USC Baseball Preview

Here’s my preview of the USC baseball team, which opens play tonight at 6 against Northwestern at Dedeaux Field. Coach Dan Hubbs’ toughest job is trying to find players with only 11.7 scholarships.

“It’s a challenge, but I’m not going to use it as an excuse,” Hubbs said. “No one will feel sorry for us. We have to get creative, whether it’s finding kids who qualify for financial aid or finding kids who can pay their own way.”

Story link here

Roster oreview after the jump:

KEY LOSSES

SS James Roberts — A mainstay at shortstop, Roberts was also a potent offensive threat who led USC in home runs (four) and RBIs (28). Was third in batting average at .320.

3B Adam Landecker — USC must replace its top hitter (.351) and one of its best defensive players. Also led Trojans in hits (71) and doubles (18).

OF Greg Zebrack — He started 55 games and finished just behind Roberts with a .345 average. His slugging percentage (.495) led the team and he scored team-high 35 runs.

TOP RETURNERS

RHP Wyatt Strahan — Will be the Trojans’ No. 1 pitcher this season and throws between 90-94 mph. Had lowest ERA on team last season (2.45) and held opponents to .247 average.

LHP Bob Wheatley — After being the No. 1 pitcher last season, will be No. 2 this year. Had a 2.78 ERA last season.

RHP Nigel Nootbaar — After being a relief pitcher last season, will move into starting rotation this year. Struck out 38 in 47 innings with three saves.

INF Dante Flores — Was the Trojans’ No. 3 hitter last season until a wrist injury sidelined him for almost two months. Drove in 11 runs in 24 starts and will be key hitter in lineup.

INF Kevin Swick — Hit .305 last season and drove in 16 runs. Also named an Academic All-American last season.

C Garrett Stubbs — He led the Pac-12 in runners caught stealing with 23 and earned All-Pac-12 honorable mention honors. Stubbs did not commit an error in 44 games.

TOP NEWCOMERS

SS Frankie Rios — Will start at key position for the Trojans after starring at Long Beach Poly past three seasons. Hit .406 with 30 RBI and named to all-Southern Section Division I team last year.

DH/C Jeremy Martinez — Will probably be designated hitter at outset after being a three-time Division I first-team selection at Mater Dei. Also a high school All-American and member of USA under-18 national team.

INF Jeff Pashke — Hit 31 career home runs at Valley Christian High School in Arizona before he transferred to Santa Barbara for his senior season. Helped lead Valley Christian to 2-A state title his sophomore year.

INF/OF Joe Corrigan — Hit .312 with 23 RBIs in 32 games at Harvard-Westlake last season. A three-time all-Mission League selection.

— Scott Wolf

Facebook Twitter Plusone Reddit Digg Tumblr Email
  • https://www.facebook.com/charles.bucket.3 Charlie Bucket

    Ugh, “I’m not making excuses…no one should feel sorry for us” what a loser mentality!!

    Sounds like another season in the cellar!!! Just like basketball!!

    One sport schools belong in the Mountain West or WAC!!!not the Pac 12!!!

    • WhtHorse

      Wow, gutties win one College World Series and they start peacocking. Hilarious!!!!!!

      • gotroy22

        And according to Wang it was a fluke- all their star plays are out for the season already.

      • https://www.facebook.com/charles.bucket.3 Charlie Bucket

        how can it be wrong, when it feels so RIGHT????

    • Joseph B. Lowe

      Really, don’t you have anything better to do? You’re on this every time I come on. What a waste of time. Loser.

      • https://www.facebook.com/charles.bucket.3 Charlie Bucket

        i suppose you are going for irony with this comment….so i won’t mention that you and your weird lil’ buddy have 10 times the number of posts than the Cadre combined. and i see you are now haunting Wang’s blog. well he needs the hits, so i don’t quibble with that. you actually liven up that blog given the scant participation.

  • rusoviet

    A teammate of former Trojan Tommy Satriano died today – Jim Fregosi – in Miami-FL. He and Tommy were on the original Los Angeles Angels roster against the MN Twins way back almost 53 years ago at old Wrigley Field (41st and Avalon).

    Jimmy was a great guy and real leader – he was traded to the Mets with a few others as well as a few others coming west including one of the greatest arms in the history of the game and one of it’s biggest jerks ‘Nollie’ Ryan.

    Best to the Fregosi kin and kith -

    • ThaiMex

      Nolan Ryan would not relieve himself on you if you were on fire.
      but fit Un anyways!