KOMU.com http://www.komu.com/ KOMU.com Baseball Baseball en-us Copyright 2016, KOMU.com. All Rights Reserved. Feed content is not avaialble for commercial use. () () Wed, 29 Jun 2016 05:06:26 GMT Synapse CMS 10 KOMU.com http://www.komu.com/ 144 25 Danny Duffy pitches Royals to 6-2 win over Cardinals http://www.komu.com/news/danny-duffy-pitches-royals-to-6-2-win-over-cardinals/ http://www.komu.com/news/danny-duffy-pitches-royals-to-6-2-win-over-cardinals/ Baseball Tue, 28 Jun 2016 4:08:23 PM Associated Press Danny Duffy pitches Royals to 6-2 win over Cardinals

KANSAS CITY (AP) – Danny Duffy matched a career best with eight sharp innings, the Royals kept swinging hot bats and Kansas City routed the St. Louis Cardinals 6-2 on Monday night to open a four-game, two-city series.

Kendrys Morales went 4 for 4 and drove in two runs, and Eric Hosmer also had a pair of RBIs as the Royals roughed up Adam Wainwright (6-5) to snap a four-game losing streak to their cross-state rival.

Duffy (3-1) served up a two-run homer to Matt Holliday in the first before settling into a nice rhythm, keeping the Cardinals off balance with pinpoint control. The left-hander struck out eight and didn’t walk a batter while breezing through a lineup that scored 11 runs the previous day against Seattle.

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Springer hits slam as Astros pound Royals, Volquez 13-4 http://www.komu.com/news/springer-hits-slam-as-astros-pound-royals-volquez-13-4/ http://www.komu.com/news/springer-hits-slam-as-astros-pound-royals-volquez-13-4/ Baseball Fri, 24 Jun 2016 10:20:52 PM Associated Press Springer hits slam as Astros pound Royals, Volquez 13-4

KANSAS CITY (AP) — George Springer hit a grand slam and a triple in Houston's nine-run first inning against Edinson Volquez, and the Astros routed the Kansas City Royals 13-4 on Friday night.

Springer finished with five RBIs, and Colby Rasmus had four hits, including a homer in the eighth, scored three runs and drove in two.

Marwin Gonzalez, Carlos Gomez, Jason Castro and Rasmus all had RBI singles in the first off Volquez (7-7), who retired only three of the 15 batters he faced with 12 scoring, ballooning his ERA more than a full run to 5.15. He gave up eight hits and walked three.

The last time the Astros scored nine in the first inning was July 10, 2003, against Cincinnati. The Royals last allowed nine or more in the first on Sept. 23, 2006, when Detroit scored 10.

Dallas Keuchel (4-9) picked up only his second victory since April 15.


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Cardinals stop 5-game slide with 3-2 victory over Cubs http://www.komu.com/news/cardinals-stop-5-game-slide-with-3-2-victory-over-cubs/ http://www.komu.com/news/cardinals-stop-5-game-slide-with-3-2-victory-over-cubs/ Baseball Tue, 21 Jun 2016 4:36:05 PM Associated Press Cardinals stop 5-game slide with 3-2 victory over Cubs

CHICAGO (AP) – Brandon Moss and Jhonny Peralta homered against John Lackey, and the St. Louis Cardinals stopped a five-game slide by holding off the Chicago Cubs for a 3-2 victory on Monday night.

Aledmys Diaz added an RBI single and Jaime Garcia (5-6) pitched into the seventh inning as the Cardinals got back on track following their first winless homestand of at least two series since 1983. It was their first trip to Wrigley Field since they were eliminated by the Cubs in the NL Division Series last year.

Seung Hwan Oh got four outs and Trevor Rosenthal worked a shaky ninth for his 13th save in 15 chances. Catcher Yadier Molina made a great play to throw out rookie Albert Almora Jr. trying to take third on a ball in the dirt, and Jason Heyward popped out with runners on the corners to end the game.

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Salvador Perez powers Royals to 10-3 victory over Tigers http://www.komu.com/news/salvador-perez-powers-royals-to-10-3-victory-over-tigers/ http://www.komu.com/news/salvador-perez-powers-royals-to-10-3-victory-over-tigers/ Baseball Fri, 17 Jun 2016 10:32:34 PM Associated Press Salvador Perez powers Royals to 10-3 victory over Tigers

KANSAS CITY (AP) — Salvador Perez homered to end Michael Fulmer's long scoreless innings streak, Yordano Ventura kept the Tigers' big bats off balance and the Kansas City Royals routed Detroit 10-3 on Friday night.

Ventura (6-4) scattered six hits while striking out five without a walk, ultimately outlasting Fulmer (7-2) in what began as an entertaining pitching duel between two bright young starters.

Fulmer pushed his streak to a Tigers rookie-record 33 1/3 innings before Perez went deep in the sixth. He left after walking the next two batters, allowing five hits and four walks in 5 2/3 innings.

Perez drove in two more in the seventh, Kendrys Morales hit a three-run shot in the eighth, and Eric Hosmer added three RBIs as the Royals beat up on the Detroit bullpen late.


