NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – The VCU Baseball team has already earned the respect of its Atlantic 10 Conference peers. On Thursday, the Rams were selected to finish third out of 15 teams in the league's annual preseason coaches poll.
VCU was picked only behind Saint Louis, who held a share of last year's regular season conference championship, and Rhode Island.
The Rams return a talented core of last year's roster that finished 34-25 (15-15 CAA) and advanced to the Colonial Athletic Association Tournament. VCU returns seven position starters, including their entire starting infield along with five pitchers from a season ago. The Black and Gold also return All-CAA honorees juniors Joey Cujas (first team) and Bill Cullen (third team), as well as sophomore Vimael Machin (all-rookie).
Charlotte was picked to finish fourth followed by Dayton (fifth) and Richmond (sixth). Xavier was picked seventh, while Saint Joseph's is eighth, Fordham is ninth, Massachusetts is 10th and St. Boanventure is 11th. La Salle was selected 12th followed by Temple (13th), Butler (14th) and George Washington (15th).
The newly-expanded, seven-team, double-elimination A-10 Baseball Championship will take place at Charlotte's Robert and Mariam Hayes Stadium from May 22-25.
VCU opens the season in the Country Inn and Suites Elon Invitational against Boston College on Feb. 15 at 11 a.m. The Rams open up their inaugural season in the A-10 with a home series against Butler on March 22-25.
2013 A-10 Baseball Predicted Order of Finish
RK SCHOOL (1st-place votes) points 2012 Record
1. Saint Louis (10) 210 41-18/17-7
2. Rhode Island (2) 197 33-25/16-8
3. VCU (3) 193 34-25/15-15 CAA
4. Charlotte 168 21-32/9-14
5. Dayton 149 31-30/17-7
6. Richmond 147 30-26/14-10
7. Xavier 146 28-28/13-11
8. Saint Joseph's 120 25-32/13-10
9. Fordham 109 22-34/12-12
10. Massachusetts 89 22-22/14-10
11. St. Bonaventure 74 23-25/10-14
12. La Salle 67 20-33/7-17
13. Temple 56 19-34/7-17
14. Butler 42 22-34/10-20 Horizon
15. George Washington 33 20-35/6-18