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There are college applications to complete for schools with good communications programs, from Boston College to Maryland to North Carolina. And in what little spare time exists, work with the school’s committee that plans dances and fundraisers.

Classes present an obstacle. During the school day, Cotillo is usually texting and emailing agents or executives. He figures the worst they can say is no. News doesn’t stop when the bell rings. Teachers have become more understanding of the discreet tapping as his reputation grows, but the phone is still off limits in math class.

“Balance is the most difficult thing,” said Cotillo, who estimates he sleeps three or four hours each night. “There’s literally not enough time in the day to get everything done I need accomplished.”

That’s not slowing down during the four-day break from school in Florida. The hectic routine almost seems normal. There are television and radio hits. A camera crew may follow him around when he returns to school. Cotillo is one of the attractions at baseball’s annual circus, between tweeting and glad-handing and filing 350-word stories.

At times, Cotillo speaks in the sober tones of a much older, more experienced journalist. He brushes off the Nolasco scoop as something everyone saw coming. But the Fister story? That glow from that tweet hasn’t faded.

“When I got a call about it, even I was shocked,” Cotillo said, “and I had to confirm it in a couple different places.”

As he surveyed the scene at the winter meetings, his voice took on the earnest, disbelieving tone of someone who can’t quite fathom what’s happened.

“I’m always in awe,” Cotillo said.

He’s not the only one.