Q&A With Xavier Commit Owen Diodati


Chris Kemlo and PBR Staff
PBR Ontario Scouting Director

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Commitment Insider: Owen Diodati Q&A



Owen Diodati

Class of 2019 / OF

Player Information

  • Graduating Class: 2019
  • Primary Position: OF
  • High School: A.N. Myer
    State: ON
  • Summer Team: Great Lake Canadians
  • Height: 6-3
    Weight: 215lbs
  • Bat/Throw: L/R

Statistics

Position
7.09
60-yard
(02/03/19)
1.93 - 2.04
Pop Time
81
C Velo
98
Exit Velo
Position
60-yard
7.14
Pop Time
1.99 - 2.03
Exit Velo
97
Position
60-yard
7.09
Pop Time
2.03 - 2.12
C Velo
80
Exit Velo
94
Position
60-yard
7.2
Pop Time
2.01 - 2.11
C Velo
80
Exit Velo
98

Owen Diodati Q&A

PBR: What were your expectations about the recruiting process? Was it easy/difficult?
Diodati: I didn’t really know much about the recruiting process when I began talking to schools but the goal was always to become a Division I baseball player. As I began to be able to focus on my game more and make big improvements, I began to catch the attention of a lot of Division 1 programs. I found the recruiting process very difficult as I was going to have to make a decision on where I want to spend my four years of University from the baseball and academic side. When I had to make a decision between so many great schools, there was a lot of pressure, but I'm confident I made the right one. 

PBR: Why did you choose Xavier?
Diodati: Xavier was one of the first visits I went on which allowed me to compare it to the several visits that followed. No school I visited after Xavier seemed to be as great of a fit as Xavier. Academically, I am a very good student and that was something very important to me and my parents.  Xavier definitely checked all the boxes in that category as the academics are very well regarded at the school. From a baseball standpoint, everything was exactly what I wanted. I'm going somewhere that I'm going to get an opportunity to play as a freshman and possibly be a big impact player. Xavier has had a lot of success over the last four years with three Big East titles which is big to me because I wanted to go somewhere that I will have the chance to win. It was also important to me that I was close enough to home that my family could come and watch me play on the occasional weekend. Coach O'Conner and his staff as well as the Xavier players also played a big part in me making my decision. The culture and goals they have are exciting and made me want to be a part of it.  It is obvious that they genuinely care about ensuring the success of their student athletes.

PBR: What other schools were you considering?
Diodati: In the end there were about 30 Division I schools that I was in contact with but I would say the schools I also considered pursuing include: University of Minnesota, Kansas, Virginia Tech, Liberty, Toledo, New Orleans, EKU and San Francisco. 

PBR: Where did Coach O’Conner first see you and how did your relationship develop with him and his staff?
Diodati: Coach O'Conner and his staff first saw me play at the Future Games in August. I visited towards the end of August and really loved what I saw. Everything Coach O'Conner had to say lined up exactly with what I had in mind for my future. It felt like a family atmosphere which was something I cared about. I wanted to make sure I was going to school somewhere that wasn't running their baseball program like a business. Over the next few months my relationship with Coach O'Conner and his staff only became more comfortable and I was more confident every day that Xavier was the right spot for me.  

PBR: Who has helped you the most to get to where you are today?
Diodati: My Dad has been extremely influential in making me the player and person I am today. He coached me from a young age and has instilled in me the traits of what it takes to be successful in baseball and in life. My parents have done a lot for me to get to this point and I can't thank them enough for all they do for me.  I have been very fortunate to have had some great coaches along the way including Mike McRae (VCU assistant coach), Ronnie Bernick and my current coaches at Great Lake Canadians – Chris Robinson, Adam Stern and Adam Arnold. 

PBR: How has PBR Ontario helped in your role to get recruited?
Diodati: PBR gave me the opportunity to be recruited by Xavier as they first noticed me at the Future Games. They have also offered a lot of advice along the way about the recruiting process and where they see spots for improvement in my game. 

PBR: What team do you play for in the summer and how has that helped you prepare for the next level?
Diodati: I currently play for the Great Lake Canadians. They are going to be very important in my development and I believe will prepare me better than anyone else for the next level. The instruction in all aspects is second to none and the advice they have given me has been very helpful. With the help of the entire staff and especially with the guidance of Chris Robinson I think I will have an opportunity to be a standout in the next couple years. 

PBR: At what point in your career did you realize you were a college caliber player and became serious about taking your game to the next level?
Diodati:
I've always loved the game and had aspirations of being a Division 1 player, but I think it all became real for me last year. I was able to see that I could compete and stand out against some of the top players in North America which was eye opening to me. My goals are not only to become a Division 1 player but to stand out at that level and play pro ball someday. 

PBR: What advice would you give to young baseball players striving to get where you are?
Diodati: My advice for young baseball players would be to work as hard as you possibly can and do the little things to get better. Everyone loves to do the cool things to get better but it's the little things that are not so fun that make the biggest difference. I'd also say to step outside your comfort zone and challenge yourself. The only way to get better is to push yourself against higher level competition which will ultimately make you better in the end. 

PBR: Being a multi sport athlete as a pretty talented hockey player, how do you feel this helped you with baseball and was the decision tough to focus on one sport?
Diodati: Hockey is definitely something that has helped me become a better athlete on the baseball field but it was also very tough to get the amount of reps in that I wanted on the baseball side of things because of how much hockey I played. After getting drafted by North Bay in the OHL priority draft I had to make a decision between hockey and baseball.  Baseball is my true passion so it was not a hard decision to follow my dreams.  Now that I can completely focus on baseball I think people are going to see some significant progress for the upcoming season and I have a chance to polish my game. 

PBR: What do you like most about Xavier and what were the key factors in making your decision?
Diodati: The baseball program was exactly what I wanted when trying to figure out what school was the best fit for me. Like I mentioned earlier, Xavier has had a winning program recently and is led by an unbelievable staff. The location was right and the academics are very good. Everything about Xavier made it the school for me. 

PBR: What do you feel are the strengths about your game?
Diodati: I think the strengths of my game are more on the offensive side. I'm a big left-handed bat with some power but at the same time I am still very confident on the defensive side of things as well. I am working on becoming more flexible and athletic this off season in order to take my defense to the next level. I can improve all aspects of my game and by next spring I hope to bring my game to the next level. 

PBR: What is your most memorable baseball moment to date?
Diodati: My most memorable moment to date was being able to win five straight Provincial Championships with the Niagara Falls Falcons as a young kid with a great group of guys.  Playing in the T12 tournament and Futures games ranks right up there as well. Cooperstown as a 12-year-old was also pretty cool. 

PBR: Who is the toughest pitcher that you have faced in Ontario?
Diodati: Keegan Pulford-Thorpe. Big left-handed pitcher that hides the ball well and has good movement on his fastball and offspeed. Nightmare for left-handed hitters. 


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