2011 Baseball Preview

2011 Baseball Preview

2011 Roster | 2011 Schedule

LANCASTER, Pa. – A strong core of returning everyday players, coupled with the return of three starting pitchers, has Franklin & Marshall ready to get back in the Centennial Conference playoffs. The Diplomats expect to improve on their 9-9 CC, 15-19-1 overall, mark last season and compete for the program's sixth conference title.

Matt Will highlights the returning players for F&M. The senior shortstop will again anchor the defense and bring his active bat to the top of the lineup. Will, a two-time All-Centennial Conference (CC) First Team selection, is starting his second year at shortstop and third in the infield. He is on pace to set a multitude of F&M career records.  He currently ranks first with a .492 on base percentage, fourth in hitting percentage (.360), and runs scored (115).  His 72 RBIs places him 11th while his 76 walks rank him second all-time.

J.T. Triantos returns at first base this season after a CC honorable mention last season. The junior brings back his .307 batting average to F&M's offense this season. Junior Blue Wells (.361, 21 RBI, 2 HRs) is also an option at first, but will begin the season as the designated hitter.

Calling the shots from behind the plate will be senior Russell Tischler. Tischler's (.311) left-handed bat will help strengthen the lineup. Josh Mendelson and switch hitter Pat Andrews will see quality time at catcher.

Third base could see both sophomore Kevin Shields and freshmen Will Benenson at the hot corner this season.

Senior Zach Honecker, sophomores Alex Vescera and Aaron Gillette, and freshman Rob Anderson provide the Diplomats with depth at second. All four will see time early in the season.

The Diplomats bring a lot depth in the outfield in 2011. Connor Devlin and Eric Bornstein will bring a wealth of experience to F&M this season. Andrew Conlan should start at the other outfield position and his left-handed bat will be a great addition to the lineup. Freshmen's Sam Gladstone, Tyler Veterano, Avery Attinson, Mike Giannone, Alex Wilson, Collin Newton and Mike Amabile add the depth in the field.

A veteran group of pitchers will be the key to success for the Diplomats this season. Senior Mike Duranti (5.36 ERA) joins juniors Matt Valente (4.62 ERA) and Josh Gray (4.21 ERA) at the top of the rotation. Seniors Tom Caramanico and Bobby Hayes, sophomore Brendan DeMond and Anderson, if he doesn't play second, will compete for the other starting jobs.

Senior Brendan McCreary will provide relief this season. Collin McCune, Justin Thacker, Michael Morgenstern, Will Colombo, Evan Lang, Eric Herbst, Mike Amabile and Jon Salandra will join him with the task of closing out ball games.

F&M was picked to finish third in CC coaches' preseason poll. The Diplomats tied Swarthmore and were picked to finished behind Haverford and Johns Hopkins.

The Diplomats start their season today at No. 5 Shenandoah at 3:30 p.m.  F&M will play five more games before heading to Florida for a nine-game spring break trip. A March 20th double-header against Susquehanna will mark the first game at Caplan Field and a March 26th double-header at McDaniel will start the Centennial Conference portion of the Diplomats' schedule.  

All home games will feature free live stats and audio.