Ed. Note: This week, Bethel junior Kenton Egbert is the feature story as the weekly summer feature series continues.
As a sophomore last season, Bethel’s Kenten Egbert made a name for himself in the Cross County Conference. As one of the area’s top pitchers, he continues to progress on the mound, and has enjoyed his first two years so far with the Bees.
“A few of the highlights I've enjoyed throughout my high school baseball career are when we beat Miami East this year,” Egbert said, also named to the first-team all-conference team chosen by the coaches. “I pitched that game and we won by getting the third out at home on a passed ball with runners on second and third.”
“Another one of my favorites would be my first league game as a freshman. We were playing Ansonia. It was my second at bat of the game and I hit a hard line drive in to center field and it got by their center fielder. I got an inside the park home run from that.”
Even as a youngster, Egbert knew this would be his first love.
“My parents were probably my biggest influences, both having played sports through high school and my mom playing soccer in college,” Egbert said. “They really pushed me to try everything and be the best that I could be not only in sports but in life.”
“I only play baseball. I have tried other sports but couldn't really get into any of them. Baseball really stood out to me because it wasn't just how big or strong you were. There was a mental side to it.”
While he works hard in the off-season, Egbert continues to work on his weakness.
“The main thing I am working on at the moment is my mental game,” he said. “I struggle with my approach at the plate and on the mound. Another thing would be letting little mistakes get into my head and then being so afraid to make another mistake that I make one.”
“In the off season, I play summer baseball for the Dayton Sluggers. We travel around Ohio and play in tournaments with other organizations from around the region. We practice quite often in the winter and those of us available play in the fall in a fall league. I do workouts on my own in the winter on top of practices.”
While he wants to see his team progress and improve on this past season, he does have his goals in line for the start of the new season in March.
“As an individual, I want to gain velocity on my throws, get stronger in my core and legs, and greatly improve my mental game approach,” the Bees pitcher said. “My goals as far as team success is to play for the team and not for ourselves.”
“I would love to play baseball in college, whether that be for a division 1 school or a division 3 school. I just want to continue my career. After college I would like to hopefully make it into the MLB draft and get drafted. That's my goal in the long run... to make it pro.”
While he would love to play at the professional level, Egbert also has a plan in case that doesn’t develop by thinking about a college career.
“I'm not 100% sure yet but I would like to be some type of engineering or architect major,” he said.