Baseball preview: Warwick
Coach: Chuck Todd (First Year)
Last Year’s Record: 13-8
CF: Brad Garcia, So.
SS: Joe Ghiloni, Sr.
C: Hunter Dolshun, Jr.
DH: Will Marmor, Jr.
1B: John Garcia, Sr.
RF: Pat Christen, Sr.
LF: Peter Moore, So.
3B: Connor Leigh, So.
2B: John Santana, Fr.
Top Pitchers: Ryan Pendergast, Will Ortiz
Coaches Outlook: We have some real good young athletes on this team who will improve on the field as the season progresses. The team has been working very hard and will continue to do so. They realize that preparation is the key to our success both now and in the future. There are some pretty good teams in our section and our guys aspire to compete at that level. We have pretty good team speed and will look to make things happen. Our pitchers throw strikes, our fielders make plays, so it will come down to the little things that we do and minimizing our mistakes.
Warwick youth is no excuse
With just three returning seniors, Warwick will rely on the strong leadership of few and the talent of many. Senior first baseman John Garcia returns along with Ryan Pendergast on the mound, and senior shortstop Joseph Ghiloni. The senior tri-captains expect the youth to grow up quickly and put their team in contention right from the start.
“We’re the only three seniors with experience, so we’re obviously a young team,” Garcia said. We have five sophomores and a freshman in the mix for playing time, but they’re all talented.”
Garcia’s younger brother, Brad, has looked great in preseason in centerfield. In a scrimmage against North Rockland, the young outfielder covered a lot of ground on defense with relative ease.
“The young guys are definitely good. My brother played JV last year but has looked like a varsity player all spring,” John Garcia said. “He had one varsity at-bat at the end last year and he hit a homerun, so we like his potential.”
Pendergast gives Warwick much needed experience in an important place, the mound. Pendergast was the team’s number one pitcher as a junior and looks great in the spring.
“Pendergast has great accuracy and really mixes it up well,” Garcia said. “He’s our one returning pitcher and we expect really good things from him.”
Warwick will fill its staff out with senior Will Ortiz in the number two spot. DJ Mendenhall, Peter Moore, and John Santana are battling for the third spot in the rotation. Santana is just a freshman.
Coach Chuck Todd is in his first year as the head coach at Warwick, but brings college-level experience to the program. His focus on the fundamentals is something his players are excited about.
“As a pitcher, it’s great to work on all the fundamentals and situations that Coach Todd has us working on,” Pendergast said. “Instead of just shagging fly balls, we get to improve as a team by learning all the little things.”
Warwick will try to compete with the best in Section 9 this year including Kingston and Valley Central despite the youthful roster.
“Our team is young but the players and coaching staff have agreed that youth isn’t an excuse,” Coach Todd said. “We’re here to get better and compete right away.”
Follow John Malone on Twitter: @MSGV_Malone