The Marlins are celebrating their 10th anniversary this season and doing so in fine fashion.
Heading into their Tuesday night game, Morehead City was smoking, winning 12 straight games and posting the best record in the Coastal Plain League with a 20-7 mark.
No other team in the collegiate wood-bat league had won 20 games, and no other team had registered a .700 winning percentage like the Marlins’ .741 mark.
The Savannah Bananas, who had won six straight games and were 18-8 (.692), were the only team close to Morehead City.
The defending Coastal Plain League champion is good at almost everything.
They Marlins have got the best pitching staff in the league, ranking first in ERA (2.61) and strikeouts (315). Compare those numbers to those that rank second in each department. The Bananas’ ERA is 0.77 higher, while the Fayetteville SwampDogs have a whopping 64 less strikeouts.
The numbers continue to be ridiculous.
Check these out: 20 pitchers have thrown at least an inning for the team this season. Seven of those have an ERA under 1.00. Three of them have a 0.00 ERA, including Ryan Loutus (Washington-St. Louis) in 10 innings, Cal Hehnke (Nebraska-Oklahoma) in 9 2/3 innings and Kenny Wells (Seton Hill) in 7 2/3.
Loutus has struck out 15 and walked one, while Hehnke has struck out 17 and walked just two.
Leo Perez (Texas A&M-Corpus Christi) leads the team in wins (three) and saves (three) while ranking second in innings pitched (20 2/3 innings) and sports a 0.44 ERA.
If it’s strikeout-to-walk ratios that impress you, check out those of Tyler Blomster (Colorado School of Mines) and Eric Miles (Presbyterian). Both have walked just three while Blomster has struck out 40 and Miles has fanned 30.
Connor Schultz (Butler) and Doug Smith (Toledo) have also been standouts. Schultz has a 1.45 ERA in 18 2/3 innings, and Smith has a 1.99 ERA in 22 2/3 innings.
Pitchering numbers like those would probably be enough to put Morehead City atop the Coastal Plain League, but the team is also no slouch at the plate.
The Marlins rank in the top six of eight hitting categories, standing second in runs (171), third in on-base percentage (.376), fourth in slugging (.394), triples (eight) and extra-base hits (67), fifth in average (.266), sixth in doubles (41) and tied for sixth in home runs (18).
They’re also second in stolen bases (78).
Jack Harris (San Francisco State) has proven to be one of the best hitters in the league, ranking fourth in average (.358), on-base percentage (.474) and slugging (.663). He ranks third in RBIs (23), tied for third in doubles (eight) and tied for eighth in home runs (five). If that isn’t enough, he’s tied for first in both triples (three) and extra-base hits (16).
Jordan Schulefand (Richmond) is 20th in average (.316), eighth in on-base percentage (.441) and 32nd in slugging (.421) while ranking fourth in stolen bases (19).
Daniel Little (Richmond) is 41st in average (.265), 49th in slugging (.349) and tied for 27th in RBIs (14), Dusty Baker (East Carolina) is 21st in home runs (three) and tied for 35th in extra-base hits (seven), Hunter Shepherd (Catawba) is tied for 28th in RBIs (15), and Blaze Glenn (Youngstown State) is tied for 37th in RBIs (14) and tied for 15th in doubles (six).
Baker doesn’t have enough at-bats to qualify among the league leaders in averages, which is a shame, seeing that he’s hitting .500 in 15 games with a .585 on-base percentage and a .810 slugging percentage.
Hunter Nabors (Ole Miss) and Camden Williamson (North Carolina A&T State) haven’t gotten enough at-bats to qualify either, but they’ve both shined in limited duty with Nabors hitting .357 in 10 games and Williamson hitting .341 in 16.
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