Blythewood is coming off a grand season that produced a 27-7 record, a Region 4-4A pennant, District 4 and Upper State postseason titles and a runner-up finish to Lexington in the state championship series.
The Bengals, like the champion Wildcats, are facing a rebuilding task. Tyler Romanik, Aaron Dahm and Connor Grant are the only returning regulars in the fold but veteran coach Barry Mizzell is now lowering expectations. Blythewood, as always, will compete at a high level.
The attack figures to be potent again, Romanik, who will play at third base and catch, led the team in batting average (.415), home runs (5), RBI (29) and bases on balls (23). Dahm (.371, 3 HR, 29 runs., 22 RBI) and rant (.305, 22 runs, 21 RBI).
Outfielder Ryan Malone, who hit .239 in 46 at bats, is the only other field player with any measure of experience.
Jacob Davis, who went 3-1 with a 1.83 ERA in 34.1 innings last season, is the only proven pitcher on the staff at the outset.
The Bengals will get a better read on things this week at White Knolls Red Bank Invitational tournament.