Q&A with Louisiana-Monroe commit C Austin Schmitt (Valley Park, 2018)



Shon Plack
Missouri Scouting Director

Austin Schmitt (Valley Park, 2018) has committed to Louisiana-Monroe. 

Schmitt is a 5-fot-10 160-pound right-handed hitting catcher in Missouri’s 2018 class. He ran a 4.07 home to first and has an exit velo of 86 mph. At the plate, Schmitt has an open stance with a controlled short in-line stride.  He has loose hands, and had consistent line drives gap-to-gap during batting practice at the Preseason All-State Showcase in February.  

Behind the plate, Schmitt has pop times between 2.13 to 2.27 pop times with a 76 mph positional velo.  He has an over the top release with quick feet and fluid transfer.

In the outfield, Schmitt has an 83 mph positional velo. He has a high three quarters release, plays through catch, and works behind the ball with a clean transfer.

Last Spring, Schmitt led Valley Park to to a conference title and a 19-5 record.  He finished the season with a .375 batting average.  He led with Hawks with 27 hits and 31 RBI. 

Here is a look into the recruiting process for Austin Schmitt.

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

Schmitt: When I first started the process I didn't expect it to be too overwhelming or challenging. But once I started to be involved more in the process I realized all that truly went into it. At the beginning of the process writing all the emails to the coaches may not be the most fun thing to do but you start to love it and enjoy it.

PBR: Did location or distance from home play a factor in your decision?

Schmitt: Both distance and location played a big factor in my decision. From the start I wanted to go out of state and to the south. I wanted to play somewhere warm all year and not have to worry about the cold. The distance was also a big part because it's not too far, but it's not close by any means.

PBR: Where did Louisiana-Monroe first see you? How did your relationship develop with them?

Schmitt: They first saw me down in Fort Myers this past October at a Perfect Game tournament. It was truly the Cinderella story of right place at the right time. They just so happened to be at the field we were playing at and they knew nothing of me or the team. They saw me and liked what they saw then came to the game the following day. After that game he talked with my coach and got my information. We had a call that night and talked about the school and baseball. We set up a visit for late October to come see the campus. When I went down I loved the atmosphere and the coaches. I really bought into the vision of the program and couldn't picture myself anywhere else.

PBR: Who is the best player you have faced in your state, and why?

Schmitt: Mark Vierling is the best player I have faced. He is an all around player. I've never played anyone that has such a high hitting ability than him.

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

Schmitt: Hard work and dedication truly does pay off. You don't have to be the biggest or strongest kid to work hard and it will pay off in the long run.  

PBR: What do you do in the offseason to keep yourself in baseball shape and prepare for the upcoming season?

Schmitt: During the offseason I lift 4-5 days a week. With my summer team we start practices in December and go to the beginning of high school season. During that time I am getting countless reps in all aspects of the game which makes transitioning to high school much easier.

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

Schmitt: Besides committing, this past highs chool season was one to remember. It was our schools fourth consecutive conference title and I was named conference player of the year and named 1st team All-District. It was the greatest season I have partaken in.

PBR: What do you like most about Louisiana-Monroe and what were the key factors in making your decision?

Schmitt: The thing I liked most was the coaches and the vision that they have of the program. The conference also played a role in the decision. Having three nationally ranked teams in the conference goes to show how tough it will be.

PBR: What other schools were on your short list before you made your final decision?

Schmitt: Evansville and Maryville were ones that I had been talking to on a day to day basis. There was a couple others that emails were sent back and forth but nothing serious.

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

Schmitt: This year we are looking forward to having a chance to win our 5th consecutive conference title. We have a young team with a lot of potential. This is the first year that I will be able to play with my brother who is an incoming freshman. He will be a huge factor in our teams pitching and offensive strategy. I hope that we will be able to make a run in districts and have a chance for the state tournament. 

 

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