2017 Free Agent IF/OF Bryan Lang
6'3" first baseman, can also play 3B, 2B, OF, and backup pitcher. Bats left and throws right.
Who are you playing with in 2017?
Free Agent BLang17@gmail.com
What positions do you play and what is your best position?
1st base and corner OF
Who is the best softball player you have ever seen play?
Danny Sarmiento. Won back to back B title's with Marnell. He is the one that taught me how to hit.
Why do you like the game of softball?
Gives me the chance to still compete and put on a uniform. This great game has allowed me to meet some amazing people and see some parts of this great country I wouldn't have normally been able to see.
What is your nickname in softball and how did you get it?
What is your height and weight?
Where do you call home?
I live in Snowflake, AZ. That is about three hours NE of Phoenix.
What's your favorite way to spend an off weekend?
An off weekend is spent with the family. My step sons love to go hit so I get to sneak in some BP. My twin little girls want to either go to the cage or just play with dad on the trampoline. Always make time to take my wife to dinner and spend that quality time with her.
What do you do for a living?
I'm the facilities manager at the high school in my town. I am in charge of all our home sporting events at the high school. Setting up and taking down, painting our football field and practice fields, and maintaining our fields. I also coach football.
Did you play sports in High School / College / Pro?
I played football my freshman and sophomores years in high school. I played baseball all four years in high school and two years at a junior college. I was drafted my the Giants in 99 as a draft and follow. Released the next year.
How did you get your start in softball and how did you get to the upper level?
Got my start on a D team right out of college. I was playing in a benefit tourney for a friend's son who passed away. I was asked to go to a tourney in Cali the next weekend. I was hooked from then on. Played on a Conference C team a few years back here in AZ and loved the travel and the competition that every weekend brought. I have been very lucky to play in the Conference and on a B team. Nothing compares to playing against the best every weekend.
What was the most surprising difference between Conference play and non-Conference play when you made the jump?
The competition is a no brainier, but the respect level between teams is what caught me off guard. There really isn't a whole lot of trash talking on the field, no boom boxes in the dugouts. Teams show up to play ball not to fight.
Is there a player that you would compare your game to?
I can't compare my self to anyone. What I do try to do is watch guys and how they handle them selves on the field. With me being a left handed hitter I try to watch guys like Filby, and Helmer. I am always trying to find something that will make me a better hitter.
What would you say is your career highlight to this point? Maybe one play or game that sticks out to you in particular?
I have two.
Playing with DeMarini a few years ago we went to the ASA B in OKC. That year we took 2nd and it was an amazing run. Fields were awesome and I was named to the all tourney team with some great players.
Two years ago I got picked up late by Valley Motors to go to the USSSA B World. We surprised everyone with a 4th place finish.
In your career was there a single person (player/manager/coach) who had the most significant impact on your approach to the game? Why?
I already mentioned Danny as helping me become a better hitter. The other person would have to be Mike Calise Sr. He took my hitting and game to the next level. He was always in my ear about my approach. Asking when should you do this when should you do that. With out Mike I wouldn't have the mind set and approach I have today.
What advice can you give a young player trying to break into the upper level?
Always play hard because you never know who is watching.
What type of batting grip do you use and what ounce bat?
Normal baseball grip. 27oz Combat. Thanks to Coop for letting me swing Combat.
What do you do in the offseason to prepare for the next softball season?
I try to hit BP as much as I can and keep my legs in shape. I spend most of my time with my family. Traveling can be hard on my family so I try to stay around home in the off season.
What is your favorite sports team and your favorite sport other than softball?
Ohio State Buckeyes
Grew up watching hockey with my dad. So any chance I have I try to get down and watch the Coyotes.
Do you have any superstitions and if so, what are they?
I wouldn't say I have superstitions. I would call them routines. I do the same thing every at bat. I don't do anything crazy like not change my socks for the entire weekend, or eat at the same place if were winning.
What would be your "at bat" music selection?
Anything from Lecrae
What is the best improvement upper level softball could make?
They made it by bat testing at every tourney. I think that was a big start.
What is your favorite non-World tournament and why?
Toys for Tots is a good event for a great cause.
What is the best softball field/complex you have played at and why?
The duel in Seattle. Fields are drug and watered after every game. The fields being surrounded by trees just makes it a cool place to play.
Where is the best place to eat on the road after a game?
All depends on how hungry you are and where your at. If I have time I would have to say Chili's or Applebee's.
What is the funniest thing you have ever seen on a softball field?
Not on the field but I think this was funny.
We were getting ready to board a plane and AJ Montano who has fake eye says see you guys on the plane. He popped it out and put his eye in his pocket to board the plane first. Grabbed the shoulder of another teammate and was led on the plane.
Tell us something about you that most would never know about you?
Going back to school to get my degree so I can be a high school math teacher.
What was your favorite sports related gift you have ever given or received?
My dad and I have always collected sports cards since I was little. When McFarlane came out with their sports figures we starting collecting them. It's nice to have a bond as silly as it may sound with my dad. I still look forward to giving and receiving these sports figures with my dad at birthdays and Christmas.
Oldscout interview questions 2/7/2016:
Have you ever missed tournaments unannounced, team jumped, quit, etc?
A couple of years ago I go picked up by Tailgaters at the end of the season. Due to some family issues I had to miss the world tournament and I still can't tell Billy I'm sorry enough. I have never team jumped when I commit to a team I stay with that team.
