2012 Season Preview - Outfield
Feb. 14, 2012
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - With the 2012 season now less than a week away, GoTigersGo.com previews the outfielders in the final of the three-part preview for the season.
Head Coach Daron Schoenrock has three outfielders with multiple starts in the outfield, but Adam McClain is the lone returning starter to the fray this season. McClain made 24 starts in left field last season and has been impressive thus far in preparations for the 2012 campaign. Hampered by injuries in the latter half of the 2011 season, McClain finished with a .276 average, three home runs and 22 RBI.
Senior Eli Hynes started three games in right field last season, but he is expected to be the primary designated hitter again this season. Hynes led the squad with seven home runs and he added 30 RBI.
The return of Derrick Thomas helps solidify the outfield depth. Thomas missed all of last season due to injuries after starting 48 games in right field back in 2010 as a true freshman. Thomas is expected to get the nod on opening day in center field. He hit .259 with one home run and 14 RBI during his freshman campaign.
Sophomore Ford Wilson was utilized as a defensive replacement in the outfield in multiple games before earning seven starts late in the season. Wilson is expected to have the same role this season after finishing his freshman year with a .175 average, one home run and two RBI.
Freshman Colton Simbeck is expected to get the starting nod in right field when Schoenrock fills out his first lineup card of the 2012 season on Friday. Simbeck had an impressive fall and has continued to impress the coaching staff in spring practices leading up to the season. Freshmen Zac Carter, Jacob Moody and Austin Hatfield round out the depth chart in the outfield.