Kollar setting new goals during time with Bristol Blues

Published on Wednesday, 20 June 2018 19:43
Written by DAN ORENCOLE

@ORENCOLEDAN

BRISTOL - The goal for Bristol Blues starting pitcher Jared Kollar this summer isn’t to strike out every batter he faces, something he was known for doing at the high school level and tried to do at the beginning of his college career.

“My goal this summer is mostly working on my changeup and improving my command,” Kollar said. “I’ve thrown my curve and slider for a couple years now and now I’m trying to get that fourth pitch.”

Kollar had a dominant high school career at Greater Latrobe Senior High School, which ended with him allowing three hits and striking out six to lead his team to a 7-0 win for the school’s first ever PIAA Class 5A state championship.

“Winning the state championship was fantastic as a senior, because you’re going out on a high note,” Kollar said. “I don’t know how much it got me ready for college, but it’s definitely something that everybody should try to do. It’s hard to say that, but it’s a great experience.”

For the former high school standout, his second start in college was a wake-up call.

Coming off a strong debut for Seton Hill University in which he earned the win with five innings of one-run ball, Kollar got hit around against Rockhurst University, lasting just two innings and giving up 12 runs, nine earned.

“In college, I kind of got hit with the [idea] ‘It doesn’t matter how hard you throw, you just got to hit your spots,’” Kollar said. “My second start I gave up a lot of runs and that’s when it really sunk in that you’ve got to hit your spots. From then on I think I’ve done a lot better pitching at this level.”

After that start, Kollar was solid for the Griffins the rest of the season. He gave up 14 earned runs in 40 2/3 innings pitched and the most hits he gave up over the remaining nine games were eight against Indiana University of Pennsylvania. He matched the three walks twice, against Clarion University and Mercyhurst University.

He finished his freshman year with a 5-4 record and a 4.53 ERA in 47 2/3 innings pitched, with 60 strikeouts, as Seton Hill reached its third NCAA Atlantic Regional Championship game.

Blues manager Ronnie Palmer has the native of Greensburg, Pa. - where Seton Hill University is located - on a specific game plan all summer, in keeping with his college team’s wishes.

“We want him to stay right around 75 pitches,” Palmer said. “One thing that we’ve done last year and this year is try and communicate with all the college coaches and see what they want their guys to do. That’s why Jared’s only throwing five innings. Regardless of where he’s at, his coach only wants him to throw five innings each start. We’re going to stick with that plan. Because what we want is when coaches send us guys, particularly pitchers, you want the coaches to trust that you’re following their plan for their guys and we’re going to stick to that.”

Kollar has shown those five innings can be worth the price of admission.

Kollar has made three starts for Bristol this season and the Blues have won two of the three. He has a 3.21 ERA through 14 innings pitched and has struck out 14 batters.



Posted in The Bristol Press, Bristol Blues on Wednesday, 20 June 2018 19:43. Updated: Wednesday, 20 June 2018 19:45.