Bulked up Raysely ready to get the season started
For Corey Raysely, the waiting truly has been the hardest part.
The Catasauqua junior is extremely anxious to begin the baseball season. Despite looming rain issues, he will get his wish when the Roughies open the 2017 campaign this week in Colonial league action.
It couldn’t come any sooner as Raysely has been ready since the football season ended. Raysely is ecstatic about several issues, one mainly dealing with the addition of 18 pounds to his 5-foot-10, 120-pound frame as a wide receiver and shortstop for the Roughies’ programs.
“I didn’t play any winter sport, so I have been very anxious to play,” he said. “I wanted to put on some weight and some muscle after football. I really feel good about the weight I am right now.
“There was a lot of lifting, hitting, and fielding that I worked on as much as I could. I want to be able to hit the ball more in gaps. After football, I wanted to get bigger and stronger. I knew I had to make the most of my final two years. (Head) Coach (Steve) Bradley and the rest of the coaches really were a big help to me with everything.”
Bradley realized Raysely’s grit and mettle as a freshman, and he knew Raysely would continue to follow the same path. He hit .295 for the Roughies last season.
“Corey has been working hard all winter,” Bradley said. “He has gotten much stronger and faster.
“His most important contribution will be on base percentage. When he gets on base, he is dangerous on the base paths. He is developing good leadership skills and is very sharp defensively.”
One of six sophomores who saw significant playing time last season, Raysely sees his team continuing to mature.
“We really know each other well,” Raysely said. “We have been playing together since fourth or fifth grade. We have great chemistry and we know it will help us.”
Raysely believes a fast start can further solidify the unit. The Roughies will end the week against Northwestern and Southern Lehigh.
“We have a challenge for us at the start of the season,” he said. “It is important that we do get off to a good start. We have a lot of guys back and we’re looking forward to the challenges ahead.”