Baseball slides to Vero Beach for spring break

Sam Beebe and Sophia McCandlish

Every year, the baseball team takes a trip to Vero Beach, Florida and competes in a tournament over spring break.

“[Vero] allows the team to interact and see each other in a different way,” head coach Frank Consiglio said. “After Vero, guys are much tighter and closer. It’s the main reason we go on the trip: to build that team chemistry.”

At the tournament, the Kits will see a level of competition that’s hard to find while playing games at home.

“Seeing 90 mph fastballs that early in the season prepares us almost to an unnecessary level for when we return,” junior first baseman Noah Leib said. “Going to Vero makes us one of the most seasoned teams going into our regular schedule.”

One of the biggest challenges this year’s team will face is the departure of last years seniors. 14 players graduated last year, including almost every starter. Part of the struggle with losing seniors, Consiglio explains, is just the lack of experience the team has competing; especially on the mound.

“We have very few pitchers that had junior year innings because it was such a senior-oriented team,” Consiglio said. “I think the biggest challenge for us is getting our guys innings on the mound.”

In fact, there are only four returning players, none of whom are pitchers, who saw significant varsity innings last year. Those players are Leib, senior catcher Chris Wolfe, senior first baseman Sawyer Brown and senior shortstop Tommy Barbato.

“Baseball is a game of routines, and that routine comes from extensive practice,” Wolfe said. “We don’t have the experience at any of the positions right now, so we just have to build our routine as we go.”

Though going to Vero will help build some experience, the team will need more than just that week before they can reach their full potential.

“The baseball season is a marathon,” Brown said. “But the two aspects we can control are attitude and effort.”

Consiglio echoed that sentiment, saying the team needs to focus on what they can control.

“We just need to be who we are,” Consiglio said. “Until we get a lot of games under our belt, you won’t see a really good baseball team.”  

The building of that routine will take time, as Consiglio and the players explain, but they think it will all pay off come playoff time in May.

“I think offensively we’ll be dynamic and fun to watch, it’s just whether the pitching can catch up,” Consiglio said.

The team’s season ended last year with a loss in the Sectional Final to Loyola, and this years team has no intention of stopping there this year.

“Our goal is always the same: To win in the playoffs,” Consiglio explained. “We want to win a regional, win a sectional, and then take our shot from there.”