Name one mistake you've made in upper level softball and what did you do to correct/learn from it?
I need to get to the upper level first.
Are you willing to sacrifice your average for the betterment of the team?
Yes. Winning is the most important thing. Whatever I can do to help the team win I will do.
Do you read and/or post on theoldscout, why/why not?
I read it almost every day. Most of the stuff I get a good laugh at but DW does a great job getting information out to us.
Are the anonymous bashers the reason why more upper level sponsors and players don't post on oldscout?
I believe they are.
What do you do after the tournament is over?
Hang out at the park for a bit and talk with friends. Then shower and find some dinner.
Has softball interfered with your Job?
No I have a job that allows me to leave on the weekends.
Has softball interfered with your family?
No it hasn't. I have a family that is very supportive of my playing and if I have something important for family the weekend of softball I don't go play ball.
Have you knowingly used altered equipment?
I have but only in BP or a HR derby. I don't want to be that guy that hits a pitcher period let along with an altered bat.
What sort of unusual training methods have you used to improve your hitting?
I wouldn't say its unusual but I have put cones out like infielders so I know where I want to hit the ball.
What kind of practice do you do to get better?
I take BP and right now I ref high school basketball to keep my legs in shape.
Are you a good teammate?
I believe I'm a good teammate. I would hope I have been one over the years. Team comes first
Do you think Worlds should be rotated around the United States each year? Which state(s) would you like to see them be in?
Yes, I remember when I first started playing the World Tournaments were rotated. I enjoyed getting to see places I would normally not get to see.
What is 1 thing you would change about the game and 1 thing you would not change?
I'm in no position to change anything. I show up and play.
How many divisions do you believe softball should have? (Currently M, AA, A, B, C, D, E)
I'm ok with what the divisions are now. I believe E teams should have a limit on how long you can stay in the Rec division.
Tell us your best travel war stories (Flights, Cars, Rooms, etc..)?
Watching AJ pop his fake eye out at the air port to walk on a plane early as Lex leads him on the plane.
Do you think worlds at all levels should go back to 32 – 48 teams only and teams should have to qualify?
The days of qualifying at an NIT were great but it is now about money.
What do you plan on doing when your softball days are over?
I plan on teaching math in high school and continuing to coach high school football.
Have you ever been cut by a team?
Do you go on the old scout message and post without your name?
I have posted with and without my name.
What other message boards do you read?
Do you consider yourself a "role model" when it comes to young softball players/kids that watch you play?
I hope when people see me play I do things the right way. I want to be a role model to my family and my daughters. They are there in the stands at times I want them to know I do things the right way.
Where do you see softball/yourself in 10 years?
Softball will still be around and I will play when I can. My daughters will be in high school and if their playing any sports I want to be there supporting them.
When do you feel you will hang 'em up?
My body and my family will tell me when it's time. I want to be able to watch my girls play when their in high school.
Has softball opened any doors for you?
Yes softball has given me the opportunity to meet some amazing people. Softball has also given me the chance to represent a great company and sell for Combat Sports. Don Cooper has been amazing and I can't thank him enough for allowing me to be a part of Combat.
Do you prefer to play tournaments in baseball or softball fields?
Have never had the opportunity to play on a baseball field so all I know are softball fields.
What is your philosophy/routine on hitting/bp sessions?
I try to work the ball around the field. I just don't go up and swing for the fence. I try to work on every part of my game.
What's your feeling on bat testing?
I'm glad they do it.
What do you want to be remembered as when you walk away from the game?
I want to be remembered as someone who played hard and was always thankful to the sponsors. With out the sponsors none of us get to play this great game.
Have you ever made a YouTube video of yourself?
Who is the one player who you enjoy competing against the most?
I have played against some of the great players. I would say the time I got to play against Scott Brown was vey important to me. Scott was competitive on the field but was the first one to talk to you off the field. Scott showed me how a true professional should act and represent a company.
What are your goals for this year?
Goals are to go out and play hard and win whatever world we are sent to.
Do you love to win or hate to lose?
I love to win.
What do you find the most challenging in playing?
The game it self is challenging and making sure your ready for each and every game can take its tole at times.
What makes you nervous in a game?
The game it self still makes me nervous. When I stop feeling that way I will know its time to give it up.
What is your favorite position in the field? Least favorite?
I love playing 1st base. I have taken pride in that position and tell my infielders to get it close to me and I'll take care of the rest.
What are you concentrating on that will improve your batting?, fielding?, pitching?
I concentrate in BP on where I want to hit the ball. Fielding I try and take ground balls.
If you were not playing slowpitch what would you be playing?
I'm not sure I would be playing anything. I think I would just be even more focused on coaching.
What is your number you wear on your uniform? is it special to you and why?
I wear number 17 and have done so through Jr High, High School, and College. It was the number of a quarter back of the Cleveland Browns Brian Sipe and it's also my birth date.
Bottom of the seventh, down 1, two outs, no HR's left, runner on 2nd. Who do you want batting in that situation?
I know this might sound arrogant but I want to put that situation on my self. Anyone that plays this game should say them selves if not then they won't be ready when that situation comes up.
Who's the best sponsor you've ever played for?
Ronnie of RMS was an amazing sponsor here in AZ. He expected a lot but was always doing what he could for his players.
Who are the toughest pitcher(s) to hit against?
For me it was Derick Warren. Derick is a great pitcher and his knuckle ball moved all over the place.
What's your favorite bat of all time?
Combat OG Plague