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Hamels pitches Rangers to 1-0 win over Cardinals http://www.komu.com/news/hamels-pitches-rangers-to-1-0-win-over-cardinals/ http://www.komu.com/news/hamels-pitches-rangers-to-1-0-win-over-cardinals/ Baseball Fri, 17 Jun 2016 9:42:39 PM Associated Press Hamels pitches Rangers to 1-0 win over Cardinals

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Rougned Odor homered and Cole Hamels pitched 7 2/3 innings as the Texas Rangers beat the St. Louis Cardinals 1-0 on Friday night.

Hamels (7-1) allowed three hits while striking out six and walking three. He lowered his road ERA to 1.64 this season and turned in his fourth consecutive quality start.

Hamels scattered five baserunners and allowed only one to reach second.

Odor homered on the first pitch he saw in the fifth, hitting it 433 feet to straightaway center. It was Odor's third homer in as many games and the 19th for the Rangers in their last eight games.

Sam Dyson picked up his 12th save.

The Rangers have won four straight, improving to an AL-best 43-25. Texas improved to 4-0 all-time at Busch Stadium in the regular season and is a win away from winning a franchise-record eighth consecutive series.


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2016 MLB Draft Tracker http://www.komu.com/news/2016-mlb-draft-tracker/ http://www.komu.com/news/2016-mlb-draft-tracker/ Baseball Sat, 11 Jun 2016 12:03:09 PM Lauren Petterson & Brendon Baker, KOMU 8 Digital Producers 2016 MLB Draft Tracker

SECAUCUS, New Jersey - The Major League Baseball draft has started. Stay updated on who has been drafted with our draft tracker.

Here are the Mizzou Baseball players that have been drafted so far:

Overall PickTeamPlayerPosition
155thSan Francisco GiantsRyan HowardSS
387thSeattle MarinersReggie McClainRHP
931stBaltimore OriolesJake RingCF
1053rdMinnesota TwinsAustin TribbyLHP

Here are the players that have been drafted to the St. Louis Cardinals:

Maryville University 

Overall PickSchoolPlayerPosition
23thColegio Individualizado PJ Education SchoolDelvin PerezSS
33thElk Grove High SchoolDylan CarlsonOF
34thMississippi StateDakota HudsonRHP
70thVirginiaConnor JonesRHP
106thNorth CarolinaZac GallenRHP
136thUSCJeremy MartinezC
166thGeorge County High SchoolWalker RobbinsOF
196thStanford UniversityTommy EdmanSS
226thNorth Carolina StateAndrew KniznerC
256thWichita StateSam TewesRHP
286thMinnesotaMatt FielderOF
316thWestern Kentucky UniversityDanny Hudzina 3B
346thVanderbilt John KilichowskiLHP
376thUnion High SchoolBrady WhalenSS
406thWingateShane BillingsCF
436thTennesseeVincent JacksonOF
466thOklahoma State UniversityJ.R. Davis2B
496thSpartanburg Methodist CollegeTyler LancasterC
526thUC RiversideMatt EllisRHP
556thMississippi State UniversityAustin SextonRHP
586thBaylorDaniel CastanoLHP
616thUniversity of Louisiana at LafayetteStefan Trosclair1B
646thBixby High SchoolCade CabbinessOF
676thCalifornia University of PennsylvaniaMick FennelCF
706thFrancis Marion UniversityJohn CroweOF
736thMonmouth UniversityAnthony CiavarellaLHP
766th North CarolinaSpencer TraynerRHP
796th University of Louisiana at Lafayette Eric CarterRHP
826thFlagler CollegeMichael O'Reilly RHP
856thClemson UniversityPat KrallLHP
886thLewis-Clark State CollegeNoel GonzalezRHP
916thVauxhall High SchoolJosh BurgmannRHP
946thBolivar High SchoolJonathan Murders2B
976thBellevue UniversityLeland TilleyRHP
1006thUniversity of West GeorgiaCaleb Lopes2B
1036thAdelphi University Jonathan MulfordRHP
1066thMichiganJackson LambRHP
1096thMaryville UniversityRobbie GordonRHP
1126thIndiana State UniversityAndy Young3B
1156thUniversity of Nebraska-OmahaRobert CalvanoRHP
1186thSan Jacinto North CollegeAaron BondOF
1216thSt. Francis High SchoolJeremy YdensCF

Here are the players that have been drafted to the Kansas City Royals:

Overall PickSchoolPlayerPosition
67thPepperdine UniversityAJ PuckettRHP
103rdFlint Hill SchoolKhalil LeeCF
133rdTexas A&MJace VinesRHP
163rdCreighton UniversityNicholas LopezSS
193rdDadeville High SchoolCal JonesCF
223rdOregon StateTravis EckertRHP
253rdUniversity of New MexicoChris DeVito1B
283rdStetson UniversityWalker ShellerRHP
313thKennesaw State UniversityRichard LoveladyLHP
343rdStetson UniversityVance VizcainoCF
373rdColby Community CollegeJeremy GwinnRHP
403rdAustin PeayLogan Gray2B
433rdFlorida AtlanticDavid McKayRHP
463rdBellarmine UniversityMike MessierLHP
493rdNorthwestern St UniversityNick HeathCF
523rdSeminole State CollegeDillion DrabbleRHP
553rdMississippi StateVance TatumLHP
583rdCochise CollegeTyler FallwellRHP
613thSanta Rosa Junior CollegeAnthony BenderRHP
643rdSouth Effingham High SchoolDalton GriffinCF
673rdSan Jacinto College NorthCody NesbitRHP
703rdUCLAKort PetersonOF
733rdSeattle University Mike McCann


