Around the Bases with Mike Cavasinni

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. --- Inside Carolina caught up with redshirt senior center fielder and lead off batter Mike Cavasinni …

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What was it like on Graduation Sunday for you - with a graduation ceremony and a game back-to-back?
"Graduation day - words cannot describe it. It was sad that I could not be able to graduate with my class but it meant a tremendous amount that I could actually graduate with one of my close friends and teammates in Colin [Bates]. The whole day - you wake up early and I went and picked Colin up and we got here early to beat the traffic. The whole time you don't really think about getting up early or think about being tired because this day has finally come. We sat out there [in Kenan] and got to listen to John Grisham, who was a fantastic speaker, and the graduation ceremony was really special and kind of short lived because right after it was over we hustled down here and took some pictures and had to warm up. We did get the victory - so that made it a perfect day. But, that day is really what you look forward to when you get to college, getting that Carolina degree, getting it from this great school. It was a special day and it was great to share it with Colin."

How has your comfort level playing with Ben Bunting next to you in left helped getting Brian Goodwin up to speed starting in right field as a freshman this season?
"It is fantastic. Ben is a fantastic outfielder. He knows how to play left field perfectly. He knows how to play the fades on the ball from lefties and the slices and all that stuff so we don't have to coach him that much. When I move he knows that I am moving and he moves with me. We have that kind of communication - we know who is going to make the catch. On the other side when Goodwin stepped in here he really did not need much teaching either. He is an unbelievable athlete and he is one of the fastest people I have ever seen. He just floats - so when a ball is hit to him you just want to sit back and watch. Both outfielders on each side of me are so good it makes it enjoyable and kind of takes a little pressure off of me because I know if I can get to a ball I'm going to catch it but if I cannot get there they will get over and catch it."

Obviously on any baseball team there are only eight position players playing on the field at any time - how has the team adapted to its roles on this team this season?
"They have been fantastic. They realize that we have a certain number of people that are starting right now and the ones coming off the bench know that that is their role and they are embracing it just the way coach wants it and how the upperclassmen expect. They know coming in they are going to get a shot and that there will be an opportunity in the game to get an at bat because they are talented enough to get a hit - a big hit in the game. Take the Clemson game - Brett Knief came in and got a base hit and got the game winning hit. He was mentally ready from the first pitch to the last knowing he was going to get in the game at some point - and when he did he came through. So I think they are all starting to realize that and they are doing an unbelievable job for us."

So far this season you have had the highest stolen base success percentage of your career - what do you attribute this success to?
"I really have to give that to Ben [Bunting]. You have to put that trust in the guy behind you. If Ben sees me running or if Coach gives me the green light I can trust that if the ball is right down the middle Ben will put it in the gap and I will score from first or if it is just a good pitch that that he can not really do anything with he will take it and hopefully I will get a good enough jump to be able to steal it successfully. The credit has to go to him since either he will hit it in the gap or take it to allow me a chance to steal it."

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