Where Are They Now - Bob Spagnolo '90
Name: Bob Spagnolo
Graduating Class: 1990
Position: 1st Base
Hometown: Harrisburg, PA
Current Residence: Palmyra, PA
Current Occupation: Workers Compensation Claim Manager – Nationwide Insurance
Family Information: Happily married 23 years to Annette; son – Dylan –freshman at Lebanon Valley College; daughter- Morgan – high school freshman
What attracted you to attend Lafayette College?
I was actually recruited to play basketball by Butch Van Breda Koff and John Leone. After my recruiting trip, meeting players, touring the campus and visiting with faculty, I knew it was the right place for me. The size of the school and class size where important, in that I was not going to be just another student in a sea of others. I also knew I was going to have the opportunity to play baseball. After my freshman year, I decided to stick with one sport and made the right choice with baseball.
What do you miss most about Lafayette?
Teammates and fraternity brothers (Theta Delta Chi). Having a cook in our fraternity house that prepared meals, especially made to order breakfast. Pub nights.
Between your former teammates and coaches, who has made the most impact on your career?
Without a doubt, it would be Coach Joe Hindelang. He taught me a lot more than just baseball during my time at Lafayette. He taught me about things that I was going to need in order to succeed in the real world. Being on time; accountability for your actions; choices, good and bad, all have consequences; be confident - no matter what the odds -- others will follow. These seem pretty basic, but a lot of memories come back when I think about these things. I was probably a challenging player for Coach, from time to time, when it came to a few of these but it all worked out in the end. Coach seemed to believe in me, when at times I questioned my own ability. He instilled confidence in me when he invited me to go along with him and play in the Great Lakes League for Bowling Green, following a less than spectacular junior season. I played pretty well, with and against talented players from all over the country -- some of which made it to the Majors. The confidence I gained that summer propelled me through the fall and spring seasons of my senior year. My senior season was filled with team and personal successes which all goes back to Coach Hindelang.
What collegiate baseball experiences have been invaluable to your successful career?
Things weren’t always easy on the field. Taking on challenges head-on and overcoming adversity is required by successful teams and businesses. Hard work, dedication to getting the job done right and attention to the details, no matter how small they seem, goes a long way. These things have helped me become a leader in my organization at work and are things that I have tried to instill in my kids that will hopefully propel them to great things in the future.
What was your most memorable moment playing Lafayette baseball?
Winning the ECC Tournament and playing in the NCAA Regional Tournament at Mississippi State in 1990. I remember the catfish fry prior to the tournament. Posters of Will Clark and Rafael Palmeiro all over the town, campus and stadium. Besides the grandstand seating, there were stands built in the beds of pick-up trucks that were parked down both lines and around the entire outfield. I remember the hospitality of the fans, post game bar-be-ques and enjoying the atmosphere. While we didn’t fare as well as we hoped against Florida State and BYU, but I will never forget that experience.
Is there one teammate you would love to hear from?
Probably, Bob Pogyor. During our years at Lafayette we were fraternity brothers and spent a lot of time together. I remember one long car ride to the University of Delaware at the end of my junior season. It was a very memorable afternoon and evening
What advice do you have for Lafayette athletes?
No regrets, leave it all on the field and most importantly, have fun. Being a quality student / athlete is not easy at a school like Lafayette. It is imperative that each individual finds the right balance between the classroom and athletic field. Utilize the resources that are available and don’t be afraid to ask for help when needed. Everyone (parents, faculty and coaches) want all Lafayette students to succeed, in and outside the classroom. The overall Lafayette experience will prepare you for success in the game of life.