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Big junior class hopes to boost Arlington baseball
Despite a relatively small group of returners, Arlington baseball coach Doug Plucker is counting on some experience at pitcher to help his teams fortunes.
Though just a junior, Kyle Ayres is a seasoned pitcher with two years of varsity experience under his belt. Hes joined in the bullpen by Caleb Scarth, who hopes to put several years of arm injuries behind him and pitch a strong senior season.
The games all about pitching and defense really, Plucker said, adding of the duo, Having that experience, that we can count on (them) to keep us in some games.
Theyre joined by junior Jeff Huge, who made the leap to varsity midway through last season.
Though Arlington lost senior Joey Dettrich to graduation last year the lefty and UW recruit was subsequently drafted and signed by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays an elbow injury has the Eagle alum back in the area and offering a hand around practice.
Hes out and helping us out until he goes down to extend his spring training, Plucker said. It gives the young guys some motivation to see a local kid whose been drafted and playing professional baseball.
Young aptly describes this years Arlington squad. Aside from Scarth, the Eagles feature three other seniors on their roster, catcher/infielder Jake Allen, and outfielders Greg Holsworth and Cameron Hanson.
Arlington features a deep junior class though. In addition to the returning pitchers, some familiar faces from the class of 09 include catcher Jerod Baker and first baseman Jon VanEyk.
A couple of likely big bats for Arlington also come from the junior class speedy outfielder Tony Geist earned the Eagles leadoff spot, while transfer student Kekoa Reggin made an impression when Arlington hosted a three-team jamboree March 8, coming up with two doubles and a single.
Defensively we struggled a little this weekend, but I think we have the tools for these guys to have a competitive team, Plucker said. While Arlington floundered last season, finishing in the bottom of the league, the coach hopes to see his team turn the page in his third year at the helm.
The attitude of the crew we have is real positive. They want to compete and they want to win games. Theyd like to be that group of guys that turns things around in Arlington, he said. Weve got a real talented freshman group, and it will be good for this group of guys to set the tone for the years to come.