The Comeback Athlete: Tyler Statler’s Incredible Recovery


What started as a promising Junior season, ended with an injury that almost cost him his eyesight. Hononegah Senior Tyler Statler joins Eyewitness News Anchors Kathleen Cohen and Jay Leonardi on set to discuss his return to baseball, and his new goal: pitching for Division One school, Southeast Missouri State. 

May of 2018 is full of painful memories for Statler. He was up at bat against rival, Boylan Catholic High School, when he fouled an inside pitch off his left eye.

Almost instantly, Statler knew it was bad. He was bleeding from the face, and he couldn’t see out of that eye. And doctors weren’t sure if he’d regain his eyesight at all.

But after months of procedures and treatment, Statler met his first goal, regaining his vision. Once he could see, his mindset shifted back to his original goal: pitching for Hononegah High School. 

And he came back better than ever. His progress attracted several colleges, and even some professional teams. 

Despite being scouted by the Major League, Statler has chosen to take the mound at Southeast Missouri State University, a Division One school.

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