The Foundation: Trevor Gretzky paves his own way

The Foundation: Trevor Gretzky paves his own way
September 10, 2013, 11:00 pm
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Tony Andracki

Walking around with the name "Gretzky," it's hard to fly under the radar.

Trevor Gretzky understands that. And while he's not trying to make a name for himself in hockey like his father, Wayne, he's not running from the fame or attention that has come from the letters scrawled on the back of his jersey.

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"It's pretty cool," Trevor said. "I respect what my father's done. Everybody asks 'is it hard playing in his shadow?' I really don't think it is at all. I respect what he's done for the game of hockey and what he's done for my family."

The younger Gretzky is a 20-year-old outfielder in the Cubs system. After being selected in the seventh round of the 2011 MLB Draft out of Oaks Christian High School in California, Trevor spent all of 2012 playing in Rookie Ball in Arizona, hitting .304 with a .372 on-base percentage.

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He started 2013 off with short-season Boise before being promoted to the Kane County Cougars, just 40 miles west of Wrigley Field.

"He's got to carry around that name and even though you're talking about two different sports, when you mention the name 'Gretzky,' people are going to be watching him," Cougars hitting coach Tom Beyers said. "It's something that Trevor very much understands and he has no problem handling that."

Trevor hit his first pro home run on Sept. 1, the day before the last game of the Cougars' season, with his parents in attendance for Labor Day weekend.

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Trevor has played just 76 games since being drafted more than two years ago and though he has a good average (.288) and on-base percentage (.335), he has yet to show the power (.332 slugging) some expected he would have. But as he grows into his 6-foot-4 frame, the athleticism running through the Gretzky bloodline could begin to present itself, allowing Trevor to make his mark in the Cubs system.

"Something my dad taught me as a kid, just play the game hard and good things will happen," Trevor said. "I've tried to do that my whole career and my whole life. I'm just out here working like all the other guys."