by Ben Schmidt, STAFF WRITER
23 February 2018
YOUNG FACES, YOUNG TEAM
In just a few short days the Oswego East gym will be filled with players and their bats, gloves, cleats, helmets, and any other items they need to help them play. It will be three days of different drills and exercises to help determine who will be on this years freshman baseball team.
Making the jump from middle school to high school level baseball might be somewhat of a change for some of the players, as the amount of time put in, skill level, and intensity all change from in previous years.
“I think the transition will take a little getting used to as coaches will be a lot more strict and i’ll be waking up early for practices,” freshman Jake Polubinski said.
For other players, though, the change will not have that big of an effect and they will be able to handle playing baseball at a higher level.
“I don’t think middle school to high school baseball will be a big change, other than maybe even competition being worse for baseball in high school considering I have played on a very good team over the summer and in fall ball facing some of the best teams in the state for my age and higher ages,” freshman Cole Collander said.
STEPPING UP TO THE PLATE
Collander added that some of his specific strengths as a young player would be a valuable asset to the team.
“Some strengths I could bring [are] my pitching, being able to throw hard, and [locating] the ball along with also having good bat power. The team would benefit from this in an offensive and defensive way from having someone to not let up too many runs and also gain a lot of runs for Oswego East,” Collander said.
Collander is not the only one who thinks he could make an impact for the team if on it, as there are other players who also think they can contribute, such as other freshman Joey Hansen.
“I feel I could bring speed on the base paths, solid defense, and a contact bat to the East team,” Hansen said.
THE VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT
During the three days the coaches have to pick and choose who will form the team. They want to look at a variety of things when choosing the players so they can not only win games, but have the best personalities and people and general.
“We look at obviously if the player can play baseball, what are their skill sets, and what are they good at, but it also comes down to are they coachable and how are their grades in class because school comes first,” Head Coach Brian Schaeffer said.
KEEPING AN EYE ON THE BALL
Making this year’s team could be a stepping stone for players for years to come, if they hope to potentially make a career in baseball. Being on the team could help them reach their goals they need to in order to succeed in baseball.
“My goals as a player [are to] keep working hard to have perfect mechanics, and be able to pitch in the 90’s by the end of high school,” Polubinski said.
Overall, in preparation for tryouts many of the players have been training indoors, doing a variety of different workouts such as speed drills, strength drills — anything that may help them improve and prepare for tryouts.
“My daily workout would be doing a lot of upper body, core, and leg workouts on my own every night. I’m also doing weighted baseball workouts to gain more arm strength on my fastball,” Collander said.
Tryouts will take place on Monday the 26th.
Ben Schmidt is a staff writer for Oswego East High School’s online news magazine the HOWL