A New Start For Auburn Baseball
Butch Thompson begins his second season on the Plains (Photo by Wade Rackley/Auburn Athletics)
It’s hard to believe it’s that time of year again. It’s time for baseball, the great American pastime. And on the college level, baseball usually comes before the beginning of spring. And, like spring, it awakens thoughts of new life.
It brings hope and stirs the imagination like no other sport. After all it is part of the American fabric. Coming at the start of spring every year it reminds us of new beginnings, new birth, and a chance to start over.
Auburn baseball could use a fresh start after the Tigers finished last season with a disappointing 23–32 overall, 8–23 SEC record. Even so, the Tigers were a force at the plate as Auburn scored 343 runs in 55 games in 2016, up from 2015’s final total of 301 (in 62 games). Auburn’s 35 homers bested the team’s 2015 total of 18.
However, starting pitching should be the strength of Butch Thompson’s second team. Leading the pack will be Keegan Thompson, who returns from elbow surgery after missing the 2016 season. The 2014 freshman All-American has a career record of 12–6 and a 2.49 ERA. He will be the starter for the Tigers’ 2:00 p.m. CT opening game today against George Washington that will be broadcast on SECN+.
There will also be a new start for the team as the roster lists 20 new players. Thompson should have plenty of time to evaluate his talent as Auburn will play its first 22 games at home, including the SEC opener against Florida a month from today.
“We just need to attack this weekend,” said coach Thompson. “Let the chips fall where they may. Give everybody an opportunity to participate. Show us where they’re at.”
Why not come out to see for yourself what the new guys look like. There’s a lot of room for optimism. After all that’s what baseball does. It reminds us of new beginnings, new birth, and a chance to start over.
Look forward to seeing you at Plainsman Park.
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