Bearcat of the Week: Joey Bielek

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Cincinnati Bearcats baseball is having a roller coaster of a season. The started the year dropping their first 5 games of the year and getting swept in the Big East-Big Ten Challenge. But UC has righted the ship against lesser competition winning 8 of their last 9 games before they take on Michigan State this afternoon. If they want to keep playing the way they are, Cincinnati will need to get a solid performance out of their true freshman third baseman Joey Bielek. My guest a month or so ago, Chuck Saffell, mentioned that Bielek was his ‘newcomer to watch’ this spring. It turns out his prediction has been spot on so far as the true freshman has been tearing the cover off the ball of late.

The series against Chicago State in which the Bearcats swept 4 – 0, Bielek hit an insane .529 pulling his batting average up to a UC-leading .404. He also notched 7 RBI’s pulling him up to 2nd on the team behind veteran Jake Proctor. But I think the most telling stat is how he only left 2 runners on base in the series. One of the most frustrating things about watching baseball is seeing your team strand baserunners, particularly at 2nd or 3rd where a simple hit would bring them in. If you paid close attention to the Cincinnati Reds in the 2000’s, you know what I’m talking about. For Bielek, he appears wise beyond his years and the fact that he’s only struck out 5 times this season vs. walking 4 times also shows how comfortable he is at the plate. This bodes well for his future at UC.