COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (January 31, 2017) – Colorado State University-Pueblo Baseball begins its 2017 campaign predicted to earn second place in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference. Josh Nuernberg, Kyle Peeler, Gilbert Sauceda, and Cameron Weinberg also earned preseason All-Conference nods in the RMAC Preseason Coach's poll released Tuesday.
The Pack's second ranking reflects their RMAC tournament seed from a year ago. CSU-Pueblo won the Plains Division in 2016 and finished with a 28-19 record. They reached the RMAC Tournament finals before a heartbreaking loss to Colorado Mesa University.
Nuernberg (Sr., Las Vegas, Nev.) led the Pack with 23 relief appearances last season. He matched a team-high with four saves. Nuernberg finished with a 3.90 ERA, the fourth-best mark among Pack relievers. A highlight of Nuernberg's junior season came against Colorado Mesa in the RMAC Tournament when he held the Mavericks scoreless for 3.1 innings to earn the save and help the Pack advance to the RMAC Championship game.
Peeler (Sr., Las Vegas, Nev.) earned All-RMAC Tournament team honors in 2016. The right-handed pitcher tossed 63.2 innings over 12 appearances, making 10 starts. Peeler finished the year with a 4-2 record and a 5.09 ERA. He walked just 16 batters and struck out 45 in his first season with the Pack.
Sauceda (So., Indio, Calif.) shined in his freshman season at CSU-Pueblo. He made 47 starts in left field for the Pack, but is expected to switch to first base in 2017. Sauceda hit .368, the 13th best average in the conference and the best among freshman hitters. He drew 23 walks and a totaled a .442 on-base percentage. Sauceda was the second-hardest batter to strikeout in the RMAC finishing with just 11 strikeouts in 174 at bats.
Weinberg (Sr., San Juan Capistrano, Calif.) earned Second Team All-RMAC honors as a junior. The lefty led Pack starters with a 3.64 ERA, seventh-best in the RMAC. Weinberg threw a team-high 76.2 innings over 13 starts and 15 total appearances. He finished with a 4-4 record and 65 strikeouts. Weinberg was brilliant in April finishing with a 1.28 ERA and 31 strikeouts in 35 innings.
The Pack will start their 2017 season Friday when they play Emporia State University on opening day this Friday at 1p.m. at Rawlings Field. CSU-Pueblo will continue its home opening series Saturday at 1 p.m. The ThunderWolves and the Hornets will conclude their three-game set Sunday at 1 p.m.
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As a member of the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference, Colorado State University – Pueblo competes in 22 varsity sports in NCAA Division II intercollegiate athletics.