Brian Johnson, Florida Southern College’s junior right-handed pitcher, was named the Sunshine State Conference pitcher of the week for the second-consecutive week on March 18.
“It feels good, but I wouldn’t have done it without the team,” Johnson said.
Being a pitcher is hard to do, but Johnson said his teammates have helped him greatly by playing strong defense behind him.
According to Johnson, it all revolves around the pitcher. If the pitcher goes out to the field and does well, the game can go smoothly, but if not it will be a long game where most of the teammates can get upset.
He decided to take on the responsibility of becoming a pitcher because he had been told that his arm was strong enough.
“I like the pressure honestly. I always have. I like being in the big spot, it’s all I dream about it. It almost kind of drives me to do it,” Johnson said.
Johnson is very close to his teammates, especially his roommates whom he has shared a house with for three years
“It is hard to kind of get away from [my roommates],” Johnson said.
Johnson believes the most challenging part of pitching is controlling where the pitches are going to go. For him, it has become a second nature.
“After a while, it turns out into a job because of the amount of time and effort we have to put into it,” Johnson said
In order to achieve all the balances, Johnson organizes all of his time around baseball.
“You do what you can around baseball. You make it to what you can do when you don’t have practice or game,” Johnson said.
According to Johnson, the team is not supposed to put academics after sports, but he puts more time into the sport. For him it is definitely worth it.
“It gives me something to keep myself occupied, because if I don’t do something, I can get bored and get myself in trouble,” Johnson said.
Even though Johnson has to balance school, sports and being healthy, he still enjoys it for the most part.
He would not trade baseball for any other sport. Johnson has already tried football and basketball, but he quit both of them to focus on baseball because it was the better choice for him.
His body could not fulfill the requirements for those sports. According to Johnson, he just was not big enough.
Johnson has been following a tradition inside his family. It started with his grandfather who played baseball, and later his father played until college.
The player just finished rehab from fall so he could throw this semester. He thinks that, hopefully, nothing will stop him.
After Johnson graduates, he will try to continue playing baseball. He believes that is not in his hands at this point. It is in the hands of the teams that might want to pick him.