763rd Bryant University Robby Rinn 


793rdUC Irvine John Brontsema3B
823rdTCURex HillLHP
853rdBroward CollegeYordany SalvaC
883rdCentral MissouriGrant Gavin RHP
913thAlabamaGeoffrey Bramblett  RHP
943rdHanahan High SchoolMalcolm Van BurenRHP
973rdProvidence Classical Christian Academy Luke BandyCF
1003rdPoplar Bluff High SchoolKameron MisnerOF
1033rdLee's Summit High SchoolNathan WebbRHP
1063rdCalifornia Baptist UniversityM.J. SanchezC
1093rdTulane UniversityAlex MasseyRHP
1123rdAuburn University Justin CampRHP
1153rdMurrieta Valley High SchoolJoey FregosiSS
1183rdUniversity of Rhode IslandChase LivingstonC
1213thUniversity of San DiegoTaylor KaczmarekRHP

[Editor's note: This story has been updated to include the most recent information.]


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Head Mizzou Baseball Coach Tim Jamieson resigns http://www.komu.com/news/head-mizzou-baseball-coach-tim-jamieson-resigns/ http://www.komu.com/news/head-mizzou-baseball-coach-tim-jamieson-resigns/ Baseball Sat, 11 Jun 2016 11:05:32 AM Lauren Petterson, KOMU 8 Digital Producer Head Mizzou Baseball Coach Tim Jamieson resigns

COLUMBIA – Mizzou Baseball will have to find a new head coach after Tim Jamieson’s resignation.

According to the Mizzou Athletics website, Jamieson has coached eight All-Americans and 10 Freshman All-Americans. During Jamieson’s time as head baseball coach, he led the team to the 1996 Big Eight Championship and the 2012 Big 12 Tournament Championship. Ten of Jamieson’s former players have made it to the big leagues. In 2011, Jamieson was the USA Baseball’s Collegiate National Team head coach.

"I would like to express my appreciation for all the players and coaches who I have had the honor of working with during my 28 baseball seasons at the University of Missouri," Jamieson said. "I am proud of what they have accomplished in the sport of Baseball but more importantly how positively they have represented the Mizzou Baseball Program as well as the University of Missouri. I am also thankful for the opportunity that I have had to lead this program and for all the great people that I have met along the journey. This is a special place and I wish great success as the program moves in to the future."

MU Athletic Director Mack Rhoades applauded Jamieson for his 22 years as the head baseball coach.

"Coach Jamieson has been an outstanding leader for Mizzou for more than two decades," Rhoades said. "We are grateful for his devotion to Mizzou, and more importantly, the tremendous impact he's had on hundreds of young men."

Jamieson may stay at MU in an administrative role.

KOMU 8 Sports' Chris Gerivino wrote on Twitter that Tony Vitello could possibly replace Jamieson.

[Editor's note: This article has been updated to include the most recent information.]

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Avila hits 2 HRs, White Sox give Royals eighth straight loss http://www.komu.com/news/avila-hits-2-hrs-white-sox-give-royals-eighth-straight-loss/ http://www.komu.com/news/avila-hits-2-hrs-white-sox-give-royals-eighth-straight-loss/ Baseball Fri, 10 Jun 2016 10:23:11 PM Associated Press Avila hits 2 HRs, White Sox give Royals eighth straight loss

CHICAGO (AP) — Alex Avila hit two of Chicago's season-high four home runs and the struggling White Sox beat Kansas City 7-5 on Friday night to give a shaky Chris Sale his major league-leading 10th win and the Royals their eight straight loss.

The defending champions matched their longest losing streak since May 2013, while the White Sox opened the weekend series with their second straight win after dropping 20 of 26.

Sale (10-2) pitched into the seventh and got the victory despite giving up a season-high three home runs — two solo drives to Eric Hosmer and one to Salvador Perez. But the White Sox also used the long ball to come out on top after beating Washington the previous night.

Avila came through with his first two homers since signing with Chicago in the offseason. He hit back-to-back solo drives with Brett Lawrie in the fourth and added a two-run shot in the sixth off Ian Kennedy (4-5) to make it 7-3.


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Missouri baseball's Howard drafted by the Giants http://www.komu.com/news/missouri-baseball-s-howard-drafted-by-the-giants/ http://www.komu.com/news/missouri-baseball-s-howard-drafted-by-the-giants/ Baseball Fri, 10 Jun 2016 8:42:28 PM Matt Vereen, KOMU 8 Sports Digital Producer Missouri baseball's Howard drafted by the Giants

COLUMBIA — A tough junior season for Missouri shortstop Ryan Howard ended on a high note today.

Howard was drafted in the fifth round by the San Francisco Giants with the 155th overall pick.

