HARROGATE, TN -- On Wednesday morning, the South Atlantic Conference released the 2012 baseball preseason coaches' poll with the Railsplitters selected to finish fourth in the league. Lincoln Memorial finished 29-22 last season and 16-11 in the South Atlantic Conference.
The Railsplitters finished with 59 total points in the voting which placed a distant fourth behind Tusculum's 79 points. Wingate received 91 points and two first place votes notching second on the poll. Defending regular season champs, Catawba, were selected as the favorites for the 2012 season.
The Railsplitters are abound with fresh faces as sixteen players will be joining the roster for the 2012 season. The Railsplitters are returning four preseason All-SAc selections. Senior infielders Gelson Perez and Joe Horsley are joined by junior pitcher Austin Johnson and junior outfield Cody Baker on the preseason All-SAC Second Team.
Gelson Perez was recently selected by the ABCA as a National Player to Watch for the 2012 campaign. Last season, he batted .335 with 47 RBIs, 14 doubles, three homeruns, and 59 hits. Horsley played in all 51 last season compiling a .290 batting average with three homeruns and three triples. He led the SAC in stolen bases as he finished with 20 on 22 attempts. cody Baker will once again be the catalyst for the offensive unit, continuing his role as the Railsplitter leadoff hitter. Last year, Baker hit .343 with 68 hits, 44 runs, and a .429 on-base percentage. Austin Johnson is expected to provide huge innings this season as he is coming off of an impressive 2011 campaign. Johnson built a solid resume with a 3.06 ERA and a 6-2 record. Johnson was a perfect 6-0 in conference.
The Railsplitters kick off their season on February 3rd, as they travel to the University of South Carolina-Aiken for a three-game set. Their home opener is set for February 21st when they host Northern Kentucky.