Andrew Schmidtlein, a 5-foot-9, 215-pound, junior, at Hayden Catholic High School in Topeka, is looking to be one of the top baseball players in the state of Kansas this spring
Last season, he was one of the top sophomores in the state of Kansas after earning first team all-state honors from Sports in Kansas after hitting .482 with 20 RBI, five doubles and 27 hits.
Schmidtlein is a third baseman primarily but can also give you some innings on the mound with a fastball in the lower 80s as a sophomore last spring. He threw in 35 innings last year while striking out 35 batters on the way to a 2-2 record.
He was also a first team All-Centennial League player and the Centennial League Newcomer of the Year. He was also an All-City pick from the Capital Journal.
Hayden plays in one of the best baseball leagues in Kansas and went 10-11 overall last year with a 9-9 league record. The record doesn't look flashy but anyone who knows anything about the league in baseball with powers like Seaman understand its battle tested with top notch talent. The Wildcats will look to improve upon last season where they finished just under .500.
Schmidtlein is also a defensive tackle in football with his 215-pound size. He had 127 tackles on the way to earning Sports in Kansas Non-Senior honorable mention. He also gets it done in the classroom with a 4.3 GPA and hopes to some day work in the medical field as a doctor.
For now, his focus is on baseball as we caught up with the junior looking to have a big season in 2019.
Q&A w/ Andrew
How did you get involved in baseball?
I grew up around it. I spent most of my childhood at the ballpark, whether it be playing or watching my older siblings play.
What are your goals this season?
I want to beat all of my records from last year. But most importantly I want to help lead Hayden to the state tournament.
Do you guys have a shot to do big things this year?
Yes, I believe we do. We have a lot of guys stepping up and filling some spots from last year’s team. We have a good group of scrappy ballplayers.
What makes you such a force as an athlete?
Being able to break the game down play by play. And using the mental side of the game to always be prepared.
What’s the atmosphere like to play sports for your school and town?
Hayden is a great atmosphere because we are a tight knit school that supports each other. It can be compared to a rowdy family when it comes to cheering at the games.
For anyone that hasn’t seen you or your team compete, why come and support?
We have a lot of fun when we are playing. We have a great team bond and bring a lot of energy.
What are your strengths and weaknesses as a competitor?
My strengths are being passionate about making the players around me the best they can be, hating losing, and being able to use the mental side to be prepared for any scenario on the field. My main weakness is not always being a vocal leader.
Do you play in the summer as well and what team, how is that?
Yes, I play for the Midwest Bruins 18u team. It is a good experience that is designed to prepare us for collegiate level baseball.
Favorite thing about baseball?
I love baseball because it is a team sport that is just as much mental as it is physical.
How cool is the state baseball experience if you’ve been?
It is a sweet experience, but it would have been better if we had made it further.
Do you play any other sports, tell us about that, what other positions do you play?
Football. I play defensive tackle.
What is it like to compete for your coach?
It helps me to push myself. He is a firm believer in doing things the right way and working hard.
What did you and the team do in the off-season to become better?
We had morning weights starting in the beginning of January until the start of the season.
What interest are you seeing at the next level and what are your plans?
I would like to play at the next level but have not received any official offers.
Favorite thing to do when you aren’t playing sports?
Spend time with my family and friends.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Starting my medical career.
Favorite subject in school, what type of student are you, GPA?
Favorite subject is science. I am a dedicated student. I have a 4.3 GPA
Who is your role model?
My Brother is my role model. He was always a small kid growing up but he worked hard and ended up being a pitcher at Washburn University. He always pushes me to work harder and to be the best version of myself I can be.
Best place to eat in your town or the surrounding area?
The Pad. They have great burgers and onion rings.
One thing the average person wouldn’t know about you?
That I want to be a doctor.