Career of Carson High’s Bryce Moyle began with a bang
The Carson-Douglas baseball rivalry will always have a spot in Bryce Moyle’s heart.
The annual rivalry game is where the left-handed Moyle burst onto the scene as a freshman, earning a save and a win in back-to-back games.
His pitching helped the Senators earn a spot in the 2014 Northern 4A playoffs, and he gave Carson High baseball fans a glimpse of the future. And, he’s been the mainstay of the staff, compiling a 16-6 record in his 3-plus seasons for coach Bryan Manoukian.
Moyle will suit up against the Tigers for the final two times in his career — today at 3:45 in Minden and at 7 p.m. Thursday at Ron McNutt Field.
“I pitched 2 1/3 at Douglas and then 1 2/3 here at Carson,” said Moyle as he sat in the stands behind the plate earlier this week. “Yeah, there were nerves. Coach (Bryan) Manoukian told me there was a reason I was on the team. That helped and gave me a lot of confidence.”
And, even though he was nervous, it didn’t look that way on the mound. Manoukian waved him into the game with two outs and the bases loaded with Parker Dixon at bat. Moyle fell into a 3-0 hole and then worked the count full. Moyle caught Dixon looking at a backdoor curve to get out of the jam.
Hollywood scriptwriters couldn’t have done better.
“That was a big-time pitch,” Manoukian said after that game back in 2014. “He showed a lot of moxie, that he is fearless, and that’s what you want in a relief pitcher.
“We (assistant Jeff Hurzel) had talked about it — didn’t expect doing it until the playoffs. We wanted him to have some success. He could have pitched his whole freshman year for us. Coach Hurzel said we need a game to get into the playoffs. I had great confidence in him. He hasn’t surprised me at all.”
One day later, Moyle stepped up big time again, relieving Danny Guthrie with one out and runners at first and second in the sixth.
After Dillon Lopez reached on an error, Moyle got the next hitter to hit into an inning-ending double play. He pitched a scoreless seventh to earn his first varsity win.
Moyle has been Carson’s ace the past three years, and he’s been solid.
“Yeah, I’ve had a pretty good career, but I’ve had some hiccups,” said Moyle. “It’s been great to graduate from here, play here at Carson and play for this coaching staff.”
The Senators haven’t won a league or regional championship in his career, but Moyle hasn’t given up hope.
“I have that vision,” he said. “I think we have a chance if we get into the playoffs.”
Carson needs a split against the Tigers to finish in the top eight.
Moyle believes Carson is pitching better, and that, along with a consistent offense, is the key to making a deep run in the playoffs.
Ben Nelson has been throwing well in recent games.
The Senators just need to be more consistent with runners in scoring position.
Better with age
Moyle, like a fine wine, has gotten better with age. He truly is a pitcher and not just a thrower.
“Setting up batters. I do a better job at that,” he said. “It comes from watching baseball and being around knowledgeable people. When I came here as a freshman, I was throwing 75 on the outside. I’d go inside maybe once a game. You throw 75 and then throw 85 inside, it looks like 90. I think I’ve touched 90, but I’ve never had a radar gun on me. The velo (velocity) comes with age and maturity. My freshman year I was throwing 80, and now I average between 87 and 89.
“It is about location and changing speeds. I need to throw my curveball harder. I’ve been working on it during the season, but it’s still too slow. I think it’s about 75-76 right now.”
Manoukian said Moyle has to work on some minor things to become an even better pitcher.
“He can locate his fastball on both sides of the plate, and his change-up is as good as I’ve ever seen.”
Manoukian did some research, and Moyle has some top-notch strikeout numbers.
He has 206 strikeouts in 145 innings pitched in his sophomore, junior and senior seasons.
The Carson coach said those numbers compare favorably with another famous Carson lefty, Donovan Osborne, who pitched for Ron McNutt and won 49 games in nine Major League seasons. Pretty heady stuff.
Moyle has gotten a lot of interest in the last two years from schools in the Pac-12, West Coast Conference, Big West and some top-notch junior colleges.
Washington State and South Mountain College in Arizona have been the most ardent suitors, and Moyle admits he’d love to have an opportunity to pitch in the Pac-12.
Moyle said he wasn’t interested in playing at Nevada because he wanted to leave the area and he never heard from UNLV, which is strange given UNLV head coach Stan Stolte is a former Nevada assistant.
“Getting a chance to play at UCLA and USC, Oregon, Oregon State, Arizona and Arizona State would be awesome,” Moyle said. “The Pac-12 always sends five or six teams to the tournament, and the Pac-12 is a conference where you could get drafted out of.
“I visited South Mountain, and they have a nationally ranked program. There is a lot to do in the area, and I really liked the coaching staff.”