#27 Oklahoma Baseball Preview

Oklahoma Sooners

Overall Rank: #27
Conference Rank: #3 Big 12
Oklahoma College Baseball Top 44 Team Preview
Oklahoma Team Page


The Sooners are an extremely talented squad who are looking to reign supreme in the competitive Big 12 conference. They once again are in the AP preseason poll, giving them five consecutive rankings. This team has some star power and qualified for a super regional last season. With their stars maturing, as their four big time players are upperclassmen, this team is looking to make a deep run in the NCAA tournament and into the College World Series.

2012: 42-25, 13-10
2012 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Sunny Golloway

Field Players:
This team is led by a pair of seniors. Both of these young men not only provide great production, but outstanding leadership and bring tons of valuable experience. Outfielder Max White paced the team with a .337 average and 55 RBI’s, 85 hits, and 17 doubles. He also smacked two homeruns and swiped seven bases. Fellow senior, infielder Jack Mayfield, started in 65 games a season ago. He hit .280, drove in 34 runs, stroked three homeruns and banged out 66 hits.  He also swiped 10 bases. As a senior he should see his batting average increase. Both players want to go out with a bang and will be the leaders both on and off the field for this squad. If this team wants to win their first College World Series since 1994, both of these seniors will need to have extremely productive seasons.

The Sooners boast a pair of junior aces, both of whom have been selected to be second team preseason All-Americans. The lefty ace, Dillon Overton, posted a 3.15 ERA, earned a 6-3 mark, tossed three complete games, and labored through 122.2 innings in 16 starts for the Sooners. He also made six relief appearances on the year. He deceived opposing batters on his way to a team high 126 strikeouts. This season the junior expects his ERA to go down, a spike in his strikeout numbers, and to work more innings. Fellow junior, right hander Jonathan Gray, will help anchor this rotation. As a sophomore Gray posted a solid 3.16 ERA and was 8-4 overall. He overpowered hitters on a regular basis, ringing up 104 opposing batters. He is only getting better and stronger as he gets older. He also has had another offseason to learn the fine art of pitching. It is not farfetched to think he will be an even more dominate pitcher this year. With both of these young men at the top of their rotation, the Sooners have a formidable pitching staff that can go toe to toe with any team in the nation.

Who to Watch:
Junior infielder Matt Oberste may not get the accolades and attention that infielder Jack Mayfield and outfielder Max White receive, but he is just as important to this lineup. As a sophomore he played in 42 games, starting in 35. As a junior he should see an expanded role. Last season he hit .312, and ripped six homeruns, second best on the team. He drove in 22 runs and slugged an impressive .536. He was able to draw a lot of walks, owning a .413 on base percentage. His playing experience from a season ago should help him this year. Additionally, with all the pressure that Max White and Jack Mayfield apply to opposing pitchers, Oberste should see many good pitches and will pounce on the opportunity, translating to an excellent season.

Final Projection:
This is a dangerous team that could make a run in the tournament this year. They will compete for the top spot in the Big 12. With their aces headlining their rotation, this pitching staff is dangerous and can compete with anyone, especially if their lineup can get hot. Their lineup returns key starters, and with another year of seasoning, should be improved from a year ago, which a scary is thought for the other teams in the Big 12 and in the NCAA. This team has set the bar high for themselves and will make a splash in the NCAA tournament.

Projected Postseason: NCAA Baseball Tournament

Returning Leaders.
At Bats: Max White, OF, 252
Hits: Max White, OF, 85
Home Runs: Matt Oberste, IF, 6
RBIs: Max White, OF, 55
Runs: Jack Mayfield, IF, 43
Stolen Bases: Jack Mayfield, IF, 10

Wins: Jonathan Gray, RHP, 8
Innings Pitched: Dillon Overton, LHP, 122.2
Strikeouts: Dillon Overton, LHP, 126
Saves: Kindle Ladd, RHP, 2

Madness 2013 MLB Draft Rankings:
#109 Jonathan Gray


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