Top 25 Breakdown: No. 12 USC
Getting To Know The Trojans
2015 Record: 39-21. RPI: 25.
Coach (Record at school): Dan Hubbs (88-81, 3 years).
Ballpark: Dedeaux Field (Capacity: 2,500).
Postseason History: 37 regionals (active streak: 1), 21 CWS trips (last in 2001), 12 national titles (last in 1998).
Podcast: Five-Minute Focus on the Trojans.
More: Fall Report on Southern California | Season Preview Index
USC's Projected Lineup
|C||Jeremy Martinez, Jr.||.296/.395/.367||1||45||0|
|1B||Dillon Paulson, Fr.||HS—Solana Beach, Calif.|
|2B||Frankie Rios, So.||DNP—Injured|
|3B||Adalberto Carrillo, So.||.245/.302/.347||1||3||1|
|SS||Reggie Southall, Jr.||.250/.362/.320||1||19||10|
|LF||Corey Dempster, Jr.||.179/.207/.179||0||4||4|
|CF||Timmy Robinson, Sr.||.295/.391/.442||7||53||19|
|RF||A.J. Ramirez, Sr.||.259/.307/.476||9||45||9|
|DH||David Oppenheim, Sr.||.284/.406/.392||3||27||3|
|RHP||Kyle Davis, Sr.||3-3||4.05||93.2||45||18||6|
|RHP||Mitch Hart, So.||7-3||4.07||86.1||51||38||0|
|RHP||Brent Wheatley, Sr.||4-4||4.50||70||63||34||0|
|RP||Marc Huberman, Sr.||6-4||2.36||49.2||48||34||4|
USC must replace its top three hitters and four of its top six from last year’s regional team, leaving a lineup with no players who hit .300 last year. Martinez, who led all the returnees with a .296 average last year, controls the strike zone very well (32 walks/17 strikeouts) and was driving the ball with more authority in the fall. He and the physical Robinson should be a formidable duo in the heart of the lineup. The Trojans need the switch-hitting Southall (a seasoned, athletic spray hitter) and Oppenheim (who has advanced bat-handling skills and situational hitting ability) to replace Bobby Stahel and Garrett Stubbs as the igniters atop the lineup — no easy task. Rios had a good fall and could be another candidate for the leadoff spot. Dempster is the wild card; he has strength, bat speed and athleticism, and the Trojans hope he can follow in Stahel’s footsteps as a late-blooming impact player. One of the big stories of the fall was the impressive performance of Paulson, an advanced freshman with a knack for barreling up hard line drives from the left side.
Already a subscriber? Log In to access this article.