By Charles Prince
The North Jefferson News
The sound of ball meeting bat will be heard again in the North Jefferson area starting Monday, as some local high school teams get their seasons under way on the baseball diamond.
The Gardendale Rockets will travel to Pleasant Grove for a doubleheader. At 1:30 p..m., the Rockets will face Pinson Valley and then at 4 p.m., they’ll face the host team.
In Morris, Mortimer Jordan hosts Oneonta for a doubleheader beginning at 12 p.m.
In Dora, new head coach Shane Chappell takes his Corner Yellow Jackets into action against the Bulldogs in another doubleheader.
The Hayden Wildcats will also take advantage of the day off school to start early in the day, as they travel to Guntersville to face the hosts at 10 a.m. and then meet Douglas at 12:30 p.m.
“It’ll be a tough way to start the season, we’ll be playing two really good teams,” Gardendale head coach Pat Keedy said. “But you need to get out there and do it. We’ve been practicing for a while now and we need to get on the field and play a real game.”
Keedy said his pitchers would be on pitch counts due in part to the cooler temperatures this time of year. He said the Rocket coaching staff is expecting to use at least six pitchers over the course of the two games.
“First off on a day like that, the coach is cold and miserable, but you’ve got to keep your pitchers from throwing too much this time of year and getting hurt,” Keedy added.
Last season, the Rockets finished with a 26-15 record and reached the second round of the 5A playoffs, but Keedy has said this year’s club could be even better.
He has not decided on his starter for the opener.
The Fultondale Wildcats won’t open their season until Feb. 21, when they host Parkway Christian at 4 p.m.
By Charles Prince