Boomer Elmsdale
Thu, February 15, 2024 at 18:14 PM
The Lansing High School baseball team is gearing up for an exciting and promising season this year. With an experienced and talented group of players, the Lions are looking to make a run at the state tournament. We spoke with Coach Admin Admin about the team's strengths, returning players, and key games on their schedule. First and foremost, the Lions' pitching staff is something to be reckoned with. With the entire staff returning from last year, the Lions' are well equipped to handle any opponent that comes their way. Leading the way is senior Tonio Mendez, who is not only a standout shortstop but also a dominant right-handed pitcher. With a 3-1 record and 27 strikeouts in just 29 1/3 innings pitched last season, Mendez is a force on the mound. He was also recognized as a 1st Team All-UKC infielder for the third time and participated in the Team Kansas Select summer 2023 program. He will be a key player for the Lions this year before he heads off to play at Barton County Community College. Joining Mendez on the mound is senior James Umbarger, a 6'6" right-handed pitcher and first baseman. Umbarger was a 2nd Team All-UKC pitcher and also participated in the Team Kansas Select program last summer. With a 4-3 record and 38 strikeouts in 43 innings pitched, Umbarger is another crucial piece of the Lions' pitching arsenal. He has already committed to St. Bonaventure University. The third member of the Lions' pitching trio is senior Caden Howell, who also doubles as a center fielder. Howell was an honorable mention All-UKC pitcher and had an impressive 48 strikeouts in just 32 1/3 innings pitched last season. He will be taking his talents to the University of Akron after he graduates from Lansing High School. In addition to their strong pitching staff, the Lions' also boast a solid core of returning position players. Senior Dalton Jorgensen, a 3rd baseman, catcher, and right-handed pitcher was a 2nd Team All-UKC infielder last year. He will be joining Mendez at Barton County Community College next year. Senior Jett Hutton, an outfielder and right-handed pitcher, was also a 2nd Team All-UKC selection last year.