Leave No Doubt

Ridge Point's Biggers one game away from dream

Ridge Point's Biggers one game away from dream
Jax Biggers is the starting shortstop for the Razorbacks in the College World Series Vype

Four years ago, Jax Biggers was a senior at Ridge Point High School playing baseball and football. He played integral roles in both teams' success. As one of Ridge Point's best receivers and one of the baseball teams most consistent hitters with .425 average and fielders, Biggers wasn't highly coveted by college scouts.

Despite the lack of offers, Biggers wasn't deterred from his passion for baseball and chose the difficult path of junior college, playing for Cisco Community College. It was his opportunity to show off the skills he'd spent his life honing.

Lead by the mantra of LND or "Leave No Doubt," Biggers is still playing at a high level just like his high school days.

Four years later, Jax Biggers is the starting shortstop for the Arkansas Razorbacks in the College World Series. looking to claim a national championship. His persistence and relentless passion for the game has paid off two fold. Biggers was also drafted during the Super Regional in the 8th round to the Texas Rangers.

"I never needed to be motivated to play baseball," he said. "It’s what I love to do. Being at the juco level just gave me time to get bigger, faster and stronger. When I got to Arkansas, just playing in the SEC and being around guys who have the same goals as you, is enough to be motivated. If you even need to be motivated," said Biggers.

Biggers' first year with the Razorbacks saw him put together one of the best seasons he's ever produced. He had the 7th highest batting average in the SEC as a sophomore and that was just a precursor to the 2018 season for Arkansas. He and his teammates have dominated the postseason, losing only twice. On the way to the College World Series, the Razorbacks defeated the No. 1 team in the country -- the Florida Gators twice, eliminated perennial contender Texas Tech and averaged eight runs per game.

"I knew the guys coming back from last year that we were special," he said. "About three weeks into the fall, the freshmen made themselves known. That’s when I knew we had a legitimate chance to win this thing," Biggers said.

 

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These uniforms have to go. Photo via: Wiki Commons.

Major League Baseball will consider going back to having players wear their team uniforms for the All-Star Game.

Club uniforms were used by the American League from 1933-2019 and by the National League from 1934-2019. When the game resumed in 2021 following the pandemic-related cancellation in 2020, MLB had started a uniform contract with Nike and Fanatics, and All-Stars were outfitted in specially designed league uniforms that drew criticism from traditionalists.

Photo by Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images.

This year's AL uniforms had a sandy base with red sleeves and lettering and the NL had a navy base with light blue sleeves and lettering.

“I’m aware of the sentiment on this issue,” Manfred told the Baseball Writers' Association of America on Tuesday. "I think where my head is on it, it’s something we’re going to have a conversation about coming out of the All-Star Game. We've got a lot of uniform things going on. And, obviously, the conversations have to involve the players first and foremost but Nike, some of our partners. But I am aware of the sentiment, and I do know why people kind of like that tradition."

MLB and Nike were criticized for club uniforms this year and said in May that 2025 club outfits will have larger lettering on the back of jerseys and individual pant customization. Players complained this year that white pants worn by some teams are see-through enough to show tucked-in jersey tops.

Regional sports networks

Manfred said a national steaming package of local television broadcasts is a future possibility.

“I could see a situation where we grow into a 30-club model. It might start on the digital side, where you have 14 or 15 clubs, and, you start with a digital product there as your first alternative,” he said.

“I was in Sun Valley last week and I did the whole speed-dating thing with everybody who’s ever streamed anything. When you talk to people in the streaming business, they’re not really interested in buying the state of Wisconsin and two counties in Michigan," Manfred added. "They want to be able to stream quite frankly, all over the U.S. and Canada but more broadly internationally. So I think those conversations are a product of owners saying, holy cow, the RSN business is really deteriorating. We know the future’s going to be streaming. What we’re hearing from the streamers is they want a more national product, and we need to be responsive to what people want to buy.”

MLB took over production of Arizona and San Diego local television broadcasts last year following the bankruptcy of Diamond Sports’ Bally networks and said MLB will be available as an option for teams looking for new deals. He said Padres game are approaching 40,000 subscribers, which he called a good figure.

“Having said that, from a revenue perspective it is not generating what the RSNs did," Manfred said. "The RSNs were a great business. Lots of people paid for programing they didn’t necessarily want. And it’s hard to replicate that kind of revenue absent that kind of bundling concept.”

Offense

While offense is near half-century lows, it has picked up from early in the season.

“The decline in offense is something that we’re paying a lot of attention to and we’ll continue to monitor to make a decision as to whether we think we need to do something. You do hear a lot of chatter about the dominance of pitching in the game. That’s absolutely true.”

Birmingham

After the success of the June 20 game between San Francisco and St. Louis at Rickwood Field, Manfred said MLB will return to the ballpark in Birmingham, Alabama, but the “exact form” had not been determined.

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