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Nashoba Seniors Prepare for College Baseball

Tuesday, May 01, 2012

 

Charlie Butler began the year with a no-hitter, and has power both on the mound and at the plate.

Five Nashoba Regional baseball players will be playing ball at the collegiate level next year after having proven themselves to be exceptional high school players.
Charlie Butler, Sam Ashline, Nick Sestito, Josh Raymond, and Brandon Radziewicz will be headed in different directions, all over the country, after spending the defining years of their baseball careers together at Nashoba Regional.

Charlie Butler, a big right-handed pitcher and one of three captains, is headed to the University of Maine. Butler, who is between 6'4” and 6'5” and 245 pounds, went 8-2 in 2011 with an incredible 2.31 ERA. In nine starts, he pitched six complete games and struck out 72 batters. In a game early in 2012, he no-hit Gardner, striking out nine.

“It's a pretty good feeling,” Butler said of throwing his first no-hitter in high school. “It's somewhat luck and somewhat having command, throwing the right pitches the whole game.”

When Butler isn't blowing pitches by his opponents, he is cranking balls out of the park.

“He definitely hits for power,” Nashoba Coach Chuck Schoolcraft said of Butler, who led the team with seven home runs in 2011. Butler also hits for average, hitting .389 in 2011. He was already hitting .400 through six games this season.

Butler gave Maine his verbal agreement two weeks before he began his junior year.

“I liked the atmosphere,” he said. “They have a good coaching staff and play the style of ball I like playing.”

The speedy captain Sam Ashline, a third baseman, is deciding between Fairfield University and Bentley College. Through April 16, Ashline was hitting an incredible .474 to go along with seven stolen bases, an average of more than one steal per game.

In 2011, Ashline hit .364 and swiped a team-leading 17 bases. He also lead the team with only three strikeouts over their 22 games.

Ashline is very focused on the season at hand, and isn't getting ahead of himself with college ball.

“Let's keep the ball rolling,” he said. “There are a lot of seniors, so hopefully we can put it all together as a team.”

Nick Sestito is a two-year veteran catcher.

“He's a good contact hitter,” Schoolcraft said.

Sestito is headed to Division II to play for Florida's Flagler College, where he will be a walk-on.

“No doubt that with hard work and dedication I will be able to prove myself as an athlete and compete at that level,” he said.

Sestito is incredibly motivated and passionate about preparing to play baseball, and will continue that going in to college.

“I worked very hard in the off-season,” Sestito said. “I'm hoping to prove to myself and the division that I'm a top catcher.”

Josh Raymond will be staying in Massachusetts and going to Westfield State University. A .313 hitter in 2011 who is working to get back to those numbers after a slow start, Raymond would like to pitch, if given the chance. Pitching in relief last year, Raymond was third on the team in strike percentage, with 63%. He was also third on the team in first pitch strikes, proving his command and ability to throw strikes.

Brandon Radziewicz has excelled on the mound this year for the Chieftains. His curveball is one of the most feared pitches in the region.

Captain Brandon Radziewicz, the number two pitcher for the Chieftains, is noted as having one of the best curveballs in the area. That pitch, paired with a fastball that hits the mid -80s make him a strong pitcher. On top of that, he is working on developing a changeup.

“Changeups are big in college,” Radziewicz said. “They will only make your fastball that much more effective.”

Radziewicz is deciding between Austin Peay, Western Kentucky and Tennessee Tech. Other schools have shown interest, but haven't had the chance to send their coaches up to take a look at him.

“Whoever wants me to play, I will go there,” Radziewicz said of his looming decision.

The five Nashoba Regional baseball players heading off to play college ball next year are at different levels of competition, but their coach believes they will all have an impact on whatever school they end up at.

“All of them should be quality players for whatever school they go to,” Schoolcraft said.  

 

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