A brief stint for the Wheeling Cardinals in the Steele and Cook Insurance OVBL has landed Michael Oberdick a spot on the Wheeling Jesuit University baseball team.
Oberdick, a four-year regular for Anthony Reasbeck at Martins Ferry, was a .310 career hitter for the Purple Riders. He was 3-2 on the mound this past spring.
"Mike was a great competitor for us for four years," Reasbeck said. "I don't think that he has reached his full potential as a baseball player yet. WJU could be getting a guy who is just hitting his stride."
The Cardinals, coached by Terry Edwards, play in Division II and will be members of the newly formed Mountain East Conference.
"I had visited a lot of schools, even some in California and Oregon, but it really came down to a handful of semi-local schools like Tiffin University, Penn State Greater Allegheny and Capital University," the lefthanded Oberdick said. Wheeling Jesuit is close to home and a really great academic school.
"I had played some for the Wheeling Cardinals last summer and most of them were Jesuit alumni. They all seemed so proud to come from Jesuit. I wanted that feeling, as well."
Oberdick knows that going from high school to the collegiate level won't be easy.
"They are recruiting me as a pitcher," he noted. "But I will try and play first base or in the outfield if I get the chance.
"I know I am definitely going to have to work on my (velocity)," he admitted. "Being a lefty, speed hasn't really been a big thing for me because I always threw hard enough, but, in college, you need a true fastball. So, that's one thing I need to work on."
Who does he credit for his success?
"The biggest past of my success has definitely been my dad. He is always on my case and telling me everything I need to do, and after 12 years, I started to find out that he knows what he's talking about, but not only that, he always set me up to succeed.
"He's taken me to camps and set me up with a travel team in Dayton," Oberdick continued. "He set me up with a fall ball team that has opened tons of doors for me, and he's gotten me a pitching coach to help me these last four years.
"I wouldn't really be where I am without my dad in all of this."
He plans on majoring in business, with a concentration on Sports Management.
North can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org