Press-Republican

PSU Sports

February 20, 2013

Young squad, exciting outlook for 2013 Cardinals

(Continued)

The Cardinals will be especially new up the middle.

Two newcomers — freshman Kevin Briggs and junior transfer John Casten — are battling it up to start behind the plate.

“Briggs can hit with power, but we’re looking to get improved defense at the catching position,” Doorey said.

As of right now, three local former standouts will play shortstop, second base and center field.

Latulipe will be the shortstop, while former Saranac standout Ben Weightman has the nod at second. Former Beekmantown standout infielder Luke Weaver is slated to get the start in center.

“We’ve had success with local kids who want to put in the time and effort to become better players,” Doorey said. “They’re good baseball players.”

Freshman J.D. Springer is also in the mix in the middle infield.

Either Pescetti or Brighton will play first base, while the third-base duties will be handled by junior Shane Houppert, a transfer from Jefferson Community College.

The outfield alignment will include freshman newcomer Mat Chavez in left, Weaver in center and Vargues in right.

“Weaver and Chavez are very fast in the outfield,” Doorey said.

Pitchers returning from last year who will be counted on include seniors Marc Plante, Brian Burns, Mike Doughtie and Kyle Kelly.

Vargues, sophomore Corey Grossman and senior Steven Corea will also see some time on the mound.

Sophomore Rafael Ponce, freshman Scott Orr and junior Colin Crawford are among the newcomers who are expected to contribute.

Plante, Burns, Kelly and Ponce are the leading contenders for starting jobs as the season opens up.

“Our rotation still isn’t set,” Doorey said. “That’s why we play these early games to get an idea of where we stand.”

Doorey considers just having all the new faces a team strength.

“I consider the newness of the team a strength,” he said. “There are no expectations other than to go out there and do your best, and put your best effort forward.

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