A Return to Expected Form for the Ducks?

Max Thornberry Editorials Leave a Comment

Nearly a month and a half into the season the Ducks have not flown as high as I had hoped this winter. But their performance has been more in line with what we had expected.

The pitching staff has performed well and the offense is still finding their groove. After the 10-1 shellacking of Portland on Wednesday evening, there is some hope that the bats are beginning to settle in. If so, the offense could not have picked a better time to get hot as No. 11 Cal (18-7, 7-2) comes into town this weekend.

The Golden Bears took two of three games from Oregon last year in Berkeley. Not to open old wounds, but this Oregon team is looking reminiscent of that 2015 team. The Ducks opened Pac-12 play with a 2-7 record last year and are flirting with falling to that mark again as they currently sit at No. 11 in the Pac-12.

Overcoming challenges such as this however, is what makes championship teams, well, championship teams. And there is always a silver lining within a 63-game season.

Kyle Kasser has emerged a consistent producer in the lineup.

Dave Peaks

Kyle Kasser has emerged a consistent producer in the lineup.

Kyle Kasser was inserted into the lineup against Utah and has been tearing the cover off the ball since. The sophomore’s OPS is 1.015 and his .394 avg. leads the team. The Ducks are crawling back, posting a 4-5 record since his emergence and have scored 4.6 runs per game in that span compared to the 4.84 mark in their first 14.

Jake Bennett has been similarly impressive since his first start on March 19 against Utah. His .360 avg. and 6 RBIs have placed him squarely in the top three in both categories for the Ducks.

Of course, nothing can be certain considering the combination of a streaky offense facing off against lights-out pitching in the cavernous pitchers’ heaven that is PK Park. Oregon has their work cut out for them on both sides of the ball.

Cal slugger Brett Cumberland (.410/.535/.859) is terrorizing pitchers this year and ace Daulton Jefferies (6-0, 1.29 ERA) ranks in the top three in the conference.

The roller coaster ride in 2015 wasn’t an exactly fun ride, and we would all rather see a more consistent stretch in 2016. It appears that some fresh faces could spark a much needed return to their expected form.

A flash in the pan is not enough to return Oregon to the pedestal they have fallen from, but it’s a start.

Top Photo by Gary Breedlove

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

The Comments Below are CLOSED, as we are moving to the OUR BELOVED DUCKS Forum!

Comments below articles are now closed as we have moved all conversation over to the free Our Beloved Ducks Forum. It has been a big success already with many more posts than what we could fit into the comments below articles.

The Our Beloved Ducks Forum is where we we discuss the article above and many more topics, as it is so much easier in a message board format over there.  At the free OBD forum we will be posting Oregon Sports article links, the daily Press Releases from the Athletic Department and the news coming out every day.

Be a part of the forum and stay caught up!  When you wish to post there, do know that you are protected just as you were on FishDuck. Join us on the free forum right here!

Our 33 rules at the free OBD Forum can be summarized to this: 1) be polite and respectful, 2) keep it clean, and 3) no reference of any kind to politics. Easy-peasy!

OBD Forum members….we got your back.  No Trolls Allowed!

Subscribe
Notify of
0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments