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Local coaches proud of Astros pitcher, a WPB native

Posted at 9:16 PM, Nov 02, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-03 04:08:47-04

A local man is now a World Series champ.

Brad Peacock, a pitcher for the Houston Astros, was born and raised in the West Palm Beach area.

Few may know he's a homegrown boy and his former high school and college coaches say they couldn't be more proud after last night's win. Peacock helped the Astros win their first World Series in franchise history.

"It's every player's dream to be in that scenario and he did great," said Kyle Forbes, Peacock's former pitching coach from Palm Beach State College.

Peacock has played professional baseball for 10 years, going from the Washington Nationals to Oakland Athletics and then to the Houston Astros in 2013. His career started in the fields of Palm Beach Central High School in Wellington.

"His work ethic was off the chart," said Peacock's former assistant baseball coach at PBCHS.  "At the time, he was a third baseman, and we felt like he was the best third baseman in the state. He just worked as hard as he possibly could offensively with our hitting instructor. Just a great young man coming from a great family."

Gullo -- who is now the head baseball coach at PBCHS -- said watching his former student play on national television this week left him on the edge of his seat.

"I was a nervous wreck. I was more nervous watching him than I've ever been playing, than I've ever been coaching. It was unbelievable," he said in an interview with WPTV on Thursday. "This is one of those time where something good happens to someone who deserves it."

Gullo coached Peacock back in 2004 when he was just a quiet, 15-year-old sophomore. He said Peacock helped launch the high school's baseball program that year and was one of the most dedicated players he has ever seen.

"He wasn't running around going to play on these teams trying to get a college to go to. He just said, 'Hey, I'm going to try my hardest and where I end up I end up,'" said Gullo. "He was one of the top two or three biggest team players I've ever coached and I've been coaching for 30 years.”

After high school, Peacock attended Palm Beach State College for just a year before getting picked up by the Nationals.

"He was relatively inexperienced as a pitcher when he got here," said Forbes, who worked with him as his pitching coach. "But my memory of him was he was a relentless worker, just a tireless worker. And very very aggressive pitcher that went after the hitters."

Forbes said he could tell right off the bat that Peacock was mentally tough, a quality that has helped him soar through the major leagues despite experiencing some injuries along the way.

"He had a great arm, he was very talented," said Forbes. "You could definitely tell that he had the desire to make it."

This spring, Gullo said this upcoming spring, he expects Peacock to come right back on the high school field where he started, inspiring baseball's next generation.

"Brad will be out here. Some of our other former players will be out here. Just letting our young men know that anything is possible," he said.

Peacock still has family in Palm Beach County. His father is a former law enforcement officer from Greenacres. He also married his high school sweetheart from PBCHS.

Tickets at the Ballpark of the Palm Beaches,  the spring training site for the Astros,  will go on sale soon. General ticket sales start on November 13 and Single game ticket sales start December 9.