NORFOLK, Virginia -- The Norfolk State Spartans and Bethune-Cookman Wildcats were predicted to win the 2017 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) baseball northern and southern divisions, respectively, the conference announced today.
All preseason honors were voted on by the conference’s head coaches and sports information directors.
Bethune-Cookman’s Danny Rodriguez was selected as the conference’s Preseason Player of the Year, while teammate Tyler Norris earned Preseason Pitcher of the Year accolades.
Rodriguez, the 2016 MEAC Rookie of the Year, led the Wildcats in hits (69) and RBIs (46); he was second in the MEAC in RBIs, tied for second in home runs and tied for fourth in hits. He recorded 224 at-bats with 10 doubles and 10 home runs, with 38 runs scored, last season. Defensively, he notched a .986 fielding percentage.
Norris earned Second Team All-MEAC honors last season after appearing in 15 games and recording six wins, including one shutout, in 69.2 innings pitched. He ranked first in the MEAC in games started (14), second in wins (6), and fourth in strikeouts (71).
Norfolk State was the 2016 MEAC Northern Division champion. The Spartans finished the season with a 29-21 overall record and a 19-5 MEAC mark.
Delaware State was picked to finish second, followed by Coppin State and Maryland Eastern Shore to round out the Northern Division.
The Bethune-Cookman Wildcats, defending MEAC Baseball Tournament champions, posted a 29-27 overall record and a 17-7 MEAC mark last season.
Florida A&M was predicted to finish second in the Southern Division, followed by North Carolina Central, Savannah State and North Carolina A&T State.
Rodriguez (B-CU) and Norris (B-CU) are joined by Brian Beard (NSU), Brian Davis (FAMU), Denathan Dukes (NSU), Ben Ellzey (FAMU), Jonathan Mauricio (NSU), Alex Mauricio (NSU) Willis McDaniel (FAMU), Adan Ordonez (NCAT), Carlos Ortiz (NCCU), Tim Ravare (NCAT) and Demetrius Sims (B-CU) on the 2017 Preseason All-MEAC First Team.
The 2017 MEAC Baseball Championship Tournament is scheduled for May 17-20 at Perdue Stadium in Salisbury, Md.
|Northern Division||Southern Division|
|Norfolk State (15) 69||Bethune-Cookman (10) 82|
|Delaware State (1) 51||Florida A&M (6) 74|
|Coppin State (2) 32||North Carolina Central (1) 53|
|Maryland Eastern Shore 28||Savannah State (1) 33|
|North Carolina A&T State 28|
2017 MEAC Baseball Preseason All-MEAC Teams
As voted on by the conference’s head coaches and sports information directors
Preseason Player of the Year: Danny Rodriguez, Bethune-Cookman
Preseason Pitcher of the Year: Tyler Norris, Bethune-Cookman