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Lindbergh's senior catcher Andrew Spitzfaden awaits the delivery of a pitch during last week's showdown with Lafayette. The visiting Flyers won 12-8. Stephen Glover photo (click for larger version)

Flyers catcher one of 'best' in state for past four years, head coach says



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Andrew Spitzfaden, also known as 'Spitz' on the Lindbergh High School boys' baseball team, currently is batting .478 with 12 runs batted. Stephen Glover photo (click for larger version)
He's known around the bases and on the field as just "Spitz."

But for the rest of us who are not Andrew Spitzfaden's teammates, he might be considered more of a "speak softly and carry a big stick" kind of guy.

The senior catcher for the Lindbergh High School baseball team may talk to people in soft tones, but don't ever let that fool you in predetermining what kind of ballplayer he truly is.

"He's definitely one of our leaders," Flyers head coach Darin Scott," told the Call. "He's a special kind of player that has stood out from his freshman to his senior year."

Spitzfaden currently is batting .478 with 12 runs batted. But as a freshman, he batted a strong .377, while driving in 12 runs on 23 hits.

"As far as I'm concerned, he's one of the best catchers in the state for the past four years," Scott said. "Andy he really knows the game and it's a luxury to have him on our team."

One of the luxuries of which the Flyers are true beneficiaries is the fact that Spitzfaden can sit behind the plate and call just the right pitches needed to work over an opposing batter.

"Andy calls the pitches for us and does a nice job," Scott explained. "He has that natural athletic ability that he really uses to his advantage."

Like many other baseball players, Spitzfaden was introduced to the sport through his father, who also was a disciple of the sport. Rich Spitzfaden played the same position as Andrew does today.

Andrew Spitzfaden still plays with some of the same players who were on his first baseball team, the Carpenters.

One of those players is Flyers senior second baseman Brock Bond.

"I started playing baseball in kindergarten for the Carpenters with Brock," Spitzfaden said. "My dad played baseball and he was the one that got me involved in the game."

Andrew is not only a solid baseball player, but he also played wide receiver and outside linebacker for the Flyers football team, which went 10-3 overall with a 5-2 mark in the Suburban West Conference last season.

His 27 receptions for 631 yards and five touchdowns ranked him as one of the team's top offensive threats this season, while his 75 tackles on defense ranked him third in 2003.

"We were not the biggest team, but we were pretty hard-nosed and stuck together," Spitzfaden explained. "For me, it was about playing football with a bunch of good friends."

A member of Lindbergh's L-Club, Spitzfaden is also a member of the Renaissance Club, which is primarily a club for those

(See CATCHER, Page 18A)

who have achieved high academic standards. So it's not surprising to find out that Spitzfaden is wanting to major in either math or architecture at the University of Kansas or DePauw University.

The oldest son of Rich and Kim Spitzfaden realizes that either football or baseball will help pay his way through college next season. He would play baseball at KU or both football and baseball at DePauw.

"Baseball has always been my No. 1 sport," Spitzfaden explained. "But it basically comes down to which one helps me pay for school."

If he keeps swinging that big stick the way his does, you just might see him playing baseball next spring.

who have achieved high academic standards. So it's not surprising to find out that Spitzfaden is wanting to major in either math or architecture at the University of Kansas or DePauw University.

The oldest son of Rich and Kim Spitzfaden realizes that either football or baseball will help pay his way through college next season.

He would play baseball at KU or both football and baseball at DePauw.

"Baseball has always been my No. 1 sport," Spitzfaden explained. "But it basically comes down to which one helps me pay for school."

If he keeps swinging that big stick the way his does, you just might see him playing baseball next spring.

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