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Spurs great David Robinson could have been a baseball star -- until he literally outgrew it

When you're 7-foot-1, it's tough blending in, no matter how big the crowd. But when you're 7-foot-1 and also a two-time NBA champion, a 10-time NBA All-Star, a Hall of Famer and considered one of the greatest 50 NBA players of all time, you're going to stand out, no matter what.

So it wasn't difficult to spot San Antonio Spurs legend David Robinson among the dozens of onlookers behind the gate on the field at Minute Maid Park during batting practice before the Astros hosted the Yankees on Tuesday. "The Admiral" was hosting several young adults as part of his mentorship program, Admiral Hospitality Scholars, which provides area high school students tutoring and guidance to obtain a degree from the University of Houston and begin a career in the hospitality industry.

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Approximately two dozen members of this program accompanied Robinson to Minute Maid Park. The group had a close-up view of the Yankees as they took batting practice, and they were treated to a quick pep talk from Yankees designated hitter Alex Rodriguez.

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Although Robinson carved out quite a career in basketball (obviously), believe it or not, baseball was his first favorite sport. He played it regularly until his senior year of high school, when he outgrew the game -- literally.

"I just grew too much," he said. "The strike zone was too big. I couldn't see the ball anymore. So, basketball made a whole lot more sense."

Got to meet one of my favorite Nba players David Robinson #theadmiral #koolaidsmile #twintowers

A photo posted by Dellin Betances (@dbetances68) on

Robinson's growth spurt didn't happen all at once. It was actually dispersed quite evenly throughout his teen years.

"All through high school, I grew three inches a year," he said. "For five straight years. It killed my baseball career."

We think it worked out OK for him.