Early on, it was apparent Luke Wrenn would earn a living in professional baseball.
For more than 40 years, he’s done just that.
Drafted out of Franklin Community High School in 1972 by the Pittsburgh Pirates, he played five seasons in the minors and for the past 32 years has been a professional scout.
But that’s not all.
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Wrenn is so good at what he does that has been inducted into the Killebrew Root Beer Professional Baseball Scouts Hall of Fame. He was honored during an Aug. 14 ceremony at Hammond Stadium in Fort Myers, Florida.
The hall, which now has 11 members, recognizes “scouts who are at the foundation of player development. It recognizes their tireless work ethic and contributions to the game of baseball.”
Each inductee is enshrined with a bronze plaque on the “Scout’s Wall” at Hammond Stadium.
Wrenn got his scouting start in 1984 with the Seattle Mariners. He joined the Boston Red Sox in 1990 and worked for that organization until being hired by Arizona.
Wrenn is credited with the signing of three first-round draft picks, Tito Martinez, Normar Garciaparra and Stephen Drew, and with the signing of eventual stars Mike Hampton, David Eckstein and Mike Maroth.
Well, not really. But what Bryan Clauson is going to attempt next racing season is a little bit crazy.
In a good way, though.
A four-time USAC champion accustomed to busy schedules, Clauson, who drives for Jonathan Byrd’s Racing, plans to be even busier in 2016, as he plans to compete in 200 races.
One of those races, if all goes according to plan, will be the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500 in the Jonathan Byrd’s Racing No. 88.
Clauson, a Noblesville resident, is widely regarded as one of the nation’s most prolific sprint-car racers. He plans to enhance that reputation next year in what is being billed as “The Chasing 200 Tour: Circular Insanity.”
In any given season, Clauson runs 120 or more races, but nothing approaching 200. Yet that will be his objective as he barnstorms tracks across the country.
Clauson’s itinerary will include winged sprint cars with the Matt Wood Racing Elk Grove Ford 17w, non-winged sprint cars in the Bryan Clauson Inc./Dooling Machine 63 and the Mike Martin Racing 16bc; and midgets in the Rusty Kunz Dooking Machine/B&H Contractors 63.
Clauson also will compete in a limited number of Silver Crown and pavement winged sprint-car events.
“I’m not sure if this is awesome or crazy, but I’m beyond excited for our plans for ‘The Chasing 200 Tour,’” Clauson said. “As a racecar driver, you dream of racing on the biggest stages, and this tour gives me the opportunity to race on every big stage in dirt-track racing along with the biggest stage of them all, the Indianapolis 500.”
Clauson has competed in two Indy 500s.
In 2012, driving for Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing, he finished 30th. In 2015, his first season with Jonathan Byrd’s Racing, he placed 31st.