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2009 OU Baseball Preview: Pitchers

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Oklahoma’s baseball team started practice on Sunday. Season tickets are on sale now and the season starts on the 20th with a home stand against Western Illinois. In 2008 OU lost to Arizona State in the Regional Final of the Tempe Regional. They return seven position starters and six pitchers with at least five starts or more.

 

Tyson Seng (Righty) made seven relief appearances last season as a freshman not allowing an earned run in the first five. He also spends time at second and third base as well as short stop. Seng batted .320 in conference play last season.

 

Chase Anderson (Righty) earned five wins on the mound last season as a sophomore alternating between relief and starting appearances.

 

Antwonie Hubbard (Righty) made 10 relief appearances last season only allowing 5 runs. He also started three games and earned a win in one of those. Last summer he played for the Anchorage Glacier Pilots of the Alaska Baseball League where he was named the league’s fourth best professional prospect.  

 

Jeremy Erben (Righty) started both the season and Big 12 openers for the Sooners last year. In between those two starts he allowed just six runs in seventeen innings of relief pitching. Opposing batters only hit .247 off him in conference play.

 

Andrew Doyle (Righty) led the team in wins with 9 and was named to the Big 12 All Tournament Team after a complete game performance in OU’s win over Texas A&M. He also led the team in strikeouts with 72.

 

Mehdi Djebbar (Lefty) is a JUCO transfer from Seminole State College where he played his freshman and sophomore seasons. In 2008 he finished with a 3-5 record, punching out 18 batters in just 39 innings of work. He was limited last season due to injury.

 

Ryan Duke (Righty) started 10 games as a freshman last season and earned a 5-2 record as a starter. Before earning a starting spot he was one of Oklahoma’s best relief pitchers. Duke threw 35 innings of relief and earned 2 more wins.

 

Kaleb Herren (Righty) is another JUCO transfer. He comes to Oklahoma from North Central Texas College where he compiled a 6-2 record with 46 strikeouts. Also spending time in the outfield Herren hit .418 last season with 15 homeruns and 56 RBIs.

 

Kennedy Winn (Lefty) comes to Oklahoma from Chickasha High School where he was pitcher of the year in 2008. He has the prospect of playing either from the mound or in the outfield where he played all three positions.

 

Jason Chowning (Righty) was named to the NJCAA All-Star Game last year after struck out 58 batters and posted a 3.46 ERA.

 

Garrett Richards (Righty) made 17 relief appearances last year for the Sooners. His lone start last season was a win where he struck out seven batters against Western Illinois.

 

 J.R. Robinson (Lefty) led the nation in ERA with 0.83. He was also tops in the nation in opponent batting average (.165) and hits allowed per nine innings (5.23) while at New Mexico Junior College. He finished the season with a 10-1 record and should make a strong push as one of Oklahoma’s starters this year.

 

Michael Whitney (Righty) played in 10 games last year at Navarro Junior College as a freshman. He went 6-1 while striking out 51 batters and posting a 2.51 ERA.

 

Levi Rhoades (Righty) appeared in 18 games last season for Western Oklahoma State College. He only threw 23 innings for the season but struck out 21 batters and posted a 2-0 record in the process.

 

C.J. Blue (Lefty) ranked 3rd on the team last season with six wins as one of Oklahoma’s mid-week starters.  

 

Jarrett Semler (Righty) led Cypress College with 24 appearances last season. He posted a 2-1 record and punched out 25 batters.

 

Stephen Porlier (Righty) was supposed to be Oklahoma’s ace last season but set the season out with a torn labrum in his throwing shoulder. He received a medical hardship and if he returns at full strength in `09 it will boost OU staff to another level.  

 

Michael Rocha (Righty) won four games for the Sooners last year and was named the Big 12’s Pitcher of the Week after his shutout win against Tennessee.

Baseball America has the Sooners ranked #16 in their pre-season poll. With the number of players returning from last year’s squad fans should expect another tournament appearance in `09. However, making a deeper run in the post season than last year is going to rest literally on the shoulders of this pitching staff. Sunny Golloway added seven JUCO pitchers to the roster this year for added depth and possible spots for a stronger rotation.