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Thomasville baseball gearing up for 2024 season

Jan. 24—THOMASVILLE — The Thomasville Bulldogs baseball team has had a successful offseason as the 2024 baseball season quickly approaches. For head coach Erik McDougald, offseason workouts were tremendous as his guys look ready and willing to take the field.

"Offseason was spectacular," McDougald said. "You know, you focus a ton on individual skill sets during that time and we had outstanding effort by our guys in their attendance and attitudes and everything they did on an individual level. I have zero complaints about anybody."

When most people think about a team's strengths, they normally think of a powerful bat, a dominant mound presence or fantastic defense, but when asked what this Bulldogs team's biggest strength was, McDougald went in an unconventional direction.

"I really like their attentiveness. I know that sounds a little unusual," McDougald said. "But they do a really good job of paying attention to details. Now, that doesn't mean they're perfect, but they do a good job of trying to pay attention to the details and being really coachable. That leads to being humble, which leads to being able to fix mistakes that you have. I love their mental approach to everything. That's a huge asset that's hard to find."

McDougald also used the word coachable often to describe his team saying, "When you're coachable that allows you to improve on a day-in-day-out basis."

As for the Bulldogs rotation, they look good and polished as far as preseason goes. Led by now senior Ethan Barrett, this group has been adding to their arsenals during the offseason, but now it's all about the game time situations.

"They did a good job of building their arsenals in the offseason. Now it's a matter of applying that to game situations," said McDougald. "It's a matter of taking that and putting into a game situation and not getting caught up in the moment."

As for the seniors on this ball club, they are reaching for one more shot at championship glory. Thomasville has had state championship potential for years, especially last year as they finished the season with a 25-11 record. Unfortunately for the Bulldogs, they ran into Harlem who lost just a single game last year and went on to win the state title. But, McDougald believes that the seniors' humility and coachability will help get them over the hump. "These seniors here have done a really good job of doing what they need to do," McDougald said.

"Being in the weight room, working in the offseason and now coming to practice and not acting like they know everything. They are here to be coached just like everybody else. They kind of fit that humbleness that I'm seeing across the board so, that's exciting."

Thomasville will begin their season on the road against Valdosta and Bainbridge before their home opener on February 16 against Cairo.