For senior pitcher Andrew Kramer, more innings may be coming his way, but the way he prepares himself will never change.

Last year, Kramer was not the ace that he has become known as this year. He was still struggling to find his groove on the hill. However, long hours of practice and determination has made him a vital part of this 2016 Plattsburgh State baseball team.

“He’s one of the most competitive and hardworking guys on the team,” senior pitcher Scott Orr said. “He’s gotten more confidence each inning that he’s gone out there, and he’s done a lot of maturing this offseason.”

Kramer’s success can be attributed to his sound fundamentals. He does not rely on a big sweeping slider or a Johan Santana type change-up to fool his hitters. He focuses on throwing strikes and beating his hitters in the count by throwing consistent strikes.

“He doesn’t give any guys a free pass,” Orr said. “Hitters are going to have to work when they face him.”

For Kramer, baseball has been something that has been a constant staple in his life from the age of five. Ever since he could remember, he had been involved in little league or some form of organized play. The game was even a common connection that brought Kramer and his family together as his grandfather was an avid baseball player as well.

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As the years have passed, Kramer has developed a comfortable mindset on the mound. For most pitchers, this is crucial due to the fact that baseball is as much a mental game as it is a physical one.

“I think when I pitch really well, I’m really focused,” Kramer said. “I’m just focusing in on the catcher’s mitt and trying to hit my spots.”

Off the field, Kramer describes himself as just a normal kid. He enjoys spending the extra time that he has throughout the day between practice and school listening to music as well as spending time with friends. His teammates praise him as an overall great kid to know.

Music has also become a big part of Kramer’s pregame ritual. Although he does not consider himself superstitious, he does like the idea of having time to be relaxed but get focused before entering a game. Prior to taking the mound, Kramer likes to have his time for himself by listening to music.

Looking forward, Kramer is looking to make a big impact not only on his team but in the Cards conference as well. Last year, he appeared in 16 games for PSUC, and he hopes to continue getting more and more innings as the season progresses.

“We’re looking for big things from him this year,” head coach Kris Doorey said. “Not only as a player but even as a leader for the younger kids on the team.”

It is too early in the season to fully gage what Kramer will accomplish. Nevertheless, for the time being, he will continue to work each and every day to make himself the best player that he can be.

Email Kevin Morley at kevin.morley@cardinalpointsonline.com

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