Hats off to Pinson Valley’s Wingard
By Gary Lloyd
Colby Wingard threw his hat off.
The Pinson Valley senior right-hander wasn’t mad. In fact, he was probably fairly happy.
His fastball was working, and his curveball was moving OK except for leaving it hanging on a few occasions.
Wingard tossed a complete game six-hitter in Pinson Valley’s 4-0 Game 1 win over No. 5 Southside-Gadsden on Friday in the Class 5A quarterfinals, most of which was played in the rain. Wingard struck out four and walked one. All six hits he allowed were singles. The win moved Wingard to 10-0 on the season.
Wingard shut out Southside-Gadsden with 94 pitches. He readjusted his hat about as many times, sometimes having to pick it up off the wet grass after fastballs. Wingard doesn’t tuck his hair under his hat like most players, instead essentially softly placing his hat on top of his blonde hair.
“The more it comes off, the more successful I am on the mound,” Wingard said after his win Friday. “It came off good tonight.”
First-year Pinson Valley head coach Shane Chappell said Wingard has pitched against every big team the No. 10 Indians have faced this season. He’ll surely pitch Friday or Saturday in the Class 5A semifinals.
“He pitches on guts,” Chappell said. “He’s not a guy that’s going to wow you with stuff. He’s done that all year for us. He pounds the zone and gets after guys.”
Wingard said he “can’t” make himself tuck his hair under his hat, that it just doesn’t feel right. He jerks a lot in his throwing motion, which sends the hat to the turf consistently.
Chappell jokingly said Wingard is a fun kid to be around and that he’s goofy sometimes. Chappell said he doesn’t like the goofiness sometimes, but it’s “nothing major.”
“But throwing as good as he is, you kind of let it slide a little bit,” Chappell said.
Contact Gary Lloyd at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @GaryALloyd.