Jan. 27, 2018
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Members of the Ohio State baseball team started official preparation for the 2018 season with its first full team practice over sunny skies and temperatures in the mid-50s Friday afternoon at Nick Swisher Field at Bill Davis Stadium. The team will be continue practice outside or at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center in advance of its season opening weekend, which is set for Feb. 16-18 in Port Charlotte, Fla.
Coach Greg Beals, beginning his eighth year at Ohio State, welcomed 35 student-athletes, including 10 newcomers on the 2018 squad Friday. It ended with a six-inning scrimmage as several pitchers squared off for the first time vs. the Buckeye hitters in a live situation. That’s a solid first day for the boys of spring.
“We’ve had a great offseason in the weight room and in the training room and now we get to put it all together,” Beals said. “To be able to step out on to the field and go full go,’ it’s exciting. We are going to be able to go into a scrimmage today and to be able to do that, it’s ahead of schedule for what we are normally able to do in our preparation.”
The Buckeyes return 22 letterwinners from a year ago. The team will be led by an experienced pitching staff, especially in the bullpen as several familiar faces return that made a big impact on the team’s run to a 2016 tournament title. Overall, Beals and has staff will have seven pitchers with starting experience on the mound. The team also will be led by a nine-member senior class, including fifth-year senior captains Adam Niemeyer and Kyle Michalik. Watch videos of Coach Beals, Niemeyer and Michalik by clicking the links above.
Ohio State will hold its annual Meet The Team Dinner Saturday, Feb. 3, at the Fawcett Center. Buckeye great Nick Swisher will be the featured speaker. For ticket information, go to buckeyediamondclub.com.
Comments from the Captains
“Being able to get outside for the first practice is awesome. I’m pretty excited how everyone plays today in our first scrimmage.”
“Our pitching staff is experienced. We still have a lot of guys that pitched on the 2016 championship team. That experience will help us. Our goal right now to start practice is to have a this-pitch mentality and not letting things affect us that happen the game before or the inning before.”
“How Adam said, we have a lot of returning guys. I feel like last year we were a newer and younger team. This year we have grown together with the newer guys. As a whole, we have grown close to each other and I’m excited how that is going to transition on to the field.”
“I think everyone is excited for the scrimmage today. It’s definitely good for us to be outside on the first day and throw live to our hitters. We all woke up with a little extra juice this morning.”