One of the best two sport athletes to come out of NH in recent years has made his college decision. Devin Springfield, who graduated from Conant High in the spring and is now doing a post-grad year at Marianapolis Prep, will stay close to home and attend nearby Franklin Pierce University. Springfield was also recruited to play basketball, but instead he has committed to play baseball at FPU.
"I would say about 2 months ago, I decided I would play baseball in college instead of basketball" Springfield told the NH Notebook. "My love for the game of basketball will never fade away but I realized just recently that I haven't nearly reached my potential in baseball and that I want to see how good I can possibly become. Coach Jayson King at FPU also sees my potential and is looking forward to having me after my PG year at Marianapolis."
This Wednesday he will sign sign a National Letter of Intent and officially become a member of one of the best Division II baseball programs in the country.
"I had never really seriously considered FPU because it was so close" explained Springfield, whose grew up in Jaffrey, which is one town over from Franklin Pierce (located in Rindge, NH). "But when I finally realized that it is one of the best baseball programs in the country was in my backyard, I knew it was place for me not only athletically but also academically with their wide variety of majors, especially their school of communications."
Springfield had many other schools recruiting him, but decided that Franklin Pierce was the best fit for him.
"As far as other schools, I had narrowed it down to 4 schools: Holy Cross, SNHU, FPU and Stonehill" said Springfield, whose father David played basketball at FPU. "All the coaches at these schools said I would play for them. FPU's proximity to home factored in a good amount. It will be great to have my family and friends come and support me. Also, I will be able to be a part of of my little brother Peyton's life as he grows up (he's 12)."
Springfield was a standout player at Conant as both a pitcher and hitter. Last year as a senior he led the Orioles to a state championship in both baseball and basketball. On the baseball field he had a 2.08 earned run average and 54 strikeouts in 34 2/3 innings, to go with a .413 batting average, 21 runs batted in, 22 runs scored and five triples. He then spent the summer playing AAU baseball.
"This past AAU baseball season was very successful" said Springfield, who was a first team all-state member in both baseball and basketball. "I played for the 18u New England Ravens so it was a team run out of FPU and the coaches really took a serious interest in me as the summer went on. As far as pitching goes, I played the majority of my season as a centerfielder. I pitched a little here and there but for the most part, most of the schools were recruiting me as an outfielder. Hitting is a strength of mine and Coach King sees me as an outfielder so that I can also bat. As far as pitching goes, if FPU wants me to pitch, I will certainly do whatever I can to help the team out. My fastball is anywhere from 81-84 mph and I throw a 2 seam, curve and a change-up."
Springfield has had a number of coaches that have helped him become the player he is today.
"The coaches that have helped me with my baseball game so far are obviously my dad, my Conant High School coach Brian Royal, my personal hitting coach, Bob Caswell who taught me my swing and my AAU summer coaches, Tom Cote and former minor league player Mike Chambers" said Springfield, who is 6-foot-3 and 170 lbs.
While Springfield certainly has a bright future ahead of him at Franklin Pierce (and this year at Marianapolis), it doesn't get much better than winning a state title in 2 different sports your senior year.
"Winning the baseball championship was a dream come true" Springfield concluded. "No one expected us to win and we proved everyone wrong. It was Conant's second championship in school history and the first since 1956 so it is a memory that my teammates and I will live with for the rest of our lives. It doesn't get any better than winning two state championships senior year. I remember after falling to Hopkinton my junior year in baseball in the semis I put up a Facebook status saying 'thank you' to all the fans coming to support you. My older sister, Brooke commented on it and said, 'Don't worry, you will win two championships your senior year' and that's exactly what happened."
Congratulations to Devin, and best of luck at Franklin Pierce.