Going into the season, Indiana knew that it would have to develop it’s young pitching staff. Of the 17 pitchers on Indiana’s roster, six are freshman, four are sophomores, six are juniors and just one, Luke Stevenson, is a senior.
One of the many roles manager Chris Lemonis has to figure out is who will be the regular starter in Indiana’s midweek games this season. Midweek games give the Hoosiers opportunities to play some tough competition without having to play a full 3 game series. Midweek wins can add quality victories that can be put on a resumé for the NCAA tournament.
“They’re huge,” Lemonis said before the Hoosiers lost to Cincinnati 6-1 on Wednesday night. “Our midweeks are very competitive, especially with the part of the country where you can play a lot of good teams, and they’re resumé builders, and confidence builders. We want to play well during the week. We spend a lot of time talking about each individual game and how important it is.”
For the Cincinnati game, Lemonis started Cal Krueger (0-1, 1.42 ERA).
“We’re going to start Cal Krueger, so a freshman. Cal pitched really good down in Florida, a right handed pitcher from Jasper, and a really good competitor.”
Against Florida Atlantic, Krueger pitched two scoreless innings in relief, and only gave up one hit. Krueger had an interesting start against the Bearcats, as he gave up just 2 unearned runs on just 1 hit and 2 walks, but only pitched 3 innings.
While Krueger got the start Wednesday night, he will not be the only Hoosier to get a chance to start a midweek game.
“We’re so young so we’re trying to see guys, trying to get guys starts,” Lemonis said. “Cam Beauchamp (0-0, 0.00 ERA in 6 innings pitched) is one, one of our young guys. Andrew Saalfrank (0-0, 6.48 ERA) one. Paulie Milto (0-0, 3.18 ERA) could fall into that role too, so we got a couple of guys that could pitch and start for us.”
Even though Krueger only lasted three innings Wednesday night, Lemonis said that as long as he pitches well, he will get some more chances to start.
“I’m sure he’ll get some more starts as long as he pitches well, but we got some other guys we’re trying to mix in there as well,” Lemonis said. “We’re really trying to figure ourselves out a little bit.”
Indiana (3-4-1) will travel to Alabama this weekend for a three-game series with Samford.