Donovan Rhodes talks about Indiana University

Donovan Rhodes was a hot button topic this season. He is an athletically gifted OF/RHP. The first thing you notice is his body. he is 6'5 long and lean. The perfect makeup for a Division One arm and then you see him out in centerfield. Do not let his length fool you. Rhodes can run. He projects more as a corner outfielder but his 6.8 speed will play anywhere. He demonstrates quick hands with a little bit of a raw swing. On the mound, Rhodes will sit consistently in the 84-86 range. His deliever is simple and the ball will explode out of his hand on occasion. Donovan is just one of those guys that it is hard not to project big time talent into. He continues to improve and works hard on his craft. he will given the oppurtunity to do both at Indiana University. Once he gets into the program, he could be a kid that takes off into a great player for Indiana. PBR caught up with Donovan recently and talked about everything from Ben Davis HS, teammate Drake Duncan, to his future at Indiana.


PBR: What schools were you considering?

Rhodes: I was considering Wright State and Heidelberg. 

PBR: Why did you choose Indiana?
Rhodes: I chose Indiana because I like the feel of the team, coaches are very good and knowledgable, and I've always been interested in IU.

PBR: Was it important to stay close to home?
Rhodes: It wasn't important to me to stay home, I feel comfortable with IU and being apart of their baseball program.

PBR: Will you hit or pitch in college?
Rhodes: I will try to my hardest to do both in college, right now I'm not sure whether I want to do outfield or pitching yet.

PBR: What were your views on the Big Ten heading into the recruiting process?
Rhodes: I like the Big Ten Conference I've always been a fan of IU ever since I moved here in '99, and IU showed a lot of interest in me that other schools did not. 

PBR: What role do the coaches expect you to play your first year on campus?
Rhodes: They want me to work hard to earn a starting spot on the roster and make a difference in the field or on the mound.

PBR: As you begin your senior year what are your goals?
Rhodes: My goals are to be the best overall player I can be, whether its being on the mound, in the outfield or at the plate I'd like to improve every aspect of my game before the start of senior year. 

PBR: What were you expectations about recruiting heading into the summer?

Rhodes: My expectations were to make myself stand out on both sides of the field, make sure coaches realized who I was. I wanted to get noticed by very good baseball programs. 

PBR: What is your biggest strength as a player and how do you feel that you will help Indiana?

Rhodes: My biggest strength as a baseball player is my mental approach to each game. I love to win and hate to lose, and I love to rally my teammates when we are down so we can come back and win. I think that will help Indiana because my teammates can fed off the positive energy I bring every game.

PBR: How has travel baseball helped your development as a player?

Rhodes: Travel baseball has made me the player I am today. Without travel baseball I would not be at the position I am at right now. It helped me become a better overall player and it has also helped my mental part of the game as well. 

PBR: Who has had the biggest impact on you as a baseball player?
Rhodes: Coach Dan Roman has had the biggest impact on me as a baseball player. When I played with him during the 2010 summer season he really fixed every aspect of my game; pitching, hitting, fielding, and the mental aspect as well. He never gave up on me and never let me give up on him. He put me where I am today with my talent.

PBR: What were your stats for this spring season at Ben Davis?
Rhodes: Avg: .341, HR: 4, RBI: 31, Runs: 24
W-L: 6-2, ERA: 4.61, K's: 32, BB: 23


PBR: Who is the toughest hitter that you have face in Indiana?
Rhodes: Toughest hitter I've faced is my teammate Drake Duncan. He is a flat out monster at the plate. He will make you pay if you make a mistake, very discipline knows the strike zone well, and has tremendous power


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