June 17, 2013
Name: Brian Shevitz
Graduating Class: ’92
Hometown: Highalnd Park, Ill.
Current Residence: Wilmette, Ill.
Current Occupation: Financial Advisor
Family Information: Karen (wife), Hailey (13), Claudia (11) and Addie (8)
At Bats: 484
Runs Scored: 119
Runs Batted In: 117 -7th all-time
Home Runs: 20 - 5th all-time
Total Bases: 253 - 10th all-time
Stolen Bases: 46 - 9th all-time
Slugging Percentage: .523
Games Played: 148
What attracted you to attend Lafayette College?
I was interested in attending a small liberal arts school in the Northeast with a good academic reputation and Division I baseball program. I really felt comfortable with Lafayette after visiting the campus, meeting a number of students, and speaking with Coach Hindelang. Joe did a great job of describing what life for a student-athlete was like at Lafayette, and he connected me with a couple baseball players who hosted me for a weekend visit. The only downside to the visit was that the baseball team lost to Lehigh in a game that was played in snowy, 30 degree weather. It is a testament to Joe’s recruiting ability and the high quality guys on the team that I still ended up at Lafayette!
What do you miss most about Lafayette?
Lafayette was such a great fit for me that I miss just about everything - it was a fantastic four years. I received a great education, met some wonderful people that are still today my closest friends, and played competitive Division I baseball on some very successful teams. I still have great memories of feeling a sense of accomplishment and relief after handing in a history or English paper that I had worked hard on for days, then immediately heading out to Metzger for a practice or game. It was great to have baseball as an outlet from the academic pressures of school.
Between your former teammates and coaches, who has made the most impact on your career?
Coach Hindelang and Ralph Russo. Ralph was a year ahead of me and played outfield too, so I spent a lot of time with him my first three years at school. We were both very competitive, but his intensity and fire was unlike anyone I had played with before. Ralph was undoubtedly the spiritual leader of our team. His ability to inspire others around him with his confidence and toughness definitely rubbed off on me in the time I spent with Ralph at Lafayette.
Coach Hindelang was a great, thoughtful coach who paid a lot of attention to small details. His focus on getting the little things right through consistent practice and his organizational skills have certainly been influential and impactful for me in my career.
What collegiate baseball experiences have been invaluable to your successful career?
I could probably list about a dozen experiences where I learned something that has been extremely helpful to me in my career. Just focusing on a couple though, the experience that first comes to mind is learning how to fail. I think in my best season I hit .350, which means I failed 65% of the time. Learning how to bounce back and shake off those failed at bats in a short amount of time has definitely carried over to my career. No one goes through life without setbacks and mistakes, and learning how to deal with them in a setting like college baseball was a great experience.
The second experience I can share is the great enjoyment of having success as a team. It was invaluable to experience winning the ECC Championship my sophomore year with a group of outstanding teammates who worked hard, had a common goal, and remained focused on that goal throughout some ups and downs over the course of the season. Individual success is nice, but there is nothing like sharing success with teammates. It is something I strive for at work with my team on a daily basis.
Looking back, what do those seasons mean to you now?
Those four years at Lafayette were a great time in my life. When I tell my kids stories about Lafayette, they think it is so cool that I was able to attend an outstanding school academically and have the opportunity to play competitive sports. My kids are so right – it was awesome. I realize now that I was able to experience college differently than most people I know. The added experiences I had by playing Division I college athletics were invaluable.
What was your most memorable moment playing Lafayette baseball?
I can still vividly picture our third baseman, Burt Solivan, waving his arms calling for a pop-up in foul territory to catch the final out in the ECC Championship game. After a brief celebration in the outfield with Ralph and Mark Rowland, we sprinted into the infield to celebrate with the rest of the team. It was a great, unforgettable moment.
Is there one teammate you would love to hear from?
Fortunately we had an outstanding turnout at the preseason baseball dinner earlier this year, so I was able to catch up with pretty much everybody from the 1990 team. It was a blast to get together with those guys again, and the email chatter reviving some old memories leading up to the event was hilarious!
What advice do you have for Lafayette athletes?
I think our co-captain, Kevin Kozlowski, covered off on pretty much everything at the end of his speech at the preseason dinner. Maybe he can post the transcript on the Lafayette baseball homepage…