JUCO: Power Hitting Duo Graeber, Brzezniak Leading RCSJ-Gloucester to Another World Series

Dan Valerio
PBR NJ Lead Scout

On May 21st, 2023 the Rowan College of South Jersey Gloucester (RCSJ-Gloucester) Roadrunners  claimed the North Atlantic District 19 Championship. This win sent one of the top ranked teams in the country to the NJCAA Dlll World Series that will take place in Greenville, TN from May 27th-June 1st.
Coach Rob Valli is entering his 24th season of collegiate baseball with 20 years of experience as head coach; 6 at NCAA Division 1 Temple University and two separate stints at NJCAA Rowan College at Gloucester County. That span includes an impressive 650+ wins, averaging 35 wins per season, 12 of 13 trips to the NJCAA World Series, and 1 NJCAA National Championship.This year Rob Valli has led his team back to the World Series and also earned Region 19 Coach of the Year.
This year's success is due in part to two of the top hitters in the country, Delaware commit OF Aaron Graeber and Freshman INF Rocko Brzezniak.
Graeber, a sophomore, stands at  6-foot-3 215-pounds. His play earned him Player of the Year honors and MVP of the regional. He leads the country in hits, total bases and runs scored and is top 10 in 9 offensive categories.
His video game numbers are:
53 GP |.492 AVG | .899 SLG | .561 OBP | 18 HR |95 RBI | 99 R | 20 SB 
Graeber on his success this season:
“I trust myself and the preparation I put in and when game-time rolls around I am confident because I know I did everything I could to be the best version of myself that day.” 

Graeber on the JUCO route: 
“For me the JUCO route was needed because of me switching up from football to baseball. The biggest take away I have is it is the most fun I've had. It's not a luxury D1 school. You must work for every little thing. JUCO is big for the process and growth. you can learn from your successes and failures and earn your way to the next stage.”
Graeber on Coach Valli and the team:
“Coach Valli is the only reason I am seeing the results I have in such a short time. He is the smartest baseball mind that I have been around has taught me so much. Coming into a winning culture gives us a standard to live up to and each year we need to produce. We fuel on success. Winning culture is huge having the standard and rep that we have is big also. We get everybody's best on everyday and I enjoy that. I want the challenge and to prove day in and day out why we deserve to be number 1 in the country."

Graeber on the program:
 “This program has shaped me into a ballplayer who loves the process and loves to win. I would not trade this experience for the world. Gloucester baseball will be the reason that I go the places that I want to go. The coaching staff and my teammates from my time here has been amazing”

Now let’s meet the other slugger, Rocko Brzezniak, a freshman 3B/1B. Brzezniak has a solid 6-foot-2 210-pound frame. He finished up as Runner-Up for Player of the Year honors in Region 19 and earned 1st Team All-Region honors as an infielder.
Rocko's stats thus far:
50 GP | .462 AVG | .857 SLG | .523 OBP | 17 HR | 98 RBI | 63 R | Leads nation in RBI’s 
Brzezniak on his success so far:
“Coach Valli helped switched my no stride stance into a full big leg kick with a tall set up and my hitting and my power completely came alive right after.” This happened around 30 at bats into the season, when Rocko had 0 home runs. After this tweak, Rocko has gone on to homer 17 times.
“Another big reason for my success would be how everyone on the team works hard and won't let anyone slack off. We get out there an hour and half or earlier before our practice even starts just to get extra swings and ground ball reps on our own.”

Rocko and his time at RCSJ-Gloucester: 
“Playing on such a talented squad as helped me so much as a ball player. Playing alongside the guys at RCSJ has motivated me to be the best ball player I can be. I have developed so much on all aspects of my game through my first year at JUCO. Coach Valli is a great coach."

Rocko’s motivation for this season:
“A big part of my success this year I feel comes from motivation from my baby boy who was born this past January. He has made me want to go out there everyday and put all I've got into the game.” 
All eyes will be on Greenville, TN as RCSJ-Gloucester heads into town with a 49-5 record and two of the hottest bats in the country.