Friday, January 24, 2014

KCKCC signs lefthanded pitcher from Wisconsin

KANSAS CITY, KAN. ----- Kansas City Kansas Community College has begun its 2014-15 baseball recruiting with the signing of left-handed pitcher Logan Berg of Eau Claire, Wis.

A senior at Eau Claire North, the 6-2 Berg also pitched American Legion baseball on a team that finished third in the state tournament.

“We’re delighted to have him in our program,” said veteran KCKCC Coach Steve Burleson. “A lot of times we get video of a player that looks good but then doesn’t approach that in person. In Logan’s case, he looked much better. For a high school senior and hard thrower, you’d expect to have to work with mechanical problems but mechanically, we think he’s almost flawless. He has a smooth delivery but still is able to generate some power and maintain the kind of touch we’d like to see.

“When you recruit an athlete, you recruit the family. In speaking with his parents at the time of his visit, I feel this is a real good fit for what the parents expect and what we think he can achieve.”

While yet to win a game at Eau Claire North, Huskies Coach Bob Johnson believes Berg is at the break through point in his pitching career. 

“His biggest strength is a live left-handed arm,” says Johnson. “He has a ton of movement in his pitches and threw harder in the summer where he had his most success.

“We lost our two top pitchers from last year so we need Logan to make the jump to the next level and we expect him to do that. He’s shown a lot of maturation in his work ethic and his approach to his senior season.”

Pitching 34 innings in 10 games last spring, Berg was 0-2 with 27 strikeouts, 27 walks, seven hit batsmen and a 4.94 ERA. 

“I think you’ll see him cut down on his walks and batters hit as he tightens up his mental approach,” said Johnson, an 8-year coaching veteran who guided the Huskies to the state championship in 2011.

Berg said his decision to attend KCKCC was made easy because of the coaching staff and a new baseball field and clubhouse complex. 

“It’s awesome,” Berg said of the new facility. “It’s good to know you have a good place to play and there’s respect for the game.”

While his fast ball is his primary pitch, Berg said he’ll be working on developing other pitches and his control this spring. “I think his curve ball is ahead of his change-up at this point,” said Johnson. “He’s definitely a blue collar kid with a lot of enthusiasm and a lot of neat interests.”