Statistics back baseball team’s play thus far

Senior+pitcher+Joe+Mortillaro+has+a+2.60+ERA+in+Summit+League+play+this+season.

Jake Thompson

Senior pitcher Joe Mortillaro has a 2.60 ERA in Summit League play this season.

Lucas Whitten

When the Western Illinois baseball team started its season, fans might have thought they were in for a long, bumpy road.

But then Summit League play came around, and the Leathernecks have performed very well during conference games this season.

Not only are the Leathernecks doing well in the win-loss column, but the statistics are there to back up the fact that Western can be a real threat in the Summit League, despite the team’s 8-18 overall record.

In nine Summit League games, the Leathernecks sport a 6-3 record and are currently in third place in the conference standings behind Omaha (6-3) and Oral Roberts (7-2).

Even though the Leathernecks have been outscored 174-112 by their opponents, in conference play, the Leathernecks, as a team, are hitting to the tune of a .277 batting average (81-292).

Roman Visintine is sporting a .412 batting average in the nine Summit League matchups this season, the highest on the team and ninth in the conference. Visintine has recorded a hit in every conference game this season, and is currently in the middle of a 13-game hitting streak.

Along with Visintine, six other batters are above the .300 mark (Adam McGinnis, Conner Currier, Nick Schrader, Chris Tschida, Dave Dobrinich and CJ Schaeffer).

The Leathernecks have scored 39 runs during conference play. Visintine is leading the team with nine, and leading the team in RBIs is none other than Currier, the first-year Leatherneck from Parkland College.

Senior pitcher Joe Mortillaro earned himself the Summit League Pitcher of the Week award after striking out a career-high 11 batters against South Dakota State on March 26.

Western’s pitching has been incredible during Summit League play. The team has combined for a 2.81 ERA in 80 innings with 64 strikeouts and 45 walks. They’ve allowed 36 runs (25 earned) in the nine conference games this season.

Since starting conference play, the Leathernecks have won all three of Mortillaro’s starts behind his 2-0 record and 2.60 ERA. In 17.1 innings, Mortillaro has allowed eight runs (five earned) while striking out 19 batters and walking 12.

The Leathernecks are 2-1 when Aaron Michel takes the mound. He’s compiled a 3.21 ERA and a 1-1 record, with 12 strikeouts and three walks in 14 innings pitched.

The bullpen has been a huge reason for the Leathernecks’ success in conference play as well. Six relief pitchers have made appearances without allowing an earned run to cross the plate, and only one run has scored from that group of six. The other four pitchers out of the bullpen have allowed no more than two earned runs.

Nate Westfahl has recorded three saves in 3.2 innings without allowing a run to cross the plate. He’s struck out four batters without walking anyone.

Meanwhile, Jordan Pannell has thrown the most innings out of the pen. In six innings, he’s allowed one earned run while walking five batters and striking out four.

If the Leathernecks can keep this kind of play up during their remaining Summit League games, they have a real chance to be a threat in the regular season and during the Summit League Championships.

The Leathernecks take on conference-leading Oral Roberts this weekend in Macomb to continue Summit League play.

Twitter: @LucasWhit10