Howard is the highest-drafted Missouri position player since 2005.

The Giants also drafted Howard last year in the 31st round of the draft, but did not sign him.

A product of Francis Howell Central High School in St. Louis, Howard started every game for the Tigers at shortstop.

Despite a slow start to the season, Howard did well down the stretch.

He finished third on the team with a .295 batting average. He hit a team-best .381 with 13 runs and nine RBIs in the last 16 games of the season. He also had eight of his 19 multi-hit games in the same span.

Howard is still eligible to return for his senior year at Missouri.



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Jefferson City caps historic season with state final appearance http://www.komu.com/news/jefferson-city-caps-historic-season-with-state-final-appearance/ http://www.komu.com/news/jefferson-city-caps-historic-season-with-state-final-appearance/ Baseball Sun, 5 Jun 2016 6:24:18 PM Chris Turner, KOMU 8 Sports Reporter Jefferson City caps historic season with state final appearance

O'FALLON - The last time Jefferson City won a State Championship in baseball, Missouri softball head coach Ehren Earleywine was the team captain for the 1989 Jays.

27 years later, the Jays ended their season at Carshield Field as the runners-up in Class 5, dropping the title game to Francis Howell, 8-2. Despite the loss, the 2016 season will go down as one of the best in school history for Jeffeson City. The Jays end the season at 28-7, shattering the previous single-season record of 23 wins in 1987 and 1997.

"To come out here and experience the Final Four experience, and get to the state championship, we accomplished everything that we wanted to." said Jefferson City head coach Brian Ash. "Just didn't finish it off the way we wanted."

After dropping a game to Lee's Summit West 11-2 on April 16, the Jays went 9-1 in their next 10 games en route to the District 9 championship game. There, they met Rock Bridge for the third year in a row. The Bruins had knocked the Jays out of the playoffs the previous two seasons.

Jefferson City went on to beat Rock Bridge 6-1 at Battle High School in May, clinching its first District title since 2008.

"That was our first hurdle, to get through the district championship." Ash said. "And now to be here in this position, and an opportunity to win a state title for this town. We're excited to represent the central Missouri area."

The Jays cruised past Willard and Nixa in the sectional and quarterfinal rounds, respectively, to punch their ticket to the Class 5 Final Four, their first since 1992. Jefferson City drew Lindbergh in the first semifinal game.

The Flyers scored four runs off Jays junior starter Jacob Weirich in the first inning to jump out to an early lead, but Jefferson City responded with seven straight runs. Weirich bounced back with 10 strikeouts to give the Jays the 7-4 win.

"They just wanted me to command the strike zone, and let my defense make plays." Weirich said of his performance. "I was leaving it up in the zone and they were able to drive it. But after that I was able to bring it down and go away from the inside and they weren't able to drive it as well."

Despite the early deficit, Coach Ash said he had complete trust in his offense to put Jefferson City back in the game.

"There really wasn't a whole lot to be said other than we still have seven innings of hitting to do." said Ash, "Once we tied it up, we felt pretty confident that we were going to be able to get into that bullpen and do a little more damage."

The Jays fell in the final game of their 2016 campaign, but the future looks bright for the Jefferson City program. Ash will return 75 percent of the Jays total hits and RBIs from this season, along with his ace pitcher, Weirich.

"If I know them as well as I think I do, I think they'll even be hungrier," said Ash. "We wanna get over the hump of winning the district, and we finally did that. To finally get here and realize this, I think it will motivate them to get back here and work hard in the offseason."

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Central Methodist softball scores generational triple play http://www.komu.com/news/central-methodist-softball-scores-generational-triple-play/ http://www.komu.com/news/central-methodist-softball-scores-generational-triple-play/ Baseball Tue, 17 May 2016 3:31:47 PM Conner Handel, KOMU 8 Reporter Central Methodist softball scores generational triple play

FAYETTE - Family is a big part of the Central Methodist University softball team. Three generations of the Reardon family are part of the program. Pat, the father, has been the head coach for the last 24 years. Gene, the grandpa, has been an assistant for the last 10 years, and Addy, the daughter, joined the team this season and starts in the outfield as a freshman.

A history of success

Pat and Gene had celebrated five consecutive conference championships entering this season.

“Last year here [at Cox Softball Complex], the final out and kind of everybody out there, and just hugging my dad, you know, sharing that stuff with him has been great,” Pat said.

Gene also recalled several accomplishments he and his son have achieved.

“Seeing him and him being excited, the first time we really got to go to the finals at the World Series, winning the first conference championship, I mean all of that stuff was just nice to see being accomplished together,” Gene said.

“Those will be things that I think if he ever does give it up, or if I ever give it up, we can sit back and enjoy,” Pat said.

Addy, then a senior in high school, had to celebrate the conference championship last season from the stands.

And Addy makes three

“It was really cool watching, at that point in time I had committed, so I was hoping next year I could be out there too,” she said.

“Having won five in a row it was kind of like, my biggest fear was her coming here and not being able to do it in the time she was here,” Pat said.

