Joe Flattery has experienced success at every level throughout his baseball career.
So when he headed to Manhattan, Kan. to begin his junior season with Kansas State University, Flattery expected nothing but the same.
By the time the year wrapped up, the St. Edmond and Iowa Central graduate had found a groove, winning six games in the Big 12 for the Wildcats.
Flattery started 15 times and appeared in 16 total contests, striking out 59 batters in just over 80 innings of work. He hurled one complete game and went 6-4 with a 4.37 earned run average, earning Big 12 Newcomer of the Week honors once.
"The biggest adjustment from Iowa Central to Kansas State was the coaches," Flattery said. "At Iowa Central, I knew all the coaches prior to coming there. They had seen me throw in high school and had an idea where I would fit on the team before I even arrived.
"At Kansas State, the coaching staff only saw me throw in video. That difference made it interesting last fall because I had to make an impression right away in order to prove that I deserved a starting spot."
Flattery did just that, securing one of the three regular spots in the rotation. In fact, between Kayvon Bahramzadeh, Matt Applegate and Flattery, the ex-Gael all-stater started the most games for Kansas State. Both Bahramzadeh and Applegate were seniors.
The Wildcats strung together a seven-game win streak during the year, including a win over then-No. 8 Texas A&M in College Station, Texas. That road trip was memorable to Flattery for several reasons.
"All the stadiums I played at were great. The best one, by far, was Texas A&M," Flattery said. "The stadium was recently renovated and everything was first class.
"The fans there were into the game the whole time and argued every call. I had never played in front of a crowd that was so baseball savvy."
Flattery was part of St. Edmond's state championship team his senior year, when the Gaels posted a 35-3 record. He ranks second in Iowa Central history in complete games (13) and sixth in both strikeouts (131) and wins (14).
The left-hander allowed just two home runs this past year for Kansas State. However, Flattery isn't resting on his success during the offseason.
"As a pitcher, the biggest thing I need to work on this summer is my consistency," Flattery said. "I showed in the spring that I can have success at this level. It's just a matter of consistently going out and making good pitches and throwing a lot of strikes."
Flattery is majoring in Economics at Kansas State.