D&E to open baseball season today at Chaflin

The Davis & Elkins College baseball team will return an experienced group of players for the 2013 season for head coach Ron Palmer.

The Senators, who finished 18-28 overall and 13-18 in WVIAC in 2012, will open their season today at Claflin University in Orangeburg, S.C.

“I’m looking forward to getting the season underway,” Palmer said. “We’ve got a good mixture between the kids who are back and the players coming in.”

D&E returns last year’s top hitter Matt Barr, who played shortstop last season. The senior will play in right field this season.

Barr hit .384 last season with eight home runs and 37 RBIs.

Also returning will be sophomore left fielder and Elkins High School product Lance VanNoy, who batted .365 and 24 RBIs a year ago. Rounding out the outfield will be senior Anthony Ragos in center, who batted .297 with 25 stolen bases.

Returning in the infield is junior Treavor Dubiel, Houston Darling, Brad Banzhoff, Kyle Crist and Mike Mroz.

Newcomers include Ryan Butts and Bryant Hines, who will split time at catcher, while Travis Phelps is projected to see time at shortstop.

“I’m very with our returning hitters,” Palmer said. “If we can get our fielding and hitting down, I think we’ll be in good shape.

“We’ve got a good mixture of new kids who have been practicing well and could see time down the road.”

D&E returns two of its top starters from last year in senior Josh Kehr and sophomore Tripp Staley.

Kehr had an ERA of 4.13 last year with three wins and 50 strikeouts, while Staley had an ERA of 4.35 and four wins.

Others who saw time on the hill last year as starters were seniors Kyle Crist and Colby Fisher.

Newcomers include left-hander Taylor Hyssong and Marcus Warner, who both could see time in starting roles.

Sophomore left-hander Jake Smith and sophomore Christian Scott, a Tygarts Valley product, are returnees in the bullpen.

Junior Matt Moceri, sophomore left-hander Sean Hoy, freshman Daulton Weagley and left-hander Michael Paratore are expected to add depth.

“I’m excited with our pitching,” Palmer said. “This might be one of the deepest pitching staffs we’ve had in a long time.”