Kansas Baseball: Fall Ball Report No. 1

LAWRENCE, Kan. – Friday (September 26) marked the first day of fall practices for the Kansas baseball squad and the team wasted no time getting into the swing of things with three intrasquad scrimmages in as many days.
Through the first three scrimmages pitchers combined for a total of 30 and two-thirds innings pitched, with 24 strikeouts.
Two newcomers to the squad led the pitching attack for the weekend, each of them pitched without allowing a hit. Freshman Ryan Jackson pitched three innings of no-hit ball, striking out three batters along the way. Junior transfer Sam Gilbert went two innings, striking out two and walking two.
Other pitchers to see action in the scrimmages included newcomers Tyler Condie, Casey Douglas, Brandon Johnson, Ben Krauth, Ryan Ralston and Blake Weiman and returners Tyler Davis, Hayden Edwards, Sean Rackoski and Colin Toalson.
Kansas hitters accumulated 32 hits in 107 at-bats for a .299 batting average. The batters also showed early plate discipline combining for 27 walks.
Senior captain Justin Protacio, who finished the 2014 season fifth in the Big 12 for walks, picked up where he left off earning four free passes in nine plate appearances.
Sophomores Joven Afenir and Michael Tinsley led the charge for the Jayhawks at the dish. Afenir went 4-for-8 (three singles and a double) with four RBIs, four runs scored, two walks, one hit by pitch and tacked on a stolen base for good measure. Tinsley led all batters with five hits in eight at-bats (.625 average), three runs, one RBI, one steal and one walk.
Connor McKay, KU’s homerun leader a year ago, blasted his first of the fall over the weekend while fellow outfielder Dakota Smith went 3-for-6 with two doubles, three RBIs and three walks. John Remick posted a 3-for-6 effort of his own (two singles and a double), knocking in two runners and earning one free trip to first.
Look for the Fall Ball Report each Monday to see how the new squad is taking advantage of fall practices to improve upon last year’s NCAA tournament appearance and build momentum for the upcoming season.
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