Senior staff writer
The overall outlook for high school baseball on the Southside shows improved pitching, solid hitters and more speed on the bases.
Leaders on the mound are Tulane University recruit Jacob Cantleberry of Center Grove, Brown University recruit Dusty Baird of Perry Meridian, Michael McAvene of Roncalli and Krae Sparks of Greenwood Christian Academy.
Most Southside coaches see their teams creating runs on base hits rather than slamming homers. Perry Meridian’s Mitchell Garrity (Purdue recruit), Center Grove’s shortstop Joey Drury and catcher Will Smithey, Greenwood’s Dylan Rosado and Jackson Daugherty, Roncalli shortstop Jacob Franklin (Missouri recruit) and GCA’s Nate Weems are among the area’s top hitters.
Center Grove, Lutheran and GCA return to action as defending sectional champions.
Roncalli, winners of 25 games last year, is ranked among the top 20 teams in 4A in the preseason coaches poll.
This year’s outlook:
Beech Grove will sting with contact instead of power
Center Grove must replace runs to repeat as MIC champions
Franklin Central depends on pitching
Greenwood plans to attack with speed and defense
Greenwood Christian looks to defend sectional crown
Lutheran is once again a sectional threat
Manual aims for improvement
Perry Meridian has power at the mound
Roncalli loaded with 10 seniors
Southport baseball has bigger expectations