Another difficult season will commence for the Yuba College baseball team in February, starting with three very intimidating road games: one against Chabot College on February 6 and a double-header against no. 1 ranked San Mateo on February 7. They struggled through last season, finishing 12-22, but head coach Tim Gloyd thinks that, despite the fierce competition in the Bay Valley Conference, this season will be much better for the 49ers. “This group is very good. It’s one of the best groups I’ve had as far as wanting to get better, wanting to play and wanting to compete,” Gloyd said. Still, Gloyd said the first games of the season will definitely be tough. Because of all the larger schools in the conference, Yuba will have a hard time throughout the season as well.
It may be an uphill battle, but hopefully the 49ers can overcome a lack of power hitting with a solid defense and some snappy base running. Gloyd said he is especially confident in his pitching staff. Three freshmen pitchers will enter the bullpen to supplement starters Charlie Madden, Anthony “A.J.” Holland and Wes Porter, the three starters who Gloyd believes will probably transfer to Division I schools and might have a chance to play professionally.
Starting catcher Brian Montgomery recently left with a full scholarship to Oklahoma Baptist University, so Sophomore Bobby Davis and freshman Darren Deweese will take over at that position.
“We’re going to be very good defensively,” Gloyd said. “We should pitch very well. Hitting, we’re going to be playing small ball: a lot of bunting, hit-and-run, fake bunts, stealing, that kind of stuff.”
Gloyd said his team will have some outstanding base running. The 49ers have led the league in stolen bases in four of the last six years and led the state in three of those years, he said. This year, he says that some of his players, like C.J. Mills and Aaron Dickson, “can really fly.”
Overall, the team will have to make up for a lack of offensive power with defense and some finesse. If the 49ers can work to their strengths, they will at least be able to remain competitive against their more powerful opponents.