CHS senior wraps up career on diamond

Jonathon Wiesman was a catcher throughout his career for Austin and Crothersville baseball teams until this spring when he changed positions.

“This year I played third and shortstop,” Wiesman said. “Before this year, I was a catcher for 12 years. I like shortstop because all the action is there.

“At shortstop you have to cover more ground. Lets say if it’s hit to the outfield you have to be the cutoff for the centerfielder and the leftfielder. At third base you just kind of cover that general area.”

Baseball has always been a passion for Wiesman.

“I started playing baseball when I was 4 years old,” the CHS senior said. “Baseball keeps me out of trouble. Since I love playing the sport and it’s something I’m good at, it makes me want to keep my grades up so I can stay on the baseball team.

Wiesman said he enjoys playing defense.

“At shortstop if there is a runner on first and he is going to steal second, if it’s a right-handed batter the second baseman covers because it’s more likely he’ll hit toward shortstop,” he said. “If it’s a left-handed batter then I’ll cover the base and the second baseman will stay where he is at.

“At third base, if there is a bunt and there is a runner on second, the third baseman will charge the baseball and the shortstop will cover third base.”

Wiesman said practice is important to go over the coverage on those plays.

“Most of the time we don’t call plays (in games),” Wiesman said. “We kind of know it from practice. You just see where the ball is hit and where the runners are on base, and we know what to do. Practice is really important. We try to get as many reps (repetitions) in as possible. We do our basic infield work, we bat every day,”

He batted seventh for the Tigers this spring, and considers himself a contact hitter.

“They’re going to throw me a fastball on that first pitch,’ he said. “If its inside, I try to pull it, take it over the third baseman’s head, or between short and third.”

He said since he practices on the CHS field every day, he enjoys home games.

“We didn’t have many home games this year because of the rain,” Wiesman said. “Mother Nature has been kind of weird. I feel more comfortable playing at home because I know my field better than I do anywhere else.”

Wiesman said you always want to have a positive outlook in all sports.

“You’ve got to know what you’re doing in baseball,’ he said. “You have to trust the other players. It’s like our pitchers. We can’t rely on our pitchers (to strike everybody out) because we’re out on the field for a reason. All he’s there for is to make them hit the ball and throw strikes.”

Wiesman attended elementary school in Austin, and has attended Crothersville schools since eighth grade.

“I’ve enjoyed my friends here mostly,” Wiesman said. “I’ve got a lot of great friends that play on the baseball team. We all get along great, and they’ve been on my side the whole way.”

He enjoyed the bus rides to the away games.

“We pumped ourselves up for the games,” he said. “After we get the ‘W,’ on the way back we stop and get ice cream. What I’m going to miss most is all my friends and playing the game of baseball.”