Who starts next year? Who will be our best pitcher and what’s the bullpen look like?
This would be my best guess as of today. This team will be going back to Omaha! We are loaded with talent. DVH has his program as one of the premier programs in the country. The next several years will be fun to watch.
Friday - Wicklander
Saturday - Noland
Sunday - Adams or Bolden
closer - committee
1B - Hodges or Goodheart
2B - Boulware
3B - Nesbit
SS - Martin
LF - Washington or Allison
CF - Franklin
RF - Kjerstad
C - Opitz
DH - Goodheart
next yr has potential but has bigtime issues in Pitching to overcome,we have no proven ace or closer and the top 2 set up men are gone and all the returning FR pitchers are very unproven(most of them really struggled with command) these are huge issues to have a very hard to fill with incoming FR and hoping these other FR are all of a sudden going to be SEC ready is hopeful but unlikely so its the major concern for next yr IMO.
The lineup can be productive b/c we have most back but its going to be hard to replace Ezell’s production and we will miss Kenley’s clutch hitting.Chet Allison is probabaly the best hitter we signed if he does indeed come to campus Hodges has great potential but i think is very raw and may need a yr…Boulware was Fr AA so he must be pretty good and hopefully the yr off has seen him get stronger and can provide some pop with the bat…
I never doubt DVH he seems to always have us in the thick of things so I will hang up and listen to all the reports we get from fall ball be eager for next season to come to see what we are working with
I’ve always thought next year was the best chance for a national title. I mean that. I had thought next year would be better than this year. Of course, we need to see who makes it campus out of the recruits, but at this point I think most will get here. I do think Adams has a chance to be in the rotation. I think there will be some guys surprise after summer ball. Elijah Trest is the one I think might emerge as a possible closer. Zeb Vermillion might surprise, too, in that role. Nolan and Wicklander might be better as Friday/Saturday combo than what we had this year. Might not match Campbell, but might do better than what was going on for Saturday. I expect Opitz, Nesbit and Franklin to hit much better.
After listening to Kyle Peterson, I’m excited to see what Connor Noland will look like on the mound next season. According to Kyle, he could make a big jump, especially in arm strength, after a full year of baseball only development.
I agree with Clay that our Fri-Sat pitching combo could be improved. I believe we were a little behind most of the SEC West teams with our Saturday starter, whether it were Noland or Wicklander.
Next year, I worry most about our bullpen. We should be a really good offensive team next year with Heston and Casey leading the way. I’m hopeful Casey will spend lots of time with the coaches on hitting (or recognizing and laying off) the curve.
DH Tollett, part time catcher
Washington-part time OF
Pitchers Noland, Wick, Adams or Zach Morris
I agree with most of the lineups thrown out there. I believe if Allison makes to campus he will get the nod in the outfield, pushing Washington to 2B. If not, Washington would play LF and leave a spot for the TCU transfer. DH could be a number of people, but I’m guessing it’ll be McFarland if he decides to stick around.
As for pitching, I’d expect the staff gives Kopps a look at the starting rotation. Between Zeb, Ramage, Bolden, Trest, and a Frosh, we’ll have a good pen. I’m thinking Burton will come out of nowhere and be our closer, a lot like Cronin did his sophomore season. Hopefully, we get one of the freshmen lefties to step up (Henry, Monkey, E. Taylor).
Matt Jones spoke highly of Redshirt Catcher Stanley last fall.
I’m anxious to hear more about him.
Yes, I’m surprised that everyone else has left Kopps off of their projected lists. I’m not necessarily expecting him to dominate next year, but I do believe he’ll probably be improved, with this being his second season back after Tommy John surgery. He may well develop into a key performer, able to either start or provide long relief when needed. I wouldn’t discount his potential for 2020.
I’m excited about next year. I’m already looking forward to it. Razorback baseball has brought me a whole lot of joy the past two years. Well, it’s actually brought it for the past 15 or so since I really started keeping up with it with religious fervor in about 2003.
I hate to say it, but I’m not especially looking forward to football or basketball, two sports that will begin & nearly finish before our first baseball game. Maybe its because of the success we’ve enjoyed on the diamond, but I believe baseball has become my favorite hog sport.
I agree and this is largely because of how DVH teams handle themselves.
My wife and I have had season baseball tickets at now Baum-Walker since it opened in 96. We sit in section 110 third base side of home plate. This past season was probably our most enjoyable! Think about it lost a starting pitcher before the season began, had to replace our pitching coach in November, we had no idea how good Campbell would be, Trevor Ezell came out of nowhere to be a great 1st baseman which he had never played before. Jacob Nesbit was a absolute great 3rd baseman, plus all the newcomers who had their moments. Goodheart was a good DH that we needed. I expect him to play a position next year. DVH is an absolute fabulous coach, there aren’t many coaches who could have accomplished what he did this year. I love college baseball especially at Arkansas! I wouldn’t trade my tickets for anything in the world! Go Hogs!
I think what I said was that he had maybe the best looking swing on the team. Whether or not that translates to playing time, we’ll see. I don’t see him being better than the third catcher on the team next season.
Matt, what is the latest on Hodges and Allison? Do you think they will turn down the money and make it to campus?
I’m not ready to take a stab at next year’s starting lineup, but a few thoughts:
• Chet Allison will probably be a starter in the outfield. His JUCO coach told me he is a natural right fielder and expects he will be play that position at Arkansas.
• Christian Franklin is the center fielder of the future.
• I’m interested to see if Jordan McFarland returns and how he might fit into the lineup if he does.
• Colby Boulware was a Freshman All-American at second base for TCU in 2018. He redshirted this season at Arkansas and will be eligible next year.
As of last check, both are expected to come to school. I’ll check on it again this week.
Thanks, Matt. What are you hearing on the other Juco commit? I believe his name is Grayson Webb. Is he a candidate to play somewhere on the infield?
If Allison plays RF then where do you see Heston playing? Back to LF or possibly first base?
I’m not sure yet. I figure they are the best candidates to play the corner outfield positions.
Braydon Webb was a center fielder at Grayson College in Texas. I haven’t heard as many good things about him as I have Allison, but I know he hit the cover off the ball this year.
I’m worried about our pitching as well. I know our freshman have a year under their belt but it usually takes two years in the SEC to become a complete pitcher. I worry about the sporadic pitching that comes with youth. We’ve had an Ace the past three years and next year we won’t have that dominate Friday pitcher. I hope my fears subside, but without great pitching we are forced to rely on our batting - and there are times that bats get cold…e.g. this years World Series appearance.