Written by Michael Florio Thursday, 08 May 2014 00:00
One member of the New Hyde Park Gladiators varsity baseball team hopes to see a lifetime of hard work pay off this season.
Ace starting pitcher, cleanup hitter, first baseman and most of all captain are some of the many titles held by senior Cody Campson,
Campson has been playing baseball for as long as he can remember and spent years perfecting his craft. He has pitched since a young age and played first base in games when he is not on the mound.
Campson, a left-handed pitcher, possesses a fastball and a change up which he pairs with a knuckle drop. A knuckle drop is similar to a curveball, possessing a downward break with movement, without putting much pressure on his elbow.
He does not overpower hitters when he’s on the hill, rather carefully thinking out pitch by pitch with precision.
“He has great poise, throw strikes and is not afraid to challenge the hitters,” said Gladiators head coach Doug Robins. “He’s a pitch to contact kind of kid and gets the most out of his stuff.”
Campson says on the mound he has to think a lot and know how to control a situation. He prefers pitching to first base.
“Pitching gives you more control over the game. I like to set the tempo,” he said.
In his last start against Jericho, he threw a complete game, allowing six hits, two walks, while striking out three, in an 11-1 victory. Campson took a shut out into the seventh inning before giving up a run.
As the cleanup hitter, Campson is also relied upon to be the big bat in the lineup. He has delivered so far this season, batting .300 with 12 RBI.
Campson has spent years of practice on his game, now he thinks it is just a matter of growing as a team. His goal for the season is for his team to make the playoffs. Just as Campson always has, he hopes to accomplish this through hard work.
He brings experience to a lineup that starts four sophomore players. Robins relies on Campson to teach these young players what is expected from them on the varsity level, both on and off the field.
“He’s a good teammate who leads by example,” said Robins.
Campson takes his roll as captain seriously.
“Being captain means a lot,” he said. “It means that they trust me to lead the team to wins.”
Robins believes Campson can reach his aspirations to play at a higher level, it is just a matter of getting in reps at practice.
After this season he hopes to play club ball for Sacred Heart, but has considering playing for a Division III.