The results from the second reader poll are in, and in a landslide freshman Blake Monar was voted as the IU pitcher our readers would least like to face. The left-hander from Rockport, IN received 35 (76%) of 46 total votes cast, finishing well ahead of Eric Arnett (6 votes) and Matt Bashore (3 votes), IU’s other weekend starters. While Bashore’s early season struggles have been well-documented on this blog, it was surprising to see Monar outdistance Arnett by such a large margin, especially since he has made only 5 appearances at the collegiate level. However, you cannot deny the success Monar has had thus far in his young college career. He is currently holding opponents to a .176 batting average and has only allowed one extra-base hit on the season (a double) while striking out 21 in 25.1 innings of work. IU head coach Tracy Smith must agree with our voters as he is giving Monar the nod to start off the Big Ten Conference season on Friday at home against Minnesota, a significant accomplishment for a player with so little experience at this level. Based on what I’ve read and seen, though, he possesses all the tools and intangibles needed to continue his early season success for the rest of the year.
Thanks to everyone who voted this week!