If Trevor Gretzky can handle a baseball bat with the same authoritative flair that his father did a hockey stick, records may one day be broken on the diamond.
The younger Gretzky, who was drafted in the seventh round (219th overall) by the Chicago Cubs in June, has signed a contract with the team. Financial terms of Gretzky's deal were not known.
The signing was confirmed Thursday by San Diego State baseball coach Tony Gwynn, who told the Toronto Sun that Gretzky inked his deal on Monday morning and, as a result, will forgo playing for the Aztecs.
According to NCAA regulations, Gretzky had until Aug. 15 to decide if he wanted to sign a professional contract with the team that drafted him or play collegiate baseball with San Diego State.
"Wayne mentioned how he started his pro career as a 17-year-old, how if you work hard enough you can make it," Gwynn said in a statement. "The father is a nice guy. He totally gets it, understands the pro game. And the son is very mature."
The 6-foot-4, 180-pound first baseman is rebounding from a shoulder injury suffered his senior season at Oaks Christian in Thousand Oaks, Cal. He was a multi-sport athlete in high school, playing both baseball and football.
[He's] real confident with the puck now, getting it off his stick quick and no second-guessing. We need that. He's such a good guy in the room. He works so hard. That's the big thing. For not a big man, he just fights for every puck and when he scores, the guys appreciate that even more.
— Winnipeg Jets coach Paul Maurice on Mathieu Perreault, who scored two goals in win against Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday