The Oregon baseball team was surprisingly knocked out in the regional round, as the eighth overall national seed could not muster enough offense to fend off the Rice Owls. The Ducks had a tremendous pitching effort this year. The combined 2.80 ERA for the staff carried the team throughout the PAC-12 conference schedule and into regional play. However, a team’s occasional struggles at the plate eventual contributed to the abrupt end to their post season run.
Last year, the Ducks landed top talent Carson Kelly out of Westview High School in Portland. However, after being selected 86th overall by the St. Louis Cardinals, he decided to forgo college and take the money, trying his hand at minor league baseball. Kelly and Healy would have been a deadly combination in the middle of the order. Just this past Thursday Ryon Healy was drafted 100th overall by the Oakland Athletics. This will be a huge blow to a lineup which needs more power. To add to the damage, finalist for the Stopper of the Year, Jimmie Sherfy was drafted 300th overall by the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Assuming these two key players leave for the majors, the Ducks will have a lot of holes to fill. Luckily for the Ducks, they have George Horton, one of the best coaches in the nation. He has the ability to develop players and recruit as well. The situation right now might seem worrisome, but I expect Horton and the Ducks to be back next year competing in regional play.