FROM CBD NEWS SOURCE
CLEVELAND, Ohio – 2013 Regular Season Champion Kent State was picked to repeat as MAC East Division & Tournament Champions, the Mid-American Conference announced Wednesday. Ball State, last year’s MAC Tournament runner-up was picked to win the West Division. The Flashes garnered four votes to win this year’s MAC Tournament, while Ball State garnered three votes to win the Tournament crown and NCAA automatic bid. Bowling Green, Central Michigan, Eastern Michigan, Miami and Toledo each received one vote to win the Tournament. The preseason poll was voted on by the league’s 12 Head Coaches.
The Golden Flashes finished last season with a 36-23 overall record and posted a 20-7 league mark. First year Head Coach Jeff Duncan will bring in 10 newcomers to this year’s squad and will welcome 15 letter-winners back from a year ago. Among those returning for the Golden Flashes include All-MAC First Team relief pitcher Brian Clark and All-MAC Second Team selection Sawyer Polen.
Kent State was followed by 2013 MAC Tournament Champion Bowling Green in the East. Buffalo was selected to finish in third, while Miami was tabbed to place fourth. Akron and Ohio rounded out this year’s East Division predictions.
Ball State ended the 2013 season with a 31-24 overall record and managed a 15-12 MAC mark. The Cardinals finished second in the MAC West Division and advanced to the MAC Tournament Championship Game. Sophomore pitcher Scott Baker was named the MAC Pitcher of the Year, while Billy Wellman was named to the All-MAC First Team and Sean Godfrey to the all-league second team. Baker ranked fifth in the nation in victories and was named the MAC Pitcher of the Week five times in 2013.
Central Michigan was picked to finish second in the West Division and was followed by Toledo in third place. Northern Illinois, Eastern Michigan and Western Michigan rounded out the remaining sports in the West. The MAC baseball season begins on Friday, February 14th, while conference play starts up Friday, March 21st. The season will culminate with the MAC Baseball Tournament, which takes place May 21-25 at All Pro Freight Stadium in Avon, Ohio.
2014 MAC Baseball Preseason Poll
East Division Predictions
1. Kent State — 71 points (11 First Place)
2. Bowling Green — 52 points
3. Buffalo — 50 points
4. Miami — 36 points (1)
5. Akron — 24 points
6. Ohio — 19 points
West Division Predictions
1. Ball State — 57 points (4 First Place)
2. Central Michigan — 56 points (3)
3. Toledo — 54 points (4)
4. Northern Illinois — 43 points (1)
5. Eastern Michigan — 27 points
6. Western Michigan — 15 points
Tournament Champions: Kent State (4), Ball State (3), Bowling Green (1), Central Michigan (1), Eastern Michigan (1), Miami (1), Toledo (1)