– James Madison
, which returns its entire starting lineup from a year ago, has been picked to win the CAA baseball championship
in 2010 according to a vote of the
league’s head baseball coaches.
The Dukes received nine first-place votes and finished atop the poll with 99 points. Perennial power UNC Wilmington got the other two first-place votes and was picked second with 91 points. Defending CAA champion Georgia State was chosen third with 75 points and Old Dominion was fourth with 66 points. Delaware was tabbed to place fifth followed by George Mason, Towson and VCU (tied for seventh), Northeastern, William & Mary and Hofstra.
JMU welcomes back all eight everyday starters and 11 of its 13 pitchers from last year’s 30-24 squad. Among the returnees are five players who received All-CAA honors in 2009 – outfielders Matt Townsend (.390, 17 HR), Matt Browning (.376, 59 RBI) and Alex Foltz (.351), infielder/pitcher Trevor Knight (.377, 55 RBI) and second baseman Mike Fabiaschi (.328, 32 RBI). JMU also returns a pair of all-conference pitchers in junior starter Turner Phelps (8-2, 5.33 ERA) and junior closer Kevin Munson (3-3, 9 svs., 2.85 ERA).
UNCW returns all 14 members of its pitching staff and eight of nine everyday starters from last year’s 31-23 club. Leading the Seahawks’ mound corps are starters Daniel Cropper (5-2, 5.46 ERA) and Tyler McSwain (2-1, 3.80 ERA) and relievers Steven Davis (5-2), Stephen Harrold (4-1) and Bryan Booth (2-1, 6 svs.). Expected to lead UNCW offensively are junior catcher Cody Stanley (.332, 56 RBI) senior shortstop Mike Rooney (.341, 43 RBI), senior outfielder Grayson Evans (.314, 47 RBI) and senior infielder Robbie Monday (.277, 12 HR).
Georgia State is coming off the most successful season in school history with a 39-22 overall record and its first CAA championship. Topping a group of six returning everyday starters are senior first baseman Bradley Logan (.309, 49 RBI), who earned CAA Tournament Most Outstanding Performer honors, and infielders Carl Moniz (.261) and Brandon Williams (.310). The Panthers’ pitching staff should be strong with senior Ryan Moore (7-2, 4.41 ERA), junior Aidan Francis (5-1, 4.15 ERA) and sophomore closer Justin Malone (1-0, 7 svs, 1.35 ERA).
Old Dominion returns 19 of 24 lettermen from a year ago. The Monarchs will be led offensively by senior All-CAA third baseman Jake McAloose (.413, 44 RBI), junior outfielder Donnie Corsner (.323) and sophomore first baseman Josh Wright (.263, 49 RBI). Back on the mound for ODU are a pair CAA All-Rookie selections in Brett Harris (6-4, 4.95 ERA) and Ben Tomchick (5-3, 3.51 ERA) as well as senior Chris Boggs (5-2, 3.20 ERA).
2010 CAA BASEBALL PRESEASON PREDICTED ORDER OF FINISH
1. James Madison (9 first-place votes) 99
2. UNC Wilmington (2 first-place votes) 91
3. Georgia State 75
4. Old Dominion 66
5. Delaware 61
6. George Mason 54
7. Towson 42
9. Northeastern 40
10. William and Mary 24
11. Hofstra 11