Inside the Recruitment: 2017 SS Tony Smodilla Commits to Case Western

By Phil Wade

Indiana Executive Director

Terre Haute North SS Tony Smodilla recently committed to Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, OH. 

PBR: Why did you choose Case Western Reserve? What were some key factors in making your decision?

Tony: I chose Case Western because of their prestigious Biomedical Engineering and Pre-Med programs. The biggest factor in my decision was an overnight visit. I was able to get to know all of the players and coaches while learning more about the school. 

PBR: Where did they first see you compete?

Tony: They first saw me in a recruiting video I sent to them. Then I attended a showcase at Case Western where they actually saw me play in person for the first time. 

PBR: What other schools were you considering? 

Tony: I was considering Johns Hopkins University, Washington University in St. Louis, and Rose Hulman Institute of Technology.

PBR: What were your expectations about the recruiting process? Was it as expected? Easy/Difficult? 

Tony: My recruiting process was what I expected it to be from talking to other players I know that have committed. It was an easy experience due to a lot of help from my summer coach.

PBR: What were you looking for out of a college program to continue you baseball career?

Tony: I was looking for a program where I would be competing for a starting spot as a freshman. I always wanted to be a part of a team that had a chance every year to go deep into the postseason.

PBR: When did the recruiting process really start to heat up for you?  Was there a particular game or event that you feel turned the corner for you? 

Tony: Before this fall I had been in touch with a few schools, but it wasn't until this fall that I began getting steady calls and offers.

PBR: At what point in your career did you realize you were a college caliber player and become serious about taking your game to the next level?

Tony: It was something I always knew I could achieve if I worked hard enough for it. I attended college showcases all 4 years in high school, but really began going after schools my junior and senior year. 

PBR: Who is the best player you've faced in Indiana, and why?

Tony: Skylar Szynski, he pitched against me in the 2015 4A state finals and led Penn to a state championship. 

PBR: What advice would you give to young baseball players striving to get where you are?

Tony: Be proactive in getting in front of schools that you are truly interested in. Also look for a program where you would enjoy spending your years in college with that team and those coaches. 

PBR: What is the most memorable moment in your baseball career to this point?

Tony: In the 2015 A 4state finals, I had a diving play to save a run that stopped what could have been a big inning. 

PBR: Preview your high school season for us.  How do you feel your team will be?  What are your expectations and goals?

Tony: Our team will be starting some inexperienced players so I expect we will start off slow, but I believe we have the potential to be a competitive team this year. The goal as always is to get back to Victory Field. 

PBR: Where do you play in the summer?  What has been your most memorable experience with them?

Tony: In the summer I play for the Indiana Havoc. My most memorable experience is a game at Taylor University where my team and I combined for 7 home runs. 

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