Last season the LaMoille-Ohio baseball team couldn’t compete in games because it didn’t have enough players to man the field and ended the 2012 campaign at 0-11.
This season, fourth-year coach Chuck Lovgren is experiencing something he hasn’t had in his with the Lions — numbers.
“We missed about half of the games (last season). We had eligibility problems, (we were) short on numbers and we missed a lot of games. This year we have enough boys that want to play so that won’t happen,” Lovgren said.
The team has 13 boys on the roster including three seniors — all from Ohio — in David Beatty, Anthony Martinez and Wesley Rogers.
Martinez played for L-O as a freshman but took a two-year hiatus from baseball before coming back for his senior season. Rogers has been on the team for three years and Beatty is a first-year player.
Even with Martinez’s break and Beatty’s novice experience level playing varsity ball, Lovgren feels comfortable with his team’s senior leadership.
The rest of the team is comprised of six juniors and four sophomores.
Lovgren also said he is more than happy to have pitching depth.
“I think we’re going to have a little pitching depth — not overpowering pitching but enough guys who can throw the ball to stay competitive,” Lovgren said. “We’re playing four or five games a week and that’s tough to keep a pitching staff solid, especially if the weather doesn’t let up.”
His pitching staff will include Martinez, juniors Anthony Lovgren, Christian Powers, Brandon Morris, and sophomore Jake Lucas.
With no practice time on the field because of weather restraints, Chuck Lovgren doesn’t know who will be his opening day pitcher, but believes he will have a pitcher by committee type of system because none of them stand out but are all good pitchers with decent fastballs with the competitive drive to stay in games.
The same goes for his batting order.
“We haven’t been able to get on a diamond yet, so it’s hard to say how are bats will be,” Lovgren said. “I think we’re going to be good contact hitters. My hopes are we make them put us out. In other words, we hope to not have a bunch of strikeouts. We’ll probably be base hitters, single or double hitters more than anything.”
The depth and the dedication to baseball from the players on his roster leads Chuck Lovgren to pursue the team goal of staying in every game, which something the Lions couldn’t do last season.
Brandon LaChance can be reached at 220-6939, or at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @NT_LaChance.