The Buckeyes welcome the new year, new faces, new confidence – press pros magazine


Sonny fulks

Editor-in-chief

Sonny Fulks graduated from Ohio State University where he pitched four college seasons for the Buckeyes from 1971 to 1974. He deepened his baseball experience as a minor league umpire for seven seasons, working for the Florida State League (A), the Southern League (AA) and the American Association (AAA). He has written for numerous websites and, for the past fourteen years, has been a columnist and photo editor for The Gettysburg Magazine, published by the University of Nebraska Press, in Lincoln Nebraska. His interests include history, supporting amateur baseball, the outdoors, and he has a music degree from Ohio State University.

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The Buckeyes’ fall series “Scarlet and Gray” showcases the future, starting with the most important position on the field. The pitch and a fresh start can be the strength of the 2022 Baseball Buckeyes.

Columbus, Ohio – Ohio State Baseball Coach Greg Beals held an “open house” Saturday at Bill Davis Stadium, showing off the merchandise with Game 2 of the annual Scarlet and Gray Fall baseball series.

It was Parents Day too, with a pre-game picnic in the plaza down the left field line – lots of fried chicken and fixins, complemented by an atmosphere of optimism and good humor. for the coming season.

“The competition has been strong – strong in the individual positions, and strong with pitchers against hitters, attacking each other.” – Greg Beals

It doesn’t matter who won the intra-squad scrum match, as a schedule they were undefeated for 2022 … which didn’t officially start until four months later.

And no one felt better about the outlook for 2022 than Beals, in his twelfth year, who took the opportunity to show off some of the riches of the gun launcher he believes he recruited to help the Buckeyes compete. next spring with folks like Michigan, Indiana, Maryland, and defending champion Big Ten, Nebraska.

Ohio State finished sixth in the 2021 race, behind all of the above, with a 22-20 record and questionable stats that need to be corrected by the time Florida opener on February 18. They only hit 0.242 as a team last year, the lowest score in more than a quarter of a century, relying on their formidable pitcher to make up for that lack of offense.

After the season, starters Seth Lonsway (San Francisco), Garrett Burhenn (Detroit) and Jack Neely (New York Yankees) were all selected in the Major League Draft, leaving those three critical positions open and a major overhaul point at the during the current five-game fall series.

A Brent Todys grand slam in the first inning made the offensive difference in Scarlet’s 8-0 win on Saturday.

Team Scarlet won Saturday’s game, an 8-0 shutout that tied the series at one game apiece – the winning point coming in the first inning on a grand slam home run opposed by wide receiver Brent Todys on the starting from Gray, the sophomore Isaiah Coupet (pronounced Coo-pay).

Scarlet starter sophomore Nate Haberthier (pronounced Hob-uh-teer) made Todys’ explosion 5.2 innings of sparkling work, making his own point to consider in February, allowing just four hits all the way. by removing three.

Afterward, Beals took the time to share details about his optimism and developing talent.

“Today you saw a few sophomores who are really starting to take off. Last year was tough because we didn’t have a normal fall baseball. Now that they have a year under their belt, they are taking a complete fall, and they are learning who they are and how to be successful at this level. They’ve both been successful before, but now they’re learning how to do it here. Haberthier has a sinking fastball and he hits the bottom of the strike zone. It’s his number 1, his bread and butter, and he mixes up a shift and a slider.

“Coupet has the break ball, and it’s a very big break ball with great spin with a slider and shift, so he has the potential to have a four-length repertoire. So I’m excited about these guys and they showed their ability today. “Habs” threw in the sixth, scattered four hits, and Coupet put out a group of guys on strikes. He got off to a bad start in the first inning, and that was the difference in the ball game, and that’s part of understanding how to pitch here. The first batter of the game turned out to be the winning point.

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Coupet, of Flossmoor, Ill., More than wet his feet last year, pitching 17.1 innings in nine appearances, and opened his eyes by striking out five of six Maryland hitters he faced in the a two-run relay in April. And he did it with a devastating curved ball… one that looks like an egg falling from your mother’s Westinghouse.

“It’s a pitch that my father taught me,” he shared on Saturday. “He learned to grab it and spin it, throw it like you hit someone on the head with a hammer. I try to make it spin as much as possible.

“They’ll nitpick anything you need to do.” It might sound good to you, but for them you have things to work on. It is not good enough. – Pitcher Buckeye Isaiah Coupet

And he’s learning this fall from the more intense teaching process that comes at this level.

“In high school, when you were working on stuff, it was more general,” he shares. “Here, they’ll nitpick whatever you need to do. It might sound good to you, but for them you have things to work on. It is not good enough.

The curved ball was pretty good on Saturday, after some control issues in the first set before Todys’ home run. He ended up hitting seven in 4.2 innings, including most of the Scarlet roster’s best. He let them fidget and guess.

Saturday also marked the fall series debut for left-hander Gavin Bruni (Broo-nee), a high-profile rookie from Alliance, Ohio, who won All-American high school honors last year and was screened as the # 1 rookie in the state by Perfect Game Magazine. As a senior, he gave up just one earned run in seven starts and struck out 68 batters in just 37 innings.

“Gavin is incredibly talented,” adds Beals. “We’re working on some things to refine it a bit, so there’s more consistency. It is a work in progress at the moment. We have taken a half step back and we really think it will be three steps forward when this process is complete. He’s going to have a bright future here, there’s no doubt about it.

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Offense, if not a concern, will be the focus of the series and throughout the winter. Beals believes this is a talented roster that was never forgotten last year due to the loss of non-conference games and development time … and against the pitcher-rich environment that now defines Big Ten baseball and college baseball in general. But after Saturday’s first of four points, Team Scarlet added points in the seventh on back-to-back doubles from Mitchell Okuley, Colton Bauer and Kade Kern.

“I’ve seen a lot of things that I love,” Beals said. “We worked on mechanical elements and we worked on approach elements. And that approach will continue to evolve throughout the winter as we begin to craft a game plan for the team, as well as the individuals. The two-step approach is better, but it must continue to evolve.

Freshman Gavin Bruni (Alliance) was a coveted rookie for the 2022 Buckeyes.

“This team has a certain dynamic. There is speed and there is power. We’ve played two Scarlet and Gray games and we have five homers. Not that we’re going to live and die on the home run, but we have the ability to do it. “

More than one player mentions confidence for the future, as a by-product of the fall and an attribute for the 2022 season.

“And you’re going to have that confidence because the competition here has been so strong,” Beals recalls. “It’s been strong in the individual positions, and it’s been with pitchers against hitters and gone against each other. “

And that’s strong, as he points out, for having additional athletes, thanks to NCAA Covid concessions, allowing years of additional eligibility and playing time for veterans like the shortstop. Zach Dezenzo and utility man Marcus Ernst.

“But we have freshmen who have a chance to step in and contribute right away – a Trey Lipsey (Southfield, Mi.) in the outfield and Bruni on the mound. It’s a bigger challenge now because there are five recruit classes here. The depth of the ball club is deeper, and that just makes it a little harder. “

If you’re interested, the Scarlet and Gray series continues at Bill Davis Stadium Tuesday night at 6:00 p.m. and ends with matches next Friday (6:00 p.m.) and Saturday (3:00 p.m.).

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