Fatty’s Restaurant takes ‘small ball’ style into summer play

Published 12:00 am Friday, June 6, 2008


Sports Editor

It may not be show business, but nonetheless auditions for the leading roles of the next prep baseball season have indeed begun at Riverside.

Seniors Jade Falgoust, Wade Delaneuville and Timmy Teague have departed, leaving over 80 RBIs missing from the middle of the order, and a rotation devoid of its two top starters.

So as Riverside-based Fatty’s Restaurant (which began American Legion play this week) takes the field, learning who on the team will step up is vital for Coach Britt Waguespack.

“Basically, we’re going to use the summer to let them tell me how we’ll be next year,” Waguespack said.

The preview that Fatty’s Restaurant will provide is one that will have not only different faces on the field, but a different style as well. With the three departing seniors each taking their .400 averages and strong power totals with them, Waguespack says the team will have to rely on “small-ball” to get by.

“We’ll have to bunt more, be aggressive on the bases and put a lot guys in motion,” he said. “Right now, those guys will be tough to replace. But these are guys who are going to compete every time up.

“The key is, with this team, we’ve got to know the game inside and out, not just play it.”

Anchoring the batting order will be catcher Jake Roussel and outfielder Remi Poirrier, each of whom Waguespack expects to build on their ’08 campaigns.

“They’ll have to hold down the middle of the order,” Waguespack said.

Sophomore Bryant Tassin will be the team’s top starter this summer, with Dylan Martin and Dylan Becnel taking the reins as the second and third starters.

Kane Keller will lead off for the team after hitting second for the latter part of the prep season. He will man third base, while Justin Newbauer takes over Teague’s old shortstop position. Austin Vicknair and Bobby Smith will each be first time starters in the outfield.

Martin, in addition to being the team’s second starter, is expected to have a big impact in the lineup as well after a strong freshman year. He will play second base in addition to pitching.

That bunch is enough to give Waguespack confidence that some positive things are ahead this summer.

“There are always guys ready to step up,” he said.