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2022 College Top 25 Preview: No. 12 Florida State

Last season: 31-24 (20-16 in ACC), reached regionals
Final ranking: NR
Coach (record at school): Mike Martin Jr. (43-29, two years)

The good news: Florida State last year was led on the mound by lefthanders Parker Messick and Bryce Hubbart, who were excellent in their first full season of college baseball. Messick was named ACC pitcher of the year after going 8-2, 3.10 with 126 strikeouts in 90 innings and Hubbart also pitched at a high level, going 6-5, 3.80 with 94 strikeouts in 71 innings. After their spring performances, followed by strong summers—Messick with USA Baseball’s Collegiate National Team and Hubbart in the Cape Cod League—they return for 2022 looking like perhaps the best 1-2 punch in the nation and ready to lead a strong Florida State pitching staff. The Seminoles have options behind them in the rotation and return veteran relievers Davis Hare and Jonah Scolaro, in addition to bringing in more high-powered arms in their recruiting class. After leading the ACC in ERA in 2021, Florida State could do so again in 2022.

The bad news: Florida State not only had the 2021 ACC pitcher of the year on its roster, it also had the conference’s player of the year in catcher Mat Nelson. But Nelson is now in pro ball after being drafted 35th overall, leaving a big hole in the lineup. He led the Seminoles in just about every offensive category, while also handling a premium pitching staff. Colton Vincent, a fourth-year junior, has big shoes to fill behind the plate, while replacing Nelson’s offensive production will fall to the whole team. Florida State wasn’t an offensive juggernaut last season and will turn to some newcomers to help bolster its attack. Transfers Jordan Carrion (Florida), Brett Roberts (Tennessee Tech) and Alex Toral (Miami) will join the lineup, as will freshman slugger James Tibbs. Outfielder AJ Shaver, a well-regarded recruit in 2020, could also provide a boost after missing all but Opening Weekend due to injury. A resurgence from fifth-year outfielder Reese Albert would also be a welcome sight for the Seminoles.

Player to know: Parker Messick, LHP

Messick was outstanding as Florida State’s Friday starter in 2021 and became the second player ever to be named ACC pitcher and freshman of the year in the same season. He also stepped up and saw time as DH when Florida State needed help in its lineup and hit .225/.279/.300 with a home run in 40 at-bats. Messick will likely not reprise his role as a two-way player, but he’ll be central to Florida State’s chances in 2022.

Path to Omaha: The Seminoles were better than their postseason showing in 2021 and got a tough draw after playing an expanded ACC schedule. A normal 2022 slate and its overall skill level should put Florida State back in the hosting conversation. It will need some new players to step up offensively, whether that’s newcomers like Roberts and Toral or veterans like Albert and Vincent. This isn’t likely to be a vintage Florida State high-octane offense, but with its pitching staff, it doesn’t need to be. As long as the lineup generates consistent support, Messick and Hubbart and a deep bullpen can lead the Seminoles on a deep postseason run.

Harney, Sean (Kentucky Sarah Caputi)

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2022 Lineup

CColton VincentR-Jr..118.211.1761701
1BAlex ToralR-Sr.
2BTyler MartinR-So..280.445.342193222
3BBrett RobertsR-So.
Transfer—Tennessee Tech
SSJordan CarrionSo.
LFAJ ShaverR-Fr..000.000.000100
CFLogan LaceyR-Sr..295.364.5181931039
RFReese AlbertR-Sr..176.318.33091415
DHJames TibbsFr.HS—Marietta, Ga.
LHPParker MessickR-So.823.10901260
LHPBryce HubbartR-So.653.8071940
RHPCarson MontgomerySo.014.5028390
RPDavis HareR-Sr.122.6727333
RPJonah ScolaroR-Sr.022.2824261

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