One of the nation's brightest young baseball players is back in the country after a trip to the United States that he hopes will lead to a path to the Major Leagues.
Auckland-based pitcher Kyle Glogoski spent two weeks in Florida, playing for an MLB Select team against Major League Baseball Rookie teams at various Spring Training complex's around the St Petersburg area. The team was a selection of top amateur talent from around the world and chosen from four separate continents (Asia, Australasia, Europe and South America).
"It was an amazing experience as I got to pitch against the Yankees and the Pittsburgh Pirates rookie ball teams," said Glogoski, "I started against the Pirates going 3 innings with a strikeout and not giving up a run, while against the Yankees I also got the start and didn't give up any earned runs and got 2 strikeouts."
Part of the experience for the Diamondblacks pitcher was adapting to a higher quality of hitter amongst the teams he pitched against, saying, "One of the biggest things I learnt on tour was how to pitch against the more advanced hitters and to have a game plan on how to approach them and this contributed a lot to my success over there as I was able to figure out what each batter was expecting and ultimately throw a different pitch.
"I got along very well with all my coaches but especially one of my pitching coaches who taught me how to approach these professional hitters to get them off time with my pitches and confuse them mentally as without his knowledge I doubt I would've had the success over there that I did," said Glogoski.
Having played a lot of baseball in Australia and New Zealand over the summer, Glogoski was excited about playing in a new environment and the opportunity to showcase his talents in front of professional and college scouts. "I was lucky enough to get more exposure to different teams which led to some exchanging of emails and phone calls, which was very good to hear as my goal was to receive more interest from different teams," he said.
Following the success in the United States, Kyle was named as the joint winner of the Lincoln Holdzkom International Player of the Year at the recent Baseball New Zealand Awards along with Bonn Capitals (Germany) and Diamondblacks third baseman Daniel Lamb-Hunt, and he credits his form in the states to the hard work he put in prior to and during the trip. "I had to work extremely hard leading up to this tour, which included throwing five times a week with long toss at least three times and a bullpen once a week, said Glogoski, who added, "I also had to include the gym 5-6 times a week and yoga once a week, in addition I added the right nutritional plan that gave me the best odds of performing at my peak over there in Florida."