Loading...
Appears the interim director of Uptown Greenville has good knowledge of its operations. So let's look elsewhere, form a...

Versatile Burleson ready for Year 2

012619ECUbaseball-4.JPG
1 of 2

East Carolina's Alec Burleson takes a swing during a preseason scrimmage on Jan. 25, 2019. (Molly Mathis/The Daily Reflector)

042918ECUbaseball-10.jpg.jpg
Loading…

By RONNIE WOODWARD
The Daily Reflector

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

The breakthrough moment for Alec Burleson as a hitter and pitcher happened early in the 2018 season, when he was a freshman and served as East Carolina baseball’s starting pitcher against Campbell along with going 0-for-2 with a walk as a batter in the same game.

It was the Pirates’ fourth game of the season, and by the end of the campaign, he was solidified in the weekend rotation as a pitcher. Burleson also made 27 starts in the batting order, finishing with 18 RBIs and 13 runs scored.

The left-hander from East Lincoln High School said during media day Monday he feels much more comfortable in preparation for this season and is aiming to reach his full potential as a pitcher and at the plate.

“Me and coach (Cliff) Godwin have talked about it a lot, and the goal is for me to pitch and hit for myself,” he said.

That role will likely come to fruition during ECU’s opening weekend series against Radford, possibly with Burleson serving as the Pirates’ first starting pitcher of the season Feb. 15.

Other candidates for the top starting pitcher spot include Jake Agnos and Trey Benton.

For now, Burleson manages practice time to routinely work with Godwin, pitching coach Dan Roszel and infield coach Jeff Palumbo.

“It’s not easy and it’s a credit to Alec, because Alec is the one who is doing the work and working on both sides,” said Palumbo, who also serves as the Pirates’ recruiting coordinator and baserunning coach. “He really has embraced it. I think the difference between being a freshman and a sophomore is just knowing what to expect and knowing how to get himself prepared for the spring.

“He just has a much clearer picture of what he has to do to get his work accomplished. ... It’s been a nice balance.”

Burleson finished his rookie campaign with 5-2 record, four saves and 3.33 ERA. He made 19 appearances on the mound, earning eight starts and the American Athletic Conference rookie pitcher of the year award.

Among the freshmen looking to follow Burleson’s two-way lead this year are infielders Ryder Giles and Connor Norby. Two of ECU’s seven seniors are starting shortstop Turner Brown and second baseman Brady Lloyd, but Godwin has already mentioned that some rookies are poised to provide depth in the infield and outfield.

“(Giles will) definitely see the field at shortstop, second and third, but he can also pitch a little bit for us,” Godwin said of the right-handed in-state product from Union Pines High. “He can really play defense and has gotten stronger and swings the bat well.”

Contact Ronnie Woodward at rwoodward@reflector.com, 252-329-9592 and follow @RonnieW11 on Twitter.

Loading…

Humans of Greenville

@HumansofGville

Local photographer Joe Pellegrino explores Greenville to create a photographic census of its people.

ECU

August 17, 2019

East Carolina’s football players were asked about their favorite ice cream flavor Saturday and they got the opportunity to pick on teammates, but there also were serious questions pointed their way about the Aug. 31 opener at N.C. State and the rest of an important season for the Pirates…

081819_gdr_ecumedia-15.jpg

August 17, 2019

Moments of reflection Saturday brought East Carolina first-year head football coach Mike Houston back to the spring.

The physicality he saw Saturday during the Pirates' final preseason scrimmage was vastly different from the spring Purple-Gold Game.

Darius Pinnix displayed his punishing rushing…

081819_gdr_ecumedia-10.jpg

August 17, 2019

In an exhibition match defined by defense, Jenna Dages scored the only goal for the East Carolina women’s soccer team to top VCU 1-0 on Friday night inside Johnson Stadium.

Dages’ goal came at the 45:34 mark. From there, goalie Meaghan Haley and ECU's defense helped to maintain the lead.…

082018ECUsoccer-4.jpg

August 17, 2019

Here are five East Carolina football players who have stepped up during preseason camp and will be looking to continue their momentum when the Pirates complete camp with a scrimmage Saturday at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium:

1. Xavier Smith, linebacker: Smith has kind of quietly morphed from a tight end…

111818ECUfootball-24.jpg

August 16, 2019

East Carolina’s football practice Friday morning ended with center Branden Pena snapping to quarterback Holton Ahlers in the victory formation, and then the Pirates celebrated. Kicker Jake Verity also made a 57-yard field goal during a late-game sequence.

On the day before an important…

081119_gdr_ecufootball-13.jpg

August 16, 2019

Jayda Hylton-Pelaia has played countless soccer matches in Canada and the United States, impressing plenty of observers with her fluid dribbling and defensive skills.

Her effect on American Athletic Conference coaches was felt Tuesday when she was named AAC preseason defensive player of the year,…

Jayda 6.jpg

August 15, 2019

Bruce Bivens is as vocal as ever on the East Carolina football defense, which can both excite and worry first-year Pirate coach Mike Houston.

Bivens' voice is important and it carries now in the middle of ECU's defense as he approaches his junior season and his second year as a starting inside…

081119_gdr_ecufootball-9.jpg

August 15, 2019

UCLA transfer receiver Audie Omotosho was in shoulders pads Thursday as he continues to work toward being in full fear and available to compete in Saturday's scrimmage.

Omotosho officially joined the Pirates on Wednesday after not catching a pass for the Bruins from 2016-18. Houston gave insight on…

081519_gdr_ecufootball2.jpg

August 14, 2019

East Carolina first-year football coach Mike Houston does not like to say that one side "won" a practice, but a big rebound day by the Pirates' offensive line left an impression on him that the offense was superb Wednesday.

Quarterback play also was efficient and the running backs, including…

5d544051a6d06.image.jpg

August 14, 2019

East Carolina football’s offense received a potential immediate boost Wednesday in the form of receiver Audie Omotosho, a coast-to-coast graduate transfer who is now a Pirate after not catching a pass at UCLA from 2016 to ’18.

The 6-foot-2, 180-pound receiver, a former four-star recruit…

5d543ecca0585.image.jpg
174 stories in ECU. Viewing 1 through 10.
«First Page   «Previous Page        
Page 1 of 18
        Next Page»   Last Page»