SAN DIEGO — College baseball is quickly approaching and although player students attending universities across the country are focusing their attentions on exams, it won’t be long until it will be time to lace up and play ball.
Outfielder Tyler Adkison of San Diego State University will be among those just mentioned, and told College Baseball Central Thursday what his aspirations were for the upcoming 2014 season.
“Right now I am working my butt off during the off-season so I can help the team out when we make our run for Omaha this year,” Adkison said. “The coaches have told us that it’s all about what you do to prepare when people aren’t watching you. That’s why I just left the gym now. Me and my team mates have been lifting, throwing and hitting.”
Aztec teammates — Ryan Muno (INF), Aaron Cross (LHP), and Jacob Erickson (LHP) — where all together when I spoke with Adkison over the phone Thursday. These guys are hardcore in their commitment to create team unity and synergy during the down time.
Adkison’s tone was all business as he sat in the parking lot of his old high school Mater Dei in Santa Ana Calif., talking to me about the upcoming baseball year.
“Everything is clicking well with the team right now, and we are all staying positive,” the 18 year old freshman explained. “The coaches know how to push us in a positive way.”
Previous major league all-star and San Diego State outfielder Tony Gwynn steps in to his ninth year as the head coach of the Aztec baseball program. This comes after a Hall Of Fame MLB career, that put him down in the books as one of the greatest players of all time.
Along with Gwynn, there have been a couple of new editions to the coaching staff that have things moving in the right direction for the Aztec baseball program.
Joe Oliveira begins his first season as an assistant coach at San Diego State as well as former Auburn Head Coach and Major League pitcher John Pawlowski.
“Both of the new coaches relate well to the players being fresh out of their major league careers,” Adkison added. “I feel like I am a smarter person since they have arrived. I chose SDSU because I used to be a bat-boy for the program when I was a kid. It’s always been a great fit for me.”