Butcher throws shutout, named NSIC Pitcher of the Week
Posted by Van Williams, ALB Media Director | Apr 11, 2017
As a transfer to the University of Minnesota-Crookston, Palmer’s Jacob Butcher felt pressure to perform every time he took the mound.
It didn’t help when he started slowly. That made him only press more.
Finally, he stopped trying so hard and went back to being himself.
“At some point,” he told me, “you just have to trust your stuff.”
Butcher, of Wasilla Post 35 fame, tossed a 3-hit shutout with 102 pitches over seven innings in a 6-0 win against the University of Mary in Crookston, Minnesota.
“It felt really good to get a game like that in. Especially in the NSIC, which is definitely for hitters more than it is for pitchers I would say,” he told me. “I've been working on a lot of things this last fall and winter and fell into an early slump to start off but finding consistent outings now that I've gotten more comfortable in my role on the team.”
The junior right-hander walked only one batter and struck out five en route to lowering his earned-run average to 5.40, two runs lower than it was before the game.
A few days later, Butcher was named Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference Pitcher of the Week for his masterpiece pitching performance.
Butcher has pitched a total of 26.2 innings for Minnesota-Crookston in eight appearances, including five starts. He doesn’t care if he starts or comes in relief.
“I have been both in my career and both are just as exciting when you get your chance to be on the bump,” he said. “The main focus for every pitcher, whether starting or relieving, is to get in there and fill up the [strike] zone and give your team a chance to win.”
Off the field, he enjoys life in Minnesota but admitted that he’s a little home sick.
“I like it here but I miss it a lot back home on the west coast and especially Alaska,” he said. “I hope to move back there because I don't see here as a permanent option for me. But the school and the degrees offered here are great.”
Butcher is currently seeking a degree in Golf and Turfgrass Management.
“Just a fancy name for landscaping,” he said. “And I couldn't be happier to be doing this degree. It ranges in a wide variety of sports fields to golf courses to parks and home lawns.”