Catasauqua Press

Saturday, July 20, 2019
Press photo by Linda RothrockCole Schiffer runs the bases in a recent game. Just a sophomore, Schiffer has a bright future as the Catty catcher. Press photo by Linda RothrockCole Schiffer runs the bases in a recent game. Just a sophomore, Schiffer has a bright future as the Catty catcher.

Cole Schiffer catching on as Catasauqua’s backstop

Wednesday, April 17, 2019 by Jeff moeller Special to the Press in Sports

Ever since he began the game in his early youth, Cole Schiffer has been a catcher.

He has relished the position that usually attracts the least volunteers.

As a sophomore backstop, Schiffer understands there is plenty more to digest in his first season as the varsity signal caller.

“As soon as I tried it (catching), I knew it was for me,” said Schiffer. “I just knew I had to work on it.

“Now, I know I have to keep getting better every day.”

Along with Schiffer’s progression, his team has followed suite. The Roughies (3-4) began the week with a two-game winning streak, impressively outscoring their opponents, 26-2, in the process.

“We were 1-4 at one point, but we knew we could get back to .500 soon,” said Schiffer. “Our start took us by surprise. Now, we have more confidence with a couple of big wins.

“We have a lot of underclassmen, and the freshmen have been playing some big roles. We all need to step up and play to our potential.”

Schiffer has worked on his game both defensively and offensively and has seen favorable results.

“I am seeing pitches better every day,” he said. “I also have been working on blocking balls and keeping everything in front of me. I have been able to recognize what is the better pitches for each of our pitchers. I want to try and do as much as I can to become a better defensive catcher.

“Offensively, I have been working on hitting more line drives and getting more contact. I want to make other team have to make a play to get me out.”

Head coach Steve Bradley likes what he sees from Schiffer. Through seven games, Schiffer is hitting .300 with six hits, second on the team in that category.

“Cole is one heckava player,” beamed Bradley. “He’s getting better every week and shows great leadership qualities for a sophomore.

“He is a solid catcher and takes care of all issues with great ease and responsibility. He keeps our pitchers calm and focused. Offensively, he is a fantastic number-two hitter, but he could easily be our number-three or four. He is a great contact hitter.”

Schiffer has been inspired by former Roughies standout and 2018 DeSales graduate catcher Randal Pacchioli as well as parents, Skip and Michelle, and older brother and former Roughie Dakota. He has molded his game after San Francisco Giants catcher Buster Posey.

“(Pacchioli) taught me everything I know about catching,” he said. “My parents always have been by my side, and my brother has made me a better player and person.”

Overall, Schiffer has watched his persistence pay some dividends for him and his team.

“We got our bats going and we have been playing better defense,” he said. “Those were two big reasons we started slow.

“I knew what I had to do as well. I can see the difference and it has been positive for all of us.”