La Roche sophomore Healey sets standard
College Football Videos
Much of La Roche's baseball success relies upon sophomore second baseman Shane Healey, the team's leadoff hitter and MVP.
So why would his teammates want to injure him?
Simple, really. Healey doubles as a resident assistant in the dorms.
“If I get them in trouble, I'm going to get hurt, basically,” Healey said with a laugh.
Luckily for the sides, there haven't been any incidents yet.
On the field, things have been smooth as well.
Healey, a Penn Hills graduate, leads the Redhawks in batting average (.366), runs (39) and hits (56), and he is tied for second with 23 RBI.
“He's done everything for us offensively,” said La Roche coach Chase Rowe, whose team plays in the Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference Tournament beginning Thursday. “He's a very good hitter. He can hit high-level pitching. He's got a short swing. He's got an idea of what he's doing at the plate. He can bunt a little bit.”
Then there's Healey's speed. He has a school-record and conference-best 23 stolen bases this spring, and he's only been caught once. That's part of what makes him such an ideal top-of-the-order hitter.
“It's a great thing believing going into the first inning that your leadoff guy is going to get on,” said junior shortstop Sean Lubin, a South Fayette graduate who bats second. “With him, he's a base-stealer, so he'll get into scoring position, which is nice because if you score that first run, you can get momentum.”
Healey typically batted third or fourth at Penn Hills. He got a taste of the leadoff spot as a freshman at La Roche and was hooked.
“I like setting the pace for the game,” he said. “I'm trying to see a lot of pitches, see what the pitcher has got. I'm making sure the guys behind me know what he's throwing, seeing what approach they need to take.”
One of the major leaguers Healey admires most is Boston Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia. The two share a position, and they're also about the same size. Healey is 5-foot-7 and 160 pounds, and Pedroia is 5-8, 165.
Healey's size is likely a main reason why Division I and II schools didn't recruit him. It also might be a main reason he developed into the player he is.
“I kind of do play with a chip on my shoulder,” he said. “ ‘Hey, you don't think I can do this. Well hey, I can.'
“It goes back to what my dad taught me,” he said of his father, Joe, who coaches the Penn Hills softball team. “He always said that in baseball, size doesn't matter, which is true. You don't have to be tall to hit a ball or field a ball or throw a ball. That always motivated me, too.”
It's been a good season off the field for Healey, too. At a Pirates game earlier this spring, he got Andrew McCutchen to sign “MLB 13: The Show,” the video game featuring him on the cover.
Healey might have something else to display next week. That's when the conference announces its player of the year, and Healey is one of six finalists.
“When he gets on base two or three times, we're going to win the game, no doubt about it because he's going to steal a bag or two,” Rowe said. “He gets big hits in big situations. He gets big hits against good teams and good pitching. He's our guy offensively, there's no doubt about that.”
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Zadecky adjusts to new position as Penn State Fayette AD
- Mars grad Bednar continues pitching progression
- Jeannette’s Mahoney hired as an assistant coach at Concord
- South Fayette grad Leja looking to have big year for Allegheny
- Ferita shines for Seton Hill baseball
- McKeesport duo a big part of PSGA basketball recruiting class