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Listen in as baseball gets under way this week in Florida

The Bates College baseball team gets the 2008 season under way this week with an excursion to the Central Florida Invitational in Orlando. The Bobcats will take on Elms College in a doubleheader on Saturday, March 15, then play Clarkson University in a single 9-inning game on Sunday before finishing with a doubleheader against Grove City College on Monday.

All of the games will feature a live audio wecast via Teamline, which has partnered with Bates to offer audio webcasts of Bates football and basketball games this year.

The games from the Central Florida Invitational will be $10 to listen via the Internet, or $25 to listen via telephone. To access the game via any phone just dial (216) 502-3200. Enter team code 0424 when prompted. Long distance charges may apply, depending on your particular long distance plan or provider.

NOTE: Bookmark Teamline's Bates webcast page to listen to future broadcasts as well as archived broadcasts of Bates basketball and football games from earlier this year.

Each team will assign one player, who isn't slated to play that game, to provide the play-by-play to listeners via Teamline.  Players will use cellular phones, provided by TRZ, to deliver the live audio to TRZ's system. TRZ's unique technology will distribute the games to listeners, worldwide, via both the Internet and the telephone. All Central Florida Invitational games are available on a pay-to-listen basis.

2008 Season Preview

Brian Buckley '08 returns to the hot corner after his outstanding 2007 season. (Scott Linscott photo)

The Bates College baseball team returns 11 seniors for the upcoming 2008 season, hungry to improve upon a 7-22 record in 2007. Bates returns its top five hitters in most categories including average, runs scored and runs batted in.

Senior shortstop Brian Mahoney (Sudbury, Mass.) was the team leader in batting average (.357), runs scored (22), and hits (41). First baseman Erik Hood (Berlin, N.H.) and outfielder Brian Buckley (Andover, Mass.) also return for their senior years after outstanding junior campaigns. Hood finished third on the team in batting average (.324), first in slugging percentage (.480), first in home runs (3), and first in the team in RBIs with 21. Buckley finished second on the team in average (.352), hits (37), RBIs (15), and home runs (2).

Outfielder Casey McCormack (Keene, N.H.), infielder Denis Hogan (Franklin, Mass.), outfielder and captain Alex Maulucci (Avon, Conn.) and catcher Alex Egelson (Fairfield, Conn.) all return after starting the majority of games their junior year. McCormack led the team in on base percentage (.425). He also collected 6 doubles on the year and led the team in walks (13). Hogan collected 33 hits on the season to go along with a .913 fielding percentage with 68 assists. Maulucci started 20 games for the Bobcats and finished the season with a .373 on base percentage. Egelson had a terrific year behind the plate for the Bobcats, committing only 2 errors for a fielding percentage of .983. Egelson also drove in 14 runs while posting a .270 batting average. Co-captain Rob Patton (Darien, Conn.) also returns as a catcher and designated hitter for the Bobcats after hitting .298 for the 2007 season.

Sean VanderVliet '08 returns as the most experienced arm on the Bates roster.

Junior infielder Matt Devin (Bridgewater, Mass.) and junior catcher Dave Farrell (Chatham, Mass.) look to improve upon successful sophomore campaigns. Devin knocked in 7 RBI while starting 10 games as a sophomore. Farrell started 5 games or the Bobcats posting an on base percentage of .389.

Tom Beaton (West Newbury, Mass.) and Josh Linscott (Portland, Maine) return as sophomores after successful years as freshmen. Beaton played in 14 games as both an infielder and an outfielder, collecting 7 hits and driving in 6 runs. Linscott started 19 games as a freshman and had a batting average of .306. He also tied for second on the ream in runs scored with 17.

The pitching staff returns four seniors for 2008. Senior Sean VanderVliet (Meriden, N.H.) won two games last year and finished the season with 20 strikeouts. Senior Ralph Vitti (Winchester, Mass.) made 7 appearances and pitched a total of 10 innings. Senior Simon Griesbach (West Bend, Wis.) finished with 5 2/3 innings of work and struck out a total of 8 batters. Buckley also appeared on the mound last year, making 2 appearances.

Junior Chuck Murphy-Romboletti (Holyoke, Mass.) pitched 22 1/3 innings last year and finished with 16 strikeouts. Classmates Ben Shwartz (Mattapoisett, Mass.), Ben Thayer (Gorham, Maine), and Larry Hinkle (Arlington, Va.) also gained experience last year as sophomores. Shwartz made seven appearances last year and struck out 32 batters. Hinkle made six appearances and finished with 1 win on the season. Thayer made 7 appearances in 2007 for a total of 6 2/3 innings pitched.

Sophomores Ryan Horvath (Fort Myers, Fla.) and Custer Cook (Philadelphia, Pa.) also return after seeing action last year. Cook pitched for a total of 11 innings while Horvath appeared in 2 innings of relief.