Humans of Harker: Flying through time

Bobby Wang brightens days on and off the baseball field


Desiree Luo

“[Baseball’s] a game of failure. There’s always going to be off-days or off-weeks or months. I try to enjoy what I’m doing and how I get to wherever I end up. As long as the journey is enjoyable, even if some things don’t go right, it’ll still be worth it,” Bobby Wang (12) said.

Bobby Wang (12) flies through the air as a bright, white baseball speeds toward him. After a 30-yard-sprint from his position in center field to right-center, he lays out and stretches his gray, worn-out glove into the air, squeezing onto the ball at full extension. Tumbling to the ground, he fires the ball back to the infielders, saving a potential double or triple for his high school team.

The catch was just one of the many memories from his journey through the sport of baseball. After playing a variety of sports from basketball to soccer and wrestling as a child, he stuck with baseball through elementary school and into high school as “a fun way to let out [his] competitive side” while also being able to play with his friends.

“I’ve made a ton of good memories in baseball,” Bobby said. “The game is obviously really fun to play, and I still remember some of the big moments from my games. One of the things I’ve enjoyed the most about baseball is the people that I’ve met in different leagues and teams.”

After joining the Harker baseball team as a freshman, Bobby has grown not only as an athlete, but also as a leader. Starting first as an outfielder, he volunteered to play third base and catcher when the upper school varsity baseball team needed him to in his first year and took on more responsibilities in his junior year, when the team won the school’s first ever baseball Central Coast Section (CCS) championship.

“I’ve enjoyed watching him get better as a person and a player,” Mike Delfino, Harker varsity baseball head coach, said. “He’s willing to do anything and has been a joy to have around. Through example, I’ve seen his leadership ability by taking some of the younger guys under his wing and helping them to get better and teaching them. It’s been fun to watch him develop.”

Bobby’s path in baseball has not been smooth sailing. The successes through high school have been fueled by the setbacks he faced along the way. Although he went through a stretch where he felt he underperformed at the end of the junior season, he continued doing the little things by getting on base and stealing bags, ultimately coming up with hit after hit in the CCS playoffs.

“[Baseball’s] a game of failure,” Bobby said. “There’s always going to be off-days or off-weeks or months. During those times, I try to do a couple extra thirty minutes every day to find the right feeling, and that really makes a difference.”

Both on and off the field, Bobby’s energy and excitement for sports radiates through his personality and the joy he finds while being around his friends when playing frisbee or Spikeball with them.

“It’s really fun to have friends that are willing to take time out of their day to care for each other and make sure that within college applications and school that we’re still able to stay together and have these moments of fun,” Bobby said. “It’s not just specifically playing Spikeball, but the memories we’ve made from over the four years of knowing each other.”

The way his peers see him as a beacon of support and care in their lives reflects such a mindset.

“He has a lot of passion for what he does, and at the same time, he’s able to be humble and modest about it,” Caden Lin (12), friend since ninth grade, said. “You can tell that he really cares about it, but he equally, if not more, cares about what other people do in his life and how their lives are doing.”

Bobby’s bubbly insights in daily conversation are another way that he brightens the days of people around him. It’s the funny and thoughtful quirks in his life that define him. Whether it’s joking around with his high-pitched laughs or picking up trash during his free period, he always lightens the atmosphere.

“He is one of the only people in the world who after you say ‘thank you’ to him, he will say ‘no worries,’” Caden said. “That is an admirable quality because it makes sure that you are not the one who is left on read. He is always the one that is left unread in the conversation, which is extremely admirable.”

Reflected through his friends, his personality and camaraderie with his friends always pops up in conversations.

“Bobby is a very playful and light-hearted person and all-around very wholesome,” Kailash Ranganathan (12), friend since ninth grade, said. “He will crack very cute jokes, and he makes you feel very happy to be around. Randomly, in the middle of a group conversation he’ll repeat what someone says word for word and no one knows why but it’s super funny every time. His company is very enjoyable and carefree and lightens up the mood.”

Just like the memories Bobby has made in baseball, the stories and time with his friends will always have a place in his mind, no matter the outcome.

“I try to enjoy what I’m doing and how I get to wherever I end up,” Bobby said. “As long as the journey is enjoyable, even if some things don’t go right, it’ll still be worth it.”