23-year old Josh Osich says he only has time for baseball and fishing. Thankfully for him, when he is playing baseball, he’s throwing mid-90s fastballs from the left side with ease. I sat down with the Oregon State alum to talk about playing again with Beaver teammate Andrew Susac, locating his fastballs better, and staying loose in the clubhouse. And fishing, of course.
So Josh you just finished lifting. Describe what that’s like for you and if you can, compare or contrast it to how hitters workout.
Everybody has their own program. No one is really the same. Pitchers? They’re on the same schedule with lifting and stuff but each lift is different for each person.
You’ve been all over the place when it comes to being in the rotation and going back to the pen. You started a little bit at Oregon State. What’s it like going back and forth like that and what’s more comfortable for you?
It kind of throws you out of your routine if you keep coming back and forth but you have to get used to it and do whatever they want you to do. But I’d rather throw out of the bullpen, I’m more comfortable there.
Coming off Tommy John in 2010, you must have gone through a grueling period of rehab. Describe that for me if you will.
It took me about 11 months, right around there. I came back strong and then I was starting in 2011 for the Beavers on Saturdays and then just towards the end I ran out of gas. My arm was pretty much just worn out because it’s not really in shape yet after Tommy John. It’s right around two years you’ll feel the best.
You did have one bright spot in 2011 after the surgery, throwing a no-hitter against UCLA. How good was that for your confidence coming out of rehab?
It felt great. Can’t really do that unless your defense is pretty good.
Well, you struck out 13 so you were doing a pretty good job yourself.
Yeah well defense still played pretty well for me. It was just one of those days where you kind of blackout and don’t really know what happened.
Have your recent injury issues stemmed from your elbow?
My Tommy John’s been good. I’ve had just about every kind of injury possible except for my shoulder…my actual shoulder.
That must be tough for you.
Yeah just got to keep grinding.
So I talked with Andrew Susac about six weeks ago. How cool is it to have your old battery mate from Oregon State here with you in San Jose?
It’s great, it makes it a lot easier to get comfortable with sitting around if you know people and stuff but I knew some guys already like Ricky [Oropesa] we played against, Mitch Beacom was here for a little bit; he played for UCLA. [Danny] Sandbrink is from Stanford. We got a whole bunch. [Alex] Burg, I’ve played with Burg before.
How does the atmosphere in the clubhouse change on a day like today when a guy like Aubrey Huff is with the club?
It’s pretty much the same. Nothing really changes. We’re always just trying to have fun. If you let the game get to you, you aren’t going to have much fun. It’s going to be a struggle for the whole year.
How do you guys have fun? How do you stay loose?
Guys always playing pranks on each other, [Bobby] Haney doing impressions of people, that’s about it.
Who’s Haney’s best impression?
[Dan] Burkhart, or [Andy] Skeels.
What are you specifically working on right now to improve your game?
Just location of my fastball and trying to get some innings in.
Your twitter describes you as a man who only has time for baseball and fishing. How accurate of a statement is that?
Whenever I have free time, I fish. That’s pretty much all there is time for.
What’s a typical fishing day like for you?
I just wake up early and get out there before it gets hot and then you come to the field.
Fly-fishing? Lake fishing?
Whatever, really. When I’m here I bass fish and at home I fly-fish. When I was in Oregon I was out on the lake because we had a boat. Pretty much. On the 23rd I’m going ocean fishing.
You head out to the lake with some teammates?
Drew Bowlin goes fishing with me and Chris Wilson is going to go ocean fishing with me. Pretty much just hanging out, having fun, getting away from baseball.