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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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Baseball press conference takeaways before Portland series

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Photo by Kyle Heise

Sophomore RHP Chris Cortez (10) pitches against Seattle U at Blue Bell Park on Sunday, Feb. 19, 2023.

After a midweek loss to Lamar University, No. 5 Texas A&M baseball looks to bounce back into the win column against the University of Portland Pilots. In the second press conference of the season, coach Jim Schlossnagle, sophomore pitcher Ryan Hogan and junior shortstop Hunter Haas discussed new uniforms, the response to their first loss and the upcoming series.
Here are a few key takeaways:
Aggies unveil new “Corp of Cadets” themed uniform
On Thursday, Feb. 23, Aggie baseball revealed their collaborative Corp of Cadets-themed uniforms that they will be wearing for the series finale on Sunday, Feb. 27.
“Ever since I came to A&M, I’ve been enamored by the history and traditions of this place,” Schlossnagle said. “We had a chance to take our team over in the fall and spend an evening going through the evening formations. We just wanted to do something to tie our program directly with the history of the Corps.”
The uniforms, which mimic the uniforms of the Cadets, even utilize actual pieces from the Corps uniforms.
“I like the belt, because we are actually getting Corps belts,” Schlossnagle said. “These aren’t belts made by Adidas or some athletic apparel company, these are actually the belts worn by the Corps with the gold buckle.”
The unveiling of the uniforms has also been well received by the players.
“When we first saw these jerseys, we started freaking out,” Hogan said. “We can’t wait to wear them and represent the Corps and Texas A&M University. To represent the traditions here, the environment we are surrounded by every day, the Corps, Texas A&M, we are all here for each other. It kind of shows you can just grow as a person and as a team with all the traditions we have here.”
Players are ready to play after first loss of season
Following the Tuesday, Feb. 21, loss to Lamar, players are excited to get back on the field and try to get back to winning.
“We are pretty anxious, I am not going to lie,” Hogan said. “We’re really hunting for people. We have a target on our back and we’re not going to let that stop us. We are going to keep going and be us. We’re just going to play to our level of training, which is the best.”
Tuesday’s loss marks the first time the Aggies have lost a midweek game since the March 15 matchup against Houston last year.
“I think nobody felt good about it,” Schlossnagle said. “But at the same time, when you sit down and get away from the emotions of the game, you look at why we lost. Number one, Lamar played really well. Number two, we had a lot of good at bats, we hit a lot of balls hard, just not enough and they didn’t fall in.”
The air around the clubhouse, however, has not been affected too heavily from the loss, Haas said.
“I don’t think much has changed, to be honest,” Haas said. “We’re still really confident in our ability as a team, so we’re looking forward to getting back out there. After a game like that, you just can’t wait to get back out there and show what you can do.”
Bullpen performance and depth will be key in Portland series
The Pilots come to College Station 3-1 on the season after a 4-game tilt against Utah Tech, looking to pull out a road series win over A&M.
“[Portland is a] super impressive group of players,” Schlossnagle said. “Definitely, [they] play a west coast brand of baseball, they’re going to make you handle the ball. They have some pitchers on the mound that have a real good feel for the baseball, throw multiple pitches for strikes. Everything we’ve seen so far from Portland, they’re very well coached, and we better play well.”
With one series under his belt, sophomore pitcher Troy Wansing continues to develop with the second series looming.
“I thought Wansing was able to knock the edge off of his experience, or lack thereof, pitching at this level,” Schlossnagle said. “He’s supposedly made an adjustment this week in the bullpen with coach Yeskie that may allow him to throw more strikes and be more consistent in the strike zone.”
Sophomore pitcher Chris Cortez continues to display significant signs of growth early on in the season, Schlossnagle said.
“I had a conversation with Chris Cortez,” Schlossnagle said. “Sunday was actually the best he has ever pitched in his entire life when you look at being a real pitcher. He said, ‘Yeah, in high school I never threw an off-speed pitch for a strike, I never had to.’ Last year he was throwing a 78 mph breaking ball, not very often for strikes. The other day, it is not where it is going to be, but it is the best he’s ever been. So, how is that not a bright spot for the Texas Aggies?”
The depth of the bullpen to back up the weekend rotation can play a large part in the success of A&M pitching, Hogan said.
“We are going to be so deep,” Hogan said. “We’ve got a ton of righties coming out, we can mix and match with lefties. We’ve got freshmen stepping up that, if they keep doing what they’re doing, we’re going to have a really good bullpen.”

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