Kansas Jayhawks: Baseball Team to Open at No. 2 LSU

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The Jayhawk offense wasn’t exactly pummeling the ball over the fence last season, as they finished with just 23 total home runs. However, the majority of them came from the Kansas outfield, including Connor McKay’s team-leading nine.

Fellow outfielder Dakota Smith is back as well, along with his team-leading .337 batting average. He also was second last year on the team with 43 RBI.

Between the two, they led the team in HRs (McKay, 9), RBI (McKay, 45), and AVG (Smith, .337), and one of the two also finished in second in slugging percentage, doubles and total bases.

Price said if Smith and McKay have their best seasons, it could be a great year for the Jayhawk offense.

The 180-degree turnaround Price mentioned before from pitching experience to position players is evident here once again, but it stops with this duo. While there are no freshman in the outfield, all other returners either had limited playing time last season or none at all.

The Jayhawks also lost a team leader from the outfield when Michael Suiter graduated. He finished last season with a .332 AVG, three home runs, and 42 RBI.

“There are going to be some growing pains and bumps in the road the first months of the season,” Price said.

RETURNERS  — 2014 stats

Connor McKay (OF, 6-3, 210 lbs., Sr.) — .259 AVG, 9 HR, 45 RBI

Dakota Smith (OF, 5-11, 185 lbs., Jr.) — .337 AVG, 2 HR, 43 RBI

Joven Afenir (OF, 5-11, 165 lbs., So.) — .275 AVG, 0 HR, 6 RBI

Joe Moroney (OF, 5-8, 170 lbs., R-Jr.) — Did not play in 2014 (Redshirt)

MJ Farthing (OF, 6-1, 190 lbs., So.) — .250 AVG, 0 HR, 1 RBI

Joe Luvisi (OF, 5-11, 190 lbs., Sr.) — Did not play in 2014

Steve Goldstein (OF, 6-1, 220 lbs., Jr.) — Did not play in 2014 after transferring from Stony Brook

Next: Jayhawks Ready for 2015