Saturday, March 16, 2013

Jeff Schley - Ambidextrous Pitcher

Jeff Schley

Tallmadge High School 1990
Blue Devils Baseball Team
Akron, Ohio

College: University of Akron

Position: Pitcher, OF
Bats: Right
Throws: Both (ambidextrous)

Gloves: two gloves for switch pitching

Jeff Schley was a successful ambidextrous pitcher a Tallmadge High School in Akron, Ohio.
He started getting serious about throwing with both hands in Little League when he was 12 years old.

Tallmadge High's Jeff Schley Unbeaten Ambidextrous Pitcher

By Milan Zban, The Vindicator - May 23, 1989

Rules makers hate guys like Jeff Schley.

Nobody knows exactly what to do about this uniquely talented athlete from Tallmadge High ... except baseball coach Dave Young, who welcomed Schley with both arms.

"I didn't know that much about Jeff when he first came out of the team," said Young, a one-time southpaw pitcher of note.

"I wanted to get a look at him and when I said, 'Get your arm warmed up,' he looked at me and said, 'Which one?'"

Schley, you see, is ambidextrous. He pitches with both arms, changing from inning to inning and sometimes while facing the same batsman.

Therein lies the rub.

With a new Ohio High School Athletic Association rule in effect, limiting a pitcher to 10 inning over 48 hours, where does Schley stand?

He conceivably could pitch a game right-handed one day and throw left- handed a day later.

"I don't think we have a rule covering that type of individual," said Dick Termeer, associate commissioner of the OHSAA, "but it sure looks like we're going to have to address it.

"I do know that he cannot delay the game to change gloves. He's allowed 20 seconds between pitches and that would be enforced.

"But, as far as I know, there is nothing in the rules to prevent his doing what he is doing."

Schley, a 6-foot-3, 190-pound junior, said all this lefty-righty business started to get serious when he was 12 years old.

"I found out I could throw hard with both hands (shoot and dribble a basketball, eat, write, etc.), but when I told my Little League coach I could pitch with either arm, he didn't believe me.

So, I had to show him."
He's been showing people ever, since.

Schley currently is 4-0, his latest victory a 2-0 no-hitter against Springfield Local in the Canfield Class AA District semifinals.

The no-hitter overshadowed Schley's work at the plate and in the outfield. Last week, the right-handed hitter was 4-for-9 with a home run, 3 RBI and three runs. For his overall achievement, Schley has been selected as the Beacon Journal's Male Athlete of the Week.

Schley blanked Springfield Local by going the route left-handed -- his right arm recently has been tender -- fanning six and walking three.

Currenly, Schley has 26 strikeouts over 24 innings. He has surrendered 13 hits and has a 1.98 earned-run average.

Ohio High School Boasts Switch-Pitcher

Tyrone Daily Herald (Tyrone, PA) 27 May 1989

You've seen switch-hitters in baseball. Mickey Mantle and Pete Rose are the most famous of the breed who could hit from either side of the plate.

You've heard many Latin players switch languages, speaking Spanish and English fluently, sometimes in the same conversation. 

Now get ready for a switch-pitcher. Jeff Schley of Tallmadge High School near Akron is this ambidextrous rarity, who can switch arms from game to game, inning to inning and sometimes from batter to batter.

Last week, the 6-foot-3, 190-pound junior hurled a no-hitter with his left arm in an Ohio high school state tournament game against Springfield Local.

When his left arm felt tender a few days later, he made his next start against Akron Ellet as a right-hander and raised his record to 4-1.

"I've never seen a kid like him," says Dave YOung, who in 26 years as the Tallmadge coach has consistently turned out some of Ohio's best schoolboy teams.

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