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Legion baseball: Worthington built around pitching

WORTHINGTON -- With seven starters returning this season, Worthington Legion coach Todd Rogers believes his team will build on its successes from last year.

"I think we will have a strong team this year," Rogers said. "We will be solid at every position and look to compete."

The returning players include 2012 Worthington graduate Lucas Henning, along with current varsity players Blake Rogers, Nathan Ray, Aaron Pavelko, Tyler Hatterman and Deron Soderholm. A.J. Hayenga will also return from last year's squad.

"We will have Lucas back along with a few kids from Adrian and Fulda," Rogers said.

Rogers feels his team's strength will be its pitching, with a large number of the roster being able to pitch as well as play in the field. But he also expects the other areas of the game to come easily to his team.

"We should also be solid with our hitting this season," Rogers said. "Our defense will be alright as well, since the guys who aren't pitching will be in the field and I know they can play there as well."

With so many pitchers in the lineup, Rogers believes his team will have its greatest success with a combination of multiple pitchers in each game.

"We will try to mix up our pitching and go with a righty, then a lefty, then a righty depending on what we need," Rogers said. "If it is a tight game and the pitcher is doing well, we might leave him in. But I want to use as much of our staff as possible in each game."

Worthington Legion travels to St. James for its first game Thursday and then will play Okabena in Wilmont Friday. All the team's home games will be played in Wilmont with the baseball fields at the Worthington Middle School not available to play on this season.