With the 2012 College Baseball season having kicked off the season on February 17th, it is a good time to start getting familiar with this year’s Gatemen team as we eagerly await the start of the Cape Cod Baseball League season.
The Gatemen return 8 players from the team that made it to the Western Division Finals in 2011 for the 2nd consecutive season and they will join 15 newcomers at Spillane Field this summer. Highlighting the returning group is single-season save record holder Konner Wade (Arizona) and All-League player Daniel Palka (Georgia Tech). A starting pitcher for the Wildcats, Wade is off to a great start; making 2 starts with a 1-0 record and under 2.00 era and has struck out an impressive 23 batters in 14 innings in the early part of college season.
Konner’s Arizona and Gatemen teammate Johnny Field, another returning Wareham player, is off to a torrid start thru 7 games. He is hitting .444 (10 for 25) to go along with 5 rbi and 3 doubles. Palka has been just as impressive in leading the #10 ranked Yellow Jackets in offense – hitting .355 with 2 homers and 7 rbi. He will return to Wareham with 3 Georgia Tech teammates in toe; including 2nd year Gatemen Mott Hyde and Matthew Grimes and CCBL first timer Devin Stanton.
The pitching staff will include lots of talented newcomers including the highly sought after, 6’6″, freshman Michael Cederoth from San Diego State. He is already has two wins in relief for Head Coach Tony Gwynn. Two other freshman, both from Louisville, will be making their way to Wareham – right-handed pitcher Jared Ruxer and southpaw Adam Schemenauer. Keep an eye on both of those young players this spring as they try to make a contribution for the #14 ranked Louisville Cardinals.
Returning to the Gatemen staff is Barrett Astin from 4th ranked Arkansas. Astin is off to a terrific start and was named the SEC’s Pitcher of the Week to start off the season. A starter for Coach Farris in the second half of last season, Astin figures to be in the mix for a spot in the starting rotation heading into the season. Additional pitchers from the deep SEC include a pair of sophomores from LSU; including Kurt Mcune who is in the starting rotation in Baton Rouge. Will Kendall, a top reliever at Auburn will also toe the rubber at Spillane Field this summer. Kendal is leading the Tigers in appearances through the first two weeks of the season.
The recently resurrected and rising program at the University of Oregon is ranked #17 and is 7-1. For the first time, the Ducks will be sending two players to Wareham. Starting pitcher Brando Tessar has 2 of Oregon’s 7 wins so far and he will be joined by outfielder Brett Thomas who is hitting over .300.
Holding with the recent tradition of having local players on the Gatemen roster, INF Tyler Horan (Virginia Tech) from Middleboro, MA and catcher Matthew Walsh from Plymouth, MA will be playing close to home this summer. Horan is the only junior on the roster and Walsh has started in 5 games already behind the plate for Franklin Pierce. Walsh will share catching duties with returning Gatemen catcher Ty Ross from LSU who is leading the Tigers with a .400 average through the first 7 games.
Keep checking back for updates throughout the college baseball season. Also, follow us on Twitter (WarehamGatemen) where we are always posting updates and keeping you informed. Also, our roster page includes links to each player’s college stats to help you stay up to date. Last, check out www.d1baseball.com which is one of our favorite websites for following all of the CBB games on a daily basis.