For the past three seasons, CSI student-athlete and baseball pitcher James Mardikos has called “the mound” his home at the CSI Baseball Complex.  The southpaw hurler has made a living making clutch pitching performances for the Dolphins, enjoying a pair of CUNYAC Championships in the process.  He’s also a force in the classroom, where the Communications major focuses in Journalism and is due for graduation at the close of the Dolphins’ 2011 season.
But what exactly does it take to be a CSI Dolphin?  What are the rigors associated with being a national-caliber student and athlete?  Mardikos tells all now in a new CSI Athletics feature called “Mardy on the Mound” a new web log chronicling a year in the life of the CSI baseball senior, as they strive for national prominence.  Join James and his teammates through the grinds of preseason workouts, fall-ball, classroom commitments, and finally…Opening Day and defending their 2010 CUNYAC Championship!  Mardy, as known to his teammates, will make periodical contributions to his blog, giving insiders a taste of what Dolphins baseball is all about.
This week, Mardy gives us a close up look of the opening of the CSI Fall Ball season, kicked off by CSI Baseball’s 2nd Annual Alumni Game at the CSI Baseball Complex.  Read on for more:
Before I begin with my first “Mardy on the Mound” blog, I saw fit to introduce myself quick. My name is James Mardikos, a left-handed pitcher who’s entering my senior year here on the baseball team. I’ve been a part of the last two CUNYAC championship teams in 2008 and this past year. I’ve also had some great times through my duration here with all of my teammates, and coaches past and present. With this coming year being a much anticipated one for us, my intention is to pass along all those good, funny, and even bad times that I encounter over the next year with anyone who would like to read along… Hope you enjoy!
We recently just had our second annual Alumni Game for past CSI Dolphins players. While this game is a huge benefit toward us current players because it helps us with funding, it’s just as important to the guys who were grateful enough to help us out by playing.

Last year, I definitely didn’t realize how serious these guys take this one game. I really noticed the effort this past year because I myself played in my high school’s first alumni game on Memorial Day. It was so awesome to see a bunch of these guys that I haven’t seen or played ball with in a long time. I’d also be lying if I said I was going thru the motions. I wanted to win… badly.

Watching the guys who played the other night made me realize that these guys were definitely having a great time, but they still wanted to give whatever they had to win this game. I saw one pretty impressive diving catch by a third basemen that was Sportscenter Top 10 plays worthy (he also wasn’t the youngest looking person out there), and our own Anthony Avena who was a Co-MVP was all over the field getting hits, and taking extra bases. Anyone giving those kind of efforts wants to win.

I’m sure it was a blast for these guys to come back and see people they probably haven’t seen since their playing days. Because there’s nothing better than reminiscing, telling old stories, and catching up with people that you spent a lot of your either High School, or College days with. They’re days that you can never get back, but you can never lose.
– Mardy