Prep Baseball Report

Q&A with Creighton Commit Alan Roden

By Matt Huck
Area Scout

Recently 2018 C/OF Alan Roden (Middleton) committed to Creighton. Roden is currently ranked No. 11 in the Wisconsin Class of 2018. This past summer he represented Wisconsin at the PBR Future Games in Indiana. He is the 14th member of the Future Games to commit to a Division I school. Here is a scouting report from the event.

Alan RodenFuture Games 2016 - 5-foot-11, 175-pound left-handed hitting outfielder, solid build. Quiet setup, consistently takes quality at bats. Bat plays well, hits from a balanced stance, short stride. Pull side approach with some pop, bat path is level and stays through the hitting zone. 90 mph exit velocity from the tee. Average runner (7.15) but plays up in game, makes great reads both in the outfield and on the bases, gets out of the box well, 4.19 down the line on an infield single, also got a 4.33 down the line previously on a ground out. Excellent route runner, well above average corner outfield defender. Arm played at 82 mph from the outfield.

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

Roden: My expectation of the recruiting process was that it would be a fairly long and difficult process. In many ways, it turned out to be this way. All the way until the end it was pretty tough, but I couldn't be happier with the decision I made. I am very grateful to my club teach coach, Greg Reinhard, for advice and guidance during the process.

PBR: What were you looking for out of a college program to continue your baseball career at?

Roden: The biggest factor into my decision was the academics of the school. Academics has been the #1 thing for my family and also for me for as long as I can remember. After that, I was looking for a quality baseball program, and a school that I feel I can call home for 4 years. Creighton punched the ticket in all of these areas.

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

Roden: Distance from home did play a factor into my decision. My family has been such a large part of this whole process, and so I wanted to be close enough so that they can come and see me play without too much struggle.

PBR: When did the recruiting process really start to heat up for you? Was there a particular game or event that you feel turned the corner for you?

Roden: The recruiting process really heated up for me this past summer with the GRB Rays 17u team. We played in some high quality tournaments which allowed for college exposure.

PBR: Where did the college you chose first see you? How did your relationship develop with them?

Roden: They first saw me this summer with the Rays. We had spoke a couple of times on the phone then after that I decided a visit was something I wanted to do. Shortly after the visit I received their offer, and after about a month of thinking it over with my family and thinking for myself about the things I decided Creighton was where I wanted to be.

PBR: What do you like most about the college you committed to and what were the key factors in making your decision?

Roden: One of the things I like the most about Creighton is their great academics. They are highly regarded and also have lots of options in the area that I want to pursue. I also like that Creighton is located in a college-town. Being that Omaha does not have any professional sports teams, most of the support from the public in the area goes toward its college teams. There is great support of the baseball team as well, shown in their amazing field. All aspects of Creighton were desirable, which made it the right fit.

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

Roden: St. Louis, Gonzaga, Dartmouth, and Columbia.

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

Roden: The best player I have ever faced is Alec Morrison. I got the chance to play with him for two years on my high school team, but he may have the best stuff I have ever hit against, or caught. He sits around 85, but has unbelievable stuff on his curveball, slider, and changeup. He can throw all three for strikes, making him a very good pitcher. He also works really hard at his game, which plays into his success.

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?

Roden: I realized that this could happen at the PBR 2018 Top Prospect Games at UIC. At this event, I had success during the gameplay of the event, and I knew that if put in the work, this is something that could happen for me.

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

Roden: Some advice that I would give is to stay dedicated to your studies. Every coach I talked to asked about my GPA and my ACT score. Academics is a huge part of the recruiting process, but it is also key to your future after baseball. Dedication in the classroom leads to dedication outside of the classroom. Outside of the classroom, I would tell them to work really hard on achieving your goals. No goal is too lofty, if you put in the work to get there.

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

Roden: The most memorable baseball experience I have had to this point is my high school baseball team's run to state this past year. We had two walk-offs in the sectional semi-final, and then the sectional final. One was a suicide squeeze, and the other being a wild pitch. This all happened in one day, and it was a great feeling of accomplishment with some guys that I had been playing with for 2 years, and I will never forget that day and how everyone was feeling in that moment.

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

Roden: Going into every year, our goal is to always win the Big 8 Conference. Our team will be made up of mostly Juniors, because our team last year was filled with Seniors who could really play. But, we also had 5 sophomores on the team last year, and who will need to play a big part for our team to have success. I am really looking forward to the spring, and to see what we can accomplish as a group.

PBR: Where do you play in the summer? And what has been your most memorable experience with them?

Roden: I play for the GRB Rays 17u showcase team, and my most memorable experience with them was winning our last tournament of the summer in Cincinnati. It really was a team effort, and we won three games on that last day. It was the perfect end, and it felt really good to win one with the teammates I had spent a lot of time with throughout the summer.

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