Record-Setting Rogers is Ready to Play

Every baseball fan knows about the history of Hillcrest Baseball and the number of great players that they have sent to the next level. Players like Seth Smith, Cody Satterwhite, Stephen Head and Logan Powers have all walked through the halls of Hillcrest Christian School but few were as productive as current Hillcrest senior, Josh Rogers.

Rogers enters his senior season just two wins shy of setting the school's all-time wins record. A record that he will undoubtedly achieve and one he can add on to his other records. In his junior year, the southpaw fanned 119 batters, smashing the single season record previously held by Satterwhite.

"It is great to have some records but the wins record is the most important one," said Rogers. "It means you have been consistently good for a while. I have been a starter since I was in the 8th grade so that has helped."

Another thing that has helped Rogers achieve his records is his amazing talent. To compliment his remarkable 119 strikeout season, opponents hit just .175 against him. He also compiled a 6-4 record with seven complete games, two of which were shutouts. With outstanding numbers like these, the 5'10" Rogers may be one of the best kept secrets in the state.

His talents were not kept secret to the staff at Southern Miss, however, as Josh chose the Eagles over offers from Ole Miss and Louisiana Monroe.

"I am excited about playing for (Southern Miss head) Coach (Scott) Berry," noted the elated Rogers. "He seems like a real knowledgeable coach and I will be down there as much as I can to watch them play this year. All I am going to do at Southern is pitch. At Hillcrest, if I am not pitching I am in left or at catcher. I think I have a chance to crack the rotation at USM as a freshman. They said if I come down there and work hard I could possibly be one of the mid-week starters and if that goes well I could be the Sunday guy in the rotation. It all just depends on how hard I work really. They are losing a lot of pitchers, especially lefthanders."

Even though the crafty lefthander does not posses an overpowering fastball he remains one of the top pitchers in the state of Mississippi because he has found other ways to get it done on the hill.

"I can touch 90 but I am consistently around 87-88 miles per hour. I throw a pretty good variety of pitches though. I have a straight four-seam fastball and a two-seamer that can have some pretty good movement at times. I have a curveball, a changeup and a slurve that I have worked on recently. It's kind of a hard curve. My out pitch is probably my changeup. It used to be my curve but I have worked really hard at my change and I think it's my best strikeout pitch now."

Being lefthanded, having a large arsenal of pitches and knowing how to hit his spots has drawn him some high praise from people who have seen him play. Some have even compared Josh to a former Atlanta Braves great.

"It's kind of weird because someone told me the other day that I remind them of Tom Glavine," Rogers said humbly. "It's weird because that is the second time I have been told that. The Lamar coach told me that same thing about two weeks ago."

For Rogers the comparisons and excitement of college ball are the least of his worries right now as he is focused on bringing another title to Hillcrest.

"We dropped down to 2A this year and I definitely think we have a chance to win it. We have been there (State Championship) 4 or 5 years in a row now and since I have been there we have won 3 out of 4. Last year we lost in the last inning and we want to redeem ourselves."

Francis Wright is a writer for, an independent website that covers Mississippi baseball, including high school, junior college and travel team ball. You can contact him by emailing

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