HARVARD -- When second-year Bromfield baseball head coach Fred McDonald and his staff took over the program at the start of last season, they knew they had their work cut out for them.
McDonald, a native of Hudson, Mass., is slowly making headway in upping the prestige of Trojans' baseball. Bromfield won its season-opener, 4-3, over Mid-Wach C foe, Clinton, on the road Friday -- and the win marks the first for the program in over a year.
Right down to the Trojans' game-day uniforms, Bromfield under the tutelage of McDonald and his staff, is slowly rising up.
"We bought brand-new home-and-away uniforms," he said. "We started a new thing at school where the varsity wear their jersey to school on game days. I went through the principal and administration, and they said it was okay. We are trying to build up a little more pride in the school."
Captaining Bromfield in 2014 are senior shortstop Ben Veno and junior catcher Zane Atwood. Veno will likely bat in the No. 2 spot of the lineup this season. Veno proved that he, too, can hit for power Friday. The senior shortstop shellacked a pitch from Clinton's Josh Bahnick into the swirling wind deep left field, but the ball was caught on the warning track.
Atwood, a Mid-Wach D All-Star as a junior, brings some pop to the Bromfield lineup. Atwood was the table-setter in the Trojans' lineup on Friday at Clinton in the No. 3 hole.
Batting cleanup is senior extra hitter Caleb Green, who will see time at first and third base. Junior Andre Weber, the ace of Bromfield's staff, picked up a complete game four-hitter victory over the Gaels on opening day. Weber will also see innings at second base and in the outfield. Bromfield pitching coach Mike DiPietro has been impressed with the development of the right-handed hurler.
"He looked good out there on Friday," DiPietro said. "It's one thing for me to call the pitches, but he actually has the ability to throw them. Andre has a curveball, change-up and fastball. In the first inning, he walked a couple of batters, but he settled right down. He is a ground ball pitcher -- that's his game."
Junior Michael Jarosz looks to find his niche in the outfield for the Trojans. Gobbling up innings at third base will be Jon Schmitz. Schmitz, a sophomore, will likely start the season in the bottom tier of the lineup card.
Brandon Keady, a sophomore, was Bromfield's opening day starting second baseman. Keady will also see time at pitcher and in the outfield.
Navigating the grounds in center field is sophomore Tommy Jackovitz.
Jackovitz will see time at first base on an as-needed basis; Cam Madalone, a freshman left fielder, as pitcher and backup shortstop. Freshman Scott Jarosz, brother of Mike Jarosz, will flip-flop playing time in the outfield and second base.
Leadoff man, Sam Rosenfield, can play just about any position on the diamond.
Rosenfield started in right field against Clinton.
Freshman Chris Culkins, starting first baseman and pitcher, stroked a 2 RBI double in the sixth inning of the win over the Gaels.
"I only have two seniors, but the freshman class is very strong," McDonald said. "They are all good players -- I am really happy.
"I am hoping Ben Veno and Andre Weber step up this year," he said. "And everybody can pitch -- they're not going to go many innings, but they will pitch. I am really excited about the talent of the freshman class. We lost our two senior pitchers from last year, but besides that, we are going in the right direction."