D1 program, Early 80s, Sophomore year in college, sitting by the pool at my fraternity working on my second beer. Friend from HS who was a solid baseball player came by and said the team was having tryouts. He said he had an extra pair of cleats and another glove and gave me the hard sell to join him...that it would be fun. I changed and we walked over to the field where 100 plus were also trying out. I played 1 year of HS baseball and hit 0.86 (though I had played every year up to ninth grade). I had put on a few inches and 40 lbs since high school. I was 6' 4" 210 lbs after graduating high school at 6' 3" 170.
They had stations, and I joined the outfielders. I made all the plays and found out my arm had gotten much stronger. My speed was also much improved since HS, and I ran the bases pretty well. They had the pitchers who were trying out pitch live to us position players. Having messed around with lefty, and was terrible from the right side, I stepped in lefty. I hit the first pitch off the right center wall and slid safely into third, I was laughing a bit, as no one else knew how lucky that was. My next at bat I hit a line drive up the middle for a single. I was loose as can be, as I had not expected much out of the experience except having fun with my friend.
After the 5 hour tryout, the head coach said he'd post on the board in the morning the names of players he'd like to come back the next day. He thanked us all, but cautioned us about our expectations. My friend had not played well as he was extremely nervous, so we went back to the fraternity to relax.
The next morning I walked by the field as it was on the way to class. There was a list of 5 players invited to come back that afternoon at 3 pm. My name was on the list. After another week of practicing and putting me through the paces, the head coach offered me a spot on the team, stating the obvious that I was raw but that he thought he could turn me into a baseball player.
I played on the JV team the first year (JV teams were more common back then) then 3 years of varsity ball. I was drafted my senior year, and played 1 year of minor league baseball before tearing my knee up pretty badly.
Sounds made up, but it's true. All my teammates knew that I was a walk-on...but they didn't know the back story. Unfortunately my friend stopped talking to me. Baseball was his love and I think what happened was too bizarre for him to process.