Moffat County baseball ready to slug it out | CraigDailyPress.com

Moffat County baseball ready to slug it out

With players turning out in droves this year, the Moffat County High School baseball team won't be hurting for kids to fill out the field.

MCHS baseball's roster includes 37 players this season, and coaches Justin Folley and Keith Gille couldn't be more pleased with the numbers participating in America's pastime. With more than half of these players freshmen, there will be enough to field a junior varsity team in addition to giving the rookies playing time in the bigger games.

There are five seniors currently on the roster, with Tyler Davis also joining depending on the outcome of a basketball ankle injury.

The team has a great deal of depth on the mound this year, with seniors like Matt Hamilton, Hugh Turner and Phillip Chadwick prepped to pitch, as well as juniors Brett Loyd and Spencer Turner and freshmen Adain Wilmot and Santiago Aragon, plus others ready to offer relief whenever needed.

"That's nice to have," Folley said. "I've got some young kids who don't quite know where they're playing, but they'll figure it out once we get into a rhythm."

Baseball in March is never a certainty in Northwest Colorado, but the ball field at Craig Middle School is looking good after grooming by players and coaches this past week.

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Among the more fearsome opponents in the 3A Western Slope League this year are Gunnison, Olathe and Basalt, while Cedaredge — which walloped MCHS, 27-0, last season — has dropped to the 2A division.

"Talentwise, we have it, we'll just see if we can stay mentally focused this year," Folley said. "A lot of it comes down to maturity, understanding and growing in the game."

Folley has been the head coach for the team since 2009, while Gille, also the MCHS football coach, joins this year, bringing many years of baseball knowledge to the Bulldogs.

"I think I can add a lot of the mental aspect for getting pitchers ready," Gille said, noting he was impressed that a team that only had 14 kids last year has nearly tripled.

Sophomore Mike Bingham said he's still adjusting to the cuts at the plate after spending last fall with the golf team.

"My swing's pretty low," he joked.

A catcher for the team primarily, Bingham is also ready to pitch or play first base if needed. He said the considerable turnout this year could lead to big things throughout the season and beyond as everybody gets settled.

"I really think we can make it to the playoffs this year," he said.

Contact Andy Bockelman at 970-875-1793 or abockelman@CraigDailyPress.com or follow him on Twitter @CDP_Sports.

Moffat County High School varsity baseball schedule

Moffat County High School varsity baseball schedule

Varsity Game Times, Date — Opponent, Home/Away

11 a.m./1 p.m., March 14 — Aspen, Home

11 a.m./1 p.m., March 21 — Gunnison, Away

11 a.m./1 p.m., March 28 — Olathe, Away

4 p.m., April 9 — Rangely, Away

11 a.m., April 11 — Rifle, Home

4 p.m., April 14 — Grand Valley, Away

4 p.m., April 15 — Steamboat Springs, Home

11 a.m./1 p.m., April 18 — Basalt, Home

3 p.m., April 22 — Aspen, Home

11 a.m./1 p.m., April 25 — Coal Ridge, Home

4 p.m., April 28 — Grand Valley, Home

11 a.m./1 p.m., May 2 — Roaring Fork, Away

— Home games take place at Craig Middle School baseball field, 915 Yampa Ave. All events are subject to change.

Moffat County High School junior varsity baseball schedule

JV Game Times, Date — Opponent, Home/Away

1 p.m., April 11 — Rifle, Home

6 p.m., April 15 — Steamboat Springs, Home

5 p.m., April 22 — Aspen, Away

3 p.m./5 p.m., April 30 — Coal Ridge, Home

— Home games take place at Craig Middle School baseball field, 915 Yampa Ave. All events are subject to change.

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