The day was February 27th, 2020. The world had already been shook up by the spread of the Coronavirus, spring sports seasons had been cancelled and one 20 year old from Syracuse, NY had something entirely different on his mind.. Repairing his torn shoulder and bicep muscle in his throwing arm.
“One of the most challenging years of my life hands down, from the season getting cancelled to having such a major surgery on my shoulder and the fear of the unknown, it was a lot to take in”.- DF; Dylan Frawley is our starting catcher for the baseball team and his road to getting to this point today has been far from a straight line. He began his college baseball career at Salem International University and quickly figured out the far away from home setup he had chosen out of high school was not the choice for him. From the lack of education to personal issues and the urge to play more competitive baseball, Dylan packed up his things to meet with our coach, Scott Landers, to discuss the possibility of furthering his career here at Oswego. This was a situation at Oswego for Dylan that could not have been a better match, as he was closer to home than he was during his freshman year and he was going to a program that had recently become a staple in Appleton, WI competing for the Division III National Title, winning the last three SUNYAC championships in the process.
Things had really begun to turn around for Dylan by making the much needed switch to Oswego until during the 2019 spring season, Dyl began to feel tightness in his throwing shoulder as he would use it more and more for competition. One of Dylan’s roommates and a teammate on the baseball team, Frank Levanti, couldn’t even tell that the arm was bothering Dylan because of his high tolerance to pain and the sharpness on his throws from behind home plate. Frank was quoted as saying, “It still really blows my mind that the entire time we were playing, he had a severely damaged shoulder that needed surgery. Nobody, including myself, could see any dramatic drop off from Dylan in his performance that would give us any indications of it being anything serious.” -FL; Dylans other roommate, Tim Schinto, also gave compelling quotes as it pertains to Frawley’s condition saying, “He was no more limited than any of our other guys, so to learn the extent of the injury that he had and continued to play through, is impressive to say the least.”- TS; Dylan continued to play throughout the 2019 season on the team’s road to winning the SUNYAC title again and going to play for a regional game.
Following the conclusion of the 2019 season, Dylan was instructed by the trainers at Oswego to simply rest the ailing shoulder in an attempt to let the injury heal on it’s own without surgery. This turned out to be the wrong advice because as preparations for the 2020 season began, Dylan began feeling the same pain as the season before and with even more intensity than ever before. Dylan described the pain of full effort throwing as, “Like I would be stabbed in the shoulder with knives every time I made the full throwing motion.”-DF; The injury slowly began to limit his range of motion and eventually led him to believing that he would never be able to fully be able to compete in the way that he was accustomed to. Following this conclusion, he decided to hang up his cleats for a short while until he figured out if surgery was worth it for him in the long run…
This retirement from the game lasted for about 2 weeks, until I got a text from Dylan halfway through one of my classes last spring. It was a long message but in essence, he was dying to come back to play and do whatever it took to do so. This began the process of calling the hospital, getting a surgery date and then rehabbing the shoulder relentlessly for months.
That same kid who went in for surgery on February 27th, 2020 is still standing tall now and awaits the first game of the 2021 season to be played, one year after the Coronavirus shook up everyone’s lives and Dylan made the clear choice that he was not done yet, in fact, far from it.