After a perfect 5-0 week on the diamond, the Mercer baseball team continues its methodical climb up the ranks to the number 7 slot in this week’s College Baseball Daily Top-25 Mid-Major Poll as well as an even more impressive ranking in the NCBWA Division I Top-30 Poll where the Bears are ranked 28th.
According to Mercer all-time records, this is the first time in program history that the Bears have received a national ranking.
In addition to its No. 28 ranking in the NCBWA poll, Mercer is also receiving votes in the Perfect Game College Top-25 poll and the USA Today/ESPN Coaches Top-25 poll.
The Bears started the season ranked 25th in the Mid-Major Poll, before moving up to 15th after week one, the #10 slot after week two and now sliding up into seventh for week three.
The Orange and Black began the week with a pair of convincing mid-week wins over Florida A&M before rolling through the weekend with a three-game series sweep of Miami (Ohio). The Bears out-scored their opposition by a combined total of 60-15.
Mercer is the highest ranked school from the Atlantic Sun Conference in the poll, joined by Florida Gulf Coast at #11 and North Florida, who makes its 2013 debut in the poll, at #24.
In addition to the national ranking and regional rankings, two Mercer Bears received Player and Pitcher of the Week honors.
Sophomore Chesny Young and junior DJ Johnson were named the Atlantic Sun Conference Player and Pitcher of the Week, respectfully.
The play of Young and Johnson were two of the main reasons why the Orange and Black are off to such a hot start.
Young had a breakout performance at the plate for the Bears, batting .474 for the week to go along with a .542 on-base percentage, six runs scored, three doubles and 12 RBI. Young went a perfect 3-for-3 with a career-high six RBI in a 9-6 win over Miami (Ohio) on March 2.
Johnson threw a complete game one-hitter in an 11-0 win over Miami (Ohio) on March 2. The Adel, Ga. native allowed no runs and no walks while striking out four and needed just 111 pitches to go the distance for the win. Johnson has not let up a run in his last two starts and has now recorded 18.0 consecutive scoreless innings.
Mercer returns to action on March 5 with a monumental mid-week contest with No. 18 Georgia Tech.