#RebsBSB Season Preview: Pitching Rotation

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The third leg of our Ole Miss Baseball season preview series looks at what the Rebels' rotation could possibly look like this season.

Last year, the rotation was solid for the most part but would have liked to have found more consistency, particularly on the front end. Ole Miss lost lefty David Parkinson to the MLB draft. He was 6-3 with a 3.39 ERA and struck out 76 hitters 75 innings pitched, walking just 24 and split time as the Friday night guy with James McArthur. Parkinson was a crafty left-hander that wasn't overwhelmingly dominant with his stuff, but gave Ole Miss a chance to win the game virtually every time he stepped onto the mound.

The Rebels the latter two thirds of its rotation from last year in lanky right-hander James McCarthur and a budding star in lefty Ryan Rolison who came onto the scene down the stretch last season, shoring up the back end of the Rebels' rotation as well as becoming arguably the Rebels' best starter down the stretch.

With all that taken into consideration, here's an idea of what the rotation will look like opening weekend.

Friday: Ryan Rolison
The sophomore lefty caught the attention of most around the SEC last season upon his insertion into the weekend rotation in early April. Rolison went 6-3 with a 3.06 ERA and struck out 64 hitters in 61.2 innings pitched. He was instrumental in bolstering the Ole Miss rotation down the stretch. He out-dueled Missouri ace Tanner Houck, tossing six innings of one-hit shutout baseball in a game that was seen as nearly a must-win for the Rebels NCAA Tournament chances in late April after being moved up a day due to David Parkinson getting sick. He's got an fastball and a wipeout breaking ball to compliment it. His change up is also developing as a formidable third pitch.

"I feel really good," Rolison said at practice this week. "My velocity is right where it needs to be and I feel really good about this year."

Rolison had a massive summer in the Cape Cod League, compiling a 6-0 record and 1.54 ERA in 35 innings. He knows he is the guy to anchor this rotation in his sophomore campaign an isn't shying away from any lofty expectations.

"My mentality isn't going to change," Rolison said."It will be to get guys out in three pitches or less and attack the zone."

Saturday:James McArthur
McArthur showed flashes of the overpowering presence he can be on the mound last season. He compiled a 3-6 record with a 4.73 ERA in 64.2 innings. It was an up-and-down season for the sophomore. There were good outings, like tossing an eight innings of one-hit ball in a shutout win at Arkansas or seven innings of one-run, two-hit baseball in a win over Alabama. But there were outings in which he lost is his fastball command and struggled to keep the ball down in the zone.

The potential with the 6-foot-7 is certainly there and Bianco has plenty of confidence in McArthur. If he can piece together quality starts at a more consistent rate this season, the Rebels could have quite the one-two punch on the mound.

Sunday: Brady Feigl
Truthfully, McArthur and Feigl are interchangeable in which day they pitch on the weekend. Feigl was really effective out of the bullpen for Ole Miss as a freshman and got a taste of the weekend rotation early on in six starts a year ago. He had 17 total appearances and compiled an ERA of 4.08, striking out 54 in 53 innings. He walked just 10 hitters. Feigl has swing-and-miss level stuff with a strong fastball and a good slider. Like McArthur, if the junior righty can find consistency he has a chance to be really strong this season.

Others in the mix: Greer Holston, Will Ethridge
Both of these rising sophomores got experience starting games in the midweek for the Rebels last season. Holston eventually assumed duties as the primary midweek guy and amassed a 2-3 record with a 5.27 ERA in eight starts. Ethridge started four games early in the season before finding a niche in the bullpen. The freshman righty served as a useful middle-inning bridge from the starter to All-American closer Dallas Woolfolk. He came into the game in some big spots for Ole Miss in his first go around in the SEC. His 1.1 innings of relief in a Friday night win at LSU come to mind as he stood stall in a hostile environment. Ethridge struck out 50 hitters in just 41 innings and only walked 10 on his way to a 2.41 ERA in what as a really effective freshman season.

Both of these guys will likely be options for Bianco to go to should he need to make a change in the rotation. Holston will likely man the bulk of the midweek starts again to begin the year and Ethridge will be one of Bianco's first options out of the bullpen.

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    Tiffany J. Moore said:

    This is amazing with what he have done so far! Hope that he'll achieve more in the future!

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    Fiftyyears fan said:

    How can you have five straight top 25 recruiting classes and look as bad as Ole Miss has this year. Easy lack of coaching fundamentals. Look at Mason at Vandy, nothing but 2 and 3 star recruits out of high school and he developers players that want to win. Hugh freeze has 3, 4 & 5 recruits and he expects them to win because of what they were in High School. Mr. Freeze you have not been teaching the fundamentals of football or winning in life. Mr. Freeze you have quit on your players because you have some false expectations of what they are instead of what you can develop in them. Either do your job or quit. Oh yea, please quit running your smoke and mirrors offense, everyone has figured it out. Run a physical offense that can open up holes for your running backs and then your pass attack want require 12 are 14 four and five star receivers. Mr. Freeze you have problems and you need to know that you are not smarter than the rest of the coaches in the SEC.

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    Karen Holden said:

    Not every pass can be caught. Too low, too short whatever. Not every Kelly pass is perfect. Records were broken by receivers also. But they sre not going to catch every ball thrown. The loss to Auburn was not one players fault. You win or lose as a team.

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    Trent browning said:

    Hey I was just wandering if these are the only 2 olemiss players signing. If there are more signing please respond to me ASAP. Also wondering if neil everett will sign any autographs. Thank you very much

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