The Emerson baseball team has missed nine consecutive games because of inclement weather and unplayable field conditions, and are predicted to have several more games postponed through the end of the month, posing a severe strain to the Lions’ on-field-chemistry from the season’s start.
The Lions were scheduled to play 40 games this season, but that number is likely to be reduced to 28, according to the Emerson Athletics website. The team is required to play a minimum of 25 games to be considered a varsity sport, and must complete or reschedule all Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) games.
The team has not played a baseball game since March 9, and has not faced a single game against a GNAC opponent this season, as the Lions have competed in all but two of their games against non-conference opponents in Myrtle Beach, S.C. during spring training.
The team currently has a record of 0-9.
Head coach Dave Hanley said losing nine straight games, and not being able to play more games, has negatively impacted the morale of the team.
“We lost some really close games against some really tough opponents,” Hanley said. “We have been sitting on this 0-9 record. We’re ready to go out and win a game, and we just want another opportunity to get out there, but we can’t, so it certainly brings the team down.”
Hanley also said that practicing in the Bobbi Brown and Steven Plofker Gym further compromises the team’s readiness, as players are unable to practice fundamentals like catching fly balls and fielding ground balls off dirt.
Brandon Topp, a pitcher and senior writing, literature and publishing major, said the bad weather has created time to reflect on the team’s performance and refocus its efforts for the remainder of the season.
“The way that I look at it is that it’s a chance to hit the reset button in order to come back out and play like the team we know we can be,” Topp said. “We just need to settle down as a team, and go out and just focus on playing baseball, and doing what we need to do to win.”
In the team’s nine out-of-conference games, the Lions have pitched an ERA of 9.77, and have allowed opposing hitters an average of .354. Comparatively, Emerson has a batting average of .222, and has averaged 3 runs a game, according to Emerson Athletic statistics.
Jesse Frankel, a freshman journalism major and a centerfielder, said that while the first few postponed games were beneficial, the team is now eager to start playing GNAC opponents.
“I think the first few days we had off were beneficial to some of the players that were worn down from Myrtle Beach, but now we just want to get out there and play some baseball,” Frankel said. “But you know, every team in the GNAC is in the same boat, so we can’t use it as an excuse. We need to just practice what we can and win some games.”
All conference games have been postponed until March 23.
The team’s next game is scheduled, weather permitting, for March 23 against Newbury College. The Lion’s first GNAC game is scheduled against Lasell on March 29.