BASEBALL PREVIEW: Numbers good, experience low for Lakers team
The Detroit Lakes baseball team won't be short on numbers, but it will be on experience.
Losing almost their entire infield and a couple of their top pitchers off of last year's Section final four team, the Lakers will have to rely on a bunch of players who have not seen the varsity playing level much.
"We have a lot of guys equal in talent, so there will be a lot of competition for those open spots," said DL head coach Steve Fuhs. "It may take over half the season to see who will be our regular starters."
The Lakers pitching staff will be led by senior Ben Gailfus and Kyle Singer, who both came on strong for DL's playoff push last year.
After those two, there will be plenty of arms, but not a lot of seasoning.
"We are inexperienced after Kyle and Ben, with seniors Travis Dorff and Stefan Boehm seeing some time last year," Fuhs said. "After that, we have up to five or six juniors who will fill out the staff, so whoever is throwing strikes, will get into the rotation."
One reliable position will be catcher, where junior Kirk McLeod will anchor the infield and the pitching staff. McLeod was the full-time starter last year, as well during the Legion summer season, so he has plenty of knowledge behind the plate.
Senior Brian Labat returns at first base and will give the Lakers some pop in the lineup, while seniors Casey Fonder and Aaron Marsh each return after solid junior seasons.
Singer also will help up the middle in centerfield.
The other returning infielder is senior second baseman Jake Johnson, while junior Taylor Magnuson gained some experience last summer during Legion.
"We have three to four guys at every position and 13 to 14 juniors out, so our numbers are good," Fuhs added. "I think we can have a good, solid team, but we'll find out as the season goes on."
The Lakers open the season at Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton Tuesday, April 10, and will have their home opener Tuesday, April 17, against Mid-State Conference foe Crosby-Ironton.
The 2012 Detroit Lakes baseball schedule:
10 at Dilworth-G-F
13 at Fergus Falls
24 at Park Rapids
1 at Wadena-Deer Creek
8 at Pequot Lakes
11 Pelican Rapids
17 at Hawley
24 Thief River Falls
31 Section Play-in
2 Section quarterfinals
5 Section semifinals
8 Section finals
14-15 State tournament.