Fayetteville, Ark. – With over a month before preseason practices are to begin for college baseball teams across the nation and despite heavy losses to the 2012 Major League Baseball Draft, the 2013 Arkansas Razorback team has been ranked preseason No. 1 by Colligate Baseball.
The Razorbacks opened the 2012 season with a preseason No. 4 ranking by Baseball America. Making the writers of Baseball America look like full-time members of Dionne Warwick’s Psychic Hotline, the Hogs (46-22) finished No. 3 after an improbable run to the College World Series for the seventh time in school history.
The 46-wins posted by coach Dave Van Horn were the second most wins in a season by an Arkansas team falling one win shy of tying the school mark of 47 set in 1990.
Gone from last year’s CWS run is starting pitcher D.J. Baxendale (Minnesota Twins), third baseman Matt Reynolds (New York Mets), relief pitcher Nolan Sandburn (Oakland A’s), and shortstop Tim Carver (Philadelphia Phillies).
The Hogs also took heavy losses from high school signees opting for a pro career over college life when players like outfielder D’Vone McClure, Jacksonville (AR), signed with the Indians and pitcher Ty Buttrey, Providence (NC), signed with the Red Sox.
The Hogs have ace pitcher Ryne Stanek, starter/reliever Colby Suggs, and closer/spot starter Astin Barrett among 10 total returning pitchers to anchor an Arkansas staff that had a team ERA of 2.83 last season.
Slugging first/second baseman Dominic Ficociello and outfielders Brian Anderson and Joe Serrano will be counted on to lead a talented group of six returning position players.
The Hogs open the 2013 season on Feb. 15 against Western Illinois and start their SEC schedule March 15, against Ole Miss at Baum Stadium in Fayetteville.
2012 Arkansas Players Drafted
No. 71 3B Matt Reynolds, New York Mets, 2nd Round
No. 74 RHP Nolan Sanburn, Oakland A’s, 2nd Round
No. 310 RHP D.J. Baxendale, Minnesota Twins, 10th Round
No. 608 SS Tim Carver*, Philadelphia Phillies, 19th Round
No. 853 OF Sam Bates*, Kansas City Royals, 28th Round
No. 893 RHP Randall Fant, Cleveland Indians, 29th Round
No. 1122 OF Derrick Bleeker, Baltimore Orioles, 37th Round
No. 1133 OF Jacob Morris, Cleveland Indians, 37th Round
* Denotes college seniors
2012 Arkansas Razorback Signees Drafted
Pick/Position/Signee/High School/MLB Team/Round
No. 75 RHP Teddy Stankiewicz, Fort Worth Christian (TX), Mets, 2nd Round
No. 143 OF D’Vone McClure, Jacksonville (AR), Indians, 4th Round
No. 151 RHP Ty Buttrey, Providence (NC), Red Sox, 4th Round
No. 162 LHP Colin Poche, Flower Mound Marcus (TX), Orioles, 5th Round
No. 298 OF Shilo McCall, Piedra Vista (NM), Giants, 9th Round
Arkansas rotates Florida and Vanderbilt off from this year’s schedule and will not face Missouri in a regular season three-game series in 2013. The Hogs play a two-game nonconference series against the Tigers at Baum Stadium May 1-2.
Arkansas Razorback 2013 SEC Baseball Schedule
*Ole Miss March 15-17
South Carolina March 22-24
*Mississippi State March 29-31
Alabama April 5-7
*LSU April 12-14
*Texas A&M April 19-21
Georgia April 26-28
Kentucky May 3-5
*Tennessee May 10-12
Auburn May 16-18
* Denotes home game at Baum Stadium in Fayetteville.