LAKEWOOD RANCH -- They've known each other since they were 8 years old, playing baseball together with travel teams and at the Out-of-Door Academy.
Tyler "TD" Dietrich and Desmond Lindsay, two rising sophomores, made an impression in an early-August camp at the University of Houston.
They did so well, the Cougars are keeping them together at the college level. Dietrich and Lindsay verbally committed to play Division I baseball for Houston earlier this week.
"It was kind of unexpected," said Lindsay, who drove in 22 runs to go with seven stolen bases and a .310 average this past season. "I didn't expect to get offered. ... They called our head coach for baseball, and he told me. And then I called their coach and committed."
For Dietrich, who hit .471 with 18 runs batted in and 12 stolen bases as a freshman, the Houston commitment was a no-brainer due in part because of his family relationship with the city and school.
"For TD, for me being from Texas and Houston made it a little sweeter for him," said ODA head coach Billy Dietrich, who is Tyler's father. "His grandfather graduated from University of Houston. So there's a connection for him."
Coming from a small private school in Lakewood Ranch, Dietrich and Lindsay were looking to play out of state and in a bigger environment.
Houston is set to be in the Big East Conference when Dietrich and Lindsay complete their ODA careers.
"I just really liked it," said Tyler Dietrich, who was a Florida Athletic Coaches Association Class 2A all-state selection and a Herald All-Area honorable mention. "It was a very nice school, overall, and I thought it was the school for me."
The baseball season isn't quite over for Dietrich and Lindsay season isn't quite over. They play for the Impact travel team based out of Naples and have a USA tournament in North Carolina during the Labor Day weekend.
But after that, Billy Dietrich said they'll rest up after a long season that started in January and has continued through the summer with travel tournaments and camps.