Raymond passing on knowledge to underclassmen

Published 10:16 am Friday, May 29, 2015

Senior Dalton Raymond takes seriously being a leader on the Edwardsburg baseball team.

Dalton Raymond

Dalton Raymond

All losses hurt Raymond, but how the Eddies lost a doubleheader (4-3 and 13-3) to Niles on May 14 particularly bothered the four-year varsity starter.

“We didn’t play well,” Raymond said. “We made too many errors. In key situations we walked guys. But I put a lot of that on myself. I’m a captain and I need to talk to my boys better.”

Raymond wants to pass down to his younger teammates what he’s learned as a member of Edwardsburg baseball team.

Upperclassmen like Kyle Slack and Michael Kempton played a big role in Raymond’s development as a baseball player.

“They were just great leaders,” Raymond said. “They helped me grow as a player. I’m trying to pass that leadership down to the younger players now.”

Along with respecting the game, Raymond excels at it as a pitcher and centerfielder. Through May 14, Raymond owned a 4-0 record with a 1.10 earned run average. He was batting .380 with one homer and 30 RBIs.

Those numbers helped the Eddies win 15 of their first 23 games.

“He’s doing a good job all-around,” Edwardsburg baseball coach A.J. Gaideski said. “He’s confident and doing all the little things right. He does a good job of keeping the team together.”

In the doubleheader against Niles, Raymond collected a two-run single in the opener and he singled twice in game two, while batting No. 3 in the order.

“I’ve been seeing the ball pretty well lately as a hitter,” Raymond said. “I saw the ball pretty well out of the pitcher’s hands against Niles. I’m taking a good approach, taking good swings and getting base hits. I’m trying to help my team win.”

Batters haven’t liked facing Raymond. He’s gotten players out this year with his fastball and slider.

“I feel like I’ve performed pretty well on the mound,” Raymond said. “I left the ball up early in the season. My command is better now. I’m keeping the ball down low.”

“He’s one of our best pitchers,” Gaideski said.

Raymond’s defense in center field also can’t be overlooked. He had six put-outs against the Vikings.

“My range out in center field has improved the most,” he said. “I’ve worked on getting my legs stronger and I’ve been able to track down balls better.”

Gaideski wouldn’t be afraid to play Raymond at any position in the field.

“He could play a lot of positions,” he said. “He just does an excellent job. He’s a heck of a ball player.”

Raymond, who has signed to play baseball next year at Spring Arbor University, badly wants to win a district title before his high school baseball career concludes.

“We’ve made it to the district championship game the last three years and lost,” Raymond said. “I want to get it this year.”