05/28/2021 9:05 AM -
The Northwest Indiana Oilmen are set to begin their 2021 season. This will be their 10th anniversary season.
TJ Marik will be handling managing duties for the campaign. Marik works under former Oilmen skipper Adam Enright at Missouri Valley College. For Marik, the goal is to be competitive while also developing his players.
“My biggest goal this summer is these guys go back healthy and they go back better than they came,” Marik said. “I’m comfortable putting any of our players in right away. I trust that they’re going to come in, play hard, do things right and have fun.”
The Oilmen are looking to continue their tradition of excellence with several veterans on the roster. Some of the vets on the pitching staff include Jordan Smevoll, who won the league’s Pitcher of the Year award last season, and Jack Guzek, who is back for his third season with the club. Offensively, the team will count on outfielder Nick Anderson who earned a spot on the MCL’s All-League team in 2020 after hitting .340 with 22 RBIs, 25 runs scored and a .434 on-base percentage in 27 games.
There will also be some fresh faces added to the mix with several players joining the team from high school. Pitcher Tom Egan will join the squad following the completion of his season with Mount Carmel, a program that has produced two MLB draft picks in the past three years. Outfielder Jared Comia be added to the mix when his season at Hanover Central is completed, and he is the No. 18 recruit in Indiana by Prep Baseball Report and the No. 4 outfielder in the state.
“We have some experienced players on the roster who are in what could be their last year in the league, and then we have some high school players who haven’t had any college experience yet, and I think that’s going to help them gel together really nicely,” Marik said. “These young guys are going to come in and learn from the older guys. I think that’s going to help us create a really good culture.”
The Oilmen will begin play with a doubleheader versus the Joliet Generals at Benedictine University on Saturday, May 29.