"I played hockey from (ages) 6 to 12 and then I gave it up"

That's a quote from Nick Bucci in this Bob Brainerd story over at Fox Sports Wisconsin.

The rest of the quote...and some of the story...
"Hockey-wise, it's kind of expensive in Canada, and everyone takes it seriously. It was almost like hockey or baseball, and baseball is kind of the way I went."

Besides easing the Bucci family budget, baseball in the Great White North was no longer a novelty act when Nick was growing up anddeciding which passion to pursue.

"It's developed over the last 10, 15 years, more and more major leaguers come out every year --it's crazy!" Bucci exclaimed, shaking his head over the thought of how far the sport has advanced in the last two decades in his homeland."We actually went to the World Cup and ended up in third (place) which was our best placing ever there. So it's definitely developing Canada."

And so is the former 18th-round pick by Milwaukee in 2008, who pitched for Team Canada to help earn that bronze medal. Thanks to the "Canadian Pipeline" established by a pair of Canucks in General Manager Doug Melvin and Assistant GM Gord Ash, players like Bucci were discovered, brought in to compete and move upthe Brewers food chain. The big club saw the same things in Bucci that Nick discovered playing the game at a young age.

"My dad saw it in me, I felt like I had more passion and more desire to play baseball, go out there and enjoy it a lot more," said Bucci."When I was younger, I was playing everywhere, shortstop, outfield, you name it.But I think my calling was on the mound.I had good arm strength, and I felt I could compete every four or five days out there as a starter."
Go and read it all.

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