Addy had a big freshman season and was one of eight players on the team named All-Conference, just one of two freshman on the team to earn that honor. The conference honored Pat as the Heart of America Athletic Conference Coach of the Year.

The team went on to win its sixth consecutive conference championship this season. This time, all three Reardon’s were on the field celebrating.

'We got a ring'

“And when we did win it I just gave her a big hug, and I said, 'We got a ring,' so all three of us will have one for the rest of our lives,” Pat said.

“And of course I teared up after that because that’s a cool thing for a dad and daughter to have,” Addy said. “I think just playing for my dad is a great opportunity and not a lot of kids get that, so I’m happy that I got that opportunity."

“Having the experience to be able to work with my dad, have him here every day, have my back, and have my daughter on top of that,” Pat said. “I’m glad she made the choice to come here. I think she’s glad she made the choice to come here. And we’ve got three more years, and hopefully we can make the most of them.”


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Young and Medlen put on DL by Royals with arm injuries http://www.komu.com/news/young-and-medlen-put-on-dl-by-royals-with-arm-injuries/ http://www.komu.com/news/young-and-medlen-put-on-dl-by-royals-with-arm-injuries/ Baseball Thu, 12 May 2016 5:31:37 PM The Associated Press Young and Medlen put on DL by Royals with arm injuries

NEW YORK (AP) — Struggling pitchers Chris Young and Kris Medlen have been put on the disabled list by the Kansas City Royals.

An MRI Wednesday determined Young has a strained right forearm, and Medlen has right rotator cuff inflammation. Young's stint is retroactive to Tuesday and Medlen's to Wednesday.

Young is 1-5 with a 6.68 ERA in seven starts and Medlen 1-3 with a 7.77 ERA in six.

Kansas City selected the contract of right-hander Peter Moylan from Omaha before Thursday's series finale at the New York Yankees and recalled left-hander Scott Alexander from the Triple-A team.

Moylan is 1-1 with a five saves and a 0.71 ERA in 12 relief appearances with the Storm Chasers, and Alexander is 1-0 with a 2.57 ERA in 14 innings.

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TARGET 8: Adopting baseball protection difficult because of stigma http://www.komu.com/news/target-8-adopting-baseball-protection-difficult-because-of-stigma/ http://www.komu.com/news/target-8-adopting-baseball-protection-difficult-because-of-stigma/ Baseball Tue, 10 May 2016 7:01:26 PM Tyler Hastedt, KOMU 8 Reporter TARGET 8: Adopting baseball protection difficult because of stigma

COLUMBIA - Although the probability is low, players being hit by a batted ball is a growing concern at the major league level, particularly for pitchers.

Eight major league pitchers have been hit in the head by a line drive since 2013. Target 8 decided to look at the current protection guidelines for high school baseball players in mid-Missouri.


According to the MSHSAA 2016 Baseball Manual, "Head protectors shall be worn as provided in Baseball Rule 1-5. All protectors will carry the NOCSAE Seal of Approval and warning label." That requires batters to wear helmets, but not fielders.

MSHSAA Communications Director Jason West said Article 5 of the same rule gives all players in the field the option to wear a face mask as long as it has a non-glare surface.

Even though this rule is put in place by the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS), West said he doesn't see many high school baseball players choosing to wear a face mask.

"We haven't seen a lot of it, if any, in Missouri yet," West said. "That may be coming. It normally starts at the younger levels coming up."

West said he sees more softball players wearing headgear because they start wearing it at a younger age.

"That really started at the youth summer league level and then when those girls went into high school and into college," West said. "Now you see it all the time at the collegiate level. As they moved up, they were more comfortable with it and it was just part of the game at that point. When the rules were changed to allow headgear or make it mandatory in some cases, it was a lot easier for those girls to transition into that."


West said the difference between baseball and softball also results from baseball taking its own path in research.

"Baseball has kind of taken a different direction especially with the use of their restrictions on bats, and they've done a very good job of monitoring and testing the bats and bat speed, the contact of the ball off the bat, and how quickly the ball comes off the bat," West said.

West said the NFHS made a big push a few years ago to make the ratio closer to alleviate the risk of line drives. The NCAA also changed its bats to meet BBCOR standards in 2011.

The current standard used for non-wood bats by the NFHS and the NCAA is the BBCOR standard. According to West, all BBCOR certified bats must have a length to weight ratio no greater than -3.

"If you have a 33 inch bat, then the weight of that bat couldn't be over 30 ounces and that's how it progresses," West said.

The goal of the BBCOR standards is to make metal bats perform more like wood bats and improve player safety.

"You could have a 33 inch bat that weighs 27 ounces," West said. "Now the batter can get that bat through the zone a lot faster without as much drag and make the ball come off the bat faster because he or she can use their own strength. Having to have a heavier bat with the length, that causes the bat to slow down and the ball doesn't come off as fast." 

Another limitation placed on pitchers in the 2016 manual is the number of innings they are allowed to throw. The manual states, "A pitcher may not pitch in more than 10 innings during any consecutive three day period." 

"The other thing we began this year was pitch counts and kind of limiting the use of pitchers' arms because we found sometimes those big hits come when a pitcher has been throwing too much," West said. "He or she might be a little tired and drop a pitch right down where it doesn't need to be. Having fresh arms can help control the ball on the pitching level and alleviate some of those line drives as well."


