Even without Kyle Lewis in the middle of the lineup, the Mercer baseball team’s offense hasn’t missed a beat.
Lewis was the Golden Spikes Award winner last year and became the first Mercer player to be drafted in the first round while helping lead the Bears to the Southern Conference regular-season title. But even without Lewis, the Bears’ offense has gotten off to another hot start with a deep and experienced lineup.
Craig Gibson’s team, which is 14-4, is batting .316 and averaging 9.0 runs per game. The Bears travel to East Carolina this weekend.
“We’re off to great start. We’ve got a good record, and everybody kind of has good numbers,” senior catcher Charlie Madden said. “Like Coach always says, I don’t think we’ve played our best baseball yet, which you kind of don’t want to right now. Even not playing our best baseball, we’ve still put a great season together so far.”
Madden has played a key role in that. He is batting .323 with eight home runs and 23 RBI, but he’s not the only player who is off to a strong start. Mercer has six players batting better than .300, and the Bears have 31 home runs.
“It’s kind of what we thought it would be, and it’s exciting to kind of see it come to fruition and everything and everybody jell together,” Madden said. “Everybody understands their role and you don’t have to do more than you’re supposed to do. It takes some pressure off you.”
Danny Edgeworth leads the Bears with a .392 average, and he has three home runs and 17 RBI. Alex Hanson (.333), Trey Truitt (.327), JT Thomas (.317) and Hunter Bening (.302) are also batting better than .300.
“We’ve got a lot of seniors and a lot of veterans in our lineup,” Edgeworth said. “There’s not any sort of lull in our lineup at all. One through nine, everyone can hit the ball around a little bit, and we like to think that everybody in our lineup can put the ball out of the park at any given moment.”