St. Pete Catholic pitcher is beating all the odds

- Colt Daninos' father will tell you that baseball has given his son a purpose.  That purpose has driven his 16-year-old son to conquer every battle set before him.

It's allowed him to dream, and that dream has him becoming a MLB player like his favorite pitcher, David Price.

But to say Colt is just another teenager with aspirations of playing the major leagues one day, that's a huge understatement.

It's easy to dream big when you've lived through nightmare after nightmare.

"Nothing affects this kid," said Colt's former coach at St. Pete Catholic, Scott Miller. "I wish a lot of people like myself could be more like that."

Colt's DiGeorge Syndrome diagnosis -- which causes short-term memory loss -- wasn't the only hurdle he'd have to clear.

His playing time has been cut short several times over the course of his life.

"Four or five different surgeries have cost him time off the field," said Colt's father, Pat Daninos. "Each time, he had to fight to come back."

Colt's been under the knife 14 times. After living with scoliosis, he had surgery to fuse his spine together four years ago.

"I have steel rods in my back, 23 screws," said Colt. "I run or walk or jog, pitch, don't feel (anything) at all."

When his parents thought they had been through the worst, they hadn't.

Last year, after a freak accident at school, doctors found Colt had a brain aneurysm.

"Once we found out what the potential outcomes were, they were everything from death to paralysis, blindness," said Pat. "That was pretty tough."

"It wasn't a good situation," said Miller. "It was pretty grim."

Colt and his family began checking things off his bucket list.

"I might die or live," said Colt. "My last words to my parents and family, 'I'm going to die' or something."

"To know that you're hugging one of your players and he might not be here tomorrow is something I had never gone through," said Miller.

The day doctors were to take care of Colt's aneurysm, the Daninos family experienced another miracle: The aneurysm was gone.

"What do you mean it's gone?" Colt's mother, Pauline, asked his doctor. "He said, 'I don't know why.'"

"They had no explanation," said Pat.

A few days after Colt was released from the hospital, he was back on the field.

"He was back the next day like nothing happened," said Miller.

Colt says he feels like he's a walking miracle.

"It's because of God," he said.

If baseball is the reason Colt has beaten all the odds on and off the field, then his purpose has been fulfilled.

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