Romine's Head Start Paying Off

A head start at your dream is something you simply can't pass up. For 22-yeard old catcher Austin Romine the thought of following his father's and brother's footsteps and attending Arizona State crossed his mind, but ultimately the catcher couldn't pass up the chance of getting a head start.

"It definitely crossed my mind," Romine said. "My dad went to Arizona State, my brother went to Arizona State, and I signed to go to Arizona State. I thought about it a couple of times but being a professional baseball player is what I want to do so if I could get into it a little bit quicker, I figured I'd get a head start."

Romine values his family greatly and keeps in touch with his brother multiple times during the week, however the conversations stray away from baseball and focus on life as well as other subjects.

"We're a pretty close family and we can rely on each other for support at any time," he added.

Romine was always destined to be a catcher. Although growing up he was skilled at multiple positions, the desire to be a catcher was always there.

"When I was little my father wanted to me play every position so I did that for as long as I could but when I got in high school I knew I was a catcher, it's what I wanted to do so I guess you can say I always wanted to be a catcher."

Heavily touted for his defensive abilities, Romine was nominated for Baseball America's Captain's Catcher Award, an award that recognizes the defensive abilities of minor league catchers.

"Anytime you get an honor, especially out of Baseball America or something prestigious it's always an honor," he said. "It's a tremendous honor for me. It made me a little excited and it made me smile."

He has a very strong arm, as well as other tools behind the plate, but Trenton's manager Tony Franklin appreciates the little things he does as well as the leadership he brings to the team.

"I don't even notice him," Franklin said. "That's how good of a job he's doing. When you don't notice players out there and they get the job done that's a pretty good thing."

Romine has made as many strides improving at the plate as he has catching behind it this year, and this has come as no surprise to Trenton Thunder hitting coach Julius Matos.

"He's been primarily known for a guy who can catch and throw," Matos said. "He's shown he can do that but if we look back at his history he's also been a pretty good offensive hitter.

"He can hit with the best of them," Matos added. "I think he's going to be a very good offensive force. He did need to improve on game plan and approach and letting things come to him and not trying to make it happen,, and he's been doing a good job of that."

The improvements have greatly improved Romine as a hitter, but like every player, there is still work to be done going forward.

"He needs to continue to work at-bats," Matos said. "He needs to continue to be a patient hitter, a patient aggressive hitter, which is one who is looking to hit but not getting away from his plan and his approach to do so. Those are the dangerous hitters in the big leagues."

Romine keeps getting better each at-bat, and will only improve as he gets more experience and opportunities going forward.

"Playing in Double-A opened my eyes a little bit," Romine said. "You've really got to focus when you're at the plate hitting and I'm starting to figure out what kind of hitter I am and what I can do and what I cant do. I try to stick with the same thing every time I go to the plate and it seems to be working."

Along with the improvements at the plate, Romine continues to be a great leader of the Thunder pitching staff.

"He's taking care of the game for us as our catcher," Franklin added. "Most people in baseball consider the catcher the general. He's shown his ability to lead the pitching staff and that's basically what we look for him to do."

Pitching coach Tommy Phelps has nothing but good things to say about Romine, and the ultimate respect for him, as he trusts him with the young pitching staff.

"He does a great job," Phelps said. "He's very mature and he keeps growing up as a catcher and as a leader for these guys, and I know the guys trust him and really love throwing to him.

"Even some of the big league rehabbers, Millwood, and Silva when they came here they were really impressed for how he calls the game," Phelps added. "That's a big compliment coming from guys that have that many years in the big leagues. It says a lot about what he can do back there."

He may be young in age, but on the field he is way beyond his years. The more knowledge he can obtain the better as he continues to work on moving up in the ranks and hoping to ultimately make it to the Major Leagues.

"He's got all of the tools to be a big league player, and to be a very good one," Matos said. "I'm sure that he's going to get his shot."

