By: Nick Johnson '13
SCU: Last year you appeared as a starter as a catcher, left fielder, and as the designated hitter (DH). What position are you most comfortable with and how are you being used so far this season?
PT: So far this season I have been able to catch a lot, which I love. I started behind the plate a lot this past summer, and I really got used to it. Being able to catch at SCU is what I have always wanted, so getting a considerable amount of time back there is great.
SCU: You have become a vital part of the team both on the field with your play and off the field as a senior leader. Tell me what that feels like and how much of a responsibility that is for you?
PT: Everyone has the responsibility to be a leader on the field. However, as a senior you really take the role to heart with so many guys looking up to you. As an underclassmen you always looked to the seniors for guidance, and now those eyes fall on us, they fall on me. Honestly, I feel blessed to be in such a position. I look forward to the challenge of leading our team by example, and being the guy that fulfills expectation.
SCU: Over your long career at Santa Clara you have continued to improve your play year by year. What parts of your game have you focused on improving in order to continue your success?
PT: In years past I made the lineup for my offense, so defense was the primary focus for me over the last year and a half. In this game though, there is always something to improve on, so everyday it is something new.
SCU: How hard is it to balance baseball and school with a major like Combined Science, and what are you hoping to do when your baseball career is over?
PT: Obviously I would like to play baseball for as long as possible. However, with a major like Combined Science I feel as though I have many options once I graduate from SCU. But more than likely I will continue my education with post grad studies, though I am undecided in which field. In terms of managing my major with baseball, I have always been a pretty efficient time manager, so it hasn't been too tough.
SCU: What attracted you to Santa Clara seeing that you were born and raised in Washington?
PT: I actually planned on going to the University of Washington until just a few weeks before classes started, but I couldn't handle the weather! I always stick up for Washington when people bash the rain, but in reality I couldn't handle it. Ultimately, it came down to the high level of academics and the sun.
SCU: What has been your best on the field and off the field memory since you began your career as a freshman?
PT: Spending everyday with 35 of your best friends you make memories all the time. But one thing I am sure to never forget is my first career collegiate home run. It was really exciting for me, not only because it was one of my first college-at-bats, but because my parents were there to see it.