Union County’s baseball program is bursting at the seams with 28 players ready to take the field.

“That means there will be 14 on each team (varsity and JV) and a lot of really good kids that are right in the middle,” UC coach Jordan Ashbrook said. “So it will be a very fluid roster this year. Have a lot of guys that we want to see what they can do at the varsity level.”

The Patriots scrimmaged at Franklin County last week.

“It went all right. You could tell we hadn’t played in two years,” Ashbrook said.
Ashbrook hired on as coach last year just about the time COVID-19 canceled high school sports events.

“I was encouraged by two things - we ran the bases very well and Mason Hornung really looked good on the mound.”

Mason Wicker and Eric Burdine are expected to handle catcher duties.
“Wicker threw the first guy out at scrimmage,” Ashbrook said. “So from then on, they didn’t try anything.”

Hitting?
“We have some big boys and hope by the end of the season we will see some of these guys hit with some pretty decent power,” Ashbrook said. “Right now we are concentrating on situational hitting. Any time we can put pressure on the man on the mound is a good situation. So we are definitely going to move runners into scoring position.”

The Patriots’ coaching staff of specialists apply their own talents and knowledge to put the best team on the field.

“I can’t be any more happy with my coaching staff,” Ashbrook said. “I have a position coach for each position on the field.”

Ashbrook works with pitchers, Mark Mathews handles the infield duties, Luke Tipton knows the outfielders and Ron Webb looks after catchers.

The Patriots open the season at Bill Webb Field this Saturday with a double-header with the Shenandoah Raiders.

“Shenandoah is also a sectional opponent,” Ashbrook said. “I’m really anxious to see what they have this year. It should be a good game.”