BABSON PARK, Mass.—Coming off a sweep of the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) regular season and tournament titles last spring, the Babson College baseball program is looking to continue its success in 2018.
NOW FOR THE ENCORE
Under the direction of 16th-year head coach Matt Noone, the Beavers ripped off a school-record 13 straight victories and won 16 of their final 18 games to advance to the NCAA Tournament Harwich Regional final last May. The Green and White, which set a new single-season record with 29 wins, brings back 27 players this spring.
The Beavers return six starting pitchers that combined to go at least six innings in 33 of 43 games last spring. Senior Teddy Carey (Upton, Mass.) went 6-3 with a 3.44 earned run average and a single-season record 79 strikeouts in 70.2 innings, while junior Michael Genaro (Greenwich, Conn.) posted a 6-2 mark to go along with a 2.90 ERA and four complete games in 68.1 innings. Classmate Connor Gill (Sterling, Mass.) went the distance twice and finished 5-0 with a 3.33 ERA, senior John Floegel (Summit, N.J.) was 4-1 with a 1.77 earned run average, and junior Edward Lehr (Byram Township, N.J), who was 2-2 in nine appearances, tossed a complete-game one-hitter in an NCAA Tournament elimination game. Sophomore Michael Nocchi (Manasquan, N.J.) also made three starts and went 2-2 in eight appearances overall.
Senior Ryan Arena (Yorktown Heights, N.Y) put together some of the best power numbers in school history last season batting .331 with 12 doubles, a single-season record 13 home runs, 36 RBI and 103 total bases. He earned all-conference and all-region honors last spring and was named to the D3baseball.com preseason All-America third team back in January. Classmate Mark Webber (Norwell, Mass.) hit six of his seven homers in the final 12 contests of last season, and has driven in 67 runs in 79 games over the last two years.
IN GOOD HANDS AROUND THE INFIELD
The Green and White brings back a trio of infielders that all started at least 24 contests last season. Junior shortstop Brian McHale (Ramsey, N.J.) batted a team-best .366 with 12 doubles and 27 runs batted in, Gill hit .286 with eight doubles, two homers and 16 RBI at second base, and senior third baseman David Lennon (Windermere, Fla.) boasted a .398 on-base percentage to go along with three doubles and 12 RBI. The Beavers turned 42 double plays and had a .955 fielding percentage in 2017.
VETERAN PRESENCE IN THE OUTFIELD
In addition to Webber, who made 39 starts in right field, Babson returns juniors Eric Jaun (Loveland, Ohio) and Nicholas Browne (Mount Laurel, N.J.) and sophomore Jake Oliger (Newtown, Conn.). Jaun hit .260 with 11 extra-base hits and 17 RBI over 39 games, while Browne and Oliger combined for six doubles and nine runs batted in during spot duty last spring.
CALL TO THE BULLPEN
Senior closer Matt Cuneo (Ashland, Mass.) recorded 21 strikeouts in 23.1 innings and registered a single-season program record 10 saves last spring. Junior Max Tannenbaum (Coral Springs, Fla.) has made 29 relief appearances over the last two seasons, while senior Drew Petillo (Bridgewater, N.J.) and sophomores Zach Sette (Franklin, Mass.) and William Gallagher (Kingston, Mass.) combined to see action in 11 contests last year.
DEPTH BEHIND THE PLATE
Sophomore Sean Harrington (Walpole, Mass.) reached base in each of his first 22 games last season and batted .311 with 12 extra-base hits and a team-high 24 walks while starting 31 contests as a rookie in 2017. Classmate Aidan Scott (South Glastonbury, Conn.) threw out 6-of-16 baserunners in 14 games, and senior Matt DeMarte (Yorktown Heights, N.Y.) will both vie for playing time heading into the season.
CHALLENGES ALONG THE WAY
The Green and White, which had to win its final six games to claim a share of last year's NEWMAC regular season title, will face a schedule littered with top-flight opponents this spring. The Beavers will face 14 opponents that won at least 20 games last spring, which includes six NCAA Tournament participants and a pair of squads that reached the 2017 College World Series.