Q and A with 2013 Ohio Northern Commit: Ryan Prather (Wadsworth HS)

Ryan Prather, LHP, Wadsworth HS, Class of 2013

PBR: Why did you choose Ohio Northern?

Prather: I chose Ohio Northern mainly because of the quality of the pharmacy program. As far as baseball is concerned, I really feel I have a great opportunity under Coach Stechschulte. I also really enjoyed the campus.

PBR: What other schools were you considering?

Prather: University of Findlay.

PBR:  Where did the coaching staff first see you compete? 

Prather: Coach Stechschulte saw me on video first. Then, I attended the Ohio Northern Baseball Prospect Camp in August of this past year.

PBR: What role does Coach Stechschulte expect you to play during your first year on campus?

Prather: He has said in the past that he fully expects me to compete for quality playing time. He said it all depends on how hard I work and how well I perform in the offseason and preseason.

PBR:  Coach Stechschulte spent a few years pitching in the MLB.   As a pitcher, what aspects of the pitching side of baseball are hoping to learn the most? 

Prather: I’m hoping to learn what it really takes to compete and what it really takes to make it to the next level. I fully intend to improve in every aspect of my game, and I believe that Coach Stechschulte is the person that can best help me do that.

PBR: Who has had the biggest impact on you as a baseball player?

Prather: My dad has definitely had a significant impact on me as a player. He has worked with me ever since I stated my goals of wanting to become a professional baseball player. He’s been there every step of the way. Also, my high school pitching coach, Bill Gearhart, has really helped me become a true pitcher and has shown me that pitching isn’t just throwing the ball. It’s so much more than that.

PBR: Who do you play for in the summer and what was your most exciting experience playing summer ball?

Prather: I play for the 18U Ohio Thunder. I’ve had a ton of exciting experiences, but there’s one that sticks out the most to me. I was pitching in the seventh inning (I had been in the whole game) and my coach said that I couldn’t let any guys on base, and if I did, I was done. So, first guy up lasers a shot to right field. I’m thinking I’m done for sure, but then my right fielder threw a bullet to first base and got him out. After that, I got the last two outs and completed the game and we won.

PBR: What were your stats last season for Wadsworth?

Prather: I never received my stats from Wadsworth last year, but on my summer team, I went 6-2 as a starter, 54 innings pitched, 53 strikeouts, 2.98 ERA, 1.43 WHIP.

PBR: Who is the toughest pitcher you have faced in Ohio?

Prather: By far, the toughest pitcher I’ve faced is Tucker Linder from Tallmadge (now at Kent State). He was the hardest throwing pitcher I’ve gone up against.