Midland Redskins gear up for 26th appearance

Jake Newby
Midland Redskins

The 13-time Connie Mack World Series Champion Midland Redskins will make an unprecedented 26th straight appearance in the tournament. And, as usual, they will be a favorite to claim the title.

Based out of Cincinnati, Ohio, the Redskins blazed past the competition in the Connie Mack East Central Regional without a loss. They were the last team to suffer a defeat in last year's world series, going 5-0 until Prairie Gravel beat them twice in the last two days of the tourney.

Coach Dave Evans, a recent American Amateur Baseball Congress Hall of Fame inductee, said his team played well last year, but the wear and tear of a long summer of baseball caught up with them in the end.

"We ran out of pitching with a couple little injuries out there on the mound," Evans said. "And you know how important pitching is. But baseball is baseball. The effort was there, but you’re not going to win every game, and we ran into a very hot Prairie Gravel team."

Georgia Tech commit Luke Waddell is the lone returning player from last year’s team. The speedy leadoff hitter — who logged a .450 batting average during the season — will play shortstop and provide leadership to a group of Midland players who will play for the first time at Ricketts Park.

Rock solid defensively and beginning to catch fire with the bats, Evans said the Redskins are rounding into form.

"We went to a tournament earlier in the year out in Las Vegas (Nevada) and had some problems. We didn’t play very well," Evans said. "But since then we’ve only lost one game and won about 25. These guys have a lot of chemistry, they like each other, and they’re starting to play some pretty good baseball."

2016 Connie Mack World Series preview

A Closer Look 

Coach: Dave Evans 

Hometown: Cincinnati, Ohio 

Region: East Central

Roster (number, name, position)

2 Austin McNicholas, INF 

3 JT Stone, INF

4 Angus Denton, RHP 

5 Matt Burch, INF

7 Luke Waddell, INF/OF

9 Hunter Sexton, RHP 

10 Chase Murray, OF 

11 Cam Hill, OF 

12 Casey Optiz, C 

13 Cal Conley, INF

15 Xavier Moore, RHP 

16 Jake Schrand, RHP 

17 Rick Raisor, RHP 

18 Zach Kohn, RHP 

20 JJ Bleday, OF/LHP 

22 Brock Mathis, C 

23 Jalen Evans, RHP 

25 Alex Segal, LHP

27 Isaiah Blaylock, RHP 

34 Jake Ziegelmeyer, RHP

35 Keagan Gillies, RHP 

40 Matthew Harrison, OF