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As budding talent, Rendon enjoyed comforts of home

Anthony Rendon, 3B, Nationals
Hometown: Houston

When it came time for Rendon, a Houston boy born and raised, to pick a college, he jumped at the chance to play for legendary coach Wayne Graham at Rice University -- a 10-minute drive from Lamar High, where Rendon starred. The All-State shortstop committed the summer before his senior year.

That way, his family -- parents Rene and Bridget, plus brother David -- could watch him play.

"I definitely think that was a huge appeal for him," said Mike McGilvray, Rendon's coach at Lamar.

Rendon cemented his status as the best position player in McGilvray's 30-plus years coaching by batting .570 his senior year. That season concluded with a district championship and trip to the region quarterfinals for Lamar.

"Outstanding talent, there wasn't any doubt," said McGilvray, who can count former Cubs pitcher Kerry Wood among his former pupils. "They're learning it in Washington, and we saw it at an early age."

Tim Healey is an associate reporter for
Read More: Washington Nationals, Anthony Rendon