Ian Moller’s baseball season officially came to an end on Sunday afternoon.
The very next day, he returned to his father’s workout facility, Built Not Born Baseball Training, in preparation for what could be a life-changing 2021 season.
The Dubuque Wahlert senior catcher went 1-for-3 to help the National League defeat the American League, 16-2, in the Baseball Factory All-Star Classic at Dr Pepper Ballpark in Frisco, Texas. The showcase event, presented by Under Armor, features 40 of the top prep baseball players in the country.
“I have a goal in mind, and I really want to achieve it, so I didn’t want to take any time off. I wanted to get right to work,” said Moller, a Louisiana State University recruit projected to be a first-round draft pick next summer. “My body actually feels great right now, so I really don’t need to take any time off. I didn’t get beat up down there, so I feel fine.”
The Under Armor game includes formal workouts for Major League Baseball scouts and has seen 365 of its 399 draft-eligible players selected the following summer, including 108 first-round picks. Wrigley Field hosted previous versions of the game.
Moller started the game at designated hitter and moved to catcher the second half of the game. He struck out in the second inning against Thatcher Hurd, punched a base hit to right field in the fourth against Carter Holton and flew out to left against Karson Ligon.
“The first guy hit 100 (mph), and the second guy is the No. 1 left-handed pitcher in the country, and they were both pretty nasty,” Moller said. “It’s always competitive facing guys like that, and it brings the best out in me. That’s why I’m working so hard right now, so when I get in a game and face guys like that, I’m prepared for it. That’s the big reason I’m not taking any time off.
“I feel like I ended the year on a high note. All of my workouts went really well and I did what I was supposed to do in the game. It gives me a lot of confidence going into the offseason to end on a high note.”
In the immediate future, Moller will participate in individual workouts for pro scouts and Zoom calls with MLB teams’ decision makers.
“I’m trying not to focus too much on the future right now,” Moller said. “I don’t pay attention to the mock drafts or what people are saying on the Internet. My main focus is on getting better.
“If I keep developing like I have been, I’ll be just fine and my goal will be accomplished. I don’t want to focus on any outside things. I just want to push myself to my limit and get myself better every day, instead of focusing on something nine months from now.”