Max Martzolf is the star two-way player for the Colts as both a pitcher and first baseman and is one of the Colts six all stars.
Martzolf finished his freshman year at Florida Atlantic University (FAU) where he was only a pitcher but got to break out his bat this summer on the Colts.
Martzolf has been a key contributor to the Colts on both sides of the game. Martzolf currently leads the Colts in batting average batting .373, with 22 hits, scoring 14 runs, 10 RBIs, and walking 12 times.
Martzolf still has 0.00 ERA, having pitched 14 innings, and struck out 23 batters while only allowing four hits and walking six over five games. Marzolf struck out 12 batters in 6 innings in the Colts 6-4 victory over the Flamingos on July 8.
Our Judith Altneu spoke to Martzolf on being a two-way player this summer.
What’s it like to be a two-way player?
“I’ve always grown up wanting to hit, like I’ve always been the guy who wants to come up to the plate in the big spotlight, but I’ve also idolized guys on my favorite team, the Red Sox, like Chris Sale and Pedro Martinez. They come up big when the moment shines on them on the mound. It feels good knowing that I could contribute to both sides of the field.”
Is there one position you like to play more than the other? Why?
“I prefer pitching more. Maybe it’s because last year at FAU I didn’t really get the opportunity to hit and they used me more in the bullpen and it feels like a more comfortable situation for me now knowing my role there. And just growing up pitching a lot helped me get to the position I am now and getting more opportunities.
What’s been working for you at the plate?
“I’ve always told myself to see the best pitch every at-bat and usually it’s the first or second pitch of the at bat. I try to tell myself hit the best pitch you can see. I get a lot of off speed pitches so I don’t normally hit the first pitch, so I can try to see what the other kids’ off speeds look like. As soon as I see that fastball coming I know I have to attack it early because I don’t get a lot of them.”
What’s been working for you on the mound?
“When I’m on the mound I always tell myself to get ahead and stay ahead. I like to attack the zone early and then get funky at the end. I like to work on off speeds very late in the count.”
How did you wind up on the Colts?
“So one of my teammates at FAU, Dawson Ball, he told me to come to this team because he knew the coach. I’m glad he reached out to me and I’m glad. I reached out to Chad and everything worked out the way it was.”
Who do you model your game after?
“From the hitting side I idolized David Ortiz, he’s my favorite player of all time and I just want to hit like him, hopefully. [For] the pitching side, I idolize Randy Johnson because I like to have that intimidation factor.”
What else do you want to accomplish this season?
“I don’t have any specific goals in mind, but I want to help the Colts get a championship title this summer and contribute in any aspect of my game I have. These are a great group of guys to play with and great coaching staff and I’m glad they invited me to help them this summer.”
What else do you like to do outside of baseball?
“Besides from baseball, I like to play golf. I like to spend time with my family, and I like to go to theme parks a lot. I really love roller coasters.”