2015 Baseball Commit Hunter Stovall Update

Pelham (AL) High School 2015 C/MIF/OF Hunter Stovall talks about the new low-seam ball and playing with some of his future Mississippi State teammates.

  • Name: Hunter Stovall
  • Classification: 2015
  • Position: Catcher/Infielder/Outfielder
  • Ht, Wt: 5-foot-9, 170
  • Bats-Throws: R/R
  • High School: Pelham (AL) High School
  • Travel Team: Dulins Dodgers
  • Schools of Interest: Committed to Mississippi State

    At the 17u WWBA national championship tournament teams are using the new low-seam ball that will be used in college baseball next season. Stovall talked about the things that he has seen from the ball.

    "The thing that I have noticed about the ball is pitchers velocity goes up but the movement on their off-speed pitches goes down," he said. "(Due to that) all of the balls are around the plate pitching-wise. I also think the ball carries a little bit more off of the bat."

    He caught an Ole Miss commitment and saw firsthand the effect the ball has on pitches.

    "I caught (class of 2015) Gray Fenter (Sunday), and he consistently sat at 94-95," said Stovall. "He throws a four-seam and a two-seam. His four-seam is flat but his two-seam runs a lot more with the low-seam ball."

    Like with the high-seam ball, as a catcher, Stovall will figure out how the pitcher's pitches are doing with the low-seam ball while in the bullpen prior to the game.

    "We throw with them in the pen," said Stovall. "It takes a little time to adjust to what you are seeing with the low-seam ball. The movement is still there but it's just not as much."

    Hitting-wise, he adjusts to the pitches the same way he did with the high-seam ball.

    "When you are on deck, you still time it up just like any other ball," said Stovall.

    But, according to Stovall, baseball is still just baseball, no matter what ball you are using.

    "The ball is a big factor in the game but it's still just baseball," said Stovall. "You still have to get up there and get base hits. The other things like home runs will come."

    A Mississippi State commitment, Stovall has worked on one area of his defensive game that Mississippi State catchers are allowed to do, calling the pitches in a game.

    "I don't call my own pitches during summer ball but I did call pitches during my high school season," said Stovall. "I prefer calling my own pitches because it helps me understand the game better and also helps me as a hitter and what to expect. It also causes me to pay more attention to the hitter because I need to know what we have thrown him and what got him out."

    One of the elite players in his class, Stovall participated in the invitation-only Perfect Game National Showcase in Ft. Myers, Florida in mid-June. And he really enjoyed the experience.

    "It was an honor being invited to it," said Stovall. "There were a lot of great players there. It was a good experience because you are seeing the best pitching in the country, the best shortstops, the best everything really. It's just an honor to be on the field with those guys."

    Playing with his summer travel team, Dulins Dodgers, has allowed Stovall to play with four his future teammates, Luke Alexander, Brant Blaylock, Austin Riley and Keegan James, all members of the same class as him.

    "It is a great experience playing for Dulins," said Stovall. "I love playing with these guys. Playing with guys who I will be playing with when I get to Mississippi State has helped me a lot. I have gotten to know Luke (Alexander), Keegan (James), Austin (Riley) and Brant (Blaylock). We are all real good buddies now. So, when we all get to Mississippi State, we'll already know each other."

    It has also helped him develop as a player because, unlike high school where he's the most talented player on his team, he's playing with guys who are on the same level as him talent-wise.

    "Playing with them I know if I'm having a bad day, there is someone to pick me up," said Stovall. "And it helps me play a little bit better because I am playing with guys who are as good or better than I am. That is good because it pushes me to be even better."

    Gene Swindoll is the publisher of the GenesPage.com website, the source for Mississippi State sports on Scout.com sports network. You can contact him by emailing swindoll@genespage.com.

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