Christopher Grothues ’22 has committed to play baseball at UCLA. The Friars’ left handed pitcher said, “I chose UCLA because I believe it is one of the best schools academically in the nation, has a good alumni network, and has a great baseball program. Even before I started seriously thinking about college UCLA was always somewhere I wanted to go.”
He continued, “I was attracted to UCLA baseball specifically because they have one of the top programs in the nation and are known for developing great pitchers. Another reason I like UCLA is because of the coaching staff. Coach Savage was just rated the National College Pitching Coach of the Year by Collegiate Baseball and was named the PAC 12 College Coach of the Decade. The fact that he develops a close relationship with his players is important to me.”
A four-year varsity letterman by the time he graduates, Grothues earned a spot in the starting rotation as a freshman last season pitching a team-high 61 innings, making 11 starts and finishing the year with a 2.6 ERA. He also led the staff in strikeouts with 49. For his efforts, Grothues earned 1st Team All-Trinity League recognition.
Head Coach Shawn Gilbert shared, “Chris is a great competitor, teammate, and a young man of character not to mention one of the top pitchers in the Trinity League. I am proud of his accomplishments thus far and excited that we still have three seasons to watch him further develop not only as a player but also a young man.” He continued, “He has improved in a short period of time already this fall and we look forward to another quality year from him. He has a real chance to be a dominant pitcher in the Pac 12 if he continues on the path he is on now.”
Grothues, who is interested in pursuing a career in sports medicine or physical therapy, is also involved with Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) and his church, Calvary Chapel East Anaheim outside of Servite. He shared, “My passion is baseball, so most of my activities have involved baseball, although I also like to play basketball and hang with my friends. I am involved with FCA and am a junior coach at their baseball summer camps. I am also active with the youth group at my church where we do a lot of outdoor and sports activities in addition to community service projects like helping the homeless and recovering addicts.”
Grothues is the second Friar in recent years to commit UCLA joining Emanuel Dean ’19 who will play his freshman season for the Bruins this spring.
In closing, Grothues shared, ” I still have a long way to go and a lot of hard work to do; however, I believe it is not my strength but God who gives me the ability to succeed. He alone has given me the talent to compete at a high level, and also gave me the best coaches in Coach Gilbert and Page. They have invested their time and energy to help me achieve my maximum potential, and without their instruction, I would not be where I am today.”
Servite would like to congratulate Chris on this exciting accomplishment and wish him the best of luck throughout his high school career as he looks toward college.