It's hard to believe for those of us who were watching snow fall today, but it's true: the 2007 baseball season gets underway for the Trojans this week with a non-conference game against Cal Poly at Dedeaux Field this Tuesday, January 30.
The Trojans are ranked 25th in one pre-season poll, which is somewhat generous after a late run of losses last season (16 of the last 19), the loss of a couple of starters, and the acquisition of a new coach. The absence of a pre-season ranking for USC in most other polls is indicative of the tough job facing the new coach.
Chad Kreuter is the third coach for Trojan Baseball since 1942, following in the footsteps of Mike Gillespie, whose solid overall career wound down with three losing seasons out of his last four. Kreuter had long career as a player in the pros, but has limited official coaching experience, stretching mostly to working with USC players at various times, and coaching the Modesto Nuts last year. He is also Mike Gillespie's son-in-law. Ahem.
In any case, it appears that while starters from last year are a little thin on the ground, there's plenty of depth to the team and especially so for pitching -- there's actually some depth at reliever, for instance.