Dickey hoping to lead Patriots as postseason begins

Published 11:24 pm Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Reid Dickey didn’t have the best start to his 2012 baseball season but the Pike Liberal Arts junior is hoping his year will continue to improve as the Patriots head into the Alabama Independent School Association playoffs.

“Reid has been a good hitter for us lately,” head coach Butch Austin said. “He had a rough start but has been swinging the bat better.”

Despite batting just .235 on the season, Dickey has turned in several key performances down the stretch including a 2-for-3, three-RBI showing against region-rival Glenwood.

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“It was tough,” Dickey said of his sluggish offensive start. “I changed my stance a little and it’s seemed to help.”

Dickey said he opened his batting stance a little but shortened his base to help see the ball better out of the pitcher’s hand. The result has been big games against big teams.

While some players might let a slow start get in their heads, Dickey has been silently working through the rough patches. As the team’s designated hitter, Dickey has a lot of time to sit a think about previous at bats while the team is in the field but that hasn’t appeared to be a concern.

“I just kind of chill,” he said of his dugout routine. “I don’t think about what happened last time up too much.”

The Patriots will need Dickey to continue his hot hitting as they head into the postseason. Pike will host Bessemer Academy in the first round.

“I think this could be the year,” Dickey said. “We have to get by some good teams but I feel good about this team.”

Pike Liberal Arts has lost to Glenwood in the state championship series the past two seasons, leaving the Patriots in search of their first ever state title in baseball.

“We’re concentrating on Bessemer but if we get back to the championship I think we have a good chance,” he said.

Dickey has been solid on the mound for the Patriots this season as well posting a 4-0 record with a 1.72 ERA in four starts.

“He’s pitched well,” Austin said. “He’s consistent every time out.”

Pike Liberal Arts will face Bessemer at Butch Austin Field at 4p.m. on Thursday.