A team, for any sport really, is much more than the eye can see. A team trusts that the next guy will get his job done, that the extra pressure will be avoided. A team doesn’t stress, and add anxiety. A team plays the game with respect because it translates to a team playing the game the right way. Being on board for the right reasons is what brings the character out in a team. It is difficult to have everyone buy into the whole championship chase. I don’t blame them because I was there. I, just like the underclassmen, always had a “next year.”Some guys have their priorities elsewhere, and some might not share the passion you have. That’s not the worst thing in the world, but the more that hop on board the better time you’re gonna have. Continue reading
It’s no secret that collegiate baseball players will never get to experience a spring break, but who cares? We are fortunate enough to wake up, play baseball and repeat for about a week straight. That’s the kind of scenario I’d like to live for the rest of my life. It’s an exciting time of year with some northern teams popping their heads down south and getting to play some out of conference, warm weather games (warmer… it’s been chilly down south believe it or not). This is the time of year where a team can really grab momentum and rip off a ton of wins. Momentum and confidence go a long way and at Tech we are experiencing a little bit of both right now. We don’t have a best player and that’s probably our best problem. We are doing a pretty good job in all facets of the game and look forward to every chance we get to be on the field.
This is my last spring break as a college baseball player and I’d have it no other way. This week we get to host conference rival Tampa for a three-game series which is looking like a premier match up in Division II. We are currently coming off a series win against an extremely good Seton Hill ball club which proved to be a formidable foe taking us to extras in the first game, and in the third game with a 9-1 deficit, they came back to beat us 12-10! We played four games in two days and we were supposed to go to Georgia this week, but didn’t due to inclement weather, and as much as we’d like to have competed, the extra days’ rest should be very beneficial.
Baseball is the best game in the world and there is nothing like this time of year with college baseball hitting its stride and the major leagues getting into the swing of things with some spring training. I can’t wait to top off my break with some SSC baseball!
The sport of baseball is notorious for it’s superstitious competitors, whether it’s Nomar’s toe tap, the Panda’s lengthy pre-pitch charade, or Turk Wendell’s ridiculous dugout antics, one thing is for sure, the routine stays the same. I bring this blog to you because routines and superstitions are taken quite seriously in the world of competition. Personally I perform tasks much better when they are laid out for me. At Florida Tech our practices are pretty structured to the point where I know (for the most part) what we will be doing as a whole on any given day, especially in season. I imagine this is pretty standard across the world of collegiate sports and that is without coincidence. Team routines are important just as personal ones are too. As a pitcher I follow a routine every week. I have 6 days to prepare for each start and I go about it the exact same way every week. If we are traveling that weekend I pack EVERYTHING baseball related, I take two bags, one is for baseball garments and equipment and the other is full of hotel accommodations (dress clothes, toothpaste, deodorant, Ipod,….you get it). Continue reading
It takes a whole team to buy into a legitimate national championship goal for a national championship to even be reasonable. There is not one team in the country regardless of their affiliation (DI, DII, DIII, etc) that doesn’t have some sort of postseason aspiration. Each team creates their own brand of baseball, has their own motto, their own label, their own habits that they play by. At tech it is no different. We are reminded frequently by our coaching staff to treat today like it’s your last day you may ever pick up a baseball. This isn’t an original mind set but nonetheless the motto stays the same. There are days where the game is taken for granted, I’m guilty of this as most of us are, but the fact that our inter-squads or practices posses game time intensity isn’t a fluke. You play how you practice. Competition is what drives the athlete, it’s why we play the game. Each team out there could probably write a book on sayings they use throughout their year together. I think it’d be interesting to televise for the public the conversations that go on during a teams practices and games, it’d probably have to be a SHOWTIME or HBO type series do to some unforeseen content , but could prove as an entertaining and educational type program for the baseball fan that may not of gotten the opportunity to experience what we have so fortunately been able to.
Opening weekend Recap- Tech edges Shorter (new member of the Gulf South) in 3 straight, currently 3-0.
Baseball is a slow game… In fact, it is so slow that according to Fox Sports, there is only about 14 minutes, or just under 11% of action in an average nine inning Major League Baseball game. No matter how slow fans may perceive the game, it is our duty as players to slow it down even more. At each competitive level, in ANY sport, the pace of the game increases and that comes with experience, knowledge of the respective sport, and the ability to play the game. I feel even pro golfers are getting through 18 holes at a brisk pace.
Slowing the game of baseball down for myself is a huge factor in my success. As a starting pitcher I, for the most part, control the pace of the game. I don’t ”work” particularly quick and there is reason for that, because it doesn’t work for me. Normally the night before my starts, I visualize success in tomorrow’s outing. I’ll wake up and go through a pretty standard ritual for my days in which I start. Most all of us do something similar every time we play/pitch. Throughout that day, I’m thinking about how I can be successful that day, what I did well in my last outing, etc. Now comes the fun part, you arrive to your destination, you go through a pre-pitch routine, get on the same page with your catcher, toe it up in the bullpen, approach the foul line, remove your cap for The Star-Spangled Banner, break it down with your teammates, and finally take your eight or so warm-up pitches before first pitch. This is where that nervous feeling erupts within me…briefly. I’m not scared of the outcome, worried about my preparation, or anything like that. I guess I’m just nervous because you don’t know who is watching, nor do you know if this is the last time you may get to play this game. If you were to watch the warm-up pitches and finally see me receive the ball from my third baseman, you’d notice that I bend down behind the mound and tie my already tied cleats. This is my way of slowing the game down, I’ve done this before, after all, the umpire says, “play ball” and not “work ball”.
All in all, I find solace in the cliché saying, “The day you don’t have butterflies…that’s the day you should hang it up.” There is nothing wrong with that “butterfly” feeling, all it really means is that you care.
Little bit late on the intro but I do feel it is necessary. First off I’m Cody, I’m a senior right handed pitcher for the Florida Tech Panthers, a DII school located down in beautiful Melbourne Florida. I’ve done what some may call the “tour of Florida” in terms of my collegiate baseball endeavors. It all started down at Florida Gulf Coast University as a walk-on where I did not compete and ended up being released after the fall semester. I finished up my first year of school at FGCU and moved on to a junior college in Ocala the following fall semester. I played under Marty Smith’s hegemony for 2 years and had a solid sophomore year which allowed me to keep livin’ the dream over here at Florida Tech. I have been fortunate enough to play with outstanding teammates and coaches throughout my college baseball career and it is unbelievable how fast time goes by. My senior season is almost underway and if you’ve ever played a collegiate baseball schedule you would most certainly agree that in a blink of an eye you’re in your final week of conference play. It is quite scary to think that this year could be my last in the competitive realm of baseball, but I wouldn’t trade my experiences for a thing.
Outside of baseball I enjoy just about anything outdoors. My favorite movie is Forrest Gump, and I enjoy music… all of it. I’m a forensic psychology major, and after someone tells me I can’t play this game anymore I’d like to pursue an occupation somewhere in federal law enforcement.
All in all, I’m very excited to bring ya’ll a unique perspective in college baseball, and even more excited for the first pitch come February.