Dr. Aaron Gray is the doctor for the baseball team at the University of Missouri. He said he feels the tradition of the game prevents players from wearing headgear in the field. 

"Baseball is a game of tradition and history, and so I think naturally players want to continue the traditions that were passed down," Dr. Gray said. "Putting a helmet on a pitcher or a face guard on a pitcher is very revolutionary and a different type of thing than most players and pitchers are used to."

Rock Bridge High School head baseball coach Justin Towe said he has not had any conversations with his coaching staff regarding headgear protection for players in the field.

"I think baseball players kind of figure that's part of the game," Towe said. "Batters have enough pads...you know they might as well be catchers at times when they have elbow pads and ankle pads. Positional players have their gloves and their athletic ability, so in all honesty, it rarely ever comes up."

In an ESPN.com story published back on Feb. 17, 2013, former major league pitcher Joe Martinez opened up about the topic. Martinez was hit by a line drive while pitching for the San Francisco Giants in 2009. 

"They [pitchers] aren't going to want anything that makes them look goofy," Martinez said. "It sounds ridiculous, you think safety would be so much more important than what you look like, but baseball players like looking good."

Towe said this sort of stigma is part of the equation as to why baseball teams are reluctant to wear headgear protection in the field.

"I think that's probably some of it, and some of it is it's baseball," Towe said. "It's hardball. It just kind of comes with the game."

West said he feels there is a similar stigma at the high school level.

"We're still dealing with high school boys that are concerned with their looks," West said. "Baseball pitchers sometimes have a fragile ego because they're the one everybody is looking at, so they have that pressure on top of everything else. Every pitch, you're the one somebody is staring at be it a 500 seat stadium at the high school level to the major league level."

Rock Bridge senior pitcher Avery Jennings also said this sort of stigma exists at the high school level.

"There's a lot of players who just want to look good," Jennings said. "There are some brands out there that say 'Oh, we're going to protect you,' but really it's all about the accessories for a lot of guys."

Rock Bridge senior pitcher Brandon Goins said it's more about the issue of comfortability.

"I think it's more focused on the discomfort some of the protective gear brings or carrying extra weight," Goins said. "Sometimes it feels unnatural to carry it. Most people don't have to face getting hit by a baseball in your private areas or in your heart or anything like that, so most people don't worry about it."

West also touched on Goins' point of view. 

"I think the higher level you get in baseball and the more precision you need, having more equipment on your person, especially on the defensive side, may weigh you down and get you off your game just enough that you're not at the elite level anymore," West said.

Jennings said he sometimes thinks about the risks associated with his position, while Goins said he doesn't really think about it.

"It never really crosses my mind until I get a rocket right back at me," Jennings said. "I have been hit in the shin before. I've almost had my head taken off a couple times already this season. Sometimes I do look back, and I think I really wish I had something protecting me. At the same time, some of the safety precautions you have to take don't really look that great on the field, so I'll admit sometimes I stay away from them just because I want to look better on the field."

"I mainly trust my reactions to either get out of the way or catch the ball, but it's not really a worry of mine," Goins said.

Potential Research and Solutions

Target 8 asked Dr. Gray if he thinks anything can be done to change the stigma concerning players wanting to look good. 

"I worry that it might take someone getting seriously injured or possibly losing their life or having serious harm for that to come," Gray said. "I know there has been some work on getting padded pitching helmets but unfortunately the ones they have now are quite large and look different. I'm hopeful that through future technologies we can come up with equipment that can protect pitchers but maintain the look and feel of tradition."

West said he feels it might take a few injuries for protective gear to be mandated.

"I don't know if it will take a severe injury, but it may take a couple injuries before people really get into 'Ok let's take a look at this again' and get it fresh in their mind," West said.

Gray said any changes geared toward protecting players need to be the result of good data. KOMU 8 News asked Gray these three questions:

1) How would you go about collecting data if you were in charge of the research?

2) How much does seriousness versus probability of injuries factor into your process?

3) What data would you find the most helpful in determining what needs to be done to increase safety for pitchers?

Here are Gray's answers:

1) You first need to figure out how often pitchers get hit by batted balls in the head face and how serious these injuries are.  This will be different for each level of baseball (Little League, high school, college, MLB, etc)  To do this you need to figure out how much exposure a team’s pitchers had to this potential injury (need to know how many games each team played) and then you need to track how many times a pitchers gets hit by a ball in the head/face and how bad the injuries are.  Major league baseball is doing this.

2) In injury prevention we like to base our future decisions on previous measured data. That is why #1 above is so important.  You need to know how often it happens.  Unfortunately, sometimes a certain injury can be very, very rare but when it happens it can be a serious injury.  Sometimes a serious injury can be so unusually rare that it doesn’t make sense to protect every single athlete from that potential injury.  This is a complicated subject.

3) We need to know if preventive measures (rule changes, extra equipment) actually works to prevent the pitcher from being hit in the head/face.  NCAA changed their bats a couple years ago to make the ball not come off as hard and this was based on lab testing of different bats.  Protective face guards or helmets for pitchers need to be tested to make sure they work.  Real players also need to test it to see if it impacts how they play the game because if it impacts there normal performance they won’t wear it.

