For Co-Captain Cole Mascott ’23, baseball has always been a significant part of his life. Starting when he was little and going to Red Sox Opening Day games with his grandfather, Mascott has been playing baseball for as long as he can remember. Since coming to Andover, he has honed in on pitching specifically.
Mascott shared how he traverses the many aspects of leadership as a captain. He found that a combination of specific feedback and leading by example has worked best for him.
“A lot of what happened this offseason was some of the younger pitchers coming in, me, and a couple of other pitchers on the pitching staff would always stay back late during practice and give people pointers, and some other younger pitchers were asking for help on their mechanics… There’s another side of being a leader is getting on people, kind of leading by example… There are multiple aspects and I like to do the best I can at both,” said Mascott.
Teammate Venkat Sundaram ’23 noted the impressive shift Mascott has made from a player to a captain. According to Sundaram, he is a “vocal leader,” keeping the team focused while also energetic and motivated.
“Cole was a phenomenal player even back [in] Lower year, but I really see the strides he’s taken and really morphed into that role as a captain this year. Whether it means setting the bar for us as a team each and every game, whether he’s on the mound or off the mound, and making sure that we’re all in the game, heads in the game and also, staying up beat [and] energized in the dugout and on the field. Cole does a phenomenal job of setting that example himself and also always sticking to that. I think he’s a vocal leader as well,” said Sundaram.
Co-Captain Andrew DeBenedictis ’23 noted the many ways Mascott contributes to a strong team dynamic, whether that be at practice, on weekends, or during warm ups.
“Cole is big into the gym, so he’s always opening it up for other players when we have the opportunity, especially after [hitter-specific practices] on Sunday mornings when the gym isn’t open otherwise. He’s always conducting the music out there for practices and games. We all run warm ups, but he’s a big part of that too. He’s just a pretty big presence on the field, I would say,” said DeBenedictis.
Sundaram highlighted the small things Mascott does that add to his strong leadership. He also noted how available Mascott makes himself, so it’s never a question of whether a player can reach out or not.
“Whether it’s as small as saying ‘hi’ when we’re walking on the path, or whether it’s having lunch with him, or even texting him questions. The smallest things, like, ‘When is Coach [Zach] Kershaw available in his athletic training room?’ or even whether it’s things like, ‘Hey, how should we approach this big game we got coming up?’ I can always reach out to Cole. He’s a really helpful leader, a really helpful friend. I think that he does a lot of the small things and by doing those small things, the big things work themselves out and come through,” said Sundaram.
Mascott emphasized the importance of being both a friend and mentor on the team. He explained how he balances giving constructive criticism while also maintaining a close relationship with his teammates.
“One of the tough things about being a captain are these kids on the team, they’re all my friends. I don’t look down on any of them. There’s those times where you need to get on a younger guy and they need to take things more seriously and they don’t want to hear that, especially because I don’t put myself above anyone else because I’m friendly with everyone on the team… and so there’s those times where you have to know when you have to give them some constructive criticism, even if they’re not necessarily going to like it. Especially on game days, you gotta get on someone for going through the motions and stuff, and they give you a scoff, but you got to do those things,” said Mascott.
Mascott will continue his baseball career at Northwestern University.
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