Is it the DNA?
Is It The DNA?
How many times has a father or mother asked themselves or rather hoped that whatever athletic talent is locked up in their DNA has it miraculous been passed down to their children.
How many times has a person been fortunate enough to coach long enough to see if this theory can prove itself out…is it possible?
It started with a phone call, on the other end a former assistant coach said, “Show up at Longwood High School for the 3PM game. Something that you’re about to experience doesn’t happen too often.”
A two hour drive later and standing with my former assistant coach, both of us watch our two former 1981 team captain’s son compete against each other. One a Pitcher for Commack H.S. and the other a catcher for Longwood H.S. last named of Orologio. Both fathers and former captains stand together and praise each other’s son’s talent.
Now the question is it in the DNA?
Both ballplayers will eventually go to play baseball on athletic scholarships. We are going to follow one of them, the catcher Camden Orologio. He receives his scholarship from Division 2 Adelphi University located on Long Island, NY. His father, a NJCAA basketball player, was convinced to start a baseball career at Farmingdale University, by yours truly. Sometimes you can tell an athlete by simply watching him walk. Since he was a baseball neophyte with talent he was to garner the nickname “Raw” and in his second year develop into a NJCAA Baseball All-American.
Now here we follow the DNA story. His son named Camden, named after the stadium Camden Yards, stands 6 foot four inches tall. Some say he is too tall for a catcher and will have to spend too much time to get all those long limbs to stay coordinated. Others will say he’ll be in the two plus time on his throws to second. So, lets put the watch on him and it comes out to be a 1.87. Not bad for the so called experts saying those long limbs wont work behind the dish. Athletic like his father, he could be called another, “Raw”, or should I say, “Raw Junior”. In my eyes, he’s developed into a soft handed catcher who moves the glove ever so slightly to frame the pitch and be intelligent enough to be able to understand what’s working for the pitcher that day and call his own game.
So, being a six foot four catcher and able to play other positions, capable of stealing bases and tops all of that off by being able to hit in the middle of the order. As one of my former mentors, a MLB scout said, “The little guy has to prove he can, the big guy has to prove that he can’t”.
After completing his sophomore year at Adelphi, Camden hit .231 in 39 At-Bats with 1 home run, mostly being in the DH role. He has been fortunate enough to sign a summer contract with the Seacoast Mavericks of the Futures League. What will he show this summer, will the DNA be there? Also, what will his junior year show at Adelphi, will he be able to become an All-American like his father? I guess only time will tell.
By Coach Ken Rocco
CSB Staff Writer
Coach Rocco was the head baseball coach of Farmingdale University for 35 years and was recently inducted in the Farmingdale University Athletic Hall of Fame.