Schramek confident his guys can contend for league and district crowns in 2012

By: Mike Moore | Rochester Post | Published April 11, 2012

 Sophomore Brad Schaenzer and the rest of the Lake Orion pitching staff are expected to be the team’s strength. The Dragons allowed just five runs in four games at press time.

Sophomore Brad Schaenzer and the rest of the Lake Orion pitching staff are expected to be the team’s strength. The Dragons allowed just five runs in four games at press time.

Photo by Donna Agusti

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LAKE ORION — There’s been five runs allowed in the first four games, and in those first four games, there were three wins.

Solid pitching is hardly unique to baseball coaches when it comes to laying out the key to any successful team.

But when Lake Orion High skipper Andrew Schramek talked about that particular attribute, he referred to it as a strength, not a key.

“Honestly, I feel like we have two of the premiere pitchers in the county at the top of our rotation,” he said of lefties Nick Deeg and Brad Schaenzer. “In a scrimmage before the season, we had four or five Division 1 scouts there and a couple major league scouts watching our pitching, so I think people know what we have. And this season, especially with the new bats, pitching is going to be at a premium.”

Deeg, who was 7-2 as a sophomore last year, is listed at 6 feet 5 inches and has been reported to hit 90 miles per hour with his fastball. He’s the unquestioned ace of the staff.

Schaenzer, just a sophomore, will serve as a very capable No. 2.

The offense, according to Schramek, may be just as strong as the pitching.

In those first four games, only once, a 5-2 loss to the defending D-3 state champs from Madison Heights Bishop Foley, did the Dragons fail to score at least nine runs.

In their three wins leading up to press time, they’ve crossed the plate 30 times.

“It’s still very early, but I think we’ve got at least six guys in our lineup that are college-level hitters,” Schramek said. “I know there’s a lot that needs to play out, but the potential and the talent are certainly there with this group.”

Still, as he looked over the roster and the season ahead, Schramek also knows the perception that Lake Orion is due for greatness is out there.

A year ago, the Dragons were 25-7, but lost in the district opener.

The guys in green and white haven’t won a district title since winning a state crown in 2007, and they haven’t won an Oakland Activities Association title since 2009.

“We can’t focus too much on postseason stuff, but we know it’s been too long,” Schramek, now in his 14th year as head coach, said of the district drought. “The guys understand what’s going on here, and they know it’s been too long since we won the district. But I think once we get rolling, once we see what’s going on and how good we can be, we’ll be a team that should be able to contend for the things we want to.”

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