The Miami Hurricanes will once again take the field at Alex Rodriguez Park when they play an exhibition against the Florida Atlantic Owls on October 26. The two teams played each other in their fall exhibition game last year, the first year fall exhibition games were allowed after the NCAA instituted a new rule following the 2018 season.
The ‘Canes come into the 2020 season with national championship expectations after a 41-20 season in 2019. Almost the entire lineup from last year’s extremely successful team should return for this season, and new talent coming into the pitching staff should add depth to an already talented group.
Here’s more from Miami Athletics:
– University of Miami head baseball coach Gino DiMare announced a fall matchup against the FAU Owls.
The Hurricanes will host FAU at 1 p.m. on Oct. 26 at Alex Rodriguez Park at Mark Light Field. It will mark the second consecutive year the Canes and Owls meet in the fall, as Miami beat FAU, 12-4, in a scheduled 12-inning contest on Oct. 27, 2018. This will serve as Miami’s lone game against another university in the fall, but the Canes will participate in the annual Orange and Green World Series in November.
“Once again, we are thrilled to host FAU back to our ballpark,” DiMare said. “After playing a number of intrasquad games amongst ourselves, it’s exciting to be able to play a team from the outside. Along with the Alumni Game right before the season begins, it’s the closest atmosphere we can create to a regular season game. This game will give us a gauge into how our players respond and play against outside competition.”
DiMare returns for his second season at the helm of the Miami baseball program after an impressive debut campaign, winning 41 games and returning to the NCAA postseason for the first time since 2016. The Canes earned the 46th postseason berth in program history and reached the Starkville Regional final before falling to No. 6 Mississippi State.
The Hurricanes went 18-12 in ACC play, winning seven conference series and turning in their best conference record since 2016.
Miami closed out the 2019 season ranked in the top 25 of every major poll, finishing as high as No. 19 in the final edition of the D1Baseball Top 25. Miami came in at No. 22 in the Baseball America Top 25 and No. 24 in Collegiate Baseball’s NCAA Div. I Baseball Poll. The Canes were also ranked No. 24 in the final NCBWA Division I Poll.
Four Canes were named All-ACC, including returners Adrian Del Castillo, Brian Van Belle and Raymond Gil. Del Castillo was also one of 12 players picked for the 2019 ACC All-Freshman Team.
Del Castillo earned a litany of awards after his outstanding collegiate debut season. The Miami native was named a Freshman All-American by Baseball America, D1 Baseball and Perfect Game and was joined by right-handed pitcher Slade Cecconi on Collegiate Baseball Newspaper’s Freshman All-America Team. Del Castillo was also named to the ABCA All-Region Team and was one of five Hurricanes named to the all-regional team at the Starkville Regional, joined by Gil, Van Belle, first baseman Alex Toral and designated hitter JP Gates.
Toral led a powerful Hurricane lineup that clubbed and ACC-best 85 home runs on the season, the most since Miami hit 106 in 2010. The herculean first baseman smashed a conference-leading 24 home runs on the season that ranked third in Division I and moved him into a tie with Yonder Alonso for the second-most home runs by a Hurricane in a single season.
Twelve different Hurricanes hit at least one home run in 2019, sparking an explosion of power from the Miami bats that matched the 2018 season home run total of 23 after just 15 games in 2019. The Canes’ 85 homers were more than the combined team home run total of 58 from the previous two seasons (35 in 2017 and 23 in 2018).
The Canes also brought in a talented recruiting class of 14 newcomers, 12 freshmen and two junior college transfers, that are expected to compete and contribute immediately