Two peas in a pod: Morrison, Phenix complete unique baseball relationship

Reed CIty’s Jeffery Phenix (8) and Hunter Morrison hold the first-place trophy after the district tournament earlier this month. They are flanked with their fathers, Ray Phenix (far left) and Barry Morrison (far right). (Pioneer photo/John Raffel)

REED CITY — Reed City’s loss to Standish-Sterling in the regional semifinal on Saturday also meant the ending of a long-time battery combination for the Coyotes with pitcher Hunter Morrison and catcher Jeffery Phenix.

Both are now off to college careers with Morrison going to Aquinas College and Phenix to Delta College.

Prior to the regional, Reed City’s leading pitcher has been Morrison with 135 strikeouts in 73 innings and a 1.151 ERA with a 10-2 record.

He and Phenix were among the team leaders in stats.

(Morrison’s stats: .408 avg., 34 RBIs, 43 runs, 8 2B, 3 3B, 1 HR, 8 K, 24 SB. Phenix: .361 avg., 37 RBIs, 20 runs, 9 2B, 6 HR, 16 K.)

Morrison said the two have been playing together for eight years.

“He knows how to call pitches and that’s very helpful,” Morrison said. “Some games in Little League he called, other games coaches called them. It depends on who we were playing. We just work good together.”

Phenix agreed. He said Morrison’s best pitches, in order, were a curveball, fastball and change-up.

“He just started working on his change-up this year,” Phenix said.

They worked together so well, Phenix said, that it was “very rare” for the battery to commit a wild pitch or passed ball.

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Posted by John Raffel

John is a sports reporter with the Pioneer as well as the Herald Review and The Lake County Star. He also coordinates the weekly Pioneer sports outdoors page. He can be reached at (231) 592-8356 or by email at jraffel@pioneergroup.com.

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