After falling shy of a late-championship series run, the Bourne Braves return several players from their 2011 rosters this summer.
UNC’s infielder Tommy Coyle and third baseman Colin Moran, right-hander Ryan Eades from LSU, Arkansas’ righty Ryan Stanek, Louisville’s righty Chad Green, and Huskies southpaw Brian Ward will all return from the 22-20 Braves team, providing a solid base to the pitching staff.
Eades was an All Star pick with 32.1 innings of work, six starts in seven games, and 23 strikeouts to his name, along with one of the league-leading low ERAs of 0.84. Ward and Stanek are also in the rotation, with seven starts between them, and Green did the majority of his work from the bullpen last year in 11 games.
Coyle and Moran contributed 22 runs between the two of them. Coyle, batting .315 and playing in 29 games, had 34 hits, 16 RBI, 34 hits, and only 13 walks. Moran, hitting .289, contributed 28 hits in 26 games. The Braves will likely look to these two to be powerhouses in their lineup.
The Braves are also getting one of the Dores, the young Chris Harvey (Vanderbilt), a catcher who graduated high school a year early to come to Vanderbilt (similar to what Levi Michaels did at UNC a few years back). Funnily enough, Harvey got the Dores first hit of the season this past weekend against projected number one draft pick Mark Appel (Stanford, played for YD last year). Harvey’s young, but a solid enough player that he’ll see plenty of time behind the plate, sharing it with sophomore Jared Bales (Southern Mississippi).
Coming in as CCBL newbies are two sophomore Huskers, Jon Keller and Tyler King, a 6’5 righty and a 6’0 lefty. Keller has been working hard at school after starting every weekend for the Big Red as a true freshman last year. Keller had a 3.62 ERA and a 3-6 w/l record in 15 appearances and 14 starts. He also had a solid 54 strikeouts.
Teammate King has largely been utilized out of the pen at college, contributing a 2.21 ERA in 20.1 innings of work—just ten hits, nine runs, five of them earned, walked 18, and striking out 16.
Southern Miss sends in three as well, including Bales, infielder Connor Barron, and outfielder/pitcher Mason Robbins. Robbins and Barron are both freshmen, getting their first taste of college ball this spring. I’d say the freshmen are doing well enough to start their season—after the first weekend of D1 games, Connor is batting .385, Mason’s .200 in just two games.