Baseball At Michigan State Up Next For Dzierwa


Bruce Hefflinger
PBR Ohio Senior Writer

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Baseball At Michigan State Up Next For Dzierwa

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Joseph Dzierwa

Class of 2022 / LHP

Player Information

  • Graduating Class: 2022
  • Primary Position: LHP
  • High School: Otsego
    State: OH
  • Height: 6-6
    Weight: 180lbs
  • Bat/Throw: L/L

Statistics

Pitching
87
Max FB
(05/05/21)
83 - 86
FB
(05/05/21)
67 - 69
CB
(05/05/21)
73 - 76
CH
(05/05/21)
Pitching
Max FB
87
FB
83 - 86
CB
67 - 69
CH
73 - 76

Baseball At Michigan State Up Next For Dzierwa

HASKINS - Joseph Dzierwa understands the challenges ahead after making a commitment to Michigan State.

“Pitching in the Big 10 brings a lot of expectations,” the senior southpaw from Otsego High School admitted. “I’ve got to work super hard to make myself better to play against Big 10 competition.”

The decision to go to MSU to play baseball was far from easy for the fifth-rated 2022 left-handed pitcher in Ohio.

“I went on a visit in mid-summer and they offered me,” related Dzierwa. “After that I took some time. I visited Ohio State, too. It took me two to three weeks after that to decide.”

Another trip to the East Lansing campus helped make the decision.

“I tried to put myself in a way to think of how I’d feel there,” Dzierwa explained. “It just fits me the best. The coaches were extremely nice and the players were crazy nice.”

Interest with MIchigan State began after an impressive outing in high school.

“I sent emails to a bunch of colleges after I had 18 strikeouts in one game,” Dzierwa said. “I gave them my whole season stats along with video PBR made from spring baseball. After that’s when I set up a visit.”

MSU had admiration for what they saw in the 6-6 180-pounder.

“They like how I was kind of athletic,” the 19th-ranked senior in the state noted. “They like my height and my arm angle. It’s different from many people.”

Making a college decision for baseball was only part of the dilemma Dzierwa faced during his recruitment.

“I got a decent amount of looks for football,” pointed out the quarterback of the unbeaten third-ranked Division V team in the state, with interest coming from Ivy League and Mid-American Conference schools. “I just enjoy baseball more. I still enjoy football, but I’m more into baseball.”

It wasn’t always that way for Dzierwa, whose father Matt is the football coach at Otsego.

“It changed when I got into high school,” Dzierwa said of baseball becoming his favorite sport. “I started pitching varsity and began to think I can work on this and get a lot better and pursue my dream of playing in the pros one day.”

His father has not only coached him along the way in football, but also baseball.

“He coached me in T-ball up to 13-14U travel ball and still helps with catching bullpens,” Dzierwa noted. “He’s been there for my highs and lows and really helped, particularly in baseball where there’s a lot that goes on emotionally. He played college football, so it’s nice to have someone like him to talk to.”

Others have also proven beneficial in his development as a player and in the recruiting process, including brother Noah Dzierwa, Otsego head baseball coach Chase Welker and former pitching coach Mark Nofziger, along with Ryan Smoyer, an Otsego grad who went on to pitch at Notre Dame.

“I have a lot of support around me,” Dzierwa related. “I’ve worked with Ryan Smoyer the last year and he’s helped a lot. My fastball is better, I have more endurance, my curve is a little better and I use my change a little more. I’m also fielding the ball a little better since my freshman year.”

The belief is more improvement will be on the horizon when baseball becomes the lone focus athletically for the three-sport high school athlete.

“It’s been very beneficial to play three sports,” explained Dzierwa, who has decided to forego basketball his senior year of high school. “They all use different muscles and parts of the body in different situations. As a quarterback you have a chance to be a leader on and off the field and basketball helps be more athletic. Once I concentrate just on baseball I can put on more weight, get my velocity up and get a lot better.”

Business is the planned major for Dzierwa, a 3.7 student who found the recruiting process enjoyable for the most part.

“I met a lot of new people and got to see a lot of things I wouldn’t have been able to without this experience,” Dzierwa noted. “It was stressful at times, but you’ve got to learn to handle it. It was surprising how quickly word got around.”

Once a commitment came, Dzierwa felt a sense of comfort.

“It’s a relief from all the questions,” Dzierwa concluded. “It was very stressful the week I was deciding. Once I made the decision it was a lot less stressful.”



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