The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor baseball team is picked to finish 12th in the American Southwest Conference in the league’s annual Preseason Coaches and Media Poll. The ASC will continue play as a single, 13-team conference again this year with both Belhaven University and U.T.-Tyler ineligible to compete in the conference tournament.
The Cru totaled 56 points in balloting of ASC coaches, sports information directors and selected media representatives Concordia Texas claimed 17 first-place votes and 290 total points as the pick to win the ASC. U.T.-Dallas came in second with seven first-place votes and 273 total points and Sul Ross State received the other first place vote and 221 points to finish third. East Texas Baptist is picked fourth with 207 points, Hardin-Simmons holds down the #5 spot with 194 total points, Ozarks is picked sixth with 172 total points, LeTourneau University is picked seventh with 151 points and Howard Payne and Louisiana College share eighth place with 115 total points. McMurry University was picked 10th with 83 points and Belhaven University is picked 11th with 77 points. Defending national champion U.T.-Tyler was not eligible for voting with the Patriots transitioning to NCAA Division II.
UMHB outfielder Landon Dieterich and pitcher Cameron Whitman were named to the ASC Preseason Watch List. Dieterich, a junior from Riesel High School, batted .254 with three home runs and 19 RBI last season. Whitman, a freshman from Belton High School, will be counted on to make an immediate impact on the UMHB pitching staff.
The Cru finished 10-29 overall and went 6-18 in ASC play last season. The Cru expects to return 19 letter winners from that team this season. UMHB will open the 2019 campaign against Texas Lutheran University in Grand Prairie on February 8th.