#4 Texas Baseball 2015 Preview

Texas Longhorns

Overall Rank: #4
Conference Rank: #2 Big 12
#4 Texas Baseball 2015 Preview
Texas Team Page


Last year the Texas Longhorns battled their way through a fierce Houston Regional against Rice and Texas A&M. They then took advantage of being awarded a Super Regional host opportunity against Houston and returned to the College World Series. The Longhorns return a majority of the core players from last year’s team and will be locked and loaded for another battle with TCU and Oklahoma State for Big 12 supremacy and a top eight seed in the NCAA Tournament.

2014: 46-21, 13-11
2014 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Augie Garrido

Field Players:
Texas was pretty good offensively in 2014 as they had a run differential of plus 112. Outfielder Ben Johnson is the most prolific power hitter returning this season and he also has great speed as well. Johnson hit six homeruns, drove in 33 runs and was absolutely perfect stolen base wise by going 21 for 21. Infielder C.J. Hinojosa is back too and Hinojosa brings a higher average to the table than Johnson as Hinojosa hit .298 with 72 hits, and drove in 35 runs while having an on-base percentage of .373. It will be a nice boost to the Longhorns offense if Hinojosa can get his on-base percentage closer to .400. Also, look for Outfielder Zane Gurwitz to take a step forward after a .284 batting average as a freshman last season.

The Longhorns did a very nice job last season of keeping the opposition in the ballpark and they only allowed six homeruns. Parker French will be the ace and will have to carry what should be a very good pitching staff once again despite the loss of Nathan Thornhill. Travis Duke has a very good shot to take over as the closer for Texas this season after going 2-1 with a 0.29 earned run average and allowing only one earned run. And he walked just seven batters in 30.2 innings. Morgan Peters will also be a vital asset in the Longhorns bullpen. Peters collected three saves in relief and was very effective all season long.

Who to Watch:
The senior leadership of Brooks Marlow is going to be a key asset for Texas this season. Marlow is one of those solid all-around players that you need in order to make a run at a national championship. Marlow hit .268 with three homeruns and drew 47 walks thanks to great discipline at the plate.

Final Projection:
The Longhorns will hit the ground running to start the season with a series against in-state rival Rice. Minnesota and San Diego will then come to Austin in what should also be solid tests for Texas. A four game series out at Stanford in the early part of March will show if the Longhorns are on their way to being a true national title contenders as winning in Palo Alto is never easy. The other big non-conference series on the schedule will be a trip to Lincoln, Nebraska to play the Cornhuskers in a battle of former Big 12 rivals. The conference schedule sets up as another test for Texas and their ability to win on the road, as they were 8-4 in Big 12 road games and just 5-7 at home during conference play in 2014. The key series will be at Oklahoma State from April 3-5, and at TCU from April 24-26. If the Longhorns can have a .500 or better record in these two series, it should put them in a great position to win the conference. The key is going to be strong pitching and solid execution offensively against the Cowboys and Horned Frogs. If the offense can evolve and become more dangerous and the pitching keeps humming along, then Texas should be a top eight national seed come NCAA Tournament time.

Projected Postseason: NCAA Baseball Tournament

Returning Leaders:
At Bats: Ben Johnson, OF, 247
Hits: C.J. Hinojosa, IF, 72
Home Runs: Ben Johnson, OF, 6
RBIs: C.J. Hinojosa, IF, 35
Runs: Ben Johnson, OF, 46
Stolen Bases: Ben Johnson, OF, 21

Wins: Parker French, P, 7
Innings Pitched: Parker French, P, 104.2
Strikeouts: Parker French, P, 62
Saves: Morgan Cooper, P, 3

Madness 2015 Baseball Recruit Rankings:
#38 Michael Cantu


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