Virginia Tech Baseball Senior Spotlight: Nick Menken

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Nick Menken
Nick Menken will hold down centerfield for the Hokies in 2019. (Photo courtesy of Virginia Tech)

It’s a bird… it’s a plane… it’s Virginia Tech’s Nick Menken patrolling centerfield for the Hokies.  No, seriously. Check out this highlight from last year…

The 5-foot-10, 190-pound outfielder made his presence known defensively while hitting .246 in his first season in Blacksburg. Menken previously spent the two years prior at Iowa Western CC. Heading into 2019, he’s ready to ‘wow’ fans once again with his exciting style of play.

Q: If you won the lottery, how would you spend the money?

NM: First, I would probably give a lot of it to my family. Then, I would go buy a private island somewhere with a nice yacht of mine and go fishing. That’s probably what I would do.

Q: Who’s the funniest guy on the team? Who’s the smartest guy on the team?

NM: Funniest guy on the team, I’m ging to have to go with Jack Dellinger. He is definitely one that’s out there. Different cookie. The smartest guy on the team, I’m going to have to go with an engineering major, Ryan Metz. He’s a pretty intelligent kid.

Q: What’s the most useless talent you have?

NM: I can burp the ABC’s.

Q: What’s been your favorite memory over your time at Virginia Tech?

NM: How the community really pours into the school. You have fanbases all over, and when you go home, I’m from Chicago, you go home and you wear some Virginia Tech in the airport, there’s always one or two or three guys coming up to you saying ‘Go Hokies!’ It’s a big community, and just being here and being part of such a great community and great school, it’s awesome and really opened my eyes.

Q: You spent two years at Iowa Western CC. What’s the hardest part about being at a junior college?

NM: The hardest part was not knowing where you’re going next. Putting so much pressure on you to perform at a level there, but thankfully I had teammates there that said to stick with the process day by day and let your abilities take care of where you’re going to go next.

Q: What attracted you to Virginia Tech after Iowa Western CC? Anything specific that coaches told you?

NM: It really felt like they wanted me there and I was their guy. They had some good things to say about the future and my future. Not just only Virginia Tech, but hopefully next year after this.

Q: Two scenarios, which one would you rather have? Bases are loaded with two outs, up one – would you rather make a diving catch to end the game? Or down one, two outs with bases loaded and have a game-winning hit?

NM: I take a lot of pride in my defense, so I would definitely say a diving catch to save the game or win the game for the boys.

Q: You did make a number of spectacular diving catches last year. What enables you to have done that several times in centerfield?

NM: I would just say taking the reps in BP is the most important thing because that’s where you’re going to get all your live reads. The first step and just being aggressive towards the ball, and just an aggressive mindset that if that ball is up in the air, I’m going to go get it and I’m not going to let it fall.

Q: Offensively, where have you been working the most to improve at the plate this year?

NM: I would say my short game. If I get a couple more bunts down, then it’s going to open a lot more in the field which would help me swinging. It would make holes for me.

Q: How do you want people to remember Nick Menken when you take off the Virginia Tech jersey for the last time?

NM: Just a kid who does the right thing day in and day out. Comes to the field with a happy mindset, positive mindset. Just always trying to get better, and not just trying to get myself better, but trying to get the people around me better every day. I think that’s the most important part is being an older guy you have to teach these younger guys a little bit of the things that you know because that’ll go a long way.

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