As the college softball season nears its playoffs, the Athletes Unlimited (AU) softball players are gearing up for AUX starting in early June. Heading into the AUX season, I had the privilege of interviewing Sam Fischer, who is always ready for softball playing and discussion. Find it at On the Beat With Sam Fischer.
A star at Loyola Marymount, among her many accomplishments, Fischer was a four-year letter winner, who became the first All-America selection in program history. At the end of her career there, she was the Lions’ all-time leader in HRs (65), RBIs (172), total bases (495), batting average (.387), slugging percentage (.786), on-base percentage (.494), runs scored (194), doubles (52) and walks (127). Fittingly, she was inducted into Loyola Marymount Sports Hall of Fame in 2019 and had her No. 52 jersey retired. Since college, Sam played for Team USA, in the NPF (National Pro Fastpitch) and the Japanese Professional League.
In 2020, Sam joined more than 50 other elite women softball players for the inaugural season of AU softball, a new, unique league. Based on team and individual points, with weekly redrafts, culminating in an individual champion, AU put a new spin on softball. Although AU incorporates fantasty league-type elements, it retains the basics of the sport I love.
Last season, Sam finished in seventh place among the 56+ players. Aside from being one of the best, Sam is one of the most fun players.
When I reached out to Sam for an interview, she was very gracious in granting me time, despite her normally busy schedule. When something came up, she even asked for the interview to be done earlier in the day, to have more time to chat. How awesome is that?! I mentioned I would be asking about her travels and she was completely into that, too.
Of course, the interview starts with softball talk. Sam discussed when she knew she was good at softball, playing in AU, her role on the AU Executive Committee, helping to make the sport bigger for future players and more. Then talk turned to travel. Through Team USA and her pro career, Sam has traveled to Japan, The Netherlands and more. She gives fun info on preparing and packing, as well as revealing her favorite places.
AUX starts Friday, June 9 in Rosemont, Illinois. Sam will be there, playing third for either the Gold, Orange, Purple or Blue. No matter the color, Sam will bring her usual elite play and fun personality to the field. I will be “On the Beat” all season, providing recaps for The Every Day Fan.
Thank you to Sam for her time and consideration. Also, on behalf of softball fans everywhere, but especially in the Chicago area, thanks to Sam and all the AU players for brightening our summer. Check AUProSports.com for more info on Sam and the league.