Mo Hackl

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Biographical Information[edit]

Moritz Hackl has played in the Austrian Baseball League and regularly for the Austrian national team. His brother Sammy Hackl has been a frequent member of the national team as well. [1]

He debuted with the Stockerauer Cubs in the 2007 ABL at age 15, going 3 for 7 with a walk, double and five runs. [2] In 2008, he slumped to .146/.255/.208, followed by .241/.373/.343 with 29 runs in 28 games in '10 (not playing in 2009). Still a teenager in 2011, he produced at a .327/.390/.467 clip, tying for second in triples (3) and tying for ninth in walks (21).He led the league with 13 doubles and tied for 6th with 35 hits.

His first appearance for the national team was in the 2011 European Championship Qualifiers. Starting at third base, he went 2 for 12 with two walks, a run and a RBI while handling 14 chances error-free. He led the event with 12 assists, one ahead of Dennis De Quint. [3] In 2012, he was at .303/.376/.422 for the Cubs. In the 2012 European U21 Championship, he started at catcher, going 2 for 14 with a walk, run and two RBI, fielding .962 and catching 4 of 10 would-be base-stealers. He walked nine and allowed four runs in three innings on the mound but got the win over Bulgaria. [4]

In 2013, he fell to .262/.319/.298 in the ABL but with 22 runs in 20 games. Splitting time between right field and catcher in the 2013 B-Level European Championship, he hit .333/.389/.467 with four runs in five games in the round-robin with 19 error-free chances. In the finale, he pinch-hit for Dominik Talir in the 9th inning against Russia, down 3-2 with two on and two outs. Facing former Twins farmhand Andrey Lobanov, he grounded out to end it. [5]

Hackl was at .282/.371/.436 in 2014. He was better in '15 at .370/.420/.543. He tied for 7th in average, was 9th in slugging, was 9th in OPS, tied for 2nd in hits (30), tied for 7th in doubles (5), tied for 2nd in home runs (3, 5 behind Adrián Quirantes) and tied for 6th in RBI (18). In the 2015 B-Level European Championship, he hit .286/.353/.571 and fielded .969 in the round-robin, with a 3-hit game against Poland. In the finale, it was 4-4 in the bottom of the 8th when he went deep off Sweden's Matt Merrifield; his role as hero evaporated when Sweden came back in the 9th, with a passed ball by Hackl causing some of the harm. [6]

During 2016, his batting line was .314/.461/.443; he tied for 5th in the ABL with 16 RBI and tied for 3rd with 14 walks. Pitching more than four games for the first time (and only time through 2020), he was 1-0 with four saves and a 4.64 ERA. He walked 21 in 21 1/3 IP but fanned 24 and allowed a .167 average. He tied another Moritz, Moritz Scheicher, for the save lead, allowed the lowest average (.001 ahead of Scheicher) and tied Walter Strasser for 9th in K.

He spent 2017 in Belgium, though their stats listings put him as Morritz Hackle. He hit .256/.379/.339 for the K. Deurne Spartans, and was 3-2 with two saves and a 4.46 ERA. He fanned 48 in 40 1/3 IP and allowed only 21 hits but walked 38. He was 9th in ERA (between Robbe De Jongh and Nicolas Migeot), allowed the lowest average (.156), was 8th in K (between De Jongh and Steve De Saedeleer) and tied José Luis Larrinaga for the save lead. [7] He was back with Austria for the 2017 B-Level European Championship, though. He was at shortstop and hit .313/.313/.500 with 3 doubles, 5 runs and 5 RBI in 4 games in the round-robin, handling 24 chances and not making an error; he had 3 hits against Serbia. He also pitched, beating Greece (6 R, 5 ER, 5 H, 0 BB, 4 K in 6 IP). He tied Max Warren and Dimitar Nassapov for 3rd in the event in two-baggers, led in assists (18) and tied for first in double plays turned (4). In the finale, he hit a three-run homer off Israel's Shlomo Lipetz, driving in four on the day and scoring twice as Austria finally won the B-Level Euros after two near-misses. [8] His brother won MVP, but he had certainly done his share.

In 2018, he batted .310/.431/.524 for the Vienna Metrostars, a teammate of his brother's. In the 2018 European Championship Playoff, he was 3 for 6 with 3 walks, 5 runs and 2 steals as Austria swept Lithuania. He tied Joachim Frick for the event lead in runs. [9] Austria won a spot in the 2019 European Championship.

Hackl hit .267/.434/.413 with 20 walks in 21 games for the 2019 MetroStars, tying for 9th in the league in walks and tying for first with two triples. [10] He won the Gold Glove at catcher. [11] In the 2019 Federations Cup, he batted .385/.571/.923 with ten runs, two homers and six RBI in five games while making no errors. He was 7th in slugging (between Philip Smith and Steven De Lannoy), tied Dominik Loffler for 8th in OBP, tied Kruno Gojković for 3rd in runs and tied Sam Boermans for 2nd with 6 walks (two behind Tim Veraghtert). [12]

In the 2019 European Championship, he started at short for Austria. He flew out his first at-bat in the Euros, against Belgium's Cedric De Smedt. His first hit was a single off France's Esteban Prioul to score his brother. He hit .150/.292/.300 entering the 9th/10th place game but with 3 runs and 6 RBI in six games, with a 3-run homer off Croatia's Marin Tadić. He was second on the team in RBI, one behind Talir. He again contributed fine defense (5 PO, 9 A, 0 E). He also closed out their win over Great Britain, saving it for Tobias Kiefer. Relieving Benjamin Salzmann with two on, two out in the 8th and a 5-1 lead. He got Alex Crosby on a fly. After Austria scored in the top of the 9th, he fanned Gary Davison in the bottom of the 9th, then retired Nateshon Thomas. He walked Brett Rosen and got Maikel Azcuy on a game-ending grounder. He had Austria's first save ever in a European Championship as a result. In the 9th/10th place game, a rematch with Britain, he went 0 for 1 with 3 walks, a run and a RBI while handling one putout and four assists; Scheicher replaced him late in the game. [13]

Moritz hit .242/.405/.394 in 2020.