After coming off a disappointing first round playoff loss following their successful regular season last year, the baseball team is eyeing a states run this year. “Obviously our goal is to win a state championship, and I believe that if we work hard it’s possible,” senior Gabe Pollack said.
They started preparing in the fall with the fall league the team does every year, followed by workouts, which that up until tryouts.
Head coach J.D. Marchand announced that Pollack, along with senior Jeremy Goldstein and juniors Ryan Mariani and Harrison Cance, will be the captains this year. Fortunately for them it’s a veteran team as only two seniors graduated last year, while only one of the two was a full time starter. “The guys have good experience. We had five starting sophomores last year that are all returning. We also have a group of juniors returning. They have the experience and the leadership,” Marchand said.
Junior Young Jae Cho is the only addition from last year’s team. There are also players who got pulled up at the end of last year. Additionally, there’s always a possibility that underclassmen get pulled up from JV during the year.
The pitching rotation last year consisted solely of Pollack, Mariani, and Cance, which means that Marchand doesn’t have to retool the rotation to start the season, though sophomore Dev Zoks will join the rotation this year. Mariani is hurt and may not be available for the start of the season.
The team had one scrimmage, which was against Bullis. Bullis has multiple college commits, but the team held their own in the scrimmage. Mariani couldn’t play due to his injury. Score wasn’t officially kept, but the game ended in a 1-1 tie. Cuts have been made since then to the varsity team, and the scrimmage was a good way for Marchand to evaluate the talent in a real game situation.
Many of the starters bring versatility to the squad as Cance and Pollack can play first and third along with pitching. Cance may play second at times too. Mariani will pitch and play shortstop, while junior Chris Vondas will play second base, and shortstop when Mariani is pitching. More important than the versatility is the experience on the current varsity squad. “We can use that experience last year because now we know what the playoffs are like,” head coach J.D. Marchand said.
The first game is at Damascus, today.
Senior News Editor