June 17, 2014 - by

Ask the Seminoles

Baseball Coach Mike Martin

Complete Seminole Baseball Coverage

Q. Do you think FSU has a shot at making the College World Series this year?

– Ben Stoller, Clearwater, FL

A. Our goal at Florida State is to get to the College World Series every year
and this season is no exception. If our pitchers keep performing the way
they have been recently and we concentrate on playing Seminole baseball —
pitching, defense & base running — we’ll have a very good shot at going to

Q. How do you feel about Brett Groves play at shortstop and his hitting so
far this season?

– Ryan, Tampa, FL

A. Brett Groves has gotten better with every game. Earlier in the season,
Brett had a 15-game hitting streak and is hitting the ball very well now.
Groves’ fielding percentage (.938) is also better than Brooks Badeaux’ in
his three seasons at shortstop and Brooks was an All-ACC shortstop.

Q. How tough is it to manage an intercollegiate baseball team? What are
the most difficult and rewarding aspects of your job?

– Janet Thomas, Orlando, FL

A. It is very difficult to manage a college baseball team but that is why my
job is so exciting. One of the most difficult aspects of the job is
competing with the Major League draft. You can lose your best high school
recruits and current players to the draft. We lost three players and three
recruits to the draft just last year.

The most rewarding part of my job is seeing our young guys grow up into
men. It is always nice to see that you’ve made a difference in a player’s
life, whether it be on the field, in the classroom, in the community or
with the Lord.

Q. Who are some of the best players you have coached at FSU? Any in the
Major League Baseball?

– Steve Wilson, St. Simons, GA

A. We’ve had a lot of great players at Florida State. Certainly, J.D. Drew —
last year’s Golden Spikes Award winner — was one of our best hitters.
We’ve been blessed with eight first-round draft picks during the 1990s —
guys like John Wasdin, Paul Wilson (1st pick in 1994), Jonathan Johnson,
David Yocum, Eduardo Perez.

I’m also lucky enough to say that 20 of my former players have made it to
the Major Leagues. Paul Sorrento (Tampa Bay Devil Rays), Luis Alicea
(Texas Rangers), John Wasdin (Boston Red Sox) are just some of the guys who
are playing in the bigs right now.

Q. Is the talent level more abundant in the state of Florida, or do schools
like FSU and Miami just attract the best players?

– Mitch Henry, Salem, VA

A. There is a lot of talent in Florida, probably because kids can play almost
all year round. When we travel around to different programs in the ACC,
there are always players from the Sunshine State on their rosters.
Programs like FSU and Miami have rich baseball traditions which attract
many of the top players who are not just from Florida. It has taken a long
time for programs like these to make a name for themselves and it is very
difficult to recruit the best talent every year.

Q. Have you ever came to Buffalo to scout? I’m a sophomore in a high
school in Buffalo and my dream is to play for your team. So my real
question is how would I get scouted?

– Ed, Buffalo, New York

A. Send our recruiting coordinator, Coach Jamey Shouppe, a tape and your
information. There are good players all over the nation. In fact, one of
our recruits that signed with us is from the state of New York.

Q. Is Salazar a highly respected prospect? I have seen a few games this
year, and I haven’t seen a better glove or arm anywhere in the nation.

– Drew, Gulf Breeze, FL

A. Jeremy Salazar is very respected in baseball circles. In fact, just this
week, Baseball America picked Jeremy as a mid-season senior All-American.
He leads the ACC with 68 RBI and has hit 13 home runs. Jeremy is a very
good catcher and does have one of the best arms in the nation.

Q. I’m really short(13 years old and I’m 5’0″), but I make good grades and
am a pretty good ball player. Would being short keep me from playing
college baseball or even high school?

– Chad Ozark, AL

A. Keep up the hard work in both the classroom and on the field. With hard
work, anyone can make their dreams come true. Our starting third baseman
Jose Zabala, is only 5-8 (with his spikes on & pretty short by baseball
standards) and he is one of the hardest working players we’ve got.

Q. How is FSU compared to other universities in the NCAA by rank and skill?

– Bryan, Atsugi U.S. Naval Base, Japan

A. This week, we are ranked #11 and #12 in the Top 25 polls by the various
publications. We also have the best ERA in the nation at 3.29. It’s hard
to rank our skills against other school’s skills without seeing everyone in
the nation.

Q. I’m looking for information regarding the Seminoles baseball camp this

– Frank, Roswell, GA

A. You can call or write to the Florida State Baseball Office to request camp
information. The phone number is 850-644-1073 and the address is P.O. Box
2195, Tallahassee, FL, 32316.

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