The Orion

Baseball player breaks hit by pitch record

Emerson Keenan

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Number 19, Eric Angerer, senior first baseman, leaves home after a hit.Photo credit: Emily Teague

In baseball, being struck with a pitch is usually avoided. For senior first baseman Eric Angerer, getting out of the way is the last of his worries.

Angerer broke the school record for most hit by pitches in a season in 2013 after being plunked 29 times, breaking the previous record of 28.

That record was set by Robby Poole, who was on the ‘Cats team that finished second in the Division II National Championship in 2002.

Angerer has been hit five times this season, raising his career total to 48, breaking the career record also held by Poole, who got plunked 45 times during his Wildcat career.

“If the ball is coming at me, I’m not going to move,” Angerer said.

Angerer, in his fourth year on the baseball team, has started slowly this season but his on-base percentage is a high .400 because he finds different ways to get on base.

“I’ve only gotten some bruises, but never really broken any bones because of getting hit,” Angerer said. “Being a leadoff hitter, you try to find any way to get on base.”

Junior shortstop Cody Slader believes that Angerer is a vital asset to the team and proceeded to call him a “bulldog-type” leadoff hitter.

“If anything, if a ball is close to Eric he is going to make sure it hits him, to get that extra 90 feet to get that rally started,” Slader said. “He’s just that type of player where if he is going to get hit, it might hurt, but he’ll do it for the team.”

Assistant coach Jose Garcia described Angerer as a “grinder” and “willing to put his body on the line for the team.” He continued, saying that Angerer is a great leader and is a captain on the Wildcats.

Angerer is not just helping the Wildcats by getting struck by pitches, he’s also catching line drives at first base with a perfect .1000 fielding percentage.

“It’s understated how valuable he is over there with the glove,” Garcia said. “We had to scramble when he went down early this season.”

One of the philosophies of Chico State baseball is to take any base that you can get, whether it be a walk, hit by pitch or a hit, Garcia said.

“When it comes to getting that momentum back, nothing gets that opposing pitcher more rattled than hitting a batter,” Garcia said. “A lot of guys rely on him to keep that energy up in the dugout.”

Chance Keenan can be reached at [email protected] or @chancelikelance on Twitter.

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Baseball player breaks hit by pitch record