Although they’ve won four games in a row, the men’s baseball team has faced an onslaught of injuries that contributed to them losing six of nine games during the stretch before their current winning streak.
The Sharks are 16-10 and 4-2 in the Southern Conference.
Outfielders David Crawford (.275 batting average) and Luis Guerrero (.273 batting average) have missed substantial time. Crawford with a swollen ankle and Guerrero with contusion in his left hand. Guerrero has only played in nine games after sustaining his injury during the team’s first scrimmage. Crawford has been out since Feb. 23.
Utility player Michael Alicea (.277 batting average) was out with a strained abdominal muscle from Feb. 23 until March 2. Freshman pitcher Juan Marcano has yet to make an appearance and freshman catcher Pablo Gonzalez-Cardenas has missed 11 games due to a sprained elbow.
All the players are expected to fully return by mid-March.
“It’s been a very up and down season,” Price said. “It’s been inconsistent because I can’t put the same team on the field day in and day out and it’s really been because of the injuries we’ve had.”
The depth of the bench has been key in keeping the team afloat as the injuries have placed a strain on the season.
As a unit, the Sharks have a .260 batting average with seven home runs, a .339 slugging percentage and a 3.65 earned run average. Sophomore catcher Nico Martinez-Bautista is enjoying a breakout season with three home runs, 10 RBI and a .262 batting average.
“We are mostly a team made up of freshmen,” Price said. “We have a lot of freshmen playing key positions but I see a team that wants to win. I see some leadership and at the end of the day, they’re trying to figure out how to come up.”
For now, the Sharks are focused on keeping their heads above water.
“I think we have to give it 100 percent,” said sophomore pitcher Collin Kiernan.“In every single pitch, every single at-bat, every single thing we do during the game.”
The Sharks’ next game will be away against Palm Beach State College on March 20 at 1 p.m.