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Buckeye senior captains take lead from behind the plate

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Senior catchers Connor Sabanosh (left) and Aaron Gretz (right) were named the Buckeyes’ team captains ahead of the 2015 season. OSU is set to begin its spring schedule against George Mason, St. Louis and Pittsburgh at the Snowbird Classic in Port Charlotte, Fla., from Feb. 13-15. Credit: (left) Lantern file photo  (right) Tim Moody / Sports editor

Senior catchers Connor Sabanosh (left) and Aaron Gretz (right) were named the Buckeyes’ team captains ahead of the 2015 season. OSU is set to begin its spring schedule against George Mason, St. Louis and Pittsburgh at the Snowbird Classic in Port Charlotte, Fla., from Feb. 13-15.
Credit: (left) Lantern file photo
(right) Tim Moody / Sports editor

As a catcher, you have to be able to handle every curveball thrown your way. Sometimes, it’s not as easy as it sounds.

“You’re focused on every pitch. It’s easy to zone out for a minute and rest your mind,” Ohio State senior catcher Connor Sabanosh said. “Sometimes innings get long and drag out, but you have to find a way to stay focused.”

This year however, two of OSU’s catchers have much more to deal with on their home plates.

Seniors Aaron Gretz and Sabanosh were selected by their teammates at the end of last season to take on the role of captains for the 2015 season. The two men left their hometowns of Apple Valley, Minn., and Cave Creek, Ariz., to attend OSU and play for the team.

Sabanosh transferred to OSU as a junior after coach Greg Beals visited him while he was attending Scottsdale Community College in Arizona. After meeting Beals, Sabanosh flew to Columbus to check out the campus and meet the team.

“I had a great time. The campus and the facilities were awesome. The coaching staff and teammates made it exciting to want to come here and be a part of a great tradition,” Sabanosh said.

Sabanosh said his time at SCC contributed to his growth as a baseball player, but he has also grown since joining the Buckeyes.

“The facilities, the equipment, the training, the weightlifting, the nutrition. There’s so much they help you with here,” he said. “It really makes being an athlete more fun and helps me really progress as a player.”

Gretz came to Columbus as a freshman and said he knew once he stepped foot on campus that committing to OSU was the right decision for him. He also said he has learned more about himself through baseball, especially by being named a captain.

“It’s a great honor to be named a co-captain. I don’t take the position lightly. I’m ready for it,” Gretz said. “It’s an honor to be named one of the leaders of these great group of guys. It’s something special.”

The team is set to travel to Port Charlotte, Fla., to start its season playing in the Snowbird Classic. It’s scheduled to face George Mason on Friday, St. Louis on Saturday and Pittsburgh on Sunday. The captains set one main goal for their time in Florida.

“Our first week in Florida, we want to go 3-0. We want to make a statement right away and win all three games,” Gretz said. “I think we should win all three games no question.”

The players are enthusiastic to get back out onto the field, and couldn’t be more excited to start the season in the Sunshine State, Sabanosh said.

“Getting down there and getting some live games in and getting the season underway, playing in the sunshine, some warm weather, get some wins hopefully and get the season started on the right foot and build from there,” he said. “We are excited to just be outside again and start playing some baseball.”

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