The pitcher of record in a baseball game gets a “W” or an “L” attached to their name.
Walsh Jesuit senior left-hander Michael Marsinek is like every pitcher — he wants the win.
Marsinek has done just that with a 14-0 record since the start of his junior season.
He has just one loss during his varsity career and upped his career record to 17-1 Tuesday in a 5-2 victory over Parma Padua Franciscan.
“I don’t really think about it during the game at all,” Marsinek said of his perfect record during the past two seasons.
“Sometimes I hear: ‘Oh, you got a win,’ or ‘Oh, you got a no-decision instead of a win.’ I don’t really dwell on that and let that bother me. I hope my team wins, and if I get the win, then that is an added bonus. I have a great defense behind me and [junior catcher] Cassidy Brown calls my pitches. He does a great job with that.”
Marsinek, 18, is 6-0 this season with an 0.82 ERA. He has 42 strikeouts and 10 walks in 34⅓ innings.
“I think the thing separates Michael is that he is very deceptive,” Walsh Jesuit coach Chris Kaczmar said. “Obviously, he has the velocity, and when you couple that with the arm slot he has and his delivery, he is very good. His delivery is unorthodox, and his fastball is very heavy. He has good control of his fastball and his breaking pitches.”
Marsinek pitched 67 innings combined as a sophomore and junior. He struck out 88, walked 39 and allowed 13 earned runs.
“I like to use the movement on my fastball a lot, get up in the count and then turn to my slider,” Marsinek said. “I pound the zone early in the count with my two-seam fastball.”
Marsinek, a 6-foot-1 and 205-pound Streetsboro native, also throws a four-seam fastball and a change-up.
His pitching prowess attracted scholarship offers from Eastern Michigan, Kent State, Wright State and Ohio State, and interest from other schools such as Cincinnati.
He orally committed to EMU in July and signed in November.
“I liked Eastern Michigan because the coaches are great there,” Marsinek said. “They already have a plan to make me a lot better. It felt like a good fit when I got on campus. Eastern Michigan has great facilities, and Coach [Jay] Alexander and Coach [Andrew] Maki are two great coaches.”
Marsinek is the ace of a Walsh starting rotation that also features junior Joe Mockbee, junior Bennet Stuffel and freshman Ryan Feltner.
The Warriors enter today with a 14-2 overall record and a 7-1 mark in the North Coast League.
Kaczmar said leadership is a key reason for the successful start and credits senior captains Marsinek, center fielder Graeme Frye, first baseman/designated hitter Zack Leonatti, second baseman Drew Miletti and shortstop Anthony Nemer for their play and guidance.
“I think we are capable of being a really good team this year,” Marsinek said. “We have a lot of young pitchers on the staff and guys are stepping up that we really need to step up. The middle of our infield is really strong with two seniors, Drew at second and Anthony at short, and we have a senior center fielder in Graeme. We have good leadership and a good lineup 1 through 9.”
Marsinek and Brown have also developed a bond and trust on the diamond after playing together at Walsh and for the past seven years on summer travel teams.
“Cassidy has a good baseball mind,” Marsinek said. “He knows a lot about the game.”
Marsinek does, too, as a result of playing baseball since the early days of his youth. He recalls playing T-Ball at age 3, and also has fond memories of competing in football, basketball, hockey and track and field.
Kaczmar said he first spotted Marsinek when he attended a Walsh baseball camp before his freshman year of high school.
“He really stood out,” Kaczmar said. “We knew he had a lot of potential. He has really steadily improved and been an impactful baseball player for us for a long time.
“Another thing that stands out about Michael is that he has a tremendous sense of humor. All the players love being around him. He is one of our captains and he comes from a very supportive family. His mom is our team photographer. He is a great teammate too.”
The lone loss
Marsinek’s only loss came in relief as a sophomore in 2010 in a regular-season game against eventual Division I state champion Lakewood St. Edward.
That Eagles team featured two seniors, Stetson Allie and Alex Lavisky, who wound up being selected in the Major League Baseball Draft. Marsinek said Allie hit a solo home run off him and that he got Lavisky to fly out to center field.
Marsinek was a sophomore then. Now as a seniorm, he has been clocked at 89 mph on a radar gun against Archbishop Hoban at the University of Akron. He reached 90 during a summer showcase at All Pro Freight Stadium in Avon.
Scouts from MLB teams have taken notice.
“Playing professional baseball someday would be a dream come true,” Marsinek said.
“I have heard some things here and there about possibly getting drafted in the later rounds in the June draft,” Marsinek said. “I don’t really look into it too much. I am focused on the season with my teammates and then I will wait until draft day and see what happens. If it happens, then great. If it doesn’t, then I’ll try to get drafted after college.”
Michael Beaven can be reached at 330-996-3829 or email@example.com. Read the high school blog at http://www.ohio.com/preps. Follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/MBeavenABJ and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/sports.abj.