College Baseball: Good times for Lewis’ Michael Schroeder
By Tim O’Brien For Sun-Times Media April 23, 2013 8:18PM
Michael Schroeder, Lewis baseball. | Supplied photo
Updated: May 25, 2013 6:36AM
Michael Schroeder doesn’t shy away from talking about a flaw in his game.
The Lewis senior first baseman is a streaky player, something he tries his best to limit.
“I’m trying to get those (bad) streaks to go away,” Schroeder said with a laugh. “In batting practice or in the on-deck circle, it’s just about that mind-set and getting that feel.”
Judging by his performance lately, Schroeder certainly is on the right track. On April 15, he was named the Great Lakes Valley Conference Player of the Week, the second time he’s been honored this season.
For Lewis coach Tim McDonough, Schroeder’s streaks have been anything but an issue for a simple reason: The good outweighs the bad.
“Mike has been here for two years, and that’s the case with his streakiness, a little bad, a little good,” McDonough said. “The fortunate thing is that he’s streaky good a lot more.”
In earning the conference honor for the second time, Schroeder went a sizzling 10-for-14 over three games with a two-run home run, two doubles, five RBI and eight runs. His efforts helped Lewis to a sweep of host Kentucky Wesleyan, the Flyers winning 15-1, 7-3 and 14-9.
Schroeder went 4-for-4 in the final game of the series.
He credited extra time with Lewis hitting coach John Drahos for getting on track at the plate. The duo didn’t fix any huge glitch in his swing or make any major adjustments. They just got back to basics.
“We worked on discipline at the plate like when I was hitting well at the beginning of the season,” Schroeder said. “I was too anxious and wasn’t looking for my pitch but the pitcher’s pitch. I was hitting to second base a lot, not spraying the ball to left-center like I’m supposed to. It was all about timing and my approach.”
Through 24 games this season, Schroeder was hitting .337 with five homers, 31 RBI and 23 runs.
He hasn’t done his damage just at the plate. He also earned the win on the mound in Lewis’ 7-3 victory over Wesleyan.
The southpaw went six innings, giving up four runs (one earned) while scattering five hits and striking out four. His record for the season is 5-2.
So McDonough has the luxury of penciling Schroeder’s name into the lineup and the rotation.
“It helps because Mike is such a quality player at both ends,” McDonough said. “He’s an all-conference pitcher and first baseman. That’s a rare combination, especially at the high level he plays. It will be tough to replace him next year.”
Balancing hitting and pitching has become second nature for Schroeder.
“It gives you a lot of confidence because with pitching and hitting, they both tap into the mental aspect of the game so much,” he said. “I’ve been doing both since I was little so I’m used to it. I’m a huge competitor, and I love competing wherever it is.”
For now, his focus is on finishing strong his senior year.
“Everything has been clicking for us,” Schroeder said. “The bottom of the lineup has been hitting well and getting around to the top of the order. Small-ball has been working for us. I got back to basics and what I know works to gain that confidence. It feels good to be back.”
Schroeder transferred to Lewis from Triton College in River Grove after his sophomore season. He is from Crown Point, Ind., and graduated from North Newton High School.