Tom Kretzler is a 2016 Colonie High graduate who graduated from SUNY Brockport with a degree in kinesiology earlier this year. He was an All-Star second baseman at Colonie High and was an All-American pitcher at Brockport, a Division III baseball program. On July 1, he made his professional baseball debut with the Tri-City ValleyCats. He pitched two scoreless innings in relief to help secure a home win at Joseph L. Bruno Stadium.
Q: How did it feel to pitch in a professional baseball game in front of a hometown crowd?
A: Pretty special being that I grew up here, and super great playing here specifically, playing professionally has always been a dream of mine.
Q: Who was your biggest baseball influence growing up and why?
A: Derek Jeter was always my favorite player growing up, I always looked up to the way he carried himself and played the game.
Q: With Pete Incaviglia, Scott Budner and now Jay Bell, for a little while anyway, you have a coach staff with decades of professional baseball experience. What do you hope to take away from your time with the ValleyCats and what is next for you?
A: I’m trying to learn as much as I can from our unbelievable coaching staff throughout this experience, just trying to take in as much as I can. As for what’s next, I don’t know, we’ll see.
Q: It’s the bottom of the ninth, the score is tied, the bases are loaded and the count is 3-2. What pitch do you throw and why?
A: Slider, it’s my best pitch, always have to throw your best pitch in those situations.
Q: If you could have lunch with your favorite baseball player of all time who would that be and what would you talk about?
A: I’d say Mike Trout because he’s the best player in the game, and I’d just want to talk to him about what makes him the best. I’d find it really interesting to learn from him.
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