Youth litters the lineup and the bullpen, but the majority of the freshman have performed far beyond their years. While they are still learning the nuances of the game, the talent is undeniable - and both the immediate, and distant - future is bright.
"For such a young staff, yeah, I think we’re really mature," junior starter Brian Howard said. "Every once in a while, you’ll see a little youth show itself on the field. But you can’t expect everyone to play like they’re a senior when they’re a freshman."
It was a dominant performance, his second career no no and 17th straight victory - a total domination from start to finish. He is 15-0 with a 0.53 ERA in his last 16 starts, and hasn't lost since the Cubs themselves were no hit last July.
Highlighting one of the most amazing runs in pitching history, Arrieta pitched his second career no-hitter in leading the Cubs to a 16-0 victory over the Reds under threatening skies at Great American Ball Park.
Arrieta, 30, struck out six and walked four in a 119-pitch masterpiece that lowered his ERA to 0.87 before a crowd of 16,497.
Despite being "sloppy" in hi pregame bullpen session and "struggling with control" throughout the game, Arrieta was once again dominant, something that has become all but expected over his dominant stretch of success.
"Baseball history, there's so many things I've been able to be a part of over these last 12, 15 months," Arrietasaid. "We're really trying to enjoy it."
While the numbers are far from good, they may not be quite as bad as they look. And Chris Del Conte believes that the low scores have more to do with the transition to the Big 12 than a problem in the football program itself.
"We knew we had two years that were not our best years," he said. "If you look at our graduation rate and our GPAs, we’re doing a wonderful job. When we moved into the Big 12, we had kids that transferred, we moved some kids out, changed the culture a little bit, whether it be for behavioral sort of things that transpired. And we had a couple of years where we were not healthy."
There is optimism about Arkansas and Baylor, but caution when speaking of an SMU team that seems poised to breakout.
Arkansas isn't exactly an SEC powerhouse but it is the only prominent team on the TCU schedule this season. Arkansas head coach Bret Bielema has a history off getting on the wrong side of Texas college coaches, but it will be difficult for his Razorbacks team to do much to cause TCU any problems.
These videos are always amazing, and Josh Doctson measures just about off the charts in most categories. He faces off against LaQuon Treadwell in this head to head. He seems to have answered any remaining questions about his speed, as well.
"What impressed us most was his acceleration... he was able to record the highest top speed and the second quickest time to top speed of any prospect we tested."
Dixon has said all the right things as he has transitioned back to Fort Worth, but backing it up will be the true test. That being said, if anyone can win at TCU, it has to be the prodigal son.
He waved away the idea that he came back to Fort Worth just for the nostalgia or because he felt obligated to do so. He insisted that he did it because he knows through his experience at TCU that the Horned Frogs can be feared in college basketball because of his experience building the team from an afterthought into conference champions.
The Frogs clinched at least a share of the regular season title, with a chance to own it outright with a victory over the Red Raiders in Lubbock this weekend.
"This is a special accomplishment for our program and for this group of guys," Roditi said. "We have such a young team and I don’t think they even realize what they just accomplished."