The SDSU baseball team has won 9-of-its-past-12 Summit League games, and currently sits second in the conference standings. Junior pitcher Tyler Olmstead has helped lead the charge, posting a mark of 3-1 since early April.
SDSU pitcher Tyler Olmstead was 2-0 in eight appearances as a freshman, but after tossing 28 innings, remembers hitting a roadblock physically.
“My shoulder just wasn’t feeling right, didn’t feel good all year in Spring for freshman year. I decided to get it checked out by a doctor and I got a MRI and I had a torn labrum, slap tear. So I had surgery after my freshman year and I was able to come back for my sophomore year,” SDSU Junior Tyler Olmstead said.
After a full recovery, Olmstead nearly doubled his appearances as a sophomore. This season, the Sioux Falls native has stepped into the role of “Ace”.
“We’ve seen him just kind of grow up. He’s learned how to prepare better in between starts. He’s gotten better each off season at just getting stronger and being fit and really taking care of himself,” SDSU Head Coach Rob Bishop said.
“Just maturing out on the mound, not letting the little things affect him during the game. If he gives up a double back when he was young, he’d get really flustered and make some more mistakes after that, but now if he gives up a double or gives up a run, he’s right back in there,” SDSU Senior Nick Smith said.
Ace pitchers typically thrive under pressure, and Olmstead isn’t afraid to step into the spotlight.
“That’s exactly what I want to be. I want to be the guy that we have to go to in a big spot. I just want to be a key part to this team and hopefully, lead us to success on the field,” Olmstead said.
The former Washington standout is averaging more than six strikeouts per game, using a trio of pitches to keep batters on their heels.
“His breaking ball is a really, really good pitch, his fastball is a good pitch, change up is a good pitch and he’s competitive. He’s taken a leadership role on that staff and he’s a guy that when he’s out there, we think we can definitely win,” Bishop said.
Olmstead and company will close the regular season with three games at NDSU. The series starts Thursday is Fargo. First pitch is set for 6:30.