Roadrunners Baseball Season Preview 2023
The college baseball season is finally here, with the Linn-Benton Roadrunners looking to start their title defense on Opening Day Feb. 17. The Roadrunners will travel to Pasco Washington for a Friday doubleheader on Feb. 17 against Columbia Basin College, and a Saturday doubleheader against Grays Harbor.
Last May the Roadrunners secured their first Northwest Athletic Conference (NWAC) Baseball Championship in 31 years (third NWAC title overall).
With a new year also comes new faces. The Roadrunners bring in 18 freshmen this season, and bring back 14 sophomores. One of those returning sophomores, Titus Dumitru played a key role in the Roadrunners Championship season. Dumitru batted .308 in conference play last year, with a .416 on base percentage.
“I think we have a bunch of new guys on the team that are gonna play some huge roles,” Sophomore Outfielder Dumitru said. “Kace Naone is gonna be our starting third baseman and he can really swing it.”
The Roadrunners will return home on March. 4 for their season home opener against Lane Community College. All home games for the Roadrunners will be broadcasted on the Roadrunner sports network, that can be found here or go to https://athletics.linnbenton.edu/live.
On March 9, the Roadrunners will travel to Gresham to face off against Mt.Hood Community College in a championship rematch from last year. The Roadrunners defeated the Saints 4-1 in the NWAC Championship game, and took 4 of the 5 games the teams played last year.
On March 25, the Roadrunners will begin a four game series against Lower Columbia College. That series will feature two games in Longview, and two games in Albany on March 26. The Red Devils fell to the Roadrunners 2-1, in the third round of the NWAC Baseball Championships.
The Roadrunners finish their season at home on March 6 against Southwestern Oregon Community College. If the Roadrunners clinch the first seed in the NWAC South Region they will have an automatic bye to the NWAC Championship from May 25-29. If the Roadrunners fall to second seed they will host a four team playoff series to get into the NWAC Baseball Championships. For more information on playoff seeding, format, and rules go to https://nwacsports.com/baseball_championship.
The Roadrunners have won 5 consecutive NWAC South Region Titles dating back to the 2016-17 season (excluding shortened Covid-19 season).
“Individually and as a team we just need to keep everything simple. We’ve prepared all fall and winter for this…we’re ready.” Dumitru said.