Redfield's Replays: July 10
ALEX PENER FOLLOWS FAMILY BASEBALL TRADITION
Alex Pener grew up in baseball.
His two older brothers, Brett and Kyle, played baseball at Blue Valley Northwest.
Brett, a left-handed pitcher, played at Central Missouri, while Kyle was a catcher at Johnson County Community College and Ottawa University.
The twin brothers are six years older than Alex.
“I honestly don’t remember ever getting started in baseball,” he says. “It has been part of my life since as long as I can remember.”
Pener graduated from BV Northwest in May and played just one season of varsity baseball for the Huskies. But he made the most of it. He was second team Class 6A All-State by the Kansas State Baseball Coaches Association as DH (designated hitter) and second team All-East Kansas League as a closer. He gives some of the credit of his success to his twin brothers.
“I have two brothers who played college baseball and that has helped me by seeing the work that needs to be put in,” he said. “Seeing the great teams they have been on has driven me to do the same.”
Pener says that the best part of his senior season was beating (Class 5A state champion) Aquinas on a walk off on Senior Night.
What are his strengths as a baseball player?
“My strengths in baseball are hitting and pitching,” he says. “My defense is solid, but I excel mainly at the plate but also as a pitcher.”
But he says he has some items to work on.
“I’m working on my speed and agility,” he says. “I have a good arm and good bat, but I am really working to increase my overall speed.”
His twin brothers, Brett and Kyle, played for Seaboard in the summer college wood bat Ban Johnson League, but Alex is playing for NKC Apartments.
“I decided to play for NKC because I wanted to play against collegiate players,” he says. “I wanted to be as prepared as much as possible so that when I got to college, it would not be as big a step up.”
He is fifth in the league in earned run average at 1.66 in games through July 6.
Pener is headed to Scottsdale Community College in Scottsdale, Arizona.
“I decided to play there because it gives me the best opportunity to further my career as a player and a student,” he says.
The BV Northwest graduate wants to play baseball as long as possible.
“I will try to play professionally, but I still have a long way to go physically and mentally (baseball-wise),” he said.
SOCK WINS AT WIMBLETON
Blue Valley North 2011 graduate Jack Sock teamed with Canadian Vasek Pospisil to win the men’s doubles championship at Wimbleton July 5.
The pair, who were playing together for the first time, beat Bob and Mike Bryan of the United States, 7-6 (7-5), 6-7, (3-7) 6-4, 3-6, 7-5.
The 36-year-old Bryan brothers have won 15 Grand Slam doubles titles, including three at Wimbleton.
Sock became the third-youngest to win a Grand Slam men’s and mixed doubles championship. Both Todd Woodbridge and John McEnroe were both 20 when they accomplished the feat. Sock is 21.
Sock and Melanie Oudin won the mixed doubles at the US Open in 2011.
The former Mustangs is ranked as the No. 76 men’s player in the world.
Sock made quite a name for himself in high school tennis in the state of Kansas. He won the Class 6A state singles title all four years of high school and posted an undefeated record of 80-0.
He only lost one set in his whole high school career.