2016 looks bright for Maryland Baseball

Photo Courtesy: @TerpsBaseball

2016 looks to be a huge year for the reigning Los Angeles regional champions, Maryland Terrapins. With renovations to Shipley Field at Bob “Turtle” Smith stadium over the fall, and a preseason all-American behind the mound, things are continuing to look up for John Szefc in his fourth season under the helm.

In Szefc’s last two seasons as manager, the Terrapins have broken numerous school records, the biggest being their first postseason appearance in 43 years. In that same season, the Terrapins had their first ever 40-win season in program history. The season ending with Maryland grasping their highest ever final ranking at No.13 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll.

The wild thing is, that his squad would top those marks the following year. The 2015 team holds the record for most wins in a season with 43, while also securing their first ever back-to-back 40-win seasons, and first back-to-back trips to the Super Regionals. They did so by knocking out the national number one seed in the tournament, the UCLA Bruins, behind magnificent plays by LaMonte Wade throughout the series and stellar pitching and defense, allowing only four runs over the three game series.

The Terps have 19 players returning from that historic 2015 team, including the stellar Sophomore shortstop Kevin Smith and preseason all-American pitcher Mike Shawaryn. Smith was named to the first team Perfect Game Freshman All-American and recorded seven home runs and a team-high 11 stolen bases last season. Shawaryn was picked to the first team by D1Baseball.com and had the lowest era of the six pitchers placed on the first team with a 1.71 ERA. D1Baseball.com also picked the Terps to win the Big Ten conference title, a conference that sent five different teams to regionals last season, including the 50 win club in the Illinois Fighting Illini. The site also listed Shawaryn as the pitcher of the year in the conference.

Maryland just finished up their intrasquad match ups over the chilly weekend and are preparing to travel down to Tuscaloosa for a three game series with the Crimson Tide of Alabama starting on February 19th.