HARRISONBURG, VA. (WHSV) -- Most players stick around for just a year in the Valley League. Every so often, you'll find a guy come back for a second season, but Thomas Smith is back for his third under Bob Wease in Harrisonburg.
"Bob does a great job taking care of everybody," said Smith. "He really makes me feel welcome, part of the family."
Feeling welcome isn't the only thing bringing smith back to the Turks. Each summer, the infielder picks up knowledge and skills that he brings back to Georgia Tech for ACC play.
"He can play short, he can play third, he can play second, he can play first," said Turks coach Bob Wease. "He can play any place you want him on the field. He is undoubtedly our most valuable player."
"Everything's been just a big learning experience," said Smith. "You learn from guys that you play with. You learn from the coaches that coach you. You have a lot of experience around you."
Smith's experience benefits his teammates. As a three-year Valley League vet, he lets the young guns know how to handle life in the VBL.
"Show them what to do day in and day out as they come to the park," said Smith. "If they have questions about what to do in certain situations, things like that, I give them kind of like an open door. Just come to me."
As his final VBL season winds down, Smith realizes that baseball isn't the thing he'll miss most about summers in the valley.
"Three years of being up here, I've built some relationships and friendships that I'll definitely miss when I go back home," said Smith. "I'll have to make an effort to keep in contact with these people."