#23 Arkansas Baseball 2019 Preview

Arkansas Razorbacks
Overall Rank: #23
Conference Rank: #6 SEC
 Arkansas Logo
Arkansas came so close to winning the national championship. The Razorbacks cruised through the Fayetteville Regional in three games and then fought off the best efforts of conference foe South Carolina in the Super Regionals. In the College World Series, Arkansas again made quick work of it, advancing to the championship series after beating Texas, Texas Tech and Florida. They then beat Oregon State in game one of the championship series before falling 5-3 and 5-0 in games two and three. That stings for now, but the Razorbacks had a superb season and will look to repeat that success in 2019.
2018: 48-21, 21-12
2018 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Dave Van Horn
Key Departed Players:
Carson Shaddy, IF, .330 BA, 13 HR, 55 RBI
Eric Cole, OF, .313 BA, 14 HR, 52 RBI
Luke Bonfield, OF, .296 BA, 9 HR, 44 RBI
Blaine Knight, P, 2.80 ERA, 14-0 W/L, 112.1 IP, 102 SO
Kacey Murphy, P, 3.20 ERA, 8-5 W/L, 101.1 IP, 85 SO
Key Returning Players:
Casey Martin, IF, .345 BA, 13 HR, 49 RBI
Heston Kjerstad, OF, .332 BA, 14 HR, 58 RBI
Dominic Fletcher, OF, .288 BA, 10 HR, 49 RBI
Isaiah Campbell, P, 4.26 ERA, 5-7 W/L, 69.2 IP, 73 SO
Matt Cronin, P, 3.54 ERA, 2-2 W/L, 48.1 IP, 59 SO, 14 SV
It will be difficult though without starting pitchers Blaine Knight and Kacey Murphy. Those two were often dominate on the mound. Matt Cronin and Isaiah Campbell figure to pick up most of the slack, but there are some talented youngsters who should be able to at least help fill in the gaps. In the end, this could be a pretty deep pitching staff, but it may take some time for all the pieces to come together. Meanwhile the Razorbacks will rely heavily on their homerun hitting trio of Casey Martin, Heston Kjerstad and Dominic Fletcher. Martin hit .345 with 13 homeruns and 49 RBIs. Kjerstad added 14 homeruns and a team high 58 RBIs, while also hitting above the .330 mark. Fletcher fell just below the .300 mark and belted ten homeruns with 49 RBIs. The Razorbacks ranked third in the country with 98 homeruns last season and they have the potential to do the same in 2019. With that much power at the plate, Arkansas should have the luxury of working in their new look rotation and get all the kinks worked out before SEC play comes around.
Projected Postseason: NCAA Baseball Tournament