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Countdown To Opening Day

Feb. 19, 2008

The Georgia Tech baseball team opens the 2008 season Feb. 22 vs. Youngstown State. Every day, leading up to the first pitch, a Yellow Jacket player blogs about the upcoming season.Today’s blog is by senior RHP Brad Rulon.

The season is almost here… three more days. I am very excited for the season to start on Friday and I know the rest of the team feels the same way. This is my fourth year and I have not been on a team with half the chemistry and work ethic (as this one). The drive and determination are definitely there. This team is eager to start out strong and get last years disappointing season behind us.

We are having so much fun it makes me realize how good we really have it. Playing baseball for Georgia Tech is a privilege that we sometimes may take for granted. I am trying to take a step back and really enjoy my last year.

Today was a short practice since we were not scheduled to intrasquad scrimmage. We stretched out, did some defensive work, and then had a good BP to end the day.

We all miss Coach Mo(randa), but Coach (Tom) Kink(elaar), (Bryan) Prince, and (Matt) White have really made us better. They are the main reason we are loose and having so much fun. They truly are player’s coaches and know the game.

Everybody has impressed me this fall and early spring but here are some guys that have really stood out to me. The two tall guys, (David) Duncan and (Eddie) Burns, are legitimate aces. I’ll take those two against anyone in the country, and I expect (Zach) Von Tersch to be right there with them. Chris Hicks has electric stuff and will dominate as a closer. There’s not one guy on the staff that won’t help us win this year.

It’s harder for me to analyze the position guys since I’m just a non-athlete (pitcher), but here’s what has stood out to me… I am amazed at how much the younger guys all improved. (Jason) Haniger has worked hard and it shows, he is primed for a breakout year. I like the swagger that (Derek) Dietrich brings to our team, something I think we got away from at times last year.

The outfield is so crowded with talent you can’t really go wrong with any of those guys. (Luke) Murton crushed the ball all fall and he has picked up right where he left off this spring. Charlie Blackmon has impressed me so much as a position guy. I can’t wait to see what kind of year he has, and no doubt it will be great with the athleticism he brings to the lineup. It should be exciting to watch.

On a lighter note, it looks like the doubles team of Feltes/Haniger continues to dominate Garofalo/Dantzler in Mario Tennis (You’re brutal G)…. We also got a new sound system for the locker room courtesy of Matt Wieters (thanks, buddy). The only person who seemed to disapprove of the huge speakers in each corner was Coach (Danny) Hall, but I’m sure he will come around. Now if we can just get (equipment manager) Walt (Smith) to give us our new cleats, we’ll be ready to go.

I look forward to seeing everyone at Russ Chandler this year, and thanks for all the support. Three days until the season opener…. GO JACKETS!!

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