For the second year in a row, the Shaker baseball team begins a season with an inexperienced lineup.
The Blue Bison lost all of their starting fielders from last year’s squad, which finished second to Shenendehowa in the Suburban Council North Division.
“There are going to be a lot of openings this year, but the guys put in a lot of work to prepare,” said Shaker coach Steve Frank.
Despite the lack of experience in the field, Frank said his team won’t back down from anyone.
“We have a quiet confidence about us,” said Frank. “Last year we had one returning starter, and we were able to compete. This year, we’ve got some younger guys who we feel confident in.”
The Blue Bison have three pitchers back — senior Chad Sinko, who was a second team All-Suburban Council selection after posting a 5-1 record, senior Kevin Bilynsky and junior Tyler Hoffman. Juniors Nick Gavin and Matt Polsinello join the staff this season.
“Coming into this season, we thought we’d have a good amount of pitching,” said Frank. “So, we’re going to rely on pitching and defense.”
The defense and the offense will be led by a group of seniors including catcher/outfielder Brenden Killian, outfielder Tyler Oppelt, designated hitter/first baseman Keegen Rodino, third baseman Steven Cox and second baseman Dean Maloney.
Oppelt said things will come together for Shaker once they are able to practice and play outside.
“Offensively, we have to see some live pitching,” said Oppelt. “Defensively, we have to be able to see the ball in the air and make our reads.”
Junior shortstop Sean Egan, junior catcher Ben Cassillo and sophomore outfielder/pitcher Garrett Klahr are also expected to contribute this season.
Shaker’s first game Friday at Burnt Hills.
-Ballston Lake for its Suburban Council North Division opener. The Blue Bison’s first home game is Wednesday, April 10, against Saratoga Springs.