February 14, 2018

Buckeyes Open 135th Season at Snowbird Classic

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Feb. 14, 2018

RELATED INFO:  2018 Team Guide |   Weekly Release | 2018 Schedule | 2018 Roster | Baseball Homepage | Big Ten Baseball |  VIDEO: Buckeyes Preview Opening Weekend  | Follow the Buckeyes on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram | 2018 Season Outlook

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The boys of summer are back on the diamond. The Ohio State baseball team embarks on its 135th season this weekend when it travels to Port Charlotte, Fla., for four games beginning Friday at the Snowbird Classic.

The Buckeyes start the weekend with a Friday doubleheader at Charlotte Sports Stadium, the home spring training facility of the Tampa Bay Rays. The Buckeyes square off with UW-Milwaukee at 11 a.m. and finish the day with a 2 p.m. matchup against Canisius. Saturday features a rematch with Canisius at 3:30 p.m. at North Charlotte Regional Park. The Buckeyes wrap up the weekend with a Sunday matinee against UW-Milwaukee at 1 p.m. at North Charlotte Regional Park.


THE BASICS
Ohio State vs. UW-Milwaukee
| Friday, Feb. 16 | 11 a.m. | Charlotte Sports Stadium
Live Stats | Twitter Updates

Ohio State vs. Canisius | Friday, Feb. 16 | 2 p.m. | Charlotte Sports Stadium
Live Stats | Twitter Updates

Ohio State vs. Canisius | Saturday, Feb. 17 | 3:30 p.m. | North Charlotte Regional Park
Live Stats | Twitter Updates

Ohio State vs. UW-Milwaukee | Sunday, Feb. 18 | 1 p.m. | North Charlotte Regional Park
Live Stats | Twitter Updates

ON THE BUMP
G1 vs. UW-Milwaukee: LHP Connor Curlis vs. TBA
G2 vs. Canisius: RHP Ryan Feltner vs. RHP Andrew Sipowicz
G3 vs. Canisius: RHP Adam Niemeyer vs. vs. LHP J.P Stevenson
G4 vs. UW-Milwaukee: RHP Yianni Pavlopoulos vs. TBA

TICKETS
Individual game tickets are available well as a weekly pass (Saturday-Saturday). Both can be purchased on site.

Individual:  $8
Weekly-Pass:  $40

FOLLOW THE ACTION
Live stats links can be found by going to the schedule page of Ohio State Baseball on OhioStateBuckeyes.com. Fans can also follow the action on Twitter via @OhioState_BASE. No live stream or radio will be available at the Snowbird Classic.

LEADING OFF

    • The 2018 Buckeyes return 22 letterwinners this season, including 13 members from the 2016 Big Ten championship team. The team welcomed 10 newcomers in the fall.
    • The Scarlet and Gray will rack up the frequent flyer miles, opening the 2018 season with 17-straight road games. The Buckeyes will be in the state of Florida two times and will also visit Arizona, South Carolina and North Carolina. The team will fly a combine 7,516 miles across the country over the next five weeks.
    • The Scarlet and Gray are 10-4-1 during opening weekend in the last four seasons. Last year, the Buckeyes went 2-2 at the Sunshine State Classic in Osceola County, Fla.
    • The Buckeyes are 1-0 all-time vs. UW-Milwaukee. Ohio State defeated the Panthers, 4-1, in the 2005 season.
    • Ohio State is 8-0 all-time vs. Canisius. This weekend will be the first meeting between the Buckeyes and Golden Griffins since the 1998 campaign.
    • Dominic Canzone returns for his sophomore campaign after leading the Buckeyes at the plate with a .343 average.
    • Seth Kinker will anchor an experienced Buckeye bullpen this spring. Kinker posted a 2.95 ERA in 58.0 innings pitched in 2017.
    • The Buckeyes are 18-9 all-time at the Snowbird Classic and have played in Port Charlotte, Fla., for the last eight years. Last season, the team went 2-0, defeating Bucknell and Lehigh. Ohio State has gone undefeated at the Snowbird two times (2015 and 2017).
    • Ohio State has won its season opener in four-consecutive seasons.

SCOUTING THE OPPONENTS
UW-MILWAUKEE
2017 Record: 22-32
Postseason: 0-1 in Horizon League
Top Returning Hitter: Ben Chally, .327, 23 runs scored, 23 RBI, 10 doubles.
Top Returning Pitcher: Austin Schulfer, 3.75 ERA, 6-5, 82,1 IP, 70 K.

CANISIUS
2017 Record: 35-22
Postseason: 1-2 MAAC
Top Returning Hitter: Liam Wilson, .343, 74 hits, 41 runs scored, 28 RBI, three home runs.
Top Returning Pitcher: Tyler Smith, 0.30 ERA, 3-0, 22 appearances, 29.2 IP, 1 ER

TRIO OF BUCKEYES NAMED TO B1G PLAYERS TO WATCH LIST
Senior Seth Kinker, junior Ryan Feltner and sophomore Dominic Canzone were named to the Big Ten Preseason to Watch List, the conference office announced Wednesday afternoon.

