By Jeremy McDonald
CENTRAL POINT, Ore.– The Diesel Train is beginning preparations for it’s possible last long haul this week in Central Point’s Anhorn Park.
Through his quiet nature, Brandon Gieselman has been an natural leader for the Santiam Senators Single-A baseball team that helped the Senators go from a handful of wins in 2015 to 16-10 and having a berth in the State Playoffs in 2016 as he is leading by example.
“I’m just trying to lead by example, trying to show the guys the right way to play,” he said. “Not get too angry, just keep my emotions under check and just lead by example.”
Gieselman said that his leadership traits started when he was a young athlete at Gervais High School, where he played football and baseball for the 3A Cougars.
Leaders he looked up to had showed him and those around him the way, and not to get on another, but show them the way.
“I had a few teammates in High School that made a really big influence on me, kind of showed me the way,” said Gieselman on those who influenced him. ”And I just wanted to follow in their footsteps and be showed the right way and how to play, not necessarily get on them, but just show them the proper ways of playing and leading by example.”
Now, as he plays with kids that vary from freshman and sophomores to upperclassmen, he’s hoping to do the same with him as those did to him when he was younger.
“I’m just trying to show what I know,” “Show them what they need to do to be successful at the level they’re playing at.”
As he’s sitting in the dugout at the Junior Varsity Fields at Anhorn during Tuesday’s practice, he’s resting up the arm that has helped Santiam get to this point as him and his team have their playoff debut against a 32-6 Central Point Comets Wednesday Night.
But he reflects on the journey to this point as he hopes to end his prep career on the top of the mountain.
“It went by really quick,” he said. “I mean it felt like I was just a freshman (and) now I’m on my last year playing legion ball, my first year playing legion ball, last year time going around it.
“I’m not trying to overhype myself, just kind of calm down and just look at it as another game. I know tomorrow when I wake up I’m going to be really excited and that’s when the nerves would probably set in once we start thinking about the game a little more.”
For Gieselman and the rest of the Senators, as they are trying their hardest to keep their excitement and nerves of the circumstances of what is to come; they too are going into Wednesday’s nightcap against the Comets as just another game and another day in the office that is baseball and it’s diamonds.
“I’m really excited, I know we have the team to do it,” said Gieselman. “We just have to have the best games the five days we are here.”