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Glick puts fear in opposing pitchers

Published 8:31am Thursday, May 22, 2014

Niles High School baseball player Connor Glick puts fear in opposing pitchers and baserunners.

“He’s a threat every time he comes to the plate,” said Vikings baseball coach Mike Vota about his senior standout. “Just the velocity of the ball coming off his bat impresses me.”

Glick, who hits third in the Niles lineup, is batting .446 with three homers and 27 RBIs for the 18-10 Vikings.

“I like (batting third) because I get to bat in the first inning,” said Glick.

The most impressive stat is that Glick has struck out only three times.

“He’s a power hitter that doesn’t strike out a lot,” Vota said. “He’s a hybrid.”

“Most pitchers want to get ahead in the count and I put a pretty good swing on pitches early in the count,” Glick said.

“Also, when I get two strikes on me I protect the plate and fight balls off. I don’t take pitches that are close to being strikes.”

As a catcher, Glick stops opponents from using their speed on their bases.

“Actually, people don’t run a whole bunch on him,” Vota said. “Teams watch him throw in between innings and don’t even run on him.”

Glick and Niles standout pitcher Tate Brawley (5-1, 1.89 ERA, 60 strikeouts over 37 innings) have developed a chemistry as a battery. When he was 12 years old, Glick was Brawley’s catcher in travel baseball leagues.

“Tate and Connor have experience together,” Vota said. “They have a good grip on what needs to be done. I let them control the game. I throw in my two cents when I need to.”

Glick and Brawley do have some minor disagreements during games.

“He shakes me off a couple times,” Glick said. “But I understand what he wants to throw and I let him throw a particular pitch.”

The 6-foot-5, 200-pounder has caught and played first base and third base during his three years on the varsity.

Glick’s freshman year didn’t include time on the diamond. Glick broke his left leg playing for the junior varsity basketball team. Six months was needed to recover from the injury.

“After I broke my leg I was unsure if I’d be able to catch again,” Glick said. “But I worked hard and got back in shape and was able to catch again.”

That hard work has continued throughout Glick’s high school career. He works out with Brawley every time he gets the chance in the Niles High School weight room.

“I feel like I’ve improved the most in my power and arm strength,” Glick said. “That helps me in all parts of my game with my speed, running the bases and agility at first and third base.”

Defensively, Glick has a .995 fielding percentage.

“He’s good at either corner,” Vota said. “We play him at first base because we want to save his arm and knees.”

Glick hopes he has several more games left in his high school career.

“At first, we struggled with our discipline at the plate,” Glick said. “A lot of the players on this year’s team were on the JV last year and we didn’t know each other well. We’re close now and meshing as a team.

“I think we’re good enough to make it to the state finals. With Tate (Brawley) on the mound we just need a couple of runs to win a game.”

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