The Community R-VI baseball team enters the 2012 season with a lot of optimism coming off last year’s 6-13 campaign as they finished with their best record in more than a decade.
Head coach Mike Boedeker said his team’s mix of youth and returning players should give Trojans’ fans some entertaining games.
“It ought to be fun to see (what might happen),” he said. “We might be young but we’ll be pretty competitive…I think we’ll hold our own at times. I think we’ll grow throughout the year. With a team as young as it is right now, it’s going to be one of those wait and see moments. We have a lot of guys fighting for spots so that ought to be fun.”
The Trojans are starting this season without graduating seniors Tyler Kobush (2B), Travis Duenke (LHP), Stephan Schafer (3B), Brian Fennewald (RF), and Jamie Becker (C).
Providing leadership to this year’s squad is senior returning starters Austin Layman (CF), Brennan Wells (P, SS), Cameron Brooks (P), and Tyler Myers (DH, 1B, OF). Other key contributors to this year’s squad includes Jacob Eastwood (P, 3B), Justin Durham (1B, P), Kaleb Harris (P, 3B), and Shane Myers (C).
Boedeker said he likes the flexibility of having multiple players who will see time on the mound for him this season.
“We’ve got a lot of youth coming up as we have five freshmen pitchers, including three lefties that are probably going to see some time along with Brennan, Jacob, Justin, and Cameron Brooks,” he said. “We have nine guys I can throw out any given day and hopefully they will give us pretty solid outings. Brennan Wells is probably the ace right now.”
Offensively, Boedeker said the lineup will start with an all-district short stop in Wells and an all-conference first baseman in Durham.
Ultimately, the key to the Trojans’ success this year will be their defense.
“We want to try and stay away from the big inning,” Boedeker said. “…We’ll pretty much rely on our defense to make plays behind our pitchers.”
The assistant coach for this year’s team is Mike Kropf. Community R-VI opens their season at 5 p.m. Monday, March 19 in Madison.