Being deaf doesn't stop Tech catcher from making impact - FOX34 Lubbock

Being deaf doesn't stop Tech catcher from making impact

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LUBBOCK, Texas -

Texas Tech's pitching staff this season showed Omaha potential. Cam Vega's contributions as bullpen catcher have helped the Red Raiders excel. It hasn't been an easy road for Vega, he was born deaf in his right ear. 

"I noticed my mom would always ask me something and I wasn't able to hear it," Vega said. "She'd get frustrated with me at the beginning. As I got to high school I thought something might me wrong."

During a high school baseball practice his junior year, his left ear was hit by an overthrown ball. 

"I went to touch my ear and I saw blood and that's never a good sign. We immediately went to the doctor," Vega said.

His hearing loss is listed as profound and he wears hearing aids. 

"When I take them off it sounds as if you were to go under water and try to talk. I hear something, I just can't make out what it is."

Losing his hearing didn't make him give up his passion of playing the game he always loved. He played through his freshman year of junior college, but realized he wanted to be a coach. Cam hung up the cleats and transferred to Texas Tech. 

Vega played summer league baseball for Steve Martin, the father of former Texas Tech pitcher Davis Martin, and he instantly helped him get on the right track.

"He told me they [Texas Tech] needed a bullpen catcher and just lost their guy. He said he would talk to Tadlock about it. It was hard to turn that down," Vega said.

"When he came in, he just wanted to be the most efficient at his job," Texas Tech pitcher John McMillon said. "He's a great bullpen catcher. There are bad ones and there are good ones and he's a great one."

Vega has been Tech's bullpen catcher since the fall of 2017 and has enjoyed the ride with his teammates. 

"We joke around with each other all the time. Me and Vega are really close. It's good to have that relationship with your bullpen catcher," McMillon said. 

"These are relationships that I will remember for the rest of my life. It's hard not to enjoy it when you get to go to Omaha twice and get to win the Big 12," Vega said.

Cam will graduate in December, hopes to go to grad school at Tech and become a graduate assistant for the Red Raiders. 


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