Compared with previous years only, the outlook for the nine is not very favorable. Cook, L. S., alone remains eligible of those who played in the Yale games last year. He has given up the position of captain, but will play as usual, probably on third base, or perhaps in the field. For the rest of the material the new captain, when chosen, will have to draw from last year's substitutes and from the class nines.
It is still early to form an estimate of the strictly new material. Very little of it has shown up yet. The fall practice failed to discover any which seemed to be above the class standard. The work since the recess has been simply for men who are trying for pitcher and catcher. Of these Perry '97, and Paine '97 both give promise of making good pitchers in the course of a year or two. Wiggin, L. S., Highlands '95, and Ames '96, however, are probably the three from whom the pitcher will be drawn. Wiggin and Highlands will not go into training until after the mid-years; Ames is with the candidates and has already shown marked improvement over last year. The brunt of the pitching, however, will fall on the first two mentioned. A few months training under Keefe ought to make both of them much more effective than last spring.
To catch Wiggin and Highlands are Scannell '97, Henry '96, and O'Malley '96. O'Malley has not come out yet and of the other two Scannell possibly has an advantage over Henry. He caught on the Boston Latin School nine two years ago with a fair record. He has in him the possibilities of a strong catcher and it will rest with him to make the necessary development in the next three or four months to secure a place for himself. In case these men fail to come up to the standard, Corbett will have to go behind the bat. He prefers, however, the field, which is his natural position.
The other positions on the nine will be subject to close competition. The candidates will not be called out until after the mid-years. New men may come to light then, but the material which is now known to be available probably represents the best that can be had. There are two freshmen of promise, Paine and Stevenson, both from Hopkinson's School. Paine will probably try for first base in case he fails to make a favorable impression in pitching. Dickinson '94 is the only other candidate for that position.
For second base there are Hayes '96, Hapgood '94 and Lowell '94, with a possibility that Wrenn '95 will be eligible to play. Whittemore '96 stands out most promisingly for shortstop, although Linfield '94 will try for the place. In case Cook plays in the field, Steveson '97, and Winslow '96, will have the closest struggle for third base. Paul '96, who played well on into the season last year on his freshman team, is another good man.
The outfield will have a number of candidates with Corbett heading them. Gonterman '96, Paine '94, McCarthy '96, and Manley, Gr., a graduate of several years standing, are likely to prove the best men for the other two places. Naturally many who see little hope for themselves in the infield will try for the outfield, increasing considerably the competition for the positions.
There has never been a time when so few places are assured. Cook alone is a fixture; eight other players will be chosen. All in all there has not been for years so favorable an opportunity to make the 'varsity nine. The material is not as a whole of superior quality, and yet an intelligent captain and earnest effort may yet turn out another championship nine.