Editor’s Note: With high school sports postponed indefinitely, we’re checking in with athletes and coaches from the Andover sports community about how they are dealing with the coronavirus pandemic.
Baseball has been an obsession for Andrew Selima since he first picked up a bat.
Selima was one of the stars of the Andover Little League team that came within a win of advancing to the Little League World Series in 2011, turning heads with his prodigious home run power and dazzling as a pitcher.
He moved on to star at St. John’s Prep in Danvers — where he hit .282 as a senior, received an A in every single class he’s took and scored 1,390 on his SATs — and for the Andover Legion baseball team.
Now, he is a junior for Holy Cross. The infielder was hitting .273 with three homers in 12 games in 2020 before the season was cancelled due to the coronavirus.
Selima took the time to answer questions about how he’s doing during the coronavirus outbreak:
SCHOOL: Junior at College of the Holy Cross; graduated St. John’s Prep, 2017
MAJOR: Mathematics major, stats and physics minor
ACCOLADES: Roy Dobens Most Improved Player (Holy Cross baseball); Student-athlete honoree; Member of Pi Mu Epsilon, Mathematics Honor Society
1. How has the shutdown of sports affected you personally?
It’s killing me. I feel like my heart has been ripped right out of me. However, I have made a commitment to not wallow in that despair and grief. I cannot let COVID-19 hold me back. I have to get up off the mat and punch back.
I decided to focus on school a little more, and I have discovered some creative ways to still practice baseball; to throw, to hit, and to field. I try to look at the positives and not dwell on the negatives.
2. Do you know anyone personally inflicted with the virus and how are they doing?
I do not.
3. What were your goals coming into the spring and how have they changed?
My goals were to have a breakout baseball season. They have not changed. While there is no season, my goals do not change. I will not let this virus change and my goals. I will not let it take control of me. While my means of achieving that goal may have changed, the goal remains the same. That is why I cannot wait for summer ball. That will be my season this year. And it better not get canceled.
4. If there has been a positive thing to come out of the virus, what is it?
I get to spend more time with my parents.
5. What makes you most upset about the people and the virus?
While we have to take this pandemic seriously, we cannot panic. Too many people I know are panicking, and it makes me upset. All that does is lead to mass hysteria, which is something we need to avoid if we are to triumph quickly against COVID-19
6. What is your overall assessment of our political leaders?
I don’t like to get political. But I will say that I approve.
7. With no NBA, NHL or March Madness, how are you getting your sports fix these days?
On YouTube, the MLB has put on some old baseball games. Yesterday I watched Game 4 of the 2004 World Series when the Red Sox won it all. Thanks to YouTube, I have still been able to get my sports fix. It is also nice reliving some great moments in Boston sports history.
8. Have you been ordering out at all, and if so, what restaurant is your go-to place?
My family has not ordered out yet. My mom has been cooking up some great home-made meals. That’s something that I am not used to at this time of the year because I am usually at school playing baseball.
9. What’s your go-to movie or show to stream?
The Witcher on Netflix is one of my favorite shows. It’s different and fresh and I really enjoyed it. The Lord of the Rings movies are my favorite too. They’re long so they keep you occupied for some time which is nice.
10. What will be the thing you’ll most want to do right away post-coronavirus crisis?
Get the Holy Cross baseball team back together and go play a game against Army so we can kick their butt and get payback for last year. I know this is unrealistic, but I just really want to get back on the baseball field and play.