Why baseball’s strong start?

After+playing+at+Central+Michigan+at+3%3A05+p.m.+ET+on+April+6%2C+Oakland+baseball+plays+a+three-game+series+at+home+against+Youngstown+State+on+Friday-Sunday%2C+April+8-10.%C2%A0
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Why baseball’s strong start?

After playing at Central Michigan at 3:05 p.m. ET on April 6, Oakland baseball plays a three-game series at home against Youngstown State on Friday-Sunday, April 8-10. 

After playing at Central Michigan at 3:05 p.m. ET on April 6, Oakland baseball plays a three-game series at home against Youngstown State on Friday-Sunday, April 8-10. 

After playing at Central Michigan at 3:05 p.m. ET on April 6, Oakland baseball plays a three-game series at home against Youngstown State on Friday-Sunday, April 8-10. 

After playing at Central Michigan at 3:05 p.m. ET on April 6, Oakland baseball plays a three-game series at home against Youngstown State on Friday-Sunday, April 8-10. 

Katlynn Emaus

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The baseball team has a 4-2 conference record. Compare this to a 5-24 conference record last season.

One thing the team has done differently this year is play 12 games on the West Coast to begin the season.

“The West Coast trip was great in so many ways,” senior shortstop Mike Brosseau wrote in an email. “Obviously, to be able to actually get outside and play ball is always exciting, but at the same time, we grew as a ball club.  We soon found out what we needed to work on and found our own identity as a team.”

Head coach John Musachio explained that the coaching staff worked on creating a more collaborative environment on the field this year.

“Obviously the coaching staff make certain decisions independently of student athletes input, but many of our decisions involve coaches and players discussing details together and, in many cases, the young men make the final decisions,” Musachio wrote in an email.

Musachio wrote that the pitchers have been focusing on trust and strengthening their presence on the mound.

“We knew we needed to make big strides on the mound to improve as a program, and that starts with commanding the fastball,” Musachio wrote. “This past fall, our pitchers were only allowed to throw their fastball during the first month of team practice.  I think this gave many of our guys a platform to really trust while out on the ‘island’ competing.  A lot of times, pitchers have a tendency to pitch away from contact.  I like to think this helped our pitchers trust themselves enough to commit to pitching to contact.”

“This team is relentless.  We truly expect to win every time we step between the lines,” Brosseau wrote, “Everybody has bought into our system and has accepted their role on the team.”

Musachio was not surprised with the early success of this team, which he credits to leadership.

“At the end of the day, the best teams are the ones who have players holding each other accountable,” Musachio wrote. “We are unique in that we’ve had to face adversity we feel most programs haven’t had to face. … When people respond in a positive way…in a way that drives them to be better…I think that is pretty special.”

The baseball season is 58-games long. Brosseau wrote that the team plans on “doing what we can to win each day, whether that is at practice or a game, it doesn’t matter.”

After playing at Central Michigan at 3:05 p.m. ET on April 6, Oakland baseball plays a three-game series at home against Youngstown State on Friday-Sunday, April 8-10. Game times are 3:00 p.m., 1:00 p.m. and 12:00 p.m., respectively.