If you want to find Austin Minton before a big game, you’ll find him in a quiet place in the locker room either meditating or organizing shuffled cards numbered from 1-99. “I’m a big focus guy. So I’m into meditation and all of that kind of stuff.” A little skeptical of this ritual beforehand, he now can’t imagine playing a game without it. Leaving high school he was approached by Rowan and Kean to play baseball, but in the end decided to come to Montclair State University.
Montclair was the perfect fit for Minton because the school is close by to his hometown so he is able to see his family frequently. His family has been extremely supportive of his choice to continue baseball and his goal to play professionally. His dad, who knew a lot about the game, was the first to introduce him to baseball and coached him until Minton required a more professional coach to advance his skills while he was participating in travel baseball and with various other teams. He is striving to improve overall and gained more inspiration when six of his friends were drafted right out of high school.
Now a sophomore, the Roebling, New Jersey native is not quite sure where his passion for baseball is going to take him. Now a Red Hawk pitcher, Minton starting playing tee ball at the age of 4 and pitching at 7 and he instantly fell in love with the game. Minton explains that he has always been a “thrower” and very early on found his niche as a pitcher. He states the more and more he plays baseball the more enthusiastic he becomes for the sport. He tried playing soccer and football but none of those ever felt quite right to him, both of these careers ending very quickly for him.
Minton, decked out in a Montclair State baseball sweatshirt, baseball hat, skinny jeans, sneakers and a gold watch, he describes baseball as a second job, his first being his schoolwork. Spending thirty five to forty hours training a week, he explains that he had to learn how to time manage so he can be effective in both areas of his life. Very proud of his time management skills, he still saves time to lie around and watch movies when he’s free to relax. He is a very passionate player and hopes to one day play for the MLB, willing to play with any team. He explains this sport isn’t for everyone. If a person is interested and fervent enough to play baseball and wants to spend countless hours training a week, it’s worth it.
“Pitching is my favorite thing in the world. I love pitching; it’s definitely what I want to do.” Minton did not realize how much pitching meant to him until he was about 17, ten years after he started. His love for the game never being subdued, he has played for the New Jersey Tigers, Tristate Arsenal, Bordentown Post 26, Florence Township High School and the West Palm Beach Sharks as well as currently a starter for the Red Hawks of Montclair State University.
Over the past summer in 2015, he was able to play for the West Palm Beach Sharks and had an incredible experience. This two-month summer league included a forty game season, playing every single night he was there, along with living in a house with twelve of his teammates. To stay fit, Minton explained during his summer with the Sharks his routine would be to swim two miles, bike a mile and run a mile each day. Ultimately running four to five times a week and lifting up to four to five times a week as well.
During the winter, he explains he spends three days a week with his trainer, and three other days he has his own work out regimen and eats at least six meals a day, living on a high-protein diet of fish, steak, and chicken. Minton expressed that his main goal overall is to continue to work hard on being a better pitcher and improving overall to hopefully one day make baseball a full-time career.
2016 has been a very exciting year for the Red Hawks, now participating in the New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC); they won both games against Rutgers-Camden but lost both games against The College of New Jersey in a double hitter on April 30th. On May 4, the Red Hawks have a chance to redeem themselves and defeat the Lions (TCNJ).
Montclair State | New Jersey