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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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One step away
June 8, 2024

Column: 2015 season will give youthful roster chance to prove itself

Photo+by+Tanner+Garza
Photo by Tanner Garza

Football season is over and the droves of camera crews that showed up every Saturday are leaving Aggieland almost as quickly as College Station’s three-week long winter, which can only mean one thing — it’s baseball season.
Stop me if you’ve heard this before: The Aggies, while loaded with young talent from a string of strong recruiting classes, will need to prove they can compete in the vaunted SEC this season after losing several key players who chose to leave school early for the draft.
No, I’m not talking about Manziel and Evans. I’m talking about Mengden and Lankford.
Last year’s Aggies often struggled to find a rhythm, but they showed flashes of greatness, beating a few highly ranked SEC schools in road games that they had no business winning.
A&M barely snuck into the NCAA Tournament, where they were matched against No. 1 seed Rice and a very strong Texas team. Somehow, the Aggies found a way to make it to the finals of their Regional, ending the season of the Owls in the process.
This year’s Aggies, on paper, are much better. They have Nick Banks, who will be drafted very early in the MLB draft the second he is eligible. They have a 6-feet-5 workhorse pitcher, the aptly named Grayson Long. They had sophomore southpaw standout Tyler Stubblefied, but he will miss most of, if not all of the season with an ACL tear.
It’s been four years since future-first-round-picks Michael Wacha and Tyler Naquin led the Aggies to the College World Series in 2011. That team tore through the Big 12 in its final season in the conference.
The 2014-15 roster has even more talent. It has a chance to be special.
Sure, the roster is unproven, but it is far from lacking. The Aggies have a potential breakout player starting at every position, especially the corner infielders. Logan Nottebrok and Ronnie Gideon are home run threats every time they step in the box. In a game void of true power potential, these two Aggies bring the thunder.
What this team lacks in veteran collegiate pitching experience, it makes up for in untapped youthful potential. Head coach Rob Childress, one of the better pitching coaches in the country, has an arsenal full of lively arms just waiting to be reigned in.
There are three seniors who played on that 2011 CWS team — Blake Allemand, Jason Freeman and Mitchell Nau. I hope they remember what Omaha looked like, because they just may be going back.
Tyler Stafford is an interdisiplinary studies senior and sports reporter for The Battalion.

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