Tigers baseball players attempt to impress in summer leagues

Tanner Houck has led the charge for Tigers playing summer baseball.
Maneater File Photo

Missouri’s baseball program is in what one might call a transition period.

For the first time in 22 seasons, the Tigers will not be headed by Tim Jamieson when they take the field for the first time in 2017. Instead, Steve Bieser will be putting together Missouri’s lineup in hopes of leading the Tigers out of the basement of the Southeastern Conference.

Numerous Tigers are looking to leave a lasting impression on their new coach this summer as they work to hone their skills in some of the nation’s top summer leagues. Here’s a look at how they are representing Missouri this summer:

Tanner Houck, Collegiate National Team: Unsurprisingly, Houck has been dominant this summer for the USA Collegiate Team. In two starts, Houck has posted a 2.25 earned run average in eight innings pitched. While he has only struck out three batters so far, batters are only hitting .160 off of him, one of the lowest averages against any pitcher on the team.

Trey Harris, Cape Cod Baseball League (Harwich Mariners): Unlike Houck, Harris has been largely underwhelming this summer in the nation’s strongest college league. After being Jamieson’s pick in left field for the majority of 2016, Harris has only appeared in nine of Harwich’s games, recording four hits and hitting .125 in those appearances.

Bryce Montes De Oca, Cape Cod Baseball League (Falmouth Commodores): Montes De Oca has struggled since coming back from an elbow injury that sidelined him for the majority of the 2016 season. The right-hander has a 9.00 ERA in three innings pitched with only two strikeouts.

Brett Bond, New England Collegiate Baseball League (Mystic Schooners): Bond has been steadily improving since the start of the summer. He has secured his spot as the Schooners’ best catcher by hitting .301 with one home run and four runs batted in.

Johnny Balsamo, New England Collegiate Baseball League (Plymouth Pilgrims): Despite an underwhelming sophomore season for Mizzou, Balsamo has impressed in his brief number of appearances for Plymouth. The rising junior has an on-base percentage of .500, with three hits and two walks.

Cole Bartlett, New England Collegiate Baseball League (Plymouth Pilgrims): Bartlett is making a strong case to be one of Missouri’s weekend starters next season with his performances this summer. He has started four games, pitching 20 innings and striking out 15 batters. He has been Plymouth’s best starter this summer with an ERA of 1.35.

Brian Sharp, New England Collegiate Baseball League (Plymouth Pilgrims): Arguably Missouri’s best freshman in 2016, Sharp has been stellar for the Pilgrims this summer. Sharp played both catcher and third base; he has hit .318 and walked 12 times.

Liam Carter, New England Collegiate Baseball League (Valley Blue Sox): Carter has been solid for the Blue Sox, pitching 11.2 innings in relief with an ERA of 2.31. His 7-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio is best on the team.

Edited by Peter Baugh | pbaugh@themaneater.com

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