Oct. 20, 2000

  • Up Close And Personal

    NORMAN, Okla. - Six returning starting pitchers and 13 additional hurlers complete the Oklahoma baseball team's roster as the team heads into its final week of fall practice. Head Coach Larry Cochell commented on the team's pitching situation as the squad concluded practice Friday afternoon at L. Dale Mitchell Park.

    "We're extremely happy with our returning pitchers and the progress of our new ones," said Cochell. "The starters, middle relief and closing roles haven't been determined yet, but we feel like we have some excellent players to fill all three roles."

    The pitching staff returns the majority of its personnel as the team lost only three pitchers from a year ago. Eight pitchers that combined to throw for 91 percent of the starts in 2000 return, including five pitchers who totaled 78 percent of the wins. Seniors Austin Coose and Logan Cuellar, juniors Michael Bradbury, Rocky Cherry and Evan Greusel and sophomore Austin Mix solidify the staff as each player made six starts or more on the mound for the Sooners in 2000. All of the six returning starters, with the exception of Cuellar, gained valuable experience in relief roles as each spent time in relief situations as well.

    Mix, a 2000 Freshman All-American and second-team All-Big 12 selection, led the staff with a 10-2 record and ranked first on the team in innings pitched, strikeouts and games started. The Coppell, Texas, native also finished among the Big 12 Conference's leaders in wins (sixth), strikeouts (sixth) and innings pitched (ninth). Coming off his strong debut season, Mix is expected to continue his success and lead OU in 2001.

    "Austin had a great season last year and we anticipate him once again emerging as one of the leaders of a strong pitching staff during his sophomore year," expressed Cochell.

    After completing 2000 as the number one pitcher in the starting rotation, Greusel will be looked upon to aid Mix in leading the staff. Greusel, who began the season in the bullpen, closed out the year with eight-consecutive starts and finished with a 5-0 record. While leading all starters in ERA and opposing batting average, the righthanded pitcher from Diamond Bar, Calif., also ranked among the league's top pitchers in opponent batting average (seventh) and strikeouts (10th).

    Nine new pitchers were welcomed to fall practice this year. Among the notable additions are senior Matt Sorensen and freshmen Brett Bagley, Buddy Blair and Mark Roberts. Sorensen, who passed on an offer by the Toronto Blue Jays in the 2000 Major League Baseball Amateur Draft, transferred from Cal State Fullerton where he compiled a 17-0 record in two years with the Titans. Roberts, a two-time All-State selection from Owasso High School, helped lead his team to two state titles and two state runner-up titles in four years. Bagley and Blair both garnered all-conference honors in their senior campaigns for Broken Arrow High School and Jenks High School, respectively.

    Fall practice concludes next week with the team's annual Red and White intrasquad games. Game times have not been set for the scrimmages and will be announced at a later date and time. Cochell finishes his fall practice reports next week with a look at the 2001 senior class.

    The following is a list of pitchers on the OU baseball roster during the fall season.

    Pitchers
    Brett Bagley, LHP, Fr., Broken Arrow, Okla. (Broken Arrow HS)
    Jedd Beeson, RHP, Jr., Duncan, Okla. (NE Texas CC)
    Buddy Blair, LHP, Fr., Tulsa, Okla. (Jenks HS)
    Michael Bradbury, LHP, Jr., Owasso, Okla. (Owasso HS)
    Rocky Cherry, RHP, Jr., Coppell, Texas (Coppell HS)
    Zack Cherry, RHP, Fr., Coppell, Texas (Coppell HS)
    Austin Coose, RHP, Sr., Kokomo, Ind. (Stanford)
    Logan Cuellar, RHP, Sr., Houston, Texas (Louisiana-Lafayette)
    Scott Diaz, LHP, Fr., Seabrook, Texas (Seabrook HS)
    Evan Greusel, RHP, Jr., Diamond Bar, Calif. (Diamond Bar HS)
    Brandon Hankins, RHP, So., Waxahachie, Texas (Waxahachie HS)
    Rusty Lane, RHP, Jr., Clinton, Okla. (Pratt CC)
    Austin Mix, RHP, So., Coppell, Texas (Coppell HS)
    Scott Moore, RHP, Jr., Cushing, Okla. (Cowley County CC)
    Nick Pollock, LHP, So., Tulsa, Okla. (Edison HS)
    Mark Roberts, RHP, Fr., Owasso, Okla. (Owasso HS)
    Matt Sorensen, RHP, Sr., South Gate, Calif. (Cal State Fullerton)
    Jeff Wigington, RHP, Sr., Denison, Texas (Denison HS)
    Patrick Wyrick, RHP, So., Atoka, Okla. (Atoka HS)