Wall's Heuertz Ready to Take State's Biggest Stage by Storm
WALL, TX -- You would think that as junior Caleb Heuertz went in the cleanup role, so, too, would the no. 1-ranked state-bound Wall Hawks’ offense. And you’d be right, sort of.
Wall has averaged 11.5 runs per game through 38 games this season and Heuertz has been the pace-setter at the plate for the Hawks.
The junior has hit .468 through 111 at-bats this season for Wall with a team-high 67 RBIs, 52 runs scored and nine home runs. He has done his job as a cleanup hitter.
His mindset, as well as all of Wall’s, has been simple: move runners over.
“My goal is to get it to the next guy. Do a job and get it to the next guy,” Heuertz said. “That seems to be working for our whole team right now. That’s all of our mindsets, just get it to the next batter, just get it to the next batter.”
That has led to Heuertz racking up 16 multi-hit games and seven games with four or more RBIs.
However, he’s struggled at the plate recently. Heuertz has hit a modest .312 over his last 16 at-bats with just two RBIs. In game two of the Breckenridge series and game one of the Brock series, the junior righty was held hitless. He picked up his first RBI in four games with a single in Wall’s 6-4 loss to their rival last Friday.
With a pair of RBI singles and a lineout in the final two games against Brock, head coach Jason Schniers feels encouraged about his highly productive cleanup batter heading into the state tournament.
“He hasn’t been himself -- and he’ll tell you the same thing -- probably the last couple of series,” Schniers said. “I think I saw some glimpses of him coming back around in that last game against Brock. He hit the ball well, he lined out to the second basemen. So, that shows me he’s starting to get a little more comfortable than where he’s been.”
The good news is Heuertz hasn’t necessarily had to be as productive for the Hawks with their lineup hitting solid throughout the order.
In their last five games, Wall’s fifth through ninth spots in their batting order have hit a combined .411 in 68 at-bats with 14 walks, 25 runs scored and 21 RBIs. They only struck out four times during that five-game span.
Yet, the dominant junior still hopes he can return to his true form on the state’s biggest stage at Dell Diamond on Friday. He also knows he has support behind him in the lineup.
“I’m really looking for a couple of hits,” Heuertz said. “But, as long as everybody else is hitting and swinging good, that’s all that matters at this point.”
Despite his offensive prowess, the right-handed pitcher is one of the best in the state on the mound with some mind-boggling numbers this season.
Through 12 starts, which he was the winner in all of them, Heuertz has an ERA of 0.99 and struck out 97 batters. He has only allowed 38 hits and 17 walks in 63.1 innings pitched this season. He’s been at the front end of Wall’s five-man rotation all season.
“I enjoy it,” he said of being part of Wall’s rotation. “I just really like getting the ball and knowing who I have behind me defensive-wise. Ryan (Gully), Tanner (Seider), Charlie (Mascorro), our whole outfield, infield. Just everybody is really good.”
Heuertz was a young freshman during Wall’s state runner-up season in 2017. He was the pitcher of record for the Hawks in their 10-0 loss in five innings against Nacogdoches Central Heights in the championship game.
He was charged with eight runs on seven hits in two innings pitched in the losing decision.
That experience in 2017 has him and the Hawks prepared to maintain his form on the mound.
“I used it as not taking things lightly, to make sure we do what we need to do and get prepared mentally,” Heuertz said.
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