#1 Vanderbilt Baseball 2019 Preview

Vanderbilt Commodores
Overall Rank: #1
Conference Rank: #1 SEC
 Vanderbilt Logo
The 2018 campaign did not go quite as planned for Vanderbilt. The Commodores did make their 13th straight regional appearance, but they were just 16-14 in SEC play. But like in 2017, Coach Tim Corbin’s squad reached the Super Regionals and fought hard for a spot in Omaha. The difference in 2019 will be the Commodores experience. This is a program that is used to losing players after their junior year, but this team has some very good seniors on the roster. The problem for those seniors is that they will be seriously pushed for playing time by a superb group of freshmen.
2018: 35-27, 16-14
2018 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Tim Corbin
Key Departed Players:
Connor Kaiser, IF, .293 BA, 6 HR, 46 RBI, 12 SB
Key Returning Players:
Austin Martin, UTL, .338 BA, 19 RBI, 22 SB
Philip Clarke, C, .294 BA, 6 HR, 36 RBI
Pat DeMarco, OF, .277 BA, 11 HR, 43 RBI, 10 SB
JJ Bleday, OF, .368 BA, 4 HR, 15 RBI
Stephen Scott, UTL, .268 BA, 15 HR, 41 RBI
Ethan Paul, IF, .237 BA, 10 HR, 44 RBI, 18 SB
Drake Fellows, P, 3.92 ERA, 7-4 W/L, 96.1 IP, 107 SO
Mason Hickman, P, 5.21 ERA, 8-2 W/L, 74.1 IP, 66 SO
Patrick Raby, P, 3.57 ERA, 5-5 W/L, 68.0 IP, 57 SO
With a nice mix of experience and young talent, this will likely prove to be the deepest team in the country. On the mound, all three regular starters are back. Senior Patrick Raby is a steady force on the mound and junior Drake Fellows recorded a team high 107 strikeouts. Sophomore Mason Hickman did allow quite a few runs, but he managed to go 8-2 on the year and is only going to get better. At the plate, Coach Corbin will look to seniors Stephen Scott and Ethan Paul to again provide leadership. Scott hit .268 with a team high 15 homeruns, while Paul belted ten homeruns with 44 RBIs and 18 stolen bases. Sophomore Pat DeMarco and junior JJ Bleday might be the best of the bunch though. DeMarco adds another power hitter to the lineup, while Bleday is garnering plenty of preseason recognition after hitting .368 last season. If he can keep that pace up while getting more at-bats, Vanderbilt will be a much more productive team at the plate and be the clear favorites to bring home a national title.
Projected Postseason: NCAA Baseball Tournament