In our continued effort to hopefully impart onto you a little bit of knowledge on just who exactly comprises the 2012 Ole Miss Rebel baseball team, we at the Cup would like to take a look at the guy Mike Bianco is counting on to win the ever important Friday night SEC matchups - sophomore pitcher Bobby Wahl.
A Virginia native, Bobby Wahl is worked primarily out of the bullpen as a closer during his freshman season, but he, despite youth and (relative) inexperience, has progressed well enough to earn the most importent spot in the Rebel rotation. His stats from last season aren't exactly eyepoppoing, however. He posted just an 0-2 record with a 4.80 ERA after only 30 innings of pitching. He earned four saves - one over Arkansas State, the other three over Kentucky and Auburn - struck out 26, walked 11, and gave up 33 hits. His opponents batted .270 against him, which isn't at all bad for a true freshman working as a closer.
Where he drew most of his praise as a collegiate player, though, was in the Cape Cod league this past summer. Brian Foley, the editor of CollegeBaseballDaily.com and one of this week's guests on Red Cup Radio (download the Rebel Sports Radio app or visit Rebelsportsradio.com to listen), was impressed by Wahl's showing for the Cotuit Kettleers (Nope. I don't know what that is either.) enough to name him to his list of the top overall college baseball players. For the Kettleers, happeared in 16 games, going 1-1 with an ERA of 1.23 through 23 innings. He struck out 39 batters, walked 11, and notched six saves.
Ever since his high school days, where he earned Virginia high school player of the year awards, Wahl has been pegged as the next great Rebel ace. And while I'm not ready to say we're placing all of our eggs in the Bobby Wahl basket, I do think whatever success we have this season will hing a lot on his performance.