Westport is known for many things. Producing professional baseball players is not one of them.
So we’ll take full credit for Joey Markus — even though his athletic career in Westport consisted of just a season in Little League.
But the 9th round draft pick of the Kansas City Royals has a decent local pedigree.
His father, Steve Markus, graduated from Staples in 1976, and played baseball and football there.
His mother, Robin Greenhut Markus, was a 1981 grad. She captained both the volleyball and ski teams.
Joey’s academic career in Westport consisted of a few months at Coleytown Elementary School. His family then moved to DeLand, Florida, where he was a power-hitter who played several positions.
Delayed puberty and and growth plate issues in his shoulder hampered his high school career. He coached the high school girls softball team one year; as a senior he was a designated hitter on a team that reached the state finals.
Still, he received a full athletic scholarship from Indian River State College in Fort Pierce, Florida. Last year, he finally pitched. Scouts liked what they saw: 1 6-6 left-hander who throws 91-93 miles an hour.
Joey is playing now for the Burlington Royals, a Rookie-level team in the Appalachian League.