CLEVELAND, Ohio – The Miami University baseball team has been picked to finish second in the MAC East Division, according to the conference's preseason coaches poll released on Thursday morning.
Head coach Danny Hayden and the RedHawks return 23 players from a season ago, including 96 percent of their innings pitched, six position starters and every pitcher who made a start in 2016.
The top spot in the east division went to Kent State, last year's regular season champion, as they garnered 61 total points, five more than MU's 56. Ohio, Bowling Green and Buffalo close out the group with 44, 32, and 27 points, respectively.
Over in the west division, Ball State was tabbed first with 57 points, followed by Central Michigan at 49. Toledo (36), Northern Illinois (32), Western Michigan (31) and Eastern Michigan (26) round out the division.
Kent State racked up four votes to conclude the season as the MAC Tournament Champions, while Miami, Ball State, Central Michigan, Eastern Michigan, Northern Illinois, Toledo and Western Michigan each collected one vote.
The RedHawks open the season on Friday at 4 p.m. at Arkansas. Sophomore right-hander Cole Gnetz is slated to take the mound game one for MU. Fans can watch the game on SECNetwork+ and ESPN3. In order to receive the game on ESPN3, one must have SEC Network as part of their TV package.
MAC Preseason Coaches Poll
1. Kent State (9) – 61 points
2. Miami (1) – 56 points
3. Ohio – 44 points
4. Bowling Green (1) – 32 points
5. Buffalo – 27 points
1. Ball State (5) – 57 points
2. Central Michigan (2) – 49 points
3. Toledo (1) – 36 points
4. Northern Illinois (2) – 32 points
5. Western Michigan (1) – 31 points
6. Eastern Michigan – 26 points
*First place votes in parentheses