Pitching key to Landrum baseball season this year

Published 6:12 pm Thursday, February 24, 2011

For years, Landrum baseball has been a name to fear at all levels in Spartanburg County and South Carolina. The Cardinals dominated the last decade.

Landrum’s Hunter Pruitt throws the ball from second base at a practice on Monday.  (photo by Joey Millwood)

Those teams won with dominate pitching with names like Cassidy Pace, Dylan Davidson, Jonathan Tillotson, Justin Corn, Alex Burrell and Mark Cann, just to name a few.
The Cardinals finished at 11-15 overall last season, but finished second in the region with a 7-3 record. A return to that dominant force and being the favorite to win the region year-in and year-out will hinge on pitching once again.

“We have a lot of guys that can pitch, but they don’t have a bunch of experience,” second-year coach Ray McCallister said. “They will need to step up for us to be successful this season.”

Some pitchers who will get time on the mound will include Kaleb Kuykendall, Hunter Pruitt, Matt Pruitt, Joseph Corn and Andrew Smith. That group plus Jon Humphries, Gus Wofford and Thomas Rabatie return to lead Landrum this season.

Hitting will be somewhat of a mystery, McCallister said.

“With the new bats no one really knows yet how the hitting will go,” he said.

Either way to be successful, the formula is simple, he added. “We need to put the ball in play and be aggressive on the bases.
McCallister’s outlook is bright for this season and going forward.

“I expect us to compete for the region title and go deep in the playoffs,” he said. “I think we can return to the tradition that Landrum fans are used to seeing – competing for region championships and state championships.”