Kinker, a native of Huntington, W. Va., collects his second straight league preseason honor and returns for his final season in the Scarlet and Gray. The right-hander was 3-1 with a 2.95 ERA in 24 appearances with 54 strikeouts in 58.0 innings pitched a year ago. Kinker ranks tied for 10th on the OSU career appearances list with 79 and has totaled 135.0 innings pitched since joining the team in 2015.

Feltner, from Hudson, Ohio, earns his first conference preseason honor. The right-hander has been tabbed as the top prospect in the Big Ten for the 2018 MLB Draft by multiple media outlets, including D1Baseball and Perfect Game. The 6-4, 195-pound right-hander has collected 118 strikeouts in 131.1 innings pitched in two seasons with the Buckeyes.

Canzone, from Sagamore Hills, Ohio, was a third team All-Big Ten selection as a true freshman in 2017. The Buckeye right fielder hit .343 with four doubles, three triples, three home runs and 36 RBI. He also had a team-high seven assists and did not make an error in 39 starts.

NIEMEYER & MICHALIK NAMED 2018 CAPTAINS
Redshirt senior pitcher Adam Niemeyer and redshirt senior Kyle Michalik were named captains of the 2018 squad, head coach Greg Beals announced in November. Niemeyer, a two-time Ohio State captain, the most experienced starter on a deep pitching staff, has started a team-high 23 games in career and holds an 8-6 overall record. Michalik, a native of Brunswick, Ohio, has 61 career appearances out of the vaunted Buckeye bullpen, posting a 2.70 ERA.

WELCOME TO D1 BASEBALL
Ohio State has nine newcomers on the 2018 spring roster, including three transfers: Junior Malik Jones (Weatherford CC; Richardson, Texas), Kobie Foppe (South Mountain CC; Phoenix, Ariz.) and Jonathan Jahn (South Carolina; Augusta, Ga.).The Buckeyes also welcomed six freshmen consisting of two position players and four pitchers: Alex Theis (New Riegel, Ohio), Seth Lonsway (Celina, Ohio), Luke Duermit (Fishers, Ind.), Dillon Dingler (Massillon, Ohio), Jake Ruby (Groveport, Ohio), Jake Ruby (Groveport, Ohio) and Griffan Smith (Cincinnati, Ohio).

SCHEDULE THE BEST
Ohio State will face some tough competition to prep the boys for Big Ten play. The team will face No. 2 Oregon State twice at the Big Ten/Pac-12 Challenge next week in Surprise, Ariz., before facing No. 23 Southern Mississippi March 3 at the Cox Diamond Club Invitational in Pensacola, Fla. Ohio State will head to the beach for spring break and will play a pair of games against Coastal Carolina, the 2016 NCAA champions, March 10-11. The squad will then travel north for a two-game midweek series at UNC-Wilmington March 13-14.

PRESEASON RECOGNITION
Several Buckeyes have been recognized by multiple college baseball media outlets.

Ryan Feltner

  • Top Big Ten Prospect of 2018 MLB Draft by D1Baseball.com and Perfect Game. Ranked No. 3 by Baseball America
  • Preseason all-conference by Perfect Game
  • Only Big Ten player listed in D1Baseball’s 2018 Preseason Prospect Top 100 (No. 71). Ranked No. 46 on D1baseball’s Top Division I pitchers
  • Noted as best fastball and best breaking ball in Baseball America Big Ten preview
  • Third team preseason selection by 10innings.com

Dominic Canzone

  • Listed as No. 6 overall Big Ten prospect in the 2019 class by D1Baseball.com and Perfect Game
  • 10 in the 2019 class by Baseball America
  • Second team preseason selection by 10innings.com

Conner Pohl

  • Ranked as the No. 13 ranked prospect out of the Big Ten by Perfect Game in the 2019 class and No. 25 by D1Baseball.com

Connor Curlis

  • Ranked as the No. 21 ranked prospect out of the Big Ten by Perfect Game in 2018 class
  • Third team preseason selection by 10innings.com

Dillon Dingler

  • Ranked as the No. 6 ranked impact freshman in the Big Ten by D1Baseball.com and No. 5 on 2020 Big Ten prospect list by Perfect Game.

UNDER BEALS
Eighth-year head coach Greg Beals is the 11th head coach in Ohio State history and the fourth in the last 60 years. In his 16th year as a collegiate head coach, he is 468-381-1 and 225-179-1 at the helm of the Buckeyes.

THE COACHING AND SUPPORT STAFF
Greg Beals is assisted by associate head coach Mike Stafford, assistant coach Chris Holick and volunteer coach Dan DeLucia. Stafford, who is the longest tenured pitching coach in the Big Ten, was elevated to associate head coach Jan. 3 and will begin his 15th season as Beals’ pitching coach. Holick is in his eighth year at Ohio State, while DeLucia is in his fifth season. Supporting the coaching staff his director of operations Blair Everhart, volunteer video coordinator Matt Angle, strength and conditioning coach Dean Hansen and athletic trainer Paul Dawson.

UP NEXT
The Buckeyes will travel to Surprise, Ariz. and compete in the Big Ten/Pac 12 Challenge Feb 22-25 at Surprise Stadium. Ohio State will face Utah and No. 2 Oregon State twice.