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Published On: May 21st, 2006

Winthrop third baseman Mitch Saum has some questions about Madison. Of course, he’s curious about the summer experience he’ll have playing baseball for the Mallards. He also has another important question…how’s the fishing?

“Do people mostly catch pike and walleye?” asked Saum, an obviously avid fisherman.

If Saum can fish like he plays baseball, we’ll all be enjoying a fish fry at the Duck Pond this summer.

Saum has become the starting third baseman on a surprising Winthrop team. The Eagles are a top-25 team in nearly every poll, which is a big surprise to many and a small surprise to Saum. “If you’d have told me at the beginning of the season we’d be where we are, I wouldn’t have believed you,” said Saum. “We weren’t expecting this. The freshman, though, have done a great job and we have great team chemistry.”

After playing with the Wilson Tobs of the Coastal Plain League last season, Saum told his coach he wanted to play against the best talent he could. He was told he could find it in the Northwoods League.

Saum’s move to Madison should be a little easier than other first-year players. One reason is he’s arriving with Winthrop teammate Tommy Lentz. Another reason, he’s been friends with Mallards pitcher Adam Mills for a few years. “Mills and I played together in the Clark Griffith League,” said Lentz, who heaped some praise on his former and future summer teammate, “He’s awesome.”

Even though it’s only Saum’s second year in college, this will be his third summer playing with college talent. He played in the Griffith League after a highly successful high school career. Saum knows full well that summer ball is extremely helpful. “My freshman fall, I don’t think I could’ve played any better. The Griffith League really helped.”

This summer, Saum wants to work on his speed. He wants to help Madison continue its winning ways.

“I’m really looking forward to coming,” said Saum. “I’ve heard the fans are unreal and there’s great competition. It’ll be fun.”