UConn coach Jim Penders' first impression of Mason Feole left a lot to be desired.
"I thought this kid was going to be spoiled rotten," Penders said. "He’s an only child, and his mom is the best Italian cook on the planet. I had my concerns about recruiting him." Feole (Wakefield, R.I.) has assuaged those concerns over the last two seasons, making Penders’ decision to offer him a scholarship out of Prout School one of the smartest the coach has made in his 16-year tenure as UConn’s head coach.
Over the past two seasons, Feole has earned a slew of pitching honors, including Collegiate Baseball first-team All-American (2018), first-team All-New England (2018), Collegiate Baseball Freshman All-American (2017) and All-New England Rookie Pitcher of the Year (2017).
The 20-year-old ace enters his junior season as a potential second-round pick after pitching nine scoreless innings while representing his country last summer as a member of the 2018 USA Baseball Collegiate National Team. Over two seasons at UConn, the left-hander has posted a record of 16-6 with a 2.90 ERA and 195 strikeouts in 183⅓ innings.
"He’s been the exact opposite of what I thought," Penders said. "He’s the most selfless, team-oriented kid I’ve ever been around. In his mind, he comes second to everything going on with the team. That’s extremely rare with a pitcher, especially a great pitcher. He doesn’t lose any edge having that mentality."