COLUMBUS, Ohio – One wouldn’t even begin to know the worldly experiences third-year sophomore Brad Hallberg, from tiny Barron, Wisc., has experienced…unless he sat next to you in an airport and mentioned he’s had about 15 or 20 30-hour travel days. Huh? One of Ohio State’s best hitters grew up in a baseball family and he first played the game in that baseball hotbed of Pakistan.

My dad (Monti) played Division III baseball at Wisconsin-River Falls. Every weekend growing up we were at the softball and baseball fields. We were just always playing…whether we were in Pakistan or the United States.

I lived in Pakistan from 1996-2001. We left there right before 9/11. My parents both taught at The International School of Islamabad.

They first started teaching in Saudi Arabia. I would have been born there, but I was born in the summer and we always came to the United States for summer vacation. I don’t remember Saudi Arabia, but I was there until I was about 5 or 6.

I remember Pakistan. It would get so hot there in the fall and spring…100 degrees.

I spent a lot of time at the U.S. Embassy in Pakistan. I played Little League games there. They had nice fields. Our whole family played on a softball team there. My dad played shortstop. My brother Mark played left center field. My mom (Julie) pitched. My sister Kayla would catch and I played second base. It was an adult softball league and I was only 8 or 9. We won the league. We were called the Vipers.

I’ve spent more time travelling than anybody I know. I’ve spent lots of time in the air and in airports. I’ve probably had a 30-hour travel day at least 15 or 20 times. 

We came to the United States to live when my brother got into high school. My dad wanted us back here to play high school sports. He became the superintendent at Barron Area Schools and that’s how we ended up in Barron. Both of my parents grew up in Wisconsin.

Starting for Ohio State is good. It’s definitely different than watching from the bench. I have to maintain my body and get through the soreness and just be ready to play every single day. I can’t carry over bad days because you’ve got to be out there the next day.

I think the coaching staff is great. They put a great deal of attention on detail. They bring enthusiasm and energy every day to practice and games.

I’ve improved in my approach to at-bats. My mentality going into an at-bat has changed. I am focused on getting my pitch – the pitch I want – and not settling on what the pitcher is giving me.

I definitely try to be a tough out. When I get two strikes I don’t want to give in. I want to make a pitcher throw more pitches. I get really dialed in. I don’t like striking out.