American Idol sings anthem, will return to high school baseball

Cameron Smith
Prep Rally

The last week was a big one for "American Idol" winner Scotty McCreery. The Garner, N.C., singer turned 18, released his first album and then sang the national anthem at a North Carolina State football game, as you can see below. It's also recently been confirmed that he will sing the national anthem before Game 1 of the World Series, so he must have done a pretty decent job at the Wolfpack game.

Needless to say, it was just a business-as-usual week for a typical American teenager.

Scotty McCreery sings national anthem at NC State football game from The Wolfpacker on Vimeo.

Yet, at the end of the day, that's precisely what McCreery wants to be … and precisely why he's committed to his other love besides music: Baseball. As first cited in an interview with blog PopCrush, McCreery is committed not only to finishing his studies in the classroom at Garner (N.C.) High (rather than earning a degree by taking virtual classes), but also to returning to the pitching mound this spring for at least a game or two as a member of the Garner (N.C.) High baseball team.

"It's looking like [baseball will be possible]. Right now we are looking ahead at what our opportunities are. We're looking at tour dates and stuff, so depending on whether that interferes or not is something we'll have to look at, but it's looking like I might be able to get back for a few games and pitch some.

"It will always be a huge part of my life. Baseball and music were my two loves growing up, and now I've moved more towards a career in music, but that doesn't mean I have to give up my love for baseball. I may take it up as a hobby -- join a rec league or a travel league while I'm performing and stuff, then I'll definitely do it. Hopefully I can get back and play with the boys at the high school. We'll see how that works out."

The quest to return to the baseball diamond -- McCreery notably had to choose between pitching for his high school team or continuing in the later stages of "American Idol" last spring (guess he made the right decision, huh?) -- marks a noted dedication to returning to some sort of "normal" for the teen, who spoke to the Associated Press last week about how his life has changed since winning "American Idol." After spending months working on his record and traveling around the country for a variety of promotional appearances, McCreery insists that his future in the short term -- when not on tour -- is in Garner. He also fully expects to begin college in fall of 2013.

"People, they bring [being a sudden superstar] up a lot," McCreery told the AP. "For me it's not so much about that aspect. The other 'Idols,' they have a lot of success in what they're doing. They get to do music every day for the rest of their lives. They may not have the most mainstream, big success, but they're still doing what they love. And we talked to some of the 'Idols' when they came to the show about that. Right now, we're doing what we feel's right."

For McCreery, part of what feels right is baseball, which is why he'll likely be back on a diamond this spring, even if this time there might be a few more cameras trained on him from nearby bleachers.

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