Name: Kumar Nambiar
Athletic accomplishment: Pitched a six-hitter and struck out nine in the April 14 win over White Plains. In three starts this season he’s allowed just one earned run in 21 innings (0.33 ERA) with 25 strikeouts against just two walks. In his 10 most recent starts dating back to his junior year, he has allowed four earned runs, struck out 85, walked four, with a 0.71 ERA in 69 innings. He’s the captain of the baseball team for the second year.
Academic accomplishment: Was a national finalist for the New Balance award, has taken six AP courses, is a member of the OSR extra-curricular science research program, has a 94 GPA, is going to Yale next year to pitch, scored a 32 on the ACT, won the science research award, and helps coach Mike Chiapparelli with clinics at the Murray Elementary School with clinics.
Getting to know
The Journal News: Why do you like to pitch?
Kumar Nambiar: Pitching has been something I’ve always liked even when I was little when my mom (Hemlatta) taught me how to pitch. I enjoy the pressure of everyone watching me; I love that part of it. The game is basically in my hands at all times and I really enjoy that aspect of it.
TJN: How did she teach you to pitch?
KN: When I was 10 years old, mom built a mound in the backyard and almost every day we practiced until I got better throwing strikes. One thing she stressed was keeping the ball in the zone.
TJN: What’s been the key to your success early on this year?
KN: My control. I only have two walks to this point. I’m keeping the ball in the zone and letting the batters put the ball in play. My fielders have been strong behind me so I’ve been able to pitch well.
TJN: Why are you attending Yale?
KN: It was between Yale and Penn at the end and I visited both schools on back-to-back days. I came back from Yale after talking to coach John Stuper, who was a left handed pitcher in the major leagues and I was sold. Just the program he said he’d provide me with to lead me to success was something I couldn’t pass up on.
TJN: What did you win the science research award for?
KN: I, along with fellow Con Ed winner Andrew Sommer, worked on a research project for the last four years about identifying holes in pitching mechanics to youth baseball players and coaches. We gave out a survey we created ourselves. It asks basic questions about the game of baseball and the second part is a picture test with side by side pictures trying to identify correct and incorrect mechanics. Through it we found area’s in the pitching mechanics they didn’t know about so in the future we can go back and teach them to help prevent injuries.
TJN: Did the study help improve your pitching mechanics?
KN: It’s helped me a ton. It helped me pick up things that could cause extra stress on my arm, change my leg angle so it’s been beneficial to not just me, but the rest of the team.
The Con Edison Athlete of the Week recognizes students in Westchester and Putnam schools who excel athletically. Academic achievements, leadership, citizenship, and school and community activities are also factors. The winner is selected each week by a panel of athletic directors and coaches who review ballots submitted by each athlete’s athletic director or coach.