Season Interrupted: Paul Skenes’ career is about to take flight

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Throughout the spring, The Times will interview high school seniors whose athletic careers were cut short by the coronavirus outbreak.

Name: Paul Skenes

School: Lake Forest El Toro

Sport: Baseball, pitcher/catcher.

Key stats: Was 4-0 with three shutouts; hit three home runs

Fall plans: Will attend Air Force Academy

A look at the high school sport standouts whose seasons were cut short by the coronavirus outbreak.

April 11, 2020

On the sudden end to the season:

“It was hard at the beginning not having any baseball, hard to find the motivation. It took a little time, but I got right back into baseball. It would have been fun to see what I could have done.”


On the lessons he’s learned:

“Everyone is going through the same thing. You can come up with excuses. You can come up with different reasons why you don’t want to work hard, but in the end, one of my favorite quotes is, ‘Nobody cares, work harder.’ You can complain all you want, but the guy next to you is going through it too. Just worker harder than him if you can.”

What he misses the most:

“I really love competition, especially with nine of my best friends on the field. I miss the relationships I made. Most of all, I miss competing.”

On the new things he’s discovered during the shutdown:

“I’m playing the guitar. I learned a few songs.”

Where he sees himself in 10 years:


“Either playing pro ball or flying jets.”

How he, at 6 feet 7, will fit into a cockpit:

“If I don’t fit into an F-35, I’ll fly a C-17 cargo plane.”

Video interviews of each athlete can be found at