Team Michigan Impresses on Day 2 of Midwest Futures Games



After a successful Day 1 of a come from behind tie, yes tie, in Game 1 against Pennsylvania, Team Michigan turned around and played both Ohio and Indiana.  In Game 1 Michigan bested Ohio 9-4 and Game 2 was an eerily similar result with a 9-5 finish.  All in all on the weekend, Michigan scored 22 runs and only allowed 14 runs.  Michigan finished with a final record of 2-0-1 on the weekend.

On Day 2, the Team Michigan bats came to life.  Jackson Overlund (Forrest Hills Central) contributed a multi-hit day capped off by a shot over the left field wall which helped propel Michigan over Ohio in the first game of the day. He ended up the Midwest Futures Games with a "weekend" cycle having a single, two doubles, a triple and a homerun.

Not to be outdone AJ Montoya (St. Joseph's) had himself a banner day.  Not only did he collect multiple hits but he hit a mammoth homerun in Game 2 that cleared the trees in left field at Parkland College. Montoya also threw out a few runners from behind the plate and shone defensively.

The middle infielders were one of the strengths of Team Michigan and it showed on Day 2.  Jake Bivens (Battle Creek Lakeview), Ben Balgaard (Howell), Logan Magsig (Hudsonville), and Kory Young (Rockford) were all solid defensively.  

Balgaard made a web gem diving play in the hole at short, snaring a line drive that most certainly saved a run late in the game. He also showed his lateral abilities when he made several plays going to his left and solid arm strenth with his throws across the diamond.  But Balgaard wasn't just defensive as he contributed to the many extra base hits on the day but rifling a double down the left field line that two hoped the left field wall.

Magsig (Hudsonville) made several nice defensive stops as well.  He ranged deep in the hole at short, jumped and threw to first in a show of good athleticism however the runner proved to be to fast and was safe at first.  Magsig also made a tough play in a slow roller look easy as he calmly charged and threw on the run to nab the speedy Indiana runner by a half step.  In addition to his defense Magsig added a few more hits to his tally and even stretched a single into a double, showing not only his speed but his desire to win.

Bivens bat showed its potential against Ohio.  Bivens smoked a one hop shot off the wall to the opposite field left center gap which drove in a run.  He too was a solid defensively making a lot of play look routine. He was involved in a smooth double play turn and at second ranged far to his left to make a tough play look easy.

Young was once again as good as advertised as he continued to hit and play smooth defense.  Young added another double to his total and showed his athleticism and speed by beating out an infield base hit. Defensively he was solid as well making plays consistently.

On the mound Oliver Jaskie was solid once again.  His velocity will come down the road but he knows how to pitch now.  He threw three pitches for strikes and had two clean innings to start against Ohio.  He struck out two and frustrated hitters with his effective use of his secondary pitches, primarily his change.

Brad Schaenzer once again drew a crowd to see him throw.  Despite touching 88mph again, Schaenzer did surrender a run to Ohio.  However Schaenzer showed his ability to make adjustments in his second inning of work as he threw a few more offspeed pitches to keep hitters off balance and produced a clean second inning.

Zack McGuire also showed why he was an Midwest Futures invitee.  On the day Zack had two doubles and a single.  Against Ohio in Game 1, McGuire rocketed a ball off the left center wall scoring two runs.  In game two he had two hits against Indiana with a hard hit line drive down the left field line and a solid base hit. In addition to his offense McGuire was a versatile addition playing both in the outfield and at third base for Michigan.

Jake Wahmhoff (Holland) did a fine job on the hill as well.  His longest outing of the Midwest Futures Games at three innings Wahmhoff battled through.  Like Schaenzer, Wahmhoff proved that he too his a pitcher with a good future.  Wahmhoff made a few solid adjustments in his third inning and threw his breaking ball for more stikes and induced more ground balls by locating well.

Game 2 saw Michael Reid (Bishop Foley) take the hill for Team Michigan.  Reid also threw three innings and battled through the first two innings but really threw well in his final inning. He struck out 7 of the 9 hitters he faced.  Reid is another intriguing arm that has some upside given his frame and long and lanky levers.  

Reid Kelley (Rockford) was next up in Game 2 and completed three innings of work.  Kelley too had to limit damage and pitch out of some jams but he did so effectively.  He too showed that he can make some minor adjustments in game and produce results.  Kelley finished with a 1-2-3 inning in his final inning of work.

The last of the pitchers to throw was Michael Hendrickson (Saline).  He quietly had one of the best showings for Team Michigan.  His velocity was 82-84 mph and commanded his breaking ball.  He once again had a clean inning and made it look easy.  Hendrickson showed that he is one to keep on eye on.  

When it was all said and done, the inaugural trip for Michigan to the Midwest Futures Games was a success.