EATON — Patrick Flanagan is taking over the reins of Eaton’s baseball program and he is setting the bar high.
Coming off an 8-16 (6-6 Southwestern Buckeye League) season, Flanagan is expecting his team, dominated by juniors, to compete for a league title and make a deep run into the postseason.
“Obviously our expectations this year are to play deep in the post season. I always like to set our goals high and do everything we can to accomplish them,” he said. “The only goal I am focused on right now though, is to win Thursday against Dixie. We are taking it one game at a time.”
Max Fadden is the lone senior on the roster.
“He is a left handed pitcher/outfielder and we are excited to have him. He is a new addition to the Eaton Baseball program,” Flanagan said of the senior who has yet to play a high school game. “Blake Curry will help us out behind the plate as well as giving us some time at shortstop. Bradley Curry will give us innings on the mound as well as playing some first base and right field. Donnie Nicodemus, Trevor Pittman, and Ghye Wilson are also juniors that will give us time in the field and be key contributors on the mound. Colton Gray will give us big innings behind the plate and at first. Lew Bowser is another new addition to Eaton baseball. He will give us innings on the infield.”
Rounding out the roster are juniors Austin Day, Henry Durham and Kevin Melling and sophomore Alex Almeyda-Roe.
Flanagan said his team will need to be fundamentally sound.
“In order for us to win ball games we have to do the little things. We have to take advantage of walks and errors. We have to move runners over by bunting, hitting and running, stealing bases. Our guys on the mound have to throw strikes,” he said. “We have to play our brand of baseball, which will be scrappy and hard-nosed.”
Flanagan said he expects growing pains early on.
“Our guys have already started to see what I expect and they are doing their best to get there. With new expectations and a new style of coaching there will always be some growing pains, but hopefully, we are about through those and we can hit the ground running,” he said. “These young men have worked extremely hard and I believe they will continue to work hard to reach the goals I have set for them. I expect a lot out of this young team.”
Eaton was scheduled to oped the season by hosting Dixie on Wednesday, March 30. They are scheduled to host Edgewood on Saturday for a double-header beginning at noon.
Reach Eddie Mowen Jr. at 937-683-4056 or on Twitter @emowen_RH.