Introducing the inaugural Cal State Omaha college baseball poll. Each week on Mondays during the regular season, we will update the poll rankings.
Mix of returners and talented newcomers makes Vandy the team everyone will be chasing in 2019.
2. Texas Tech
Red Raiders look poised for a return trip to Omaha two years in a row.
Things are looking up in Westwood and the Bruins look to get back to Omaha for the first time since 2013.
Bullpen the only weakness for the Tigers seeking their seventh CWS title.
5. East Carolina
The Pirates hosted a Regional in 2018 and return most of their squad. That experience and confidence looks like a trip to Omaha could be in the cards for ECU.
Every year a Big 10 team comes alive and surprises everyone and sneaks into the national conversation. The Wolverines is the 2019 Big 10 team to do it.
7. Cal State Fullerton
Offense will be much improved with more thump in the Titans bats coming from new additions. If the pitching can mature quickly, look for Fullerton to make their 19th trip to Omaha.
8. Florida State
Can a stellar recruiting class send Mike Martin off into the Omaha sunset with an elusive national championship?
Gators lost two 1st round pitchers and an All-American closer to the MLB draft in 2018 but unproven hurlers could be better than last year’s arms.
10. Oklahoma State
The Cowboys will look to mash their way to Omaha if they can cut down on the strikeouts. Pitching looks improved over last year’s squad.
Hard to rank the Frogs lower just based on recent success. Failing to make the postseason in 2018 makes for great motivation for a talented returning group.
12. Oregon State
Beavers lost Pat Casey and half of the starting line-up plus arguably the best pitcher in college baseball in 2018. The defending national champions are bound to come back to earth but still are dangerous in 2019.
13. North Carolina
Veteran leadership should propel the Tar Heels to a solid season after suffering a heart breaking end to the 2018 season in Omaha.
14. Ole Miss
The Rebels junior class was ranked No. 1 by pundits two years ago. If they can live up to expectations, Oxford could be host to another regional.
Can a strong recruiting class along with a talented group of young arms get the Cardinals beyond the Regionals where they fell short last year?
Plenty of returners in Athens make the Bulldogs ready for a deep run in June but they will be lacking the traditional SEC power at the plate.
Instead of bashing their way into the postseason, the Tigers will need to be more creative to manufacture runs this year. Small ball in the ACC something of a trend?
18. Georgia Tech
Returning seven in the field and the Friday and Saturday night starters are back makes the Jackets a formidable out in the competitive ACC.
The Cardinal will put together a strong regular season and possibly host a regional but will flame out in the post-season… again.
Replacing six position players from last year’s squad that was one out away from a championship will be tough. Enough talent returns along with new additions to put the Hogs in contention for success.
Pitching should be better this year while competing in the tough ACC. Pitcher Graeme Stinson will hold down the Friday spot and get the Blue Devils off to a 1-0 start in ACC weekend series.
22. Coastal Carolina
Odds on favorite to win the Sun Belt Conference, the Chants could host another regional if newcomers and veterans can gel quickly.
23. UC Santa Barbara
The Gauchos seem to be hot and cold each year but led by Tommy Jew, UCSB could make the post-season as the second Big West Conference team.
Tony Vitello and staff are the same guys that recruited the Arkansas squad that went to the CWS finals. In year two, the Vols are much improved and could suprise in the SEC.
If pitching comes along to compliment a veteran infield, the Cats look to get back into the postseason despite last year’s snub.