February 15, 2013
JP's Weekly Walk-Off: IF/OF Preview
A wealth of returning experience highlights the 2013 Beavers offensively/defensively, as the primary starters at all but two positions return. The versatility of some of the returning players, along with a small but talented recruiting class, will be looked upon to fill the departures at 2B and 3B. In the outfield, seven players that accounted for 177 of 180 starts in 2012 return, making for an extremely deep and talented group at those positions.
KEY PLAYERS LOST
- Ryan Dunn, 3B (.286, 7 HR, 36 RBI)
- Ryan Gorton, C/DH/P (.303, 4 2B, 15 RBI)
- John Tommasini, 2B (.219, 3 2B, 14 RBI)
After three seasons of battling a variety of injuries that limited his playing time, the Beavers staff is ecstatic to have a fully healthy Danny Hayes ready for the season. Despite missing time last year with a shoulder injury, Hayes hit .412 with 6 2B, 4 HR, and 14 RBI in 19 Pac-12 games, and he will be looked at to hit 4th in the order and fill that crucial role of providing enough of a threat with his bat to force teams to pitch to Michael Conforto. Hayes has also seen some work in the OF in the offseason to add to the ways the staff can get him in the lineup.
Defensively, you know a Pat Casey coached team will be well drilled in the fundamentals, and I would look for them to be good, but perhaps not great in the field. There do not look to be any glaring holes in the field, but as is the case with the team speed, I'm not sure there are many players that grade out as truly excellent defensively.
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