March 22, 2012
While the Arizona baseball team's 2012 season is now well under way, former UA first baseman Cole Frenzel has been around Hi Corbett Field getting ready for his own major league season. A few weeks ago ArizonaWildcats.com got a chance to catch up with him and find out how pro ball is going, his thoughts on this year's team, and more.
Frenzel led all Pac-10 batters last season with a .461 on-base percentage. He was drafted by the New York Mets in the seventh round of last year's MLB Draft.
ArizonaWildcats.com: How is it being back in Tucson working with some of your old teammates before you get ready for spring training?
Cole Frenzel: It's absolutely awesome. With the facilities here you have everything you need to get ready. It's nice just being with them because they weren't just my teammates; they were and still are my friends. So yeah this is definitely really cool.
ArizonaWildcats.com: How is it different getting ready for the season this year just knowing you're not going to be in an Arizona Wildcats uniform?
Cole Frenzel: It's definitely different. I've come back to watch a few games already and it brings back a lot of memories. I'm playing baseball still though and I'll always be a wildcat. I wish the best for these guys.
ArizonaWildcats.com: Do you have a favorite memory playing here at Arizona?
Cole Frenzel: I don't think I could just label one day or game. I've just had so many great memories and experiences here. Coming out to practice and just being around baseball is just awesome.
ArizonaWildcats.com: Last year you guys you had a pretty lengthy ride through the College Station Regional. Obviously you guys would have liked to come out of there as winners, but what was the experience like having to battle back through the loser's bracket and nearly winning the regional?
Cole Frenzel: We knew coming into the regional that we were a really good team and we had our sights on winning the tournament, so losing that first game really hurt our chances. But after that, we knew if we just played good baseball we'd be fine, and that's what we did for the most part until the end there. Unfortunately in that first game against Seton Hall their starting pitcher (Jon Prosinski) just came out and threw a great game. That's just how it goes sometimes.
ArizonaWildcats.com: What was your initial reaction to getting drafted?
Cole Frenzel: Well it was kind of a bittersweet day. It was one of the best days of my life because this is what I've worked so hard for, but at the same time it was one of the worst because it was the same day we were eliminated from the postseason and our chance to get to Omaha was gone. I mean going to the College World Series is why you come to a place like Arizona, so it was unfortunate that we couldn't get there. It was absolutely a bittersweet feeling. That was a weird day for sure.
ArizonaWildcats.com: How tough was the decision to leave Arizona and go pro?
Cole Frenzel: Oh it was extremely tough, one of the toughest decisions I have ever had to make. There was a lot of talking with my parents and other people, just going over everything just to make sure I was making the right decision. It was kind of a win either way. I could either come back and play baseball at a fantastic program at the University of Arizona or I could go get my shot at professional ball, something I've wanted to do every since I was little.
ArizonaWildcats.com: Brandon Dixon is taking your spot at first base this year. Any advice you want to offer him?
Cole Frenzel: Dixon is a great player. If he ever needs anything he knows I'll always be more than happy to help him out. He's a great guy, good kid; he's doing a great job over there. I don't think he needs too much advice to be honest, he's a lot more prepared than people would think. (Smiling) He's a faster learner than me anyway.
ArizonaWildcats.com: What was it like playing for coach like Andy Lopez?
Cole Frenzel: Just the life lessons he would give were so great. I mean I played two years here and I think I would learn something new from him everyday. The messages he would deliver through his speeches were just really inspiring. I don't even go here anymore and I'm still taking advice from him. He's just a great coach and one of the most professional human beings I've ever met on and off the field.
ArizonaWildcats.com: There are a lot of returners and some really talented players on this year's Arizona Wildcats team. You would know better than anyone, what is this team capable of doing this year?
Cole Frenzel: Definitely winning a national championship, without a doubt. You look at guys like Bobby Brown, Johnny Field, Kurt Heyer, Alex Mejia; the list just goes on and on. This team has a lot of talent. They have the pitching and the offense, so I really do think this team can win it all. I fully believe that.