Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton)
Baseball is back in Binghamton for the 20th consecutive season.
And the B-Mets have some high expectations, after missing out on the playoffs for a long while.
There's a new manager and several familiar faces back in town.
Action Sports Reporter Gabe Osterhout tells us about this year's team, and how it's different from teams in the past.
After missing the playoffs the last 7 years, there are high expectations for the Binghamton Mets.
Several of this year's starters played in Binghamton last year.
There are also high expectations for new manager Wally Backman, a former Sporting News minor league manager of the Year.
And a winner of the division in 3 of his 5 managerial stops, including last year with Brooklyn in the NY-Penn League.
Josh Satin says, "I think Wally's a players coach as well but he's just firey and he gets you fired up. I'm very excited to play for him. I've enjoyed my experience in spring training playing for him. He has so much passion for the game, I'm just excited to kind of feed off that."
Josh Stinson, who went 9-3 last season, will be the opening day starter for the B-Mets.
And Backman is excited about the other 4 starters as well.
But he says the strength of this year's team may have been it's biggest weakness last season, the bullpen.
John Lujan will be at the end of a bullpen that includes several options.
Backman says, "They're going to throw strikes. We want them to put the ball in play but ya know we have those guys pitching in the back end of our bullpen which you're excited to have especially having two pretty good left handers in your bullpen, means a lot because those are guys situationally can use them in the proper situation."
Backman thinks this year's offense will be built on power, not speed, like he's used to.
The middle of the lineup will include third baseman Eric Campbell, who hit 6 home runs in 50 games last season, and outfielder Raul Reyes who hit 8 home runs in 59 games.
Eric Campbell says, "I think our lineup is pretty strong 1 through 9 so its not going to be all up to me or Satin or anybody like that. I think we can score runs from 7,8,9 or 1,2,3, wherever it is."
With this much talent, and a great spring record, the B-Mets are hoping to conclude their 20th
season the way they did their first, celebrating an Eastern League Championship.
For this week's Action Sports spotlight, I'm Gabe Osterhout.