The NCAA and NFHS have made strides when it comes to monitoring the bats being used. The player is currently in charge of choosing whether to wear protective gear in the field at the high school level, and holding onto tradition brings a fair share of risks.







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Polanco, Jaso homer, lead Cole, Pirates over Cardinals http://www.komu.com/news/polanco-jaso-homer-lead-cole-pirates-over-cardinals/ http://www.komu.com/news/polanco-jaso-homer-lead-cole-pirates-over-cardinals/ Baseball Sun, 8 May 2016 4:28:34 PM The Associated Press Polanco, Jaso homer, lead Cole, Pirates over Cardinals

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Gregory Polanco hit a three-run homer and John Jaso added a two-run drive, leading Gerrit Cole and the Pittsburgh Pirates over the St. Louis Cardinals 10-5 Sunday.

Cole (3-3) gave up two runs and six hits in six innings. He struck out seven and walked two.

Mark Melancon relieved with the bases loaded in the ninth and got Yadier Molina to ground into a game-ending double play for his ninth save.

Michael Wacha (2-3) lost his third consecutive decision for only the second time in his career, the first coming in 2014. He allowed four runs on six hits and two walks in six innings.

In his last three starts against the Pirates, Wacha has given up 15 runs and 20 hits in 14 1/3 innings.


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Tomlin stays unbeaten as Indians down Royals 5-4 http://www.komu.com/news/tomlin-stays-unbeaten-as-indians-down-royals-5-4/ http://www.komu.com/news/tomlin-stays-unbeaten-as-indians-down-royals-5-4/ Baseball Sun, 8 May 2016 3:23:21 PM The Associated Press Tomlin stays unbeaten as Indians down Royals 5-4

CLEVELAND (AP) — Josh Tomlin stayed unbeaten and again helped Cleveland bounce back after a loss, leading the Indians to a 5-4 win over the Kansas City Royals on Sunday.

Tomlin (5-0) worked into the seventh inning and became the first Indians pitcher to win his first five outings since Justin Masterson in 2011. Tomlin is 12-0 in 13 starts following a loss since the beginning of last season.

Carlos Santana and Mike Napoli homered off Edinson Volquez (3-3) as the Indians took two of three from the defending World Series champions.

Eric Hosmer homered for the Royals, just 3-9 in their last 12.


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Opening day of Challenger Division gives all athletes a chance to play http://www.komu.com/news/opening-day-of-challenger-division-gives-all-athletes-a-chance-to-play/ http://www.komu.com/news/opening-day-of-challenger-division-gives-all-athletes-a-chance-to-play/ Baseball Fri, 6 May 2016 11:20:21 AM Landon Burke, KOMU 8 Anchor Opening day of Challenger Division gives all athletes a chance to play

COLUMBIA — This week, mid-Missouri athletes met for opening day of Daniel Boone Little League's Challenger Division.

On Thursday, adult players gathered at the Columbia Insurance Group's Sports Park for their first game of the new season. The athletes were sorted into two teams - one team wearing Cardinal red, and the other wearing Royal blue.

DBLL President Tony Redlinger told KOMU 8 the Challenger Division is about giving every athlete the chance to play.

"It's designed for players with disabilities," Redlinger said. "Either physical disabilities or mental disabilities, they just come out, and they get to play the game of baseball."

Patrick Myers played second base for the Cardinals on Thursday. He said for him, the Challenger Division gives him the opportunity to play the game he loved for his entire life. 

"I played little league when I was a kid, and I've always been into baseball," Myers said.

During the game, Patrick slugged the ball deep into center field for a home run. As he rounded the bases, he was congratulated by members of his own team, as well as his opponents.

Redlinger said these games allow for athletes, and their loved ones, to have some fun with "America's pastime."

"We get player buddies that come with them," Redlinger said. "So they can help players round the field, help them run bases, help them hit the ball, help them field the ball... it's a pretty good experience for everybody, really!"

The Challenger Division hosts a league for both children and adults. Redlinger said the children's division is designed for athletes ages 4-18, and the adult division for ages 18 and up.

When the adult athletes took the field on Thursday, there was quite a spread in ages among the players.

"For our adult division, we're usually looking at somewhere in the ballpark of 18 to 55 years old," Redlinger said. "I think this year we have a 68-year-old!"

Michael Pitts played first base for the Cardinals team on Thursday. He told KOMU 8 he first started playing in the Challenger Division last year. He said he had so much fun, he came back for another season.

Although playing baseball is fun, the Challenger Division displays a much more meaningful message.

"[People] need to support people with disabilities," Pitts said. "There's people with disabilities that can't take care of themselves, and people have to take care of them."

Pitts said people need to understand there are many different disabilities, and each situation is unique.

"There's some people that live in a wheelchair," Pitts said. "I'm not in a wheelchair, but I'm high functioning. I can take care of myself."

One parent at Thursday's game told KOMU 8 News he moved to Columbia a few years ago. He said mid-Missourians are much more accepting and understanding toward people with autism. He said he has three sons who are autistic, and they are treated much better here than they were in St. Louis.

