Monday, February 19, 2007

OSU BB: Preview Updates

The best OSU sports site on the net, The-Ozone, has checked in with their preview of the baseball team. They have the benefit of being able to talk to Coach Todd, and so they have some new information that changes the projected roles of a few players.

For one thing, Brian DeLucia, as I speculated, is the front-runner at third base, but Tony Kennedy is also being looked at there, with no mention of Chris Macke. Eric Fryer will not be used at first base this year, apparently, although I still would not be surprised if he is used at DH every once in a while in order to get a break from catching. Also, true freshman outfielder Ryan Dew has impressed and should be in the mix for playing time, and redshirt freshman outfielder Zach Hurley has apparently taken a big step forward.

On the pitching side, it appears as if Jake Hale could be moved to the bullpen, as the true freshman lefties Theron Minium and Josh Edgin have earned mound time. One of those two or Josh Barerra could take Hale's rotation spot. Hale and Meister would make a pretty strong 1-2 punch out of the pen, although this move would create an all-lefthanded starting rotation. However, Hale's move to the pen is far from certain, with Coach Todd describing it as "an experiment early to see whether that could happen".

The season will begin Friday as the Buckeyes "host" James Madison at the Buckeye Baseball Classic, held at the Yankees' spring training site in Tampa. They will play a doubleheader with Kansas State on Saturday and a single game against Seaton Hall on Sunday. I do not believe that it is a coincidence that the Bucks are hosting their tournament at the Yankees facility, as George Steinbrenner is a well-known friend of the Ohio State Athletic Department.

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