“I listen to my coach more than I listen to myself because he's been where I am,” said Atterbury of Columbia baseball coach Steve Dennis.
The rest is a result of consistency and perspective.
“I practice everything like it’s the game,” Atterbury said. “If you practice how you play it will come naturally in the game.”
Consequently in 19 games, Atterbury is batting .473 with 18 RBI, while owning a 6-1 record on the mound with a 0.22 ERA and 40 strikeouts.
“As a pitcher, you want to throw strikes first then you can kind of play with the hitters as you pitch,” Atterbury said. “As a hitter, most of the time I like swinging at the first pitch because it’s really the best pitch in the count.”
Offensively, Atterbury cites his best day at the plate against Chamblee on March 31, when he had three hits in four appearances. Atterbury notched his first home run of the season in a 14-3 victory over Lithonia on April 2.
Even though the Eagles lost to undefeated Marist 1-0 on March 24, the right-hander allowed five hits and struck out seven with two walks and an unearned run.
After next season, Atterbury would really like to play at South Carolina.