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Oxford

GOAT Starting Pitchers Under Coach Mike Bianco

By Adam Brown and Jeff Roberson 
adam.brown@hottytoddy.com; wjrobers@olemiss.edu

Ole Miss fans, it has been a long month with no sports for the red and blue. Here at HottyToddy.com, we feel the same way you do about not being out at Swayze. We miss hearing the crack of the bats, feeling the energy of the crowd and cheering on the Rebels. 

Over the next few weeks, HottyToddy is going to break down the greatest of all time to step on the diamond of Swayze Field in the coach Mike Bianco era. We’re taking a position-by-position look at the five best at their craft.

We know there will be debate about these choices, and that is good. It’s what we want. We also know some excellent players are left off these lists because we only chose five at each spot as well as a total of 15 outfielders.

HottyToddy’s own sports editor Adam Brown and contributor Jeff Roberson are going to give our readers our top picks at each position on the diamond. In all, there will be a total of 10 lists that include starters, relievers, closers, and utility players.

Starting pitchers. Are there more valuable players on any baseball team? Arguably, there might be others of equal value. But a team isn’t going far without stellar starters.

Through 20 seasons of Mike Bianco baseball, the list is longer than five of those who have made a distinct difference. But here are our five, in no certain order, along with some honorable mentions for good measure.

Lance Lynn. An argument, or a statement, could be made that this hard-throwing, bear of a guy was the best to come through the program. From 2006-08 the Indiana native and RHP was a dominant force for the Rebels. That is why we have him first on the list, although we aren’t ranking them, remember? This season Lynn is with the Rangers, his fourth big-league ballclub.

Drew Pomeranz. He and Lynn could actually be co-No. 1s. But, again, we aren’t ranking them. Another dominant ace for the Rebs from 2008-10, the lanky, left-handed Tennessean, from an hour north of the UM campus, was as cool as the proverbial flip side of the pillow. That 2009 Oxford Regional when he started two games was unlike any performances we’ve seen.

Christian Trent. All you need to say about this crafty left-hander from Louisiana is: Game Two, Lafayette Super Regional, and a dominant performance that lifted the Rebels to game three and ultimately a College World Series trip. Trent never thought he would lose. In 2014, he never did, posting a 9-0 record.

Chris Ellis. Also, a part of the 2014 Omaha team, this righty from metro Birmingham, Ala., had the right stuff to become the Rebs’ ace. His development throughout his college career was noteworthy, and his final season he was as good as there has been here.

Mark Holliman. The first dominant pitcher recruit of the 20-year era who took care of business on Friday nights in the early days. From 2003-05, the right-hander from metro Memphis helped lift Ole Miss to its first Regional host (2004) and Super Regional host (2005). He helped set the tone for those Rebel aces to follow and was a great example of the type recruit headed to Oxford throughout the era.

Honorable Mentions: Ryan Rollison, Mike Mayers, Bobby Wahl, Will Kline, Will Ethridge


Adam Brown
Adam Brown
Sports Editor

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