CRANBERRY, Pa. (EYT/D9) — Logan Sell will play anywhere on the baseball field.
Some positions are harder on him than most.
Sell, a Keystone graduate who will play baseball at Penn State DuBois next spring, was behind the plate recently in a Butler County Area Baseball League game for Karns City vs. Butler Township.
It was a particularly painful evening for Sell. Foul tips seemed to have it out for him.
“I got hit in every part of the body. Every part,” Sell said. “Shoulders. Thigh. Ankle.”
It’s all part of the job for Sell, who has marketed himself as a do-it-all player. That’s what got him a shot at Penn State DuBois, one he hopes turns into another opportunity elsewhere in a couple of years.
“Originally Slippery Rock University was on the table,” Sell said. “But I just didn’t know anyone at Slip and a roster spot was just kind of a toss up.”
Sell also had offers from Penn State Wilkes-Barre and Penn State DuBois. He opted to play in DuBois because of his familiarity with the campus and the players on the roster.
“Just with their reputation, the coaching staff, it’s unmatched,” Sell said. “I was just excited to get that opportunity to play there.”
Sell is a true utility man. He can play all three outfield positions, crouch behind the plate and man shortstop. He shows off his strong arm no matter where he takes the field.
It’s not an easy job, either, and Sell puts the work in to make sure he’s ready to play anywhere his coach needs him on a particular day.
“It just takes a lot of work,” Sell said. “I put more time into baseball than probably anything else in my life. But I just love the sport. I was 4 when I started playing baseball and it was always the sport I put above everything else.”
Karns City BCABL manager Mike Weigle recruited Sell to play for his team three years ago. Sell and Weigle’s son, Broc, are close friends and will room with each other at Penn State DuBois.
“I think we’re played him at every position except for first base,” Weigle said. “With his athletic ability and the speed he has, he can play anywhere.”
As a junior, there was no baseball to be played at all because of the COVID-19 pandemic that shut down all spring sports. It was a miserable time for Sell, who was used to keeping busy, not only with baseball, but with football, basketball and track and field.
“Losing my junior year of baseball was probably the hardest thing that’s ever happened to me,” Sell said. “I was really excited. We had a great group of seniors, a great group of juniors and sophomore talent as well, and it just fell through the cracks. I think that would have been Keystone baseball’s year and we just never got the opportunity to have it.”
That made Sell’s senior season on the diamond that much more satisfying.
Sell batted .382 with a home run and 14 RBI. He also had three doubles and six triples for the Panthers. The summer, he was a standout as well for the Karns City in the BCABL, making the league’s all-star game.
“He can be streaky, but when he’s on, he’s on,” Weigle said. “He had a couple of home runs in the last couple of years for us, and if he doesn’t get it over the fence and it gets to the wall, he’s going to be standing on third base real quick because he’s really fast.”
Sell was just happy to be playing baseball at all because of the disruption caused by the pandemic.
“It definitely made me appreciate it,” Sell said.
He’s never been one, though, to take things for granted. That’s because he knows the story of his father, Todd, who had to leave sports behind to get a job when he was a teenager to help support his family.
Logan Sell said he dedicates his athletic accomplishments to him.
“I tell him I’m thankful to be blessed enough to be able to play because of what he and mom have set up for me,” he said. “I don’t have a worry in the world because of what they’ve done for us.”
Sell, though, found that lobbying his mom, Steffanie, to play football in the eighth grade was a tougher, well, sell than he thought.
She dug in, worried that her son would be seriously injured. But Logan eventually convinced her with a stunning, succinct argument.
“I told her, ‘Mom, if you’re afraid, you’re never going to let me live,’” Sell said. “And she said, ‘All right. If you want to play, you can play.’ I played four years after that and the most I ever got was a stoved finger.”
Sell’s younger brother, Aidan, didn’t have to lobby as hard to play football, and he’s an up-and-coming star athlete at Keystone.
“He’s going to be a junior this year and it’s really going to be his time to shine,” Sell said.
Sell is hoping his time to shine will come soon at Penn State DuBois.
“Honestly, my whole life I’ve always wanted to go to college and play baseball,” Sell said. “I sat myself down and told myself that I needed to excel to get some looks and that’s what happened this year. And here we are. I got what I’ve always wanted.”