My Story - Ryan Ruiz
Updated: Jan 21, 2019
My baseball journey began in Orange County, California where baseball is played year round. I attended El Toro High School (Nolan Arenado/Matt Chapman), where the level of baseball is at its highest. I was undersized, with mediocre grades and had zero direction to where I was going post high school graduation. With my limited options, I chose the junior college route. There I was, 18 years old, playing at Saddleback CC as a freshman. I got stronger, faster, and earned accolades in the Orange Empire Conference. My sophomore year I received 16 division 1 offers, however I still greatly lacked guidance and direction.
I remember how overwhelming and stressful the process felt. Where should I go? What distance am I willing to go? Is it the right coaching staff? Will I play right away? The questions were endless. This was supposed to be an exciting journey, but I was so stressed about making the right decision to go to the best school that was a FIT for me. I received letters from Wake Forest, Tennessee, University of Southern California, University of San Francisco, Lamar University and Texas Tech. There were so many options now. I eliminated East coast options due to distance, and USC/USF due to expense, even with a 75% scholarship offer. It was on my official visit to Texas Tech where I felt what I want every one of our players to feel. It felt right and it was perfect for me. It was the right place for me academically, financially, geographically and at the level I wanted to play.
Attending Texas Tech was the best decision of my life. I was a two-time All Big XII player and was up for the Easton Defensive Player of the year award my senior year. I batted .388 my junior year and .368 my senior year while stealing 35 bases.
Although I did not get drafted, I signed with the St. Paul Saints as a free agent. I was able to continue and play professional baseball for eight years. Like many players today who wish to move on to the next level, sometimes that level may not be what you thought. I made the decision to swallow my pride after not being drafted and continued to play professionally. It is important to have the realization and understanding that there is a school program fit for them. As a regional advisor for College Athlete Advantage, my passion and mission is to get our players to the right college for them.
Following my years of playing baseball, my coaching background started with 4 years at Central Arizona College, attending 2 NJCAA World Series. Next, I coached two years at Grand Canyon University, where we went to the Division II World Series. Also, I spent summers coaching in multiple collegiate leagues; Santa Maria Indians in the California Collegiate, as well as Mankato Moondogs and Rochester Honkers of the Northwoods League. I have experience as Associate Scout for the Kansas City Royals and have worked with the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2017 as a left handed batting practice assistant.
I have now worked in higher education for the past 13 years and have a great understanding of the academic, financial, and athletic realms at the college level.
My passion is for the game of baseball and my desire is for student athletes to have a great experience in the recruiting process. These have brought me to be a Regional Advisor for College Athlete Advantage. I am a baseball guy wanting the best fit for our athletes. My goal is to work with families and get players to the right collegiate FIT for them.