Redlinger said DBLL is doing its part to hosts athletic programs for players of all abilities.

"If you're four years old, and you want to play tee ball, or you're 68 years old and you want to play in our challenger league, we have something out here for everybody," Redlinger said.

To learn more about the Challenger Division, you can visit DBLL's website.

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Mizzou Baseball drops series finale to Mississippi State, 3-1 http://www.komu.com/news/mizzou-baseball-drops-series-finale-to-mississippi-state-3-1/ http://www.komu.com/news/mizzou-baseball-drops-series-finale-to-mississippi-state-3-1/ Baseball Sat, 7 May 2016 8:31:15 PM Mark Stanley, KOMU 8 Sports Digital Producer Mizzou Baseball drops series finale to Mississippi State, 3-1

STARKVILLE — The Mizzou Baseball team dropped its series finale by a score of 3-1 against the Mississippi State Bulldogs Saturday afternoon at Dudy Noble Field.

The Tigers were only able to muster up one run off of eight hits in the game. The only run for Mizzou came off of an error on a fielder's choice by Mississippi State's second baseman John Holland.

With the loss, the Tigers fall to 24-25 on the season. The Mississippi State Buldogs improve to 33-14-1 on the season.

The Tigers failed to capitalize on having runners in scoring position as they finished the game with seven runners left on base. This included a missed opportunity with the bases loaded and no outs in the sixth inning during which Mizzou could only get one run across the plate.

Mississippi State's Daniel Brown was credited with the win, moving him to 3-2 on the season. Reid Humphreys earned the save, which was his sixth of the year. Missouri's Michael Plassmeyer was credited with the loss, making him 4-5 on the season.

The Tigers will look to rebound after being swept, when they take on the Georgia Bulldogs in another three-game weekend series as they approach the end of the season.

The first pitch is set for 6 p.m. Friday at Taylor Stadium.


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Carpenter homers to lift Cardinals to 6-4 win over Pirates http://www.komu.com/news/carpenter-homers-to-lift-cardinals-to-6-4-win-over-pirates/ http://www.komu.com/news/carpenter-homers-to-lift-cardinals-to-6-4-win-over-pirates/ Baseball Sat, 7 May 2016 7:41:18 PM The Associated Press Carpenter homers to lift Cardinals to 6-4 win over Pirates

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Matt Carpenter hit a tiebreaking two-run homer in the ninth inning, lifting the St. Louis Cardinals to a 6-4 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Saturday.

Aledmys Diaz sparked the winning rally with a leadoff single. After Jeremy Hazelbaker flied to deep left, Carpenter drove a 1-2 pitch from A.J. Schugel (0-1) over the wall in right for his fourth homer.

It was the Cardinals' first win over the Pirates in five games this season.

Pittsburgh had tied the game on Starling Marte's double off Trevor Rosenthal (1-1) with two out in the top of the ninth.


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Kennedy, Morales lead Royals to 7-0 win over Indians http://www.komu.com/news/kennedy-morales-lead-royals-to-7-0-win-over-indians/ http://www.komu.com/news/kennedy-morales-lead-royals-to-7-0-win-over-indians/ Baseball Sat, 7 May 2016 7:34:01 PM The Associated Press Kennedy, Morales lead Royals to 7-0 win over Indians

CLEVELAND (AP) — Ian Kennedy pitched four-hit ball for seven innings, Kendrys Morales homered and drove in four runs, and the Kansas City Royals blanked the Cleveland Indians 7-0 on Saturday.

Kennedy (4-2) worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the sixth and retired 14 in a row at one point. He struck out six while helping end Cleveland's four-game winning streak.

Morales hit a three-run homer in the first, providing an early boost for Kansas City's struggling offense. He added an RBI single in the eighth.

Kansas City's win came at an opportune time. The Royals had lost eight of 10 and announced before the game that third baseman Mike Moustakas was put on the 15-day disabed list with a fractured left thumb.

Cody Anderson (0-2), called up from the minors before the game, allowed four runs in five innings.


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Garcia goes 7, Moss hits long HR as Cardinals beat Phillies http://www.komu.com/news/garcia-goes-7-moss-hits-long-hr-as-cardinals-beat-phillies/ http://www.komu.com/news/garcia-goes-7-moss-hits-long-hr-as-cardinals-beat-phillies/ Baseball Thu, 5 May 2016 4:03:08 PM The Associated Press Garcia goes 7, Moss hits long HR as Cardinals beat Phillies

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Jaime Garcia pitched seven sharp innings, Brandon Moss hit a long home run and the St. Louis Cardinals beat the Philadelphia Phillies 4-0 on Thursday.

Stephen Piscotty drove in two runs and also made an outstanding catch in right field to help preserve the shutout.

St. Louis won three of four in the series.

Garcia (2-2) gave up two hits, didn't walk a batter and struck out five.

Moss launched a drive estimated at 462 feet to right field in the first off Jerad Eickhoff (1-4). It was the longest homer by a left-handed hitter in the history of the new Busch Stadium, which opened in 2006.


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