Lakeland senior Rich Vetrano is a starting pitcher on the varsity baseball team.
How old were you when you first playing baseball and how did you get started?
I started playing Tee-Ball for Shrub Oak Athletic Club at five years old and I’ve played baseball ever since.
What do you think are your strengths as a baseball player?
My strengths as a baseball player are pitching, being able to remain focused on the mound and having control of my pitches.
As a senior on the team this year, how do you see your role as a leader?
I try to demonstrate my leadership by practicing hard, giving it my all every time I step on the mound and motivating my team throughout the game.
What are your goals, both for the team and individually, in your last season?
My team goal is to win the section title. My individual goal is every time I pitch I try and give my team the chance to win.
What is your favorite team activity, pre-game or post-game ritual that you share with your teammates?
Prior to the start of every game our team gets in a circle and gets pumped up for the game.
Who has been your biggest role model over the years and what have you learned from them?
My parents are my role models. They have taught me to never give up and always give 100 percent in all that I do.
Tell us one thing about yourself that not a lot of people know?
Most people think I am quiet but I like to joke around. I enjoy a good practical joke.
Do you plan on continuing baseball in college? If yes, where are you going and why did you decide on that college?
Yes, I will be playing baseball at Manhattanville College next year. I really liked their campus and their baseball program.
Do you know what you want to study in college? If yes, what and why?
I am planning on studying sports management, which is a huge field. It ranges from business marketing to scouting. I have always been passionate about sports and that’s why I chose this field of study.
Who is your favorite professional athlete and pro or college sports team?
I would go with Derek Jeter and the New York Yankees. I have always respected the way Jeter played the game and handled himself on and off the field.
What is your favorite music to listen to warming up for a game?
If you could have one super power, what would it be and why?
If I had one super power it would be to fly, so I could get to my favorite places quicker.
If you could pick one place to visit on vacation that you’ve never been to, where would you go and why?
I would like to go to Aruba because I have never been there. I heard it was a great vacation spot with lots to do.
What is your favorite food to eat before or after a game?
Before a game I never eat a lot, but after a game I like to eat an Awesome Ash from Lakeland Deli.
Best place to eat in Shrub Oak and why?
Bob-B-Q’s in Shrub Oak has great food. I recommend their chicken, bacon, ranch quesadillas.
What advice would you give to a young baseball player growing up in Shrub Oak?
I would tell a young baseball player to always give it 100 percent when you step on the field and don’t forget to have fun playing the game.