It is easy for Andrew McCutchen to not forget where he came from. Because he never left.
McCutchen has simply grown from the prep pride of Fort Meade, Fla., into its Pied Piper. He was at it again Saturday, surrounded by the area's youth at his "Raising The Standard" Baseball Camp.
All proceeds from the one-day clinic are earmarked for Fort Meade Dixie Youth Baseball. Instructions on strength and speed drills and defensive and batting techniques were capped off by an inspirational address by McCutchen.
When the National League MVP speaks, you bet the kids listen.
It was one of McCutchen's final public appearances before joining the rest of the Pirates for the start of Spring Training. Position players are to report Feb. 17 but McCutchen, whose Fort Meade roots are a mere 50 miles from Pirate City, is predictably one of the regular early arrivals.
Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog Change for a Nickel. He can also be found on Twitter @Tom_Singer. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.