After a devastating end to a strong season last year, the Virginia Cavaliers are poised to continue their vast success in the national landscape, and perhaps go even farther. D1Baseball picked Brian O’Connor’s squad 14th in this year’s preseason poll.
Despite the departure of 2023 ACC Player of the Year Kyle Teel, as well as the program’s all-time home run leader in Jake Gelof, UVA’s lineup is as good as it gets going into 2024. Look for Ethan Anderson and Griff O’Ferrall to lead the way for a group that is stacked with legitimate MLB Draft prospects.
The pitching rotation is a minor concern, which is what likely kept the Cavaliers outside of the top ten for now. Virginia’s entire weekend trio of Nick Parker, Connelly Early, and Brian Edgington have moved on, and O’Connor’s transfer portal class is not loaded with arms like years past. Streaking the Lawn will preview the roster in-depth throughout the coming weeks, as we approach opening day on February 16.
Perhaps, the most exciting thing about this upcoming season is the fact that UVA’s top 15 national ranking still places them 5th in the ACC. No. 1 Wake Forest, No. 10 Clemson, No. 12 Duke, No. 13 North Carolina State, and No. 15 North Carolina are also in the preseason poll. This will be an especially exciting conference in its last year before expansion.
UVA’s non-conference schedule does not include any ranked opponents but Auburn and Old Dominion are certainly not programs to gloss over.