Preseason Countdown: No.31 Douglas County




 

By John Cackowski
State Director

Leading up to the start of the high school season, we will count down the top 50 preseason teams every day as part of our comprehensive season coverage. The top 50 teams are picked from all classifications, and are not divided up by class level. To see the entire list CLICK HERE

Team: Douglas County
Preseason Rank: 31
2015 Record: 13-7
Conference: Continental
CHSAA Class: 5A
Head Coach: Craig Gienger
Playoff Run: Lost to Rock Canyon 10-3 in the Class 5A District 5 championship game.
2015 Final Rank: 17
Returning Starters: 3
Returning Pitchers: 4


TOP PLAYERS:
Sean Kelsen, OF/LHP, No. 47 2016 (Barstow CC)
Isaia Casas, OF/1B/LHP, 2016
Javier Rodriguez, LHP/OF, 2017
Jake Minnick, 3B, 2017

 X-FACTOR:  
Even though the Huskies graduated a lot of talent in 2015, they might be able to role out 3 starting pitchers that are left-handed this spring to keep them as competitive.

KEY PLAYERS LOST:
Taylor Williams: Xaivier
Jared Montoya: Central Arizona

STAT RAT
Out of the 129 total innings pitched in 2015, 128 of those innings graduated. 

BOTTOM LINE: 
The Huskies have had some talented teams over the last few years, and have gotten the short end of the stick with tie breakers in the tough 5A Continental League. Last year we felt they were going to break through and for the first time reach the 5A Final 8, and while playing eventual 5A State Champion Rock Canyon in the Class 5A District 5 championship game down 4-3 in the 4th inning, the game got away and they eventually lost 10-3 ending their season. Though they graduated a lot of talent in 2015, we still feel they will be a tough out, and have good enough talent coming back to be a factor in 2016. 2016 OF/LHP Sean Kelsen tends to fly under the radar in our state, but he's one of the best outfielders in Colorado. Last year Kelsen hit .364 with 4 homeruns, 5 doubles, and 2 triples. Kelsen will also be could be called on to be one of of the Huskies starters on the mound, and being left-handed that could be very effective for them. 2016 1B Isaia Casas had a solid 2015 hitting .419 and also could be asked to pitch as well, and Casas is left handed. 2017 LHP Javier Rodriguez brings a mid 80's fastball to the mix as well. Rodriguez could also be asked to provide production at the plate. With those three they could potentially have three starters from the left side. Jake Minnick returns to man 3B, and you can expect a solid year of production from him. The Huskies have had depth in their program over the last 8 years. We don't expect that to change even though they graduated a lot of talent in 2015.


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