Virginia Tech Hokie Baseball Starts this Weekend

It’s hard to believe that college baseball season is here. It hasn’t been particularly cold this year, but it’s still winter, and the pros are just at the Pitchers and Catchers report portion of Spring training. They didn’t tell that to colleges though. The NCAA baseball season is underway (the Softball season started a little while ago and we’ll have a weekly update on them, too). Right now we need to take a look at the baseball team and see how things are shaking out after an offseason where several players left for the minor leagues, and others graduated from the program.

Coach John Szefc is back at the helm, and he’s actually returning most of his pitching staff, and that includes standouts from 2019; Zach Brzykcy, Ryan Okuda, Ian Seymour, and Chris Gerard. The coach has also been doing some serious recruiting at all positions, especially the pitching staff. There are 12 total Freshmen on the pitching staff, and 3 are listed as both Pitcher and Outfielder.

On the receiving side we have players who haven’t really scratched the surface of the goofy turf batters’ boxes at English Field. Sophomore switch hitter Carson Taylor is presumably going to start behind the dish, and Freshman Cade Hunter is going to back him up.

The infield is split between newcomers and some returners. Back in the infield for the Hokies are Reagan Teegarden, Spencer Palmer, Nick Biddison, Kevin Madden, and Nick Holesa. Coach Szefc has added three Freshman to the mix. With a long college season it’s a good bet that all of them will see some time on the field.

The Outfield is probably the smallest and shallowest part of the roster, though the most experienced players on the roster are backing everyone up. With metal bats, good outfielders are important in college ball; Tanner Thomas, Brennan Reback, Jason Rooks, and Jonah Seagears will all get field time.

Virginia Tech Hokies Baseball

Number Name Class B/T Pos. Ht. Wt. Hometown High School Previous School
Number Name Class B/T Pos. Ht. Wt. Hometown High School Previous School
8 Carson Taylor So. S/R C 6-2 205 Duluth, Ga. Greater Atlanta Christian
17 Cade Hunter Fr. L/R C 6-2 200 Mount Laurel, N.J. Lenape Central Arizona College
2 Reagan Teegarden Sr. L/R IF 6-1 185 Bellevue, Wash. Bellevue
7 Spencer Palmer Jr. L/R IF 6-2 215 El Segundo, Calif. El Segundo
24 Nick Biddison So. R/R IF 5-10 190 Glen Allen, Va. St. Christopher’s Central Arizona JC
26 Kevin Madden So. R/R IF 6-1 215 Glenwood, Md. St. Paul’s
33 Nick Holesa So. L/R IF 6-2 205 Huntingdon, Pa. Huntingdon Area
4 Fritz Genther Fr. R/R IF 5-8 165 Kingston, N.Y. Kingston
11 Cade Swisher Fr. L/R IF 5-11 190 Chesterfield, Va. Cosby
32 Lucas Donlon Fr. R/R IF 6-0 205 McLean, Va. Georgetown Prep El Camino CC
23 Tanner Thomas Sr. L/R OF 5-11 190 Jacksonville, Fla. Fleming Island
9 Brennan Reback Jr. L/L OF 6-0 195 Vernon Hills, Ill. Vernon Hills
20 Jason Rooks Jr. R/R OF 6-2 220 Marietta, Ga. Walton
37 Jonah Seagears So. R/R OF 5-11 184 Gainesville, Va. Battlefield
15 Nic Psimas Fr. R/R P 6-6 225 Chesapeake, Va. Nansemond-Suffolk Academy
16 Matthew Siverling Fr. L/L P 6-4 190 Matthews, N.C. Charlotte Christian Chattahoochee Valley CC
25 Samuel Rochard Fr. R/R P 6-1 205 Williamsburg, Va. Warhill
27 Noah Johnson Fr. L/L P 6-5 195 Toledo, Ohio St. Frances De Sales
29 Carson Jones Fr. L/L P 6-2 190 Glen Allen, Va. Deep Run Tallahassee CC
39 Peter Sakellaris Fr. R/R P 6-0 185 Milton, Mass. Milton Academy
40 Henry Weycker Fr. L/L P 5-11 205 Wellesley, Mass. Wellesley
42 Ryan Gleason Fr. L/L P 6-5 210 Laytonsville, Md. Georgetown Prep
55 Mike Grupe Fr. R/R P 6-1 195 Purcellville, Va. Loudoun Valley
30 Peyton Alford Sr. L/L P 6-0 190 Knoxville, Tenn. Powell St. John’s River SC
38 Jaison Heard Sr. R/R P 6-1 205 Maitland, Fla. Winter Park
5 Zach Brzykcy Jr. R/R P 6-2 215 Taylorsville, N.C. Alexander Central
22 Ryan Okuda Jr. L/L P 6-1 170 Gibsonia, Pa. Pine-Richland Walters State CC
31 Ian Seymour Jr. L/L P 6-0 190 Westborough, Mass. St. John’s
34 Anthony Simonelli Jr. R/R P 6-2 200 Winchester, Va. Millbrook
35 Ryan Metz Jr. R/R P 6-1 190 Fishers, Ind. Fishers
10 Nolan Wilson R-So. R/R P 6-3 210 Atlanta, Ga. Lakeside St. John’s River SC
3 Chris Gerard So. R/L P 5-10 175 Wayne, N.J. Bergen Catholic
12 Nathan Starliper So. L/L P 6-3 190 Greencastle, Pa. Greencastle-Antrim
18 Xander Hamilton Fr. L/R P/OF 6-4 220 Raleigh, N.C. Needham Broughton
19 Gavin Cross Fr. L/L P/OF 6-3 210 Bristol, Tenn. Tennessee
21 Stephen Restuccio Fr. R/R P/OF 6-2 190 Hammonton, N.J. Hammonton

2020 Hokies Baseball Roster

HokieSports.com

What’s most important about the roster is that the coaching staff has finally stabilized. The issue will be how the big loss of experienced talent will affect the team’s performance, especially early in the “get wins” portion of the season. Remember, the ACC is College Baseball’s SEC, and once the Conference schedule picks up the wins are going to get more and more difficult.

So, where are things starting and when? The team heads to Conway, South Carolina for three games against some pretty formidable non-conference opponents in the Brittian Resorts Baseball at the Beach Tournament.

Game 1 will be a stiff opener on February 14th, against San Diego State (those of us Nats fans know that name and a certain Stephen Strasburg). Saturday the 15th the Hokies will play UNC-Greensboro, and then Sunday they’ll wrap up the tournament against brutal Coastal Carolina (presumably the host team). This is pretty hard warm up whallop to take. All three of these programs can play some ball.

The Hokies Open at home on February 18th (Tuesday – drat) against East Tennessee State University. Then off to Lousiana to face off against the Ragin Cajuns of Lousiana-Lafayette.

Folks this is a tough start, and Coach Szefc is going to look to do better than his 1 game shy of .500 season in 2019.

We’ll be reporting game highlights and get photo passes when we can get to home games to cover. It’s going to be a long season, and the early games are going to be interestingly wintery…

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Author:

Mighty Fahvaag

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