New Hampshire Hardball

Ivy League media poll released

PRINCETON, N.J. — The Ivy League office announced the results of its 2019 Baseball Preseason Media Poll on Monday with Dartmouth pegged to finish where it ended up last year — third. Yale, last year’s regular-season champion, sat atop the poll with 11 first-place votes and 122 points while the winner of the Ivy League Championship Series (ILCS), Columbia, received the other five first-place votes to claim second with 113 points.

The Big Green received 88 points to beat out Penn (79) for third, while Harvard (72) Princeton (41), Cornell (34) and Brown (27) rounded out the poll.

Dartmouth narrowly missed out on its 12th trip to the ILCS last year, ending up a mere half a game behind Columbia in the standings due to a tie at Penn, the first for the Big Green in conference play in 36 years. Had Dartmouth won that game, it would have tied the Lions for second place and advanced to the ILCS having defeated Columbia in the best-of-three series earlier in the season.

Although the Big Green lost the 2018 Ivy League Player of the Year, outfielder Dustin Shirley, to graduation, they still return seven starters in the field from last year’s squad that finished first or second in the league in the three slash stats — batting (.272, first), on-base percentage (.352, second) and slugging (.379, second). Not only does the entire infield return that helped the team boast a .981 fielding percentage in conference play, but so does junior center fielder Trevor Johnson after missing all but three games a year ago following a strong rookie campaign in 2017.

The pitching staff will have to replace two of its three weekend starters, but senior Cole O’Connor (5-4, 4.50 ERA) will anchor the rotation. Head coach Bob Whalen will need some of his younger charges to step up into bigger roles this season to help improve upon the team’s 5.93 ERA, though that number dropped by a full run in conference play.

Dartmouth opens the 2019 campaign next week with a four-game series at UTSA in San Antonio, Texas. Opening night will be Friday at 6 p.m. local time (7 p.m. Eastern).

2019 Ivy League Baseball Preseason Media Poll
Place Team (first-place votes) Points
1. Yale (11) 122
2. Columbia (5) 113
3. Dartmouth 88
4. Penn 79
5. Harvard 72
6. Princeton 41
7. Cornell 34
8. Brown 27

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