#37 Stony Brook Baseball 2016 Preview

Stony Brook Seawolves
Overall Rank: #37
Conference Rank: #1 America East
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Stony Brook continued its run atop the America East Conference in 2015 as the Seawolves won the regular season and conference tournament last season. Stony Brook was awarded a number three seed in the Fort Worth Regional and they acquitted themselves as they went 1-2 and were very competitive at the plate and an on the mound. The Seawolves bring back plenty of talent among the position players and enough depth in the weekend rotation that they should be a contender for the America East Conference Championship once again in 2016 under the direction of head coach Matt Senk.
2015: 35-16-1, 18-4-1
2015 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Matt Senk
Field Players:
Stony Brook is not going to overpower you at the plate. They rely on speed and execution to produce runs offensively. Senior outfielder Jack Parenty will lead the Seawolves offensively once again in 2016. Parenty was the 2015 America East Player of the Year in 2015, hitting .367 and driving in 47 runs. He was relentless on the base paths with 19 stolen bases in 22 attempts. Toby Handley is back as well in 2016 and Handley also provides a very dynamic element of speed that will constantly keep the pressure on opposing pitchers. The combination of Parenty and Handley is going to continually cause havoc for opposing pitchers and that will only make the lineup that much more effective all the way through the entire batting order.
Tyler Honahan and Cameron Stone are going to anchor the starting rotation and the bullpen, respectively. Honahan was a first team all-America East honoree last season and should seamlessly be able to take over as the number one starter on Friday nights. Stone will be the closer once again this season and was pretty much lights all season long in 2015. The ability to have such a strong closer like Stone will allow Coach Senk to remain disciplined with pitch counts and innings counts for the Stony Brook pitchers. It also will allow the Seawolves to shorten the game to relieve pressure on their offense.
Who to Watch:
Utility player Casey Baker is one to watch this season as Baker led Stony Brook in homeruns last season with four. Baker’s homerun production accounted for exactly half of the homeruns hit by the Seawolves in 2015. Thus, it is going to be critical for Baker to stay healthy since he is the most dangerous threat to hit the ball out of the ballpark for Stony Brook. Baker will also help Parenty and Handley see better pitches on a consistent basis throughout the season.
Final Projection:
The Seawolves will make their maiden voyage into Texas during the regular season for a weekend series against Baylor in late February. This will be a great opportunity for Stony Brook to make a statement nationally against a team like the Bears by winning that particular series. In addition, there will be a trip to TD Ameritrade Park in the latter part of March for the Stony Brook to take on Creighton. Those two series will provide great opportunities to set the Seawolves up for a number three seed or possibly a two seed if they can have a .500 or better record in those six games. As a whole the culture of winning is such right now that as long as this team stays healthy and gets strong pitching, they will have a great shot to get to a Super Regional with the right draw.
Projected Postseason: NCAA Baseball Tournament
Returning Leaders:
At Bats: Jack Parenty, OF, 210
Hits: Jack Parenty, OF, 77
Home Runs: Casey Baker, UTIL, 4
RBIs: Jack Parenty, OF, 47
Runs: Toby Handley, OF, 45
Stolen Bases: Jack Parenty, OF, 19
Wins: Tyler Honahan, P, 7
Innings Pitched: Tyler Honahan, P, 76.1
Strikeouts: Tyler Honahan, P, 65
Saves: Cameron Stone, P, 6