Canisius College Golden Griffins

04/15/2014, 5:00pm EDT
By Canisius Stats Information Department; Photos By Tom Wolf

“We had a special season last year, and we can’t ignore that result. We still need to continue to grow as a program on a daily basis. There is a lot of depth on this team and guys who have had to wait their turn will be counted on to take the next step and become leaders for our program.” – Mike McRae, Head Coach

canisius-slideshow_largeWith more than 200 wins during the past six seasons, the bullseye on the back of the Canisius baseball uniform has always been present. After winning the program’s first conference championship in 2013 and playing in the NCAA Tournament for the first time, that bullseye got a little bit bigger.
While the 2014 edition of the Golden Griffins are looking forward and not focusing on the successes of the rearview mirror, this year’s team has a lot of experience to handle the pressure and a lot of depth in players who are waiting in the wings to get their chance to shine.
Canisius returns seven starting position players and 12 players who appeared in 29 or more games. The Griffs have three of their top four starting pitchers back along with five relievers who appeared in 10 or more games.
Jimmy Luppens hit a team-best .360 last year while Canisius ranked fourth in the country with a .416 on-base percentage. Canisius returns four infield starters as well as two starting outfielders, with competition for at-bats expected.
Alex Godzak earned Freshman All-American honors after going 8-3 with a 3.36 ERA and 66 strikeouts in 83 innings. Canisius will have to replace both their ace Garrett Cortright and closer Jon Fitzsimmons, who departed after signing MLB contracts at the end of their junior seasons. Junior Rohn Pierce looks to move into the weekend rotation after a strong end to the season and impressive fall practice. Iannick Remillard aims to take over at the back end of the bullpen.

Player Spotlight

Jesse Kelso played 58 games last year and made 53 starts while hitting .292 with 44 runs scored, 39 RBI and 12 stolen bases to earn All-MAAC First Team honors. Kelso also received Capital One Academic All-District Honors and has a 3.5 GPA while majoring in biology.
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