University and Freshman Baseball
The University baseball squad has made rapid progress in the indoor practice of the past week. The work has been more detailed than heretofore, the men receiving secret instruction in base running. At the bat the work has been only fairly satisfactory, as many of the best hitters have shown a falling off in their work, due partly to the improved form of the battery candidates. In bunting, however, there has been a decided improvement, as Coach Coburn has given special instruction in drawing the ball to the ground. In fielding grounders and passing to first base the squad is now well trained, the throwing to first having developed special accuracy during the week. Second base work has shown some improvement, but the infielders are still uncertain on short throws to the second baseman and shortstop. There is a tendency to stand squarely on the bag in executing the double play, instead of on the near corner. Practice was held for the first time last week on a complete diamond, for the purpose of better instruction in stealing bases. The work in this direction is still rather crude.
With the more advanced instruction of the past week, and the general improvement in the work of the squad, the outlook for the opening of the season is not discouraging. The recent fall of snow, however, has further delayed the commencement of outdoor practice, which is essential to the development of good team play. The squad will go on the field, however, in a more advanced stage of development than last year.
Following the work of the University squad the Freshmen hold daily practice in the Cage. The work has been of the same general nature as that of the University squad, special attention being given to the batters. Since the beginning of regular practice on February 12, there has been but one cut, after which 35 men were retained. Owing to the large number of Freshmen now on the University squad and the uncertainty of their position there, the prospects cannot be determined at present. The squad has no experienced pitchers, and is decidedly weak in fielding.