Prentiss “Peej” Hall – Baseball

Prentiss came to USNA from Dallas, Texas where he had proven himself as a stand-out high school first
baseman and pitcher in baseball and a quarterback in football. He was recruited and counselled by
Naval Academy royalty…Roger Staubach and Ross Perot…to play both sports. He chose to play baseball.
When he went to his first baseball practice during Plebe summer, the assistant coaches had plans for
him to be a pitcher since he had a 5-1 record his senior year in high school, but Prentiss knew he would
be a better first baseman in college than a pitcher, so he pushed back on the coaches, demanding that
he be given a chance to play first.

He eventually won out and was given his shot. He made it count and got the starting first base position
on the JV team, hitting over .300 and putting several home runs in the books. The upper JV field didn’t
have a fence and Prentiss was quoted several times saying, “not only did you have to hit the long ball,
but you also had to run like hell to get around the bases for the home run.”

From then on, Prentiss became a regular on the varsity team, lettering 3 years, helping to lead the team
to winning seasons each of those years in both league and overall play, and was undefeated against
Army, beating them 7 times during the 1976 – 1978 seasons. His career batting average was .318 with a
high of .372 in 1977. He was selected as the Eastern Intercollegiate Baseball League’s All League First
Team First Baseman and Second Team Designated Hitter and inducted into the NAAA Hall of Fame as a

Another highlight of Prentiss’ baseball experience was his performance against major league teams.
Back in the 1970’s, major league teams would play local colleges for exhibition games. So, every other
year, Navy would play the Baltimore Orioles. In the off years, Navy would sometimes play Baltimore’s
opponents that were in town for a game the next day. Prentiss was able to play against Baltimore,
Kansas City, and the Montreal AAA team during his career. Some of Prentiss’ best memories were
playing against two Hall of Fame 3rd basemen, Brooks Robinson and George Brett. He was pictured on
the front page of the Baltimore Sun Sports section putting out Brooks Robinson at first base, a picture he
still has in his office today.

Prentiss recalled his first major league pitch from the Oriole’s star reliever Tippy Martinez. It was a
90MPH+ fast ball called for a strike. Prentiss was quoted as saying, “good thing the umpire saw the pitch
because I sure didn’t!” He saw the rest of the pitches though and went 1 for 2 against Martinez. Prentiss
followed that up the following year against KC pitcher Jim Colburn, going 2 for 2 against the 18-game
winner. All in all, Prentiss hit 4 for 7 in the majors for a .571 batting average!

During his first-class year, Navy had a lot of young talent coming up. One was a left-handed throwing
first baseman. At the same time, the 3rd base position was open. Famed Coach Joe Duff asked Prentiss
to make the switch to the opposite corner, saying that if anybody could make the change, it would be
him. Always a team player, Prentiss accepted the challenge and played his final year as a 3rd baseman.
Toward the end of that season, the Capital Gazette published an article on Navy Baseball, titled “Prentiss
Hall Keeps Navy 9 Together”. The article described how Coach Duff had asked Prentiss to move to 3rd
base after achieving 1st Team All-League honors at 1st base the previous year. The legendary coach went
on to say that Prentiss was very good at 3rd, but beyond that it was “like having another coach on the
field,” citing Prentiss’ experience, maturity, and ability to settle down young pitchers. The team ended
up 18-7 on the year.

After his sea tour on USS Berkely (DDG-15), Prentiss returned to USNA for his shore duty and had the
privilege to coach JV under Coach Duff, an experience he has always cherished. Prentiss described Coach
Duff as an amazing leader, mentor, father figure, baseball strategist, and role model. It’s rare to get the
chance to work and coach under the person you played for…an experience that Prentiss would never
forget and never trade.

Prentiss Hall Baseball Card Highlights.
Bats Left, Throws Right
Positions: 1st base, 3rd Base, DH
Career Batting Average: .318
All-League 1977 Eastern Intercollegiate Baseball Team
➢ 1st Team for play at First Base
➢ 2nd Team for play as DH
➢ Batting average: 372
Major League Play
➢ Vs. Baltimore Orioles
▪ 1 for 2 against Tippy Martinez (LH Reliever with 2.70 ERA, 5-1 record)
▪ Played against Eddie Murray, Brooks Robinson, Rick Dempsey, Lee May, Tony Muser, etc.
➢ Vs. Kansas City
▪ 2 for 2 against Jim Colburn (18 game winner that year with a no hitter)
▪ Played against George Brett, Freddie Patek, Frank White, Clint Hurdle, Amos Otis, Hal McRae
➢ Montreal AAA team
▪ 1 for 3
Major League Batting Average – .571 (4 for 7)
Navy Baseball record & Record against Army:
1978 18-7: Beat Army; May 7, 1978 5-1, June 4, 1978 16-0
1977 18-10-2: Beat Army; May 7, 1977 7-0 and 16-8 and June 3, 1977 11-1
1976 19-11: Beat Army; April 30, 1976 11-4; May 30, 1976 13-1