Drafted in 2012, designated hitter Dario Pizzano has spent his entire professional career with the Mariners. Growing up in Saugus, Mass., the 27-year-old attended Columbia University and majored in political science. The last two seasons, Pizzano went back and forth between AA and AAA but has been with the Travelers thus far this season.
Are you pleased with your career so far?
Of course not. I have a job, and it could be much worse. I have an insatiable mindset and would like to be in the Big Leagues. As long as I have a uniform on my back, I’ve adopted that attitude.
What are your thoughts about being the designated hitter?
I play outfield and first base some, but as long as I’m hitting. My strong point is I have a good eye at the plate. One of my specific skills is I don’t strike out much and hit the ball hard.
What keeps you playing ball instead of using your degree?
Getting a degree from that school I could work in finance. It’s a double-edge sword. I have that degree in my back pocket and will worry about that when my career is over. I wanted to make the Big Leagues by the age of 25, but I’ve talked to others who made it when they were older. I’m fortunate enough to have a strong support system. I’m 100 percent focused, and there is hope. I can’t give up.
Did you always want to play professional baseball?
It was always my dream, and I was always pretty good and athletic. When I was 12, I played in the Little League World Series. I liked playing on that stage in front of people and having a microphone in my face.
Have you ever been in a slump?
I have, but the older you get you get more mature and better at the craft of dealing with adversity. You’ll have your ups and downs. Now, I do mental exercises and don’t get upset and put it into perspective.
Besides the Big Leagues, what are your goals?
My goal right now is to just put 100 percent in on this-physically, mentally and mechanically at the plate.
What do you do in the off-season?
I live with my girlfriend in Hoboken, N.J. and train at Columbia with my college coach.