The Catonsville baseball team played three scrimmages on consecutive days two weeks ago in frigid temperatures, with gusts of wind that would make a knuckle ball pitcher salivate.
“It was dry, but brutal,” said coach Rich Hambor, who had his team practicing outside in similar conditions the next day. They were wearing sweatpants and hooded sweatshirts.
After that practice on March 23, Hambor was eager for the start of opening day, scheduled for March 30 against Manchester Valley, and he was not concerned about the weather.
“I’m never going to say the weather is a deterrent because we all have the same weather,” Hambor said. “I’m not concerned about anything. I’m excited. I’m looking forward to getting the season started.”
The Comets had to wait until today at home against Sparrows Point for that to happen.
Last week, except for one 60-degree day on Monday, weather put a halt to all practices for three straight days, because Baltimore County schools closed early on Tuesday and all day on Wednesday and Thursday, because of snow.
The game against Manchester Valley was postponed, but Hambor wasn’t overly concerned if they have to make up the game this week or if there are other games rescheduled because of the snow on the fields.
“Over those three scrimmages, we used 11 different pitchers, so I feel like right now we could do it,” Hambor said. “We could probably go 12 or 13 deep with guys who have pitched before in travel, but maybe not pitched in varsity games before. That’s going to be a huge help if schedules get backed up.”
The top four pitchers in the rotation include senior Carl Baker, juniors Cody Brick and Will Jones and senior Brenden Kehoe.
Baker had a 2-1 record in seven innings pitched last season, and Brick and Jones only pitched one inning each because the 9-8 Comets were led by the triple threat of graduated seniors Matt Rhoades (4-1, 1.98 earned run average), Joe Rubalcaba (3.13 e.r.a., 37 strikeouts in 38 innings) and Ross Kidd (1-0, 1.24 e.r.a.).