The Drill: Cade Wenninger gets plenty of good advice on baseball
Luverne amateur baseball player Cade Wenninger's father Mike and older brother Skyler are wells of knowledge he can learn from regularly
LUVERNE -- Through the years, Cade Wenninger has received a lot of advice about how to play baseball, and much of it has come from a father and an older brother.
Not everybody would always welcome so much family advice, but Cade has taken it in stride. His older brother Skyler, who is the head baseball coach at Worthington High School and a teammate of Cade’s on the Luverne Redbirds amateur baseball team, is capable of handing out pointers at any time. His dad, Mike Wenninger, recently retired after spending many seasons as the Luverne High School varsity coach -- and as any former Cardinal can tell you, Mike was never shy about telling his players how baseball needed to be played.
“My dad is definitely on the aggressive side of coaching,” Cade testified, recalling his own years as a Cardinal. “He’ll let you know what you need to do and how to do it, and let you know if you’re in the wrong. It’s kind of cool having two coaches in the family because I have two personal coaches at all times. … Two coaches in the family definitely has some drawbacks, too, I’d say. There’s never a dull moment in it.”
Cade says his biggest inspiration probably comes from Skyler, who pushed himself to become a star player at a Division I school.
“He went on to college at Brookings, at SDSU (South Dakota State University), played baseball there and had an impressive career. Skyler likes to be a second coach to me, no matter what team we’re on. I get tips in the dugout, out of the dugout. He always knows what to say. It’s fun being on the same team as my brother, and playing,” said the younger Wenninger.
Besides performing with his older brother on a Redbirds team that’s one of the favorites to emerge from the Region 13C tournament to earn a state tournament berth this summer, Cade -- a 2021 LHS graduate -- is a member of the baseball team at Briar Cliff University in Sioux City, Iowa. He’s happy with his freshman year on the squad, and at the same time he is impressed with the level of talent he’s seen.
“I discovered that there’s a lot of good baseball players no matter where you go. You’ve got to compete, and always be ready to compete,” he said.
There’s no doubt that the young Wenninger learned about how to compete from watching and listening to not only his father and brother, but also the many outstanding ball players he’s rubbed elbows with in Luverne as a teen-ager. Luverne has seen many exceptional athletes come through the system over the years, and some of them are Redbirds players even today.
The Globe talked baseball with Cade Wenninger recently, and you can see an accompanying video on the Globe website at www.dglobe.com . Here’s a sample of the interview:
QUESTION: How did you arrive at Briar Cliff as the place to go after high school?
ANSWER: “I chose Briar Cliff because I knew it would be a place where I could get some playing time in, compete, and I like the coaches there and the improvements they are doing. I was ready to buy in. My freshman year went pretty good. I got a lot of time playing JV, and I’m hoping to get on the varsity team this year. I’m studying computer science there. I learned a lot there, and in baseball, too.”
QUESTION: What would you say is the most valuable sports advice you’ve learned in your sports career?
ANSWER: “You kind of just have to be yourself no matter what you’re doing. There’s right way of doing things and there’s a wrong way of doing things. But you’ve gotta be doing it your way, too.”
QUESTION: What’s the most interesting thing about you that some people don’t know?
ANSWER: “I have a drone business. I fly a drone around. I like technology -- the newest computers, or drone, or phone. It’s an interest I’ve had since I was a kid. I had a toy drone and I’d fly it around the house and probably break it.”