By MICHAEL LETENDRE
WATERBURY – On Thursday, Jan. 17, Fairfield University baseball made a very wise local investment in its future.
And that future will include St. Paul’s Kyle Dube as the young man signed a National Letter of Intent and will join the Stags for its 2014 baseball campaign.
“I’m so excited,” said Dube. “I can’t even put into words how gratifying it is…getting an award like that.”
And his biggest supporter, his mother Jeannette, might be even more excited for Kyle than he is.
If you go to any St. Paul athletic event, she’s probably the loudest fan in the stands and, in turn, one of the proudest for a very exceptional young man.
With Fairfield just down the road, there’s going to a familiar voice in the stands cheering on the soon to be pitcher when he debuts for the Stags.
“I’m very proud,” said Jeannette. “I liked the school when we went to see it. I think it’s a good choice for him. It’s close to home, I can watch him play.”
It’s not surprising that Dube’s skills are in demand as he is one of those glue guys on the field who’s not afraid to turn and successful make a big play.
Dube always makes the players on the team better and is simply a role model young players can look up to.
Leaders are always easy to find by Dube is a standout in that category.
And getting a chance to strut his stuff for Fairfield in the 2014 season won’t be too shabby either.
When it came to schools interested in Dube, several schools took notice.
Central Connecticut took a serious look at him as did the University of Connecticut.
The University of Massachusetts also followed Dube’s play as did Northeastern University (Dube’s mother said that the Boston option wasn’t going to be a good choice because Kyle would probably spend his days at Fenway Park instead of in class…).
But Fairfield came through with an offer while the other schools went down other avenues and looked at other players.
And Dube is not just a good player, but he’s a very good student as well.
It’s the reason why the Stags came through with not just a partial athletic scholarship but some academic money as well.
With a 3.8 GPA, several schools would have loved to have Dube even if he wasn’t playing ball.
And with friend and teammate Joey Randall on the squad as well, a sense of familiarity will help out both players at Fairfield.
“I’m going to play with Joe,” said Dube. “It’s going to be a great experience.”
This season, Fairfield head coach Bill Currier enters his second year as coach with the program and he led the squad to a program record 27 victories and its first MAAC Championship berth in 12 seasons during 2012.
It’s a program that’s growing and Dube is going to be on the ground floor of it.
However, Fairfield is also getting a good player in return.
Dube can play just about all over the field and chuck the ball from the mound with accuracy as well and his arm is what caught the Stags’ eye. And he did a little of everything for the Falcons last season.
As a junior for St, Paul, Dube batted an outstanding .381 with 32 hits, one home run and 20 RBI.
He also had a .411 on-base percentage, which also was outstanding.
Pitching for the program, he carried an ERA less than 2.00 while going 6-2 on the campaign.
Dube racked up 10 strikeouts in a game against Sacred Heart while posting 45 overall while walking only 16.
Offensively, he had five games of three hits in a game and that offense certainly was a major reason for the Falcons’ stellar 14-10 campaign under the tutelage of veteran coach of Pat Holden.
And then he backed up that excellent play with an outstanding summer of baseball at the Legion level for the Bristol club as more scouts had an opportunity to make a play for the pitcher.
While Dube will have an outstanding senior campaign this coming spring, a number of colleges and universities will be a little frustrated than they failed to scoop him up.
But Dube is certainly ready to play at the next level as a member of a NCAA Division I program.
“I’m really excited for it,” said Dube.