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\r\n \r\n\r\n\"It definitely crossed my mind,\" Romine said. \"My dad went to Arizona State, my brother went to Arizona State, and I signed to go to Arizona State. I thought about it a couple of times but being a professional baseball player is what I want to do so if I could get into it a little bit quicker, I figured I'd get a head start.\"
\r\n
\r\nRomine values his family greatly and keeps in touch with his brother multiple times during the week, however the conversations stray away from baseball and focus on life as well as other subjects.
\r\n
\r\n\"We're a pretty close family and we can rely on each other for support at any time,\" he added.
\r\n
\r\nRomine was always destined to be a catcher. Although growing up he was skilled at multiple positions, the desire to be a catcher was always there.
\r\n
\r\n\"When I was little my father wanted to me play every position so I did that for as long as I could but when I got in high school I knew I was a catcher, it's what I wanted to do so I guess you can say I always wanted to be a catcher.\"
\r\n
\r\nHeavily touted for his defensive abilities, Romine was nominated for Baseball America's Captain's Catcher Award, an award that recognizes the defensive abilities of minor league catchers.
\r\n
\r\n\"Anytime you get an honor, especially out of Baseball America or something prestigious it's always an honor,\" he said. \"It's a tremendous honor for me. It made me a little excited and it made me smile.\"
\r\n
\r\nHe has a very strong arm, as well as other tools behind the plate, but Trenton's manager Tony Franklin appreciates the little things he does as well as the leadership he brings to the team.
\r\n
\r\n\"I don't even notice him,\" Franklin said. \"That's how good of a job he's doing. When you don't notice players out there and they get the job done that's a pretty good thing.\"
\r\n
\r\nRomine has made as many strides improving at the plate as he has catching behind it this year, and this has come as no surprise to Trenton Thunder hitting coach Julius Matos.
\r\n
\r\n\"He's been primarily known for a guy who can catch and throw,\" Matos said. \"He's shown he can do that but if we look back at his history he's also been a pretty good offensive hitter.
\r\n
\r\n\"He can hit with the best of them,\" Matos added. \"I think he's going to be a very good offensive force. He did need to improve on game plan and approach and letting things come to him and not trying to make it happen,, and he's been doing a good job of that.\"
\r\n
\r\nThe improvements have greatly improved Romine as a hitter, but like every player, there is still work to be done going forward.
\r\n
\r\n\"He needs to continue to work at-bats,\" Matos said. \"He needs to continue to be a patient hitter, a patient aggressive hitter, which is one who is looking to hit but not getting away from his plan and his approach to do so. Those are the dangerous hitters in the big leagues.\"
\r\n
\r\nRomine keeps getting better each at-bat, and will only improve as he gets more experience and opportunities going forward.
\r\n
\r\n\"Playing in Double-A opened my eyes a little bit,\" Romine said. \"You've really got to focus when you're at the plate hitting and I'm starting to figure out what kind of hitter I am and what I can do and what I cant do. I try to stick with the same thing every time I go to the plate and it seems to be working.\"
\r\n
\r\nAlong with the improvements at the plate, Romine continues to be a great leader of the Thunder pitching staff.
\r\n
\r\n\"He's taking care of the game for us as our catcher,\" Franklin added. \"Most people in baseball consider the catcher the general. He's shown his ability to lead the pitching staff and that's basically what we look for him to do.\"
\r\n
\r\nPitching coach Tommy Phelps has nothing but good things to say about Romine, and the ultimate respect for him, as he trusts him with the young pitching staff.
\r\n
\r\n\"He does a great job,\" Phelps said. \"He's very mature and he keeps growing up as a catcher and as a leader for these guys, and I know the guys trust him and really love throwing to him.
\r\n
\r\n\"Even some of the big league rehabbers, Millwood, and Silva when they came here they were really impressed for how he calls the game,\" Phelps added. \"That's a big compliment coming from guys that have that many years in the big leagues. It says a lot about what he can do back there.\"
\r\n
\r\nHe may be young in age, but on the field he is way beyond his years. The more knowledge he can obtain the better as he continues to work on moving up in the ranks and hoping to ultimately make it to the Major Leagues.
\r\n
\r\n\"He's got all of the tools to be a big league player, and to be a very good one,\" Matos said. \"I'm sure that he's going to get his shot.\"
\r\n
\r\n

\r\n \r\n \r\n \r\n\r\n
\r\n

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\r\n

\r\n

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