Baseball America ranks UofL fourth in pre-season poll

Baseball America, one of the premier college baseball sites, has the University of Louisville baseball team ranked No. 4 in the country going into the 2013 season, which begins Feb. 15th.

North Carolina is ranked first, Vanderbilt second and Arkansas third.

Hitting:

Louisville returns eight battle-tested starters from a team that ranked 20th in the nation in scoring last year. In Adam Engel and Cole Sturgeon, the Cardinals have a pair of dynamic options for the leadoff spot, and Nick Ratajczak’s bat-handling prowess makes him an ideal No. 2 hitter. Ty Young, Coco Johnson, Jeff Gardner and Zak Wasserman form a formidable quartet of run producers who all hit for average in the middle of the lineup. Kyle Gibson and Zack Lucas won’t give away outs, either.

Pitching:

All three weekend starters have power stuff, with 92-93 mph fastballs and good sliders. Chad Green’s easy arm action and good command of his quality three-pitch mix gives him a chance to thrive in the Friday starter role, after spending most of last year in the bullpen. The ultra-physical Jeff Thompson misses the most bats of this group thanks to his sharp low-80s slider. Jared Ruxer has a different style, excelling by hitting his spots and pitching to contact, but he bumps 94 mph and flashes a plus changeup. Freshman RHP Kyle Funkhouser also bumps 94 and has an excellent slider, making him a stellar No. 4 starter option.

Read the entire rundown.

Author: Charlie Springer

Charlie Springer is a former Louisville editor and sportswriter, as well as a public affairs consultant, a UofL grad and longtime fan.

2 thoughts on “Baseball America ranks UofL fourth in pre-season poll”

  1. Props extended to UofL softball as well. #17 in the nation. Sandy Pearsall’s squad returns seven starters and is the defending BIG EAST champs.

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