One of the most often overlooked benefits of summer baseball is the ability to bring players together from all parts of the country, and sometimes even across international borders. The two-month season allows players to bond with teammates from different athletic divisions, NCAA and otherwise, and live outside of their comfort zone. The Dutchmen have always made it a priority to match local Northeast talent with the plethora of talent from across the nation. This year’s roster will feature players from perennial baseball factories like Texas, California, and a collection of talented players from Florida, like Andrew Giddens (Ave Maria), Zak Spivy (Polk State), and Zeke Pietrzyk (FGCU).
A freshman at Ave Maria, Andrew Giddens enjoyed a strong career at Lakewood Ranch High School in Brandenton, Florida. The 6’1” right-hander was one of Perfect Game’s top 1000 players in the nation and the service’s 171st ranked player in the state of Florida. During his senior season, Giddens was named honorable mention to the 2014 Florida Region team before committing to Ave Maria. Since suiting up for the Gyrenes, Giddens has appeared in 14 games, totaling 26.2 innings and striking out 18 batters. He recently threw 2.1 innings of relief against perennial division two power Lynn University, allowing only two hits and no earned runs. By continuing to pile up valuable experience, the talented Giddens looks ready to be a contributor immediately upon his arrival in Albany.
Joining Giddens on the mound will be Naples, Florida native Zak Spivy. A freshman at Polk State, the 6’3” 230 pound Spivy has been a force for the Eagles. The right-hander has thrown 30.1 innings on the year, allowing only 29 hits, while striking out 21 and waking five. It’s all enabled him to total a 4-1 record and a 1.78 ERA, good for fourth best on the team. Spivy’s success has been a crucial component to the team’s 34-13 record. It’s also one of the reasons that the Dutchmen fans and organization are so eager to see him suit up in Albany.
Rounding out the trio of Florida freshman arms is Steven “Zeke” Pietrzyk. A left-hander from Fort Myers, Florida, Zeke is currently taking a red-shirt year at Florida Gulf Coast University. The 6’2” 240 pound Pietrzyk joined Giddens on the honorable mention list for Perfect Game’s 2014 Florida Region Team, coming in as the 175th ranked prospects in the state and one of the top 1000 prospects in the nation. During his high school career, he was also named to the FACA All State & All Star Team, the All-Area team and was First Team All-State. The former Naples Daily News Player of the Year will look to start his collegiate career on a high note with the Dutchmen this summer.