The Rising Sun Shiners open the 2018 baseball season on Wednesday, March 28th at Lawrenceburg.
The Shiners enter the season ranked fifth in the Class A preseason baseball coaches poll.
Coach Kevin Wirsch’e Shiners were 19-6 a year ago and won the sectional with wins over Shawe, Hauser and South Decatur wen route to the Morristown Regional. There they defeated White River Valley 7-2 to advance to the elite eight before losing to Indianapolis Lutheran 6-1.
Rising Sun will have to fill big shoes lost to graduation of base stealing thief Bryant Housemyer (.416) , first baseman Derrick Eldridge (.400), Zach Martini (.362) and third baseman Jakob Sandlin (.314).
The big blow early in the new season is the loss of starting catcher Matt Martini and his .388 batting average to a knee injury.
Rising Sun and Lawrenceburg played in a four inning scrimmage on Monday (a game moved up a day with rain and snow in the forecast).
Colby Ritter took Martini’s spot behind the plate and is battling Dalton Snelling for that starting spot.
Rising Sun returns it’s entire pitching staff from a year ago including senior ace Brent Turner. H put together a 9-3-1 record with a team high 1102 pitches. He struck out 76 in posting a 1.514 ERA.
Jacob Bovard was 5-1-1 on the season with a 2.571 ERA while Steven Jimenez recorded a 5-1-2 mark and 2.965 ERA.
Rounding out the experienced mound crew is lefty first baseman Brayden Bush.
Turner has signed to play at Huntington University after graduating. He brings a .410 batting average with a team best 34 hits including a pair of home runs and 27 RBIs. Bovard had a .388 average a year ago with 33 hits, 26 runs scored and 18 RBIs. Bush (.310)
Lead off man and centerfield Kameron Montgomery hit .478 in 14 games a year ago. Rising Sun had a ,366 average at the plate including .234 by Jimenez.
Senior Jaydin Parsons returns along with Peyton Bell.
Rounding the roster is freshman Landon Cole, Zander Gilb, Max Bowne, Caleb Valentine Ben Lewis, Mikey Ackman, Brady Russell, Cyrus McComas and TJ Bradley.
The Shiners will begin Ohio River Valley Conference play against Southwestern on April 9th. Besides playing all ORVC teams twice, the Shiners have added St. Henry (Ky).
They will play Sectional 60 foes Jac-Cen-Del, North Decatur, Oldenburg Academy and South Decatur but not sixth ranked Hauser. The new alignment will take the sectional away from Shawe and moved to Jac-Cen-Del.
2018 baseball schedule
3/28 @ Lawrenceburg
3/31 11:00a @ Batesville (DH)
4/4 Trinity Lutheran
4/9 5:30p.m. Southwestern (Hanover)
4/16 5:30 p.m. @ Shawe Memorial
4/18 5:00p.m. South Ripley
4/21 @ South Decatur
4/25 @ Switzerland County
4/27 @ Milan
4/30 5:00p.m. Jac-Cen-Del
5/2 5:30p.m. @ Southwestern (Hanover)
5/4 Switzerland County
5/5 10:00a.m. North Decatur (DH)
5/7 @ St. Henry (Erlanger, KY)
5/9 5:30p.m. @ South Dearborn
5/11 Shawe Memorial
5/14 5:00p.m. @ South Ripley
5/16 5:00p.m. @ Jac-Cen-Del