Baseball: Niles North’s Dwyer catching scouts’ attention with defense
Niles North's Gabe Dwyer hits a line drive single during the Vikings' game against Deerfield. | Curtis Lehmkuhl~Sun Times Media
Updated: July 29, 2012 6:05AM
In baseball showcases like the high-profile Stevenson Showcase, athletes receive limited opportunity to stand out.
Niles North’s Gabe Dwyer played six innings over the course of two nine-inning games because he was one of the CSL team’s three catchers. Dwyer earned three at-bats over the course of those six innings.
While his opportunities were limited during the games, Dwyer and the other position players got the opportunity to perform position-specific events before each game. The catchers displayed their pop times — how quickly they can catch the ball and fire to second base — for the hordes of scouts in attendance.
That’s where Dwyer shined. The Niles North senior recorded the top pop time among CSL catchers, and that, along with his quickness behind the plate, is a big reason why the Niles North senior has received interest from Division I recruiters this summer.
“I’ve been getting some letters, some emails,” Dwyer said. “I went to a camp at Bradley and they seem pretty interested; they want to see me play. I know Boston College just showed interest after seeing me play (at the Showcase). It’s started; hopefully it will pick up soon.”
Dwyer, as he showed at Stevenson, is solid defensively, but it’s his hitting that he will spend the most time this summer trying to develop.
“I think my hitting and approach at the plate is definitely what I want to improve the most,” said Dwyer, whose teammate Elliot Mark went 2-for-2 in the CSL’s 5-1 victory against the MSL. “I’m definitely going to work on that this summer. Defensively, I just want to keep improving in every game.”
Dwyer is playing with the Schaumburg Seminoles, which travels to high-profile tournaments throughout the Midwest. He also plays with Niles North’s summer team whenever he can.
Dwyer remains disappointed with the Vikings’ performance this spring, but with the majority of lineup returning, he feels confident that Niles North can improve upon its 16-20 record.
Dwyer knows he’ll have to improve offensively in order for Vikings to do that.
“I think, as a team, we could have done better, especially during conference,” Dwyer said. “We have a lot of returning guys, so we’re hopeful for next year. Personally, I think I played pretty solid defense, but I think my hitting kind of held me back. I didn’t hit the way I wanted to, let’s put it that way.”