Monday May 29th, 2017
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Kyle Yerkes

 

Kyle Yerkes

ASA Playing History

USSSA Playing History

Major Watch List

2014 Interview

What positions do you play and what is your best position?
1b, c, pitch

Who is the best softball player you have ever seen play?
With all things considered including what type of person someone is, I'd have to say Brett Helmer.  He has done amazing things in the game and off the field.  Total class act and genuinely a great player.  Also Bryson Baker in his prime was as good as they get.  Wegman is always a contender as well.  Andy Purcell has absolutely set the standard on the mound and become an outstanding hitter.  There's a lot of quality players to be considered.

Why do you like the game of softball?
Its a blast to get away and feed the competitive spirit that drives any athlete. Playing sports my whole life has been a driving force for me.  Softball allowed me to continue playing something competitive at the highest level. Its always a rush to get back to the family when the weekends done though.

Who is the best up and coming player in softball and why?
I'm gonna go with Ryan Parfitt.  I guess at the A level you have arrived but this kid is a beast.   Dedicated on and off the field to becoming the best player he can be.  From his diet to his practice sessions, not many work harder.  I'm sure there are many others on their way up as well.

What is your nickname in softball and how did you get it?
Started out as Biggons…a team in Michigan started calling me that in 2000….but it was a team we were playing. Really not too original.

Recently though thanks to Farron Miller and Whaley, its switched over to Diesel.  I'm a huge diesel truck fan and a motorhead.  Seems fitting.

What is your height and weight?
6'3" 260lb

Where do you call home?
Currently Noblesville, Indiana

What's your favorite way to spend an off weekend?
I love taking my son fishing.  My wife brings along our baby and me and Jackson fish all day.  He's got the edge on me though.  He must be the only kid to catch an 8lb large mouth on a superman fishing pole. The kid gets it done!!

What do you do for a living?
Consulting in EMR records

Did you play sports in High School / College / Pro?
Played highschool basketball and baseball.  Played baseball at University of Toledo.  Drafted by Seattle.

How did you get your start in softball and how did you get to the upper level?
I was playing Church league softball after recovering from a career ending shoulder injury in baseball.  Was playing a team in a state tourney we entered for fun.  The team was the North End Dogs from Toledo Ohio (Matt King, Mike Rose, etc..). After the game they asked me to play with them. Shortly I played with Steve's Drywall then to Line drive for conference as a B team.  And there ya go…seems like a long long time ago now. That was about 13 years ago I think.

What was the most surprising difference between Conference play and non-Conference play when you made the jump?
Speed of the game. Period.  Balls move faster through the infield.  Pitching is better and quicker.  Defense is better.  It all makes for a fast paced game.  And I am sure to some of the new guys it seems a bit overwhelming.  Especially with today's equipment and bigger, stronger players.

Is there a player that you would compare your game to?
Not really.  I'm sure there probably is someone out there like me but most I've played with say I'm one of a kind…not sure if that's a compliment or not.  Pretty much don't have the ability to hide any intensity or thoughts.  It is what it is….no reason to sugar coat anything in this game.. Haha…

I play hard and work hard at getting better and hate losing.

What would you say is your career highlight to this point? Maybe one play or game that sticks out to you in particular?
I've had the luxury of being an World Champion a few times….Most recently with R and M Metals in 2012…

However..we had an incredible game when I was with AJs in 2010 in the world title hunt against Desert Falls.  We were down I think 22-1,in the third.  I came in from first to pitch and we held them to five additional runs.  We came all the way back to win and went on to win the world championship a few games later.  Many have said it was one of the best games ever.   Not sure about that, but it felt that way to all of us AJs guys and our coaches Mike Foulkes and Pete Campbell!

In your career was there a single person (player/manager/coach) who had the most significant impact on your approach to the game? Why?
Yes but he wasn't involved in softball.  Dave Taylor, a gentleman from Indianapolis, invited me to play on his organizations summer travel team on high school.  We were one of the top 3, in the country.  But what has always stuck with was his focus on the MENTAL GAME OF BASEBALL.  This applies, in my opinion, to all sports.  I think this helped me mature as a player and direct emotions and intensity toward being productive. That summer was a giant leap forward for my playing days.

What advice can you give a young player trying to break into the upper level?
Just be yourself.  If you make it to the higher levels by being you, don't change. Don't try to impress or change to try and fit, just work on perfecting and improving what got you there in the first place.  And don't be greedy!!

What type of batting grip do you use and what ounce bat?
Pinky drop slight overlap.

What do you do in the offseason to prepare for the next softball season?
Lots of weight training and some cardio. Try and hit when I can and usually really start hitting in early January.   Also lots of sledgehammer drills.

What is your favorite sports team and your favorite sport other than softball?
Cubs (insert wise crack here) and baseball.

Do you have any superstitions and if so, what are they?
I have to take one hard swing before getting in the box.  And of course a little dirt pile for my back foot.

What would be your "at bat" music selection?
Bottoms up…Brantley Gilbert

What is the best improvement upper level softball could make?
I think its pretty good now. Gaps amongst divisions are closing and it seems like theres more talent to go around these days.  I like it the way it is.

What is your favorite non-World tournament and why?
Firemens in Minnesota

What is the best softball field/complex you have played at and why?
Cant beat Disney…groomed fields.

But I love the turf on the Field of Dream Complexes.

Where is the best place to eat on the road after a game?
Chipotle.

What is the funniest thing you have ever seen on a softball field?
Derek Shuk pitching in a C nit with his shirt off…..he's a funny guy and not a model of physical fitness and he doesn't care!   Absolutely hilarious.

Tell us something about you that most would never know about you?
I'm pretty much an open book.  But unless you really know me, you wouldn't know I have a true passion for customizing cars.  Love old muscle cars and have recently evolved into a desire to build a 1/4 mile diesel drag truck. My dad owned a trucking company for years and I think being around him doing mechanical work rubbed off.

What was your favorite sports related gift you have ever given or received?
I attended a few private hitting lessons in high school with legendary Cub great Billy Williams.   He owned a facility in Donaldson, Indiana. He gave me an old wooden bat that he used as a batting practice bat on several occasions.  It was identical to his game bat.

It was a pretty cool gift…still have it.

 

 



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2 responses to “Kyle Yerkes”

  1. Nelly 84 says:

    Great teammate and even better friend! Goodluck bud

  2. Chris says:

    Why did he leave line drive??

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