Saturday, March 25, 2006

On Deck: The Hippie in Game Three?

Save for Captain Morgan, really the only pitcher not to throw so far in Jacksonville has been senior Matt Brunnig, suggesting the shaggy-haired Floridian whom Sky Mann playfully calls the "hippie" may get the start in Sunday's series finale at 1 pm.

Let us know if you know otherwise, but assuming we're not misreading the situation and Brunnig does get the ball, this bodes as a potentially impactful appearance from Harvard's 6'6 question mark. It's no secret that skipper Joe Walsh is still auditioning pitchers for at least two of the coveted weekend starter roles, and with the Ivy League season less than a week away, now is really the time to make an impression.

Coming off a solid relief appearance last weekend against New York Tech, Brunnig seems positioned to earn the right to start against either Cornell or Princeton next weekend if he turns in an impressive outing tomorrow.

Since his rookie year, Brunnig has been hyped as a special talent, with all-Ivy potential. With Cole and Haviland struggling this weekend and only certain elements of the bullpen inspiring confidence so far, Brunnig could emerge as a difference-maker this season. More than a few times in the recent past, we've seen a Harvard pitcher go from unknown quantity to go-to guy in his senior season. Also working in Brunnig's favor is the fact that he has traditionally been one of the team's more reliable strike-throwers--so far this year, he's got just one walk in over five innings of work.

Long story short, he is definitely capable of replicating--or even surpassing--his rookie year success in 2006. We're rooting for him.

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