The University of Alabama baseball program released their 2021 roster on Friday. With the uncertainty surrounding everything, but in particular college football, let’s hope coach Brad Bohannon gets to build on last year’s success. In Bohannon’s shortened third season, the Tide raced out to a 16-1 record before the season was axed two days before conference play began.
With the circumstances of last season, the 2021 roster will include 21 freshmen, 10 sophomores, two juniors, and two seniors. Due to the Covid shortened season all players from last season retained the same class rankings. This leads to oddities like catcher Sam Praytor (The General) being a redshirt sophomore even though this will be his fourth year on campus. and pitcher Landon Green being a third year redshirt freshman.
Key losses for the Tide are outfielder Tyler Gentry who was drafted by the Kansas City Royals in the third round, All-American utility player Brett Auerbach who signed with the San Francisco Giants, pitcher Casey Cobb who signed with the Boston Red Sox, and two year starting shortstop Kolby Robinson.
Replacing those players will be 10 “new” freshmen, and three sophomores who came via the JUCO ranks. The 35 players come from 12 states and two countries. Sixteen of the guys are from Alabama, followed by four from Tennessee, three from Georgia, two from Canada, and one each from Arizona, California, Florida, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Missouri. New Jersey, Texas, and Wisconsin. Former Florida pitcher Hunter Ruth joined the team this year from Palm Beach State CC. Highly regarded Davis Heller from Gilbert, AZ comes in from South Mountain CC as a 6’9” pitcher and first baseman with a ton of upside. True freshmen of note include the player of the year from Alabama in P/INF Dylan Ray, player of the year from Indiana, infielder Brett Eblin, and player of the year from Missouri, pitcher Jake Eddington.
Pitching coach Jason Jackson will have 18 pitchers to work with, including four that are listed as two way players. Sophomore Tyler Ras is a right handed pitcher mostly but has played some first base and right field as well as designated hitter. Incoming freshman Ray is a right handed pitcher and an infielder. Grayson Hitt is an incoming freshman mostly noted for his powerful left arm, but also plays outfield. The aforementioned Heller is a right handed pitcher that can drop bombs as a first baseman/designated hitter.
The typical fall practice and scrimmage schedule in definitely in peril at this point with all the unknown brought on by the pandemic. Hopefully Coach Bohannon and his troops will be able to prepare for the season as normally as possible and will get to have a full spring season to continue the upward trend of the Alabama baseball program. The first step to any sport going forward will be a successful start and completion of the football season. Without the football money all sports at the University will suffer greatly.
Bama Baseball Fever, Catch It