LOUISVILLE, Ky. — The University of Rio Grande baseball team is picked to finish 10th in the Mid-South Conference according to the 2013 MSC preseason coaches poll released Monday by league officials.
The RedStorm received 25 points in the balloting of league coaches, who were not permitted to vote for their own team.
Head coach Brad Warnimont’s team finished 30-27 overall and 6-14 in conference play last season.
Among the returnees this season are senior 1B/OF Shane Spies, who batted .319 with 12 home runs, 21 doubles and 50 runs batted in; senior infielder Kyle Perez, who hit .332 with one home run, five doubles and 31 stolen bases; and junior pitcher Mike Deitsch, who posted a 5-6 record and a 3.33 earned run average in 15 appearances.
After capturing its first Mid-South Conference regular season baseball title in 2012, Lindsey Wilson is projected to repeat in 2013.
The Blue Raiders, who won the conference with a 17-4 mark last season, received 99 voting points from the conference coaches and nine of the 11 first-place votes.
Georgetown College, the 2012 MSC Tournament champions, were second in the balloting with 85 points and one of the two remaining first-place votes. Cumberland University, who begins its first season in the MSC as a full member since 2001, was third with 83 points and the final first-place vote.
Campbellsville University was predicted to finish fourth with 79 points and was followed by Shawnee State University with 57 points. St. Catharine was right on the Bears’ heels with 56 points and University of the Cumberlands was seventh with 49 points.
Mid-South newcomer Bluefield College ws eighth with 33 voting points, while UVA-Wise (29 points), Rio Grande and University of Pikeville (10) complete the 11-team poll.
The 2013 MSC baseball season begins in mid-February with conference play beginning later that month.