July 14, 2023 10:32 pm | by Amanda Foster
Sebastian Murillo can be described in many different ways. The fact that he’s a talented shortstop goes almost without saying, and his ability to be a leader on the field is evident. The Georgia Bulldog knows baseball, plain and simple.
As a member of the Wareham Gatemen, Murillo’s impact was two-fold; he dominated the two responsibilities of a shortstop to make outs and lead during the game, but he also kept that same attitude away from the ballpark.
Never failing to sign autographs or have engaging conversations with the youngest of Gatemen fans, Murillo encapsulated exactly what it meant to be a mentor on and off the field. And he did it all while establishing himself among the best collegiate baseball players in the country.
“I can’t say enough good things about him,” manager Ryan Smyth said. “He has been here basically since day one. He came out here with something to prove, and I think he did that.”
Murillo arrived in Wareham in the beginning of June, making his first start as a Gateman on Opening Night. Coming in on a temporary contract, the amount of time Murillo would spend with Wareham was unspecified. Fast forward to July 14, his final game with the team, and he had become one of the most reliable, consistent players on the roster. Out of Wareham’s 28 games played, Murillo played in 23 of them and had a positive impact in every one.
In 77 at-bats, the California native posted a .260 batting average with 20 hits, 13 RBI and one home run. As shortstop, he shined even more, constantly turning double plays, firing long-range throws to first base and making web gems to draw gasps and cheers from everyone at the park. His presence on the field created a sense of comfort for his teammates. The pitchers knew he would back them up, the catchers knew he could catch their throws and everyone else knew he would give every play his all.
“What he did out here I think is going to suit him really well going forward,” Smyth said. “He’s been a leader on this team, he’s been one of those vocal guys.”
Murillo’s overall experience on the Cape goes far beyond the numbers he put up or the amount of outs he made in the field. His biggest takeaways are the memories he made with new friends and the lessons he learned about himself.
“The biggest thing is just be present now, where your eyes are and where your feet are,” he said. “Because you never know, this could be the last day. I’m just really thankful to be out here, and all the guys I’ve met, they’ve changed my perspective on a lot of things.”
Murillo plays with a bit of a chip on his shoulder, eager to prove himself and show off his hard work to become the player he is today. His determination doesn’t get in the way of his caring — and quieter — personality, though, and the two combine for an interesting on-field mentality.
“As a shortstop, I’m just trying to take away hits because a lot of guys take away my hits,” Murillo said. “But I kind of like to keep to myself and lead by example in that sense.”
The example Murillo sets? Be confident and put in the work. He said he knows he won’t always be the fastest or strongest player out there, and that mindset is what allows him to be so confident in himself.
“I’m here for a reason,” Murillo said. “So as long as you can believe in yourself and trust in your abilities, you’ll be perfectly fine.”
Murillo can go back to Georgia for his senior season with the Bulldogs even more sure of himself as a person and as a baseball player. He stood out among, and outlasted, a multitude of extremely talented athletes as one of the last remaining players from Wareham’s Opening Night roster.
And he’s not done working.
“I feel like I still got some more to do with my stick in general,” Murillo said. “But I feel like I put myself in a good spot, put myself on the map. People know who I am as a defender, but now it’s time to show them it with my stick.”