Former Virginia pitcher Will Roberts is back in the Commonwealth for the week, as his Akron RubberDucks face the Richmond Flying Squirrels in a four-game series.
"I'm kind of bummed we're only coming here one time this year, this trip is it," the Virginia native said of coming back home. "Just to be able to come back and play so close to home, stay at my house, see my friends while I'm here, it's awesome to kind of break up the season because it really is a grind."
Roberts has spent the week enjoying the comforts of home and getting ready to pitch on Thursday, when he is scheduled to start. In 2014, Roberts has started 17 games for the RubberDucks and has an 8-9 record. Entering Thursday, he has pitched 101.3 innings, giving up 106 hits with 73 strikeouts and a 3.75 ERA.
"I'm working on everything," he says. "My goal at the beginning of each year is to kind of reassess where I am. At the end of the month, just to make sure I'm better at the end of the month that I was at the beginning. I feel like so far I've done that. It's just a constant struggle to stay consistent and keep with what got me here."
While Roberts is busy trying to improve, he did take time to watch the Cavaliers' run to the finals of the College World Series in 2014. The last time UVa made it to Omaha was Roberts' final season as a 'Hoo.
"That's it, that's our Final Four, our BCS Championship game," he says of the CWS. "It's something we talk about all year long in the fall and in the winter. Omaha is always the focus of the Virginia program. That's what we're going for every year, and then once you get there, you've got to do something with it. I'm glad these guys were able to go pretty far."