Hyder's Highlights: Fish fry and homecoming kick off October

Former Raider McKenry's Pirates in MLB playoffs

October 8, 2013 · @MTAthletics

In this week's Hyder's Highlights, Aaron talks homecoming, fall practices, and a former Blue Raider looking to keep "Buctober" alive in the MLB playoffs.

Also, the team gears up for the 30th annual John Stanford Grand Slam Fish Fry presented by Nissan of Murfreesboro, taking place Wednesday at 6 p.m. inside the Livestock Center on the Middle Tennessee campus.

Saturday was Homecoming for Middle Tennessee State University as they welcomed East Carolina to Murfreesboro. Homecoming weekend brings about plenty things to be excited for - the game, the tailgate, the parade, and seeing former Blue Raiders.

On Saturday morning, the players participated in the annual Homecoming Parade. Sororities, fraternities, and other organizations from Middle Tennessee also participate in the parade. 

Alumni and fans line up on Main Street and Middle Tennessee Boulevard to see the parade. The baseball players tossed out candy to the kids in the street. This is a great way to get involved with something in the community and the players look forward to it every year.

After the parade was over, it was time to tailgate. The players headed to the Grove to hangout. Meanwhile, at the stadium, the Alumni Tailgate was just kicking off. Gumbo and fish highlighted the main foods consumed by former players. It is a good time for these guys to get back on campus; they get to converse with their old teammates and get to see what improvements have been made at Reese Smith Field.

Even with the Homecoming festivities, the Blue Raiders continued their work on the diamond. The team got some really good defensive work in early on in the week. The weekend was set aside for the intrasquads.

The team scrimmaged on Thursday, Friday, and Sunday. Sunday brought back a familiar theme from last spring ... it rained. Sometimes people tend to use weather as a scapegoat for their performances, but anyone who was on the team last year knows that you have to learn to deal with it.

During a stretch last year, we had rain delays in at least five straight weekends. So, while the rain may have seemed like a hassle on Sunday, it was good for the players to be getting accustomed to bad conditions.

Former Blue Raider Michael McKenry is still in Pittsburgh with the Pirates. Even though McKenry had season-ending surgery, he still attends and travels to the playoff games. McKenry was serving as the backup to Pirates catcher, Russell Martin. The Pirates face St. Louis in Game 5 of the National League Division Series on Wednesday.

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