WASHINGTON - The Georgetown University baseball team opens the season on Friday, Feb. 16 when it travels to Wake Forest University. As the first pitch of the 2018 campaign draws closer, GUHoyas.com will take an in-depth look at each of the team’s position groups. This edition looks at GU’s relief pitchers.
“The back end of our bullpen will be competitive with any team in the BIG EAST,” Georgetown Pitching Coach Eric Niesen said. “We have a strong mix of freshmen and returners that will add depth and help bridge the gap from the starter to the late-inning guys.”
The Hoyas turn to a trio of pitchers at the back end of the bullpen. Senior Jimmy Swad (Washington, D.C./St. Albans) led the staff with six saves last season, while also compiling a 3-2 record and 2.51 ERA in 32.1 innings pitched. He finished with 42 strikeouts, setting a program record with 11.69 strikeouts per nine innings.
Conor Cuse (Sherman Oaks, Calif./Harvard-Westlake/Stanford), a graduate student transfer from Stanford University, and left-handed sophomore Brent Killam (Nokomis, Fla./Venice) will also be called upon for the late innings. Killam, who went 2-1 with a 4.26 ERA and 26 strikeouts in 19.0 innings last year, was dominant in the Northwoods League over the summer, registering a 0.37 ERA with nine saves and 42 strikeouts to just two walks in 24.1 innings.
The Blue & Gray will look to a mixture of returners and newcomers to help bridge the game to the late innings. Junior Jack Cushing (Flower Mound, Texas/Marcus) and freshman Owen Lamon (Herndon, Va./Oakton) are battling for the third weekend starter position. Whoever does not start, will come out of the bullpen while likely starting most midweek games. Cushing made 14 starts in 2017 as a sophomore, tying for the team lead with six wins and recording a 4.80 ERA in 84.1 innings. He ranked second on the pitching staff in both innings pitched and with 79 strikeouts, which is also the second most in GU’s single-season history.
Senior Matt Randolph (Concord, N.H./Cannon School/Emory) and sophomore Jeremiah Burke (Delmar, N.Y./Bethlehem Central/La Salle Institute) will compete for more innings in 2018. Last season, the two combined to pitch 11.2 innings with six strikeouts.
A trio of freshmen will also work into the mix and look to earn innings for the Hoyas. Beau Dana (Marblehead, Mass./Deerfield Academy) and Michael Stupinski (River Forest, Ill./Fenwick), as well as lefty Jacob Grzebinski (Bellaire, Texas/Emery Weiner) will add to GU’s bullpen depth in 2018.
Georgetown opens its season on Friday, taking on Wake Forest at 4 p.m. at David F. Couch Ballpark. The Demon Deacons were a win away from reaching the College World Series last season, falling to the eventual national champions -- Florida. The Hoyas conclude the opening weekend with neutral-site matchups against Gardner-Webb on Saturday (4 p.m.) and Navy on Sunday (10 a.m.).