SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) – For many senior athletes in Iowa, they’re hoping they can get one more chance to take the field this summer, before their careers come to an end.
“It would just mean a lot to go out there once last time with my teammates and my fellow seniors and have one last go together,” said Kyle Brighton, Hinton senior.
Nebraska laid out a plan to return to youth baseball in June, leading coaches and players to hope Iowa follows suit.
“At this point anything gives us hope, besides them telling us that it’s completely shut down,” said Andy Osborne, Bishop Heelan head coach. “But I think it’s a real good sign that Nebraska is at least putting guidelines in place and showing people that this is what it’ll look like.”
“I think as long as we can play a conference schedule, even if we get only 20 games, I’ll take anything at this point,” said Brant Hogue, Bishop Heelan senior.
In the meantime, these players are going out and doing whatever they can to stay ready to go, if in fact baseball does come back this summer.
“I just threw a simulated game,” said Hogue. “80 pitches. And I’m sticking with my routine, my goal is to get up to 110 pitches by June 1.”
“I’ve been pitching,” said Brighton. “There’s a freshman on our team, Glen Carlson, he’s got a shed with a mound and a batting cage so I’ve been going over there for the last few weeks twice a week to try and get as many opportunities to pitch as I can.”
For coaches, their biggest job is to make sure they’re prepared for any timetable.
“We need to be a be to hit the ground running, and I really tried to emphasize that with our guys is that we’re not gonna have a lot of preparation time,” said Osborne. “The primary focus right now is our pitching staff, making sure that they’re doing everything that they’d normally be doing if we were practicing.
But, everything is still up in the air right now, so teams have got to be ready for anyhting.
“I try to keep them optimistic, but at the same time realistic because at this time we’re not sure what the season is gonna look like, I hope we have a season,” said Osborne.
The decision whether or not to keep baseball this summer will be made sometime in the near future.