2018/19 ABL R2 – Geelong-Korea v Perth Heat
22 Nov 2018 19:00 AEDT / 22 November 2018 23:00 AEDT Add to calendar
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Just eight years after hosting Brut Australian Baseball League history, all eyes will again be on Blacktown International Sportspark on Thursday night.
The site of the relaunched league’s first game in 2010 between Sydney and Canberra will usher in the expansion era when the Sox welcome Geelong-Korea.
GK – under the tutelage of former Sydney closer Dae-sung Koo – enter the league with plenty of fanfare and the eyes of a nation upon them.
But after putting together a roster in a matter of months the question is whether they can have instant success.
GK have a tough test ahead against the Blue Sox, who have upgraded in pursuit of an elusive Claxton Shield.
Sydney have added plenty of talent as they look to end a three-year hiatus from the ABL playoffs.
The Sox have named former Brisbane pitcher Alessandro Maestri as their Opening Night starter, with Philadelphia prospect Nick Fanti slated to start game two.
Sydney’s bullpen includes returning right-hander Tyler Herr, along with new additions Ty’relle Harris, Garrett Granitz and Shogo Nakashima.
Todd van Steensel is set for a full season and Craig Anderson is slated to come out of the bullpen, giving the Sox pitching staff which boasted a league-worse ERA an improved look.
Sydney will be without marquee infielder Gift Ngoepe for Opening Weekend.