#17 Clemson Baseball 2014 Preview

Clemson Tigers

Overall Rank: #17
Conference Rank: #5 ACC
#17 Clemson Baseball 2014 Preview
Clemson Team Page


With the return of 23 players from 2013, things look promising for the Clemson Tigers ahead of the 2014 season. Coming off a 40-22 record and an appearance in the NCAA Regional in 2013, the Tigers have a largely settled roster from last year and have a solid recruiting class of nine players for this season. Those recruited players include two who were selected in the 2013 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft: infielder Eli White in the 26th round by the Cincinnati Reds and catcher Chris Okey in the 31st round by the San Diego Padres. The Tigers have talent both offensively and defensively, and will be hoping to make a splash in the competitive ACC.

2013: 40-22, 18-12
2013 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Jack Leggett

Field Players:
An experienced group of field players will be led by Steven Duggar in the outfield and Shane Kennedy in the infield. Both are coming off very productive seasons at the plate, and will be looked to assume leadership roles in 2014. There is plenty of depth across the field for the Tigers, although they may be a little stretched at catcher with Okey and Garrett Boulware their only experience options at the position. However, if both players stay healthy, that should not be too much of an issue for the Tigers as they move forward.

There is also a great deal of depth in the Clemson pitching staff, with last year’s star Daniel Gossett returning for his junior year. Matt Campbell is the only senior pitcher for the Tigers, so plenty will be expected of what is a young group, but if Gossett can continue his 2013 form, they will be in good shape.

Who to Watch:
Freshman Chris Okey arrives on the Clemson roster as one of only two catchers and a highly-rated future prospect. The native of Mount Dora, Florida has appeared on two occasions for Team USA 18U, and arrives with the Tigers as the #2 rated draftee in all of Florida, the highest to attend college. He will want to hit the ground running and live up to the considerable expectations surrounding him.

Final Projection:
A settled roster should help Clemson be even more consistent this year, especially in ACC play. If their pitching staff can put together a solid season and they can be backed up by continued offensive production, the Tigers present a big challenge to any opponent. They should definitely look to reach the NCAA Tournament stages, and may be an outside shot for a berth in the College World Series if they can peak at the right time.

Projected Postseason: NCAA Baseball Tournament

Returning Leaders:
At Bats: Steven Duggar, OF, 250
Hits: Steven Duggar, OF, 75
Home Runs: Garrett Boulware, C, 8
RBIs: Garrett Boulware, C, 45
Runs: Shane Kennedy, OF/IF, 47
Stolen Bases: Shane Kennedy, OF/IF, 22

Wins: Daniel Gossett, P, 10
Innings Pitched: Daniel Gossett, P, 98.1
Strikeouts: Daniel Gossett, P, 91
Saves: Matt Campbell, P, 7

Madness 2014 Baseball Recruit Rankings:
#8 Chris Okey


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