It’s not receiving as much attention as the New York
Yankees’ acquisition of Alex Rodriguez, but the Michigan
baseball team is also dealing with major changes in the
infield.

Sports Department
Sophomore shortstop Jeremy Goldschmeding,left, will be back at his familiar position, but A.J. Scheidt will be adjusting to a new position, while Chris Getz and Kyle Bohn adjust to a new school. (SETH LOWER/Daily)

Two starters, first baseman Kyle Bohm and second baseman Chris
Getz, are adjusting to life in Ann Arbor after transferring from
Auburn and Wake Forest, respectively. A.J. Scheidt played almost
exclusively at second last year, but he will start at third this
season. Sophomore Jeremy Goldschmeding remains at shortstop, but he
has just 25 starts under his belt from last season.

Growing pains would normally be expected with such a collection
of players, but the group has flourished, and the squad has a
surprisingly good .968 fielding percentage.

“It’s almost like a whole new team,” Michigan
coach Rich Maloney said. “It’s going to take us a while
to grow, but I’ve been extremely pleased, from a defensive
standpoint.”

Goldschmeding has enjoyed building relationships with his fellow
infielders.

“We’re kind of all learning together,” he
said. “We’re having a blast.”

Players are often sensitive about switching positions, but
Scheidt’s move to the hot corner was accompanied by no such
difficulties.

“I was happy to move to third base,” Scheidt said.
“Getting a guy like Chris to transfer and come play second
base was a better situation for the team. Chris and Jeremy do a
pretty good job of directing the middle.”

The sweeping changes on the diamond have caused some problems,
though. Maloney’s chief complaint is the lack of
communication between his players. The coach is still searching for
somebody to step up and “direct traffic.”

“It’s not easy,” Maloney said. “The more
success you have, the more confidence you have. The more confidence
you have, the easier it is to communicate. It goes hand in hand.
(Communication) is an area where we haven’t done as good a
job as we need to do to be the best defensive club we can
be.”

Second baseman Getz credits fall practice for providing the
foundation for the team’s cohesiveness.

“I think we built a lot of chemistry earlier in the
fall,” Getz said. “It’s always nice to see how it
comes along in the spring. Fielding-wise, I think we’ve been
on the same page.”

As a former middle infielder himself, Maloney has a certain
interest in the progress of the group.

“Your infield is your first line of defense,” he
said. “They will receive most of the plays in most games. To
be a good infielder, you have to do a couple of things extremely
well. You have to field the ball cleanly and then you have to make
a clean throw. You have two parts of the puzzle that have to be
completed perfectly in order to make it work.”

Michigan’s infield will have plenty of opportunities to
showcase its slick fielding in this weekend’s Michigan
Classic. The Wolverines will play two games each against Detroit
and Oakland from tomorrow through Sunday at Ray Fisher Stadium, and
the players are eager to play their first home contests of the
year.

“We’re ready to go,” Bohm said. “I think
we feel pretty comfortable with each other.”

Getz sees past this weekend and envisions great things for the
infield as a whole.

“We’re all young,” he said. “I think
it’s only going to get better. We have two or three more
years together, so it’s a taste of what’s to
come.”

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