One three year starter on the Tennessee Baseball team hopes that his teammates and all Vol fans will be saying Thank God it’s Friday.
Red shirt junior Bryan Morgado has been named the Friday starter for this Spring Baseball season. It’s a role that he has embraced with a new level of confidence and some high expectations.
“I expect us to play hard and win a lot more games than we have won in the past,” Morgado told InsideTennessee.com. “We have a solid lineup. We have a solid rotation of starting pitchers and a great bullpen.”
Morgado is a tall rangy left handed pitcher that is known for his mid 90’s fast ball.
Getting off to a great start on Friday nights is something that the talented thrower hopes to do.
“My goal is to go out and be consistent every time I pitch,” Morgado said. “If I do that and keep my team in the game, we will be ok.”
Does the Miami Florida native need to work on one particular part of his game?
“I would have to say my mental aspect of the game,” Morgado said. “If I can keep from having any out of body experiences and stay within myself, the physical part of my game will be fine.”
This is Morgado’s fourth year as a Vol Baseball player, he received a medical red shirt his freshman year and has been a three year starter ever since.
With Morgado as one of the team’s leaders and captains, he plans on being a leader on and off the field by example.
“I’m one that leads by example,” Morgado said. “I want to go out and give us a W every game. Knowing the set up guys I have around me and knowing I have Matt Ramsey as my closer, I’m very confident about being able to do that.”
Has Morgado seen a change in this year’s team chemistry and attitude?
“Most definitely this is the best team we have had since I have been here,” Morgado said. “This is the best our team chemistry has been. We know we have the talent to win, instead of hoping to win, we expect to win this spring.”
Pitching has been an area of concern the last two seasons, Morgado and third year head coach Todd Raleigh doesn’t feel that will be the case this season.
“I definitely think our hitting will be our key strength,” Morgado said. “But I also feel that our pitching staff will be strength this spring instead of being one of our weaknesses.”
“We were better as an overall staff that we showed at times,” Raleigh said. “We have more depth this season than we ever have had. I think that will be a big difference for us this year.”
Morgado also sees a big difference in Raleigh’s attitude and approach this spring.
“He knows what type of team he has,” Morgado said. “He is excited about this team. These are his guys and he is a lot more relaxed than he has ever been. If we put everything together this definitely could and should be the year we win a lot of games and compete for a SEC Championship.”
His freshman season Morgado was the Saturday starter, making 14 appearances during the season, 13 of those as the starter.
He earned second team honors on the Pro-Line Athletic/National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Freshman All-America Team.
Last season he was 4-2 overall in 20 appearances, five as a starter, he also earned two saves. He recorded 75 strike outs last spring.
“Bryan is a guy that we are counting on as a starter for us,” Raleigh said. “He has a big arm and is a great young man. He will be our Friday night starter, if he gets things started out like he is capable of, a lot of good weekends are ahead for us.”