Coming off a 2-16 campaign from a year ago, Van-Far head baseball coach Wes Rowden is hoping that his team’s gained experience will help them improve their record during the upcoming 2015 season.
Returners include seniors Lucas Robinson (SS/2B/P), Austin Speagle (1B), and Nathan Kraft (OF).
The list of junior returners features Wyatt McDowell (IF, P), Mike Colson (3B, P), Klayton Haddock (IF), and Layten McMillen (OF, IF).
Freshman Josh Hodde leads a talented freshmen group of players also expecting to battle for time in the lineup.
Rowden says he has a total of 15 kids out for the team this Spring.
The key for the Indians this season will be its pitching staff.
He said he expects Colson to throw the most innings. McDowell was solid at the end of last season but shoulder issues may keep him off the mound a little in 2015.
“Pitching last year was so erratic,” Rowden said. “If we can be consistent with our pitching, that’s what I’m going to work for. We just don’t want to give up a ton of walks.”
He noted the importance of his team playing well defensively behind the pitchers and cutting down on the errors.
Offensively, Van-Far lost second-team, all-state player Kyle Decker to graduation after Decker hit over .400.
Meanwhile, the rest of the team barely hit .190.
“So I expect some other guys with Robinson, McDowell, and Colson, to come along and hit much better than they did last year,” Rowden added.
This season, the Indians will be playing in Class 2, District 5.
The tournament will be held at South Shelby.
Other district teams include Clopton, Louisiana, Monroe City, Paris, and South Shelby.
Van-Far’s home opener will be on Monday, March 23 against Calvary Lutheran at 5 p.m.