Players battle for starting spots
Published: Thursday, March 21, 2013
Updated: Monday, March 25, 2013 13:03
Looking at various lineup cards for the Wolf Pack this season would cause some people confusion as to who the starters are.
Nearing the end of the season there are still position battles occurring on the team. Head coach Doug Faust said he feels that in some spots no one has “claimed a position.” These positions are catcher, left field, third base and second base.
Faust said that there are two players that he trusts to be behind the plate, business freshman Daniel Pappas and business senior Bradley Brunet. Though Brunet has gotten more starts than Pappas, Faust said that he goes with whoever has the hot hand at the time. Brunet has outperformed Pappas at the plate this season with three times more RBIs and three times a higher batting average. Pappas, however, has been better behind the plate playing error free baseball with a perfect fielding percentage while Brunet has committed 10 errors. This could be a potential hindrance to the Wolf Pack pitching and fielding because of the responsibilities catchers have with arranging fielders and dictating pitches. Despite this, Brunet feels good about the different players sharing time on the field.
“I think Coach Faust is really giving everybody a chance to play. We have a lot of players. We’re a lot deeper than last year,” Brunet said.
Third base for the Wolf Pack has been a somewhat revolving door for people to step into. For much of the season, the position was held by freshman John Nicholson. Nicholson suffered an injury after a three-game series against the University of Auburn Since his injury, third base has been occupied by senior Tony Asta, freshman Brett Pellegrin and sophomore Nevin Brown. Asta has gotten most of the starts, but it is difficult to see him completely overtaking this position with his responsibilities as a relief pitcher for a bullpen that has been struggling for most of the season.
Similar things could be said about starting freshman pitcher Kevin Lindsey who, in addition to his time spent on the mound, has split time in the left field with Garett Lacour. Lindsey is an integral part of the starting rotation for the team this year leading the team in wins, ERA and walk plus hits per innings pitched. Lindsey has performed well in the outfield so far this year committing no errors in while stationed out in left field.
Second base has been a two-man carousel for the team this year with starts primarily from Carmelo LoSauro and Britt Pellegrin. LoSauro has gotten the most starts at this position, 13, and is followed closely in number by Pellegrin, 12. LoSauro has fielded better committing six fewer errors than Pellegrin (four compared to 10) and they have shown nearly equal value as batters.
These position battles can warrant something positive in that they allow players to get in game experience, but could pose a threat to leadership on the team in terms of stepping up in certain moments which has been a problem for the team this season.
Etefia Umana can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org