FREDERICKSBURG, Va. - St. Mary's College of Maryland baseball was selected to finish eighth in the 2019 Capital Athletic Conference Preseason Poll, the league announced today (Feb. 6).
Three-time defending champion Salisbury edged Christopher Newport for the top spot in the 2019 Capital Athletic Conference Baseball Preseason Poll. The Sea Gulls totaled six first-place votes and 48 points to narrowly edge out CNU (43 points, 2 first-place votes) in a vote among the conference head coaches.
Penn State Harrisburg finished third in the voting with 36 points, followed by Frostburg State (31) and York (22) in the top five. Mary Washington (21) was close behind in the sixth position with Southern Virginia (12) and St. Mary's (11) occupying the final two spots.
The Seahawks look to improve off of their 11-20, 4-14 CAC record from last season. St. Mary's returns 23 players from last season and brings in 20 newcomers to their roster.
The Seahawks return one All-CAC selection from last season in Jay Hammett. The redshirt junior was selected to the Second Team last year. The 6-1 first baseman hit .390 last season with 46 hits, 21 RBI, 18 runs scored, 12 doubles, two home runs, and a triple in 118 at-bats. He posted a .452 on-base percentage and a slugging percentage of .559 while hitting in the No. 3 spot in the order for the Seahawks all season long.
He ranked fifth in the conference in batting average, tied for ninth in doubles, and 12th in both on-base percentage and slugging percentage while coming in 13th with 190 putouts. Hammett notched a .995 fielding percentage with only one error in 196 chances and helped to turn 10 of the team's 15 double plays this season. The Seahawks return nine players that received 60 or more at-bats from last season and five pitchers that have thrown 25 or more innings.
The Seahawks will open up their season on Feb. 16 when they host Mt. St. Mary (N.Y.) in a doubleheader. Game times are set for 12 and 3 p.m.
The CAC Tournament will once again feature the new format as introduced last season, with all eight programs competing in the postseason event spread across two weekends. The opening weekend (May 3-4) will feature a pair of three-team, double-elimination pods hosted by the top two seeds. The winners of those pods will square off the following weekend (May 10-11) at the highest remaining seeds' field.
Points (First-Place Votes)
|2.||Christopher Newport||43 (2)|
|3.||Penn State Harrisburg||36|
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