Perry’s baseball team has already been hard at work hoping to improve on last season’s 7-21.
So far the current season seems much improved, as the Bluejays (2-4) recorded their first win in their first four games.
Their first win mimics that of last season, when that squad earned their first victory with a 5-2 win over Raccoon River Conference opponents, the Carroll Tigers.
It was almost a deja vu scenario for the home Bluejays on May 30, when they captured a 7-2 win against those same Tigers.
Albeit, the one game improvement wasn’t cause for a celebration, but this squad has been able to stay close to their competitors.
In their first four games, the Bluejays were outscored 17-11, including the first win. Last season they were outgunned, 19-6, all losses.
One thing that might be a key to success, if not this season but for the future, is the number of underclassmen the squad returns.
The 2018 Bluejays return five seniors and a combination of three juniors, four sophomores and three freshmen.
Two of those returning to the fold are senior Brandon Kenyon and junior Kaleb Olejniczak.
The former was third on the team in batting average with a 345. The latter was fourth with a .318.
Those two will be looked at to replace the offensive production from last season seniors, Janier Puente and Kyle Nevitt.
Puente batted .361 with three home runs, 23 RBIs, on 30 hits. Nevitt averaged a .357 with two home runs, 20 RBIs.
Defensively, the Bluejays will look to seniors Alexis Garrido and Austin Carpenter as well as sophomore Avery Meister to mow down the competition.
During the 2016-2017 season, Garrido made seven starts and finished with a 3-4 record. In 42 and 2/3 innings, he struck out 27, walked 20, and had a 4.43 ERA.
Carpenter didn’t make any start but seven times came on in relief. He finished with a 0-1 record, struck out 10, and walked nine in 17 and 2/3 innings.