Billy Horn (Pitching Coach - Long Island Ducks - Atlantic League)
I've had the privilege of meeting Bryan at a couple of workouts over the past year and was shocked when I found out he was 38. It's amazing seeing a guy 10-15 years older than everyone out there and run a 6.81 60 yard dash, have a better arm than most of the guys and swings the bat pretty well also.
After speaking with him, I was even more shocked to learn he has a supporting family behind him as he's chasing down a dream. I’m rooting for him and hope a team at the next level takes a chance on Bryan. He'd be a great guy in the clubhouse, can contribute both offensively and defensively and I think it'd be a great story for professional baseball.
Eddie Gonzalez (Director of Baseball Operations - Empire Pro League 2016)
"I first saw Bryan Hoover when he came to an Explorers tryout for the NCBL. I was the manager of the team at the time and we had about 25 players trying out. I noticed his fielding and throwing skills, along with his speed before knowing anything about him. I asked him about his experience and he said “I’m a rookie”, so I went on to ask him if teams had shown interest in him, and if not why? He replied by saying, “After college, being the best time to have pursued pro baseball, I was led to get into local ministry work with the church. NOW I am 38 years old and it’s time to do this! I know my time is short but this is a dream of mine and I must conquer it before I really have zero chance." I was blown away by his answer because for 19 years Bryan had not played ball, yet got him self ready to come to a pro tryout and out perform guys that were already on the team, fresh out of college, and those with affiliated pro experience. Two weeks after signing, the Explorers promoted Alfredo Patino to York of the Atlantic league which opened a utility spot. I felt he was a perfect fit to jump in that role, and I was confident that Bryan deserved a shot. He proved in a league full of players that went on to play in Atlantic league or American Association, that he could play with the best of them.
Bryan will be 39 years old next season, but he has shown in 2015, that he has the talent to be on the same baseball field with any of them. He is right now in better shape physically than many guys in the league. He can be an asset to any team that gives him chance, and a great player in the clubhouse.
This winter Bryan also participated in the Florida Indy Ball tryout and he out performed 32 other players there. He received the highest grading by all coaches in attendance.
We are looking forward to sending great recommendations to the CanAm, American Association, and Atlantic League teams to see if Bryan could get a shot to make one of the ball clubs.
It was an honor being the 1st Pro Manager, that did not disqualified Bryan over age and experience and gave him a chance at achieving his dream of playing professional baseball."
Danny Acosta (Manager - Florida Jets) Former Scout
I had the pleasure to meet Bryan Hoover this winter during the South Florida Winter League that took place at the Cocoa Expo Center and when I first heard about his age I was not really sure if he was going to be able to catch up with the young boys. After the first day the question was turn around, “Are the young boys going to be able to catch up with Hoover?" A very inspiring story behind him and if anyone has any questions about his playing ability you can call me any time. Bryan has speed, very good arm strength, finds the gaps often and with some power. In addition, I will mention his presence in the dugout, respect and leader figure he is for the young men is a great asset to any ball club. As manager I would love to coach Bryan Hoover again! He brings a lot to the game of baseball as well as what he brings to the entire ball club and community he is a part of. I have no reservations on recommending Bryan to any professional organization in the nation or abroad as I am confident in his abilities!