With Tanner Burns and Bailey Horn starting their professional careers after being drafted in June, head coach Butch Thompson will look to the bullpen to fill spots in the starting rotation.
Senior Cody Greenhill will make the transition from closer to starter in the 2021 season.
As a closer, Greenhill has been phenomenal for the past three seasons. He’s posted a 2.59 ERA in 128.2 IP since 2018. In 2020, he pitched 12.2 scoreless innings before the COVID-19 shutdown.
“This is a guy who has over 50 appearances in our program,” Thompson said on Friday. “There’s a lot of things that I think about and worry about, but Cody Greenhill is not one of those.”
Despite being used solely out of the pen for the Tigers so far in his career, Cody Greenhill is not a stranger to being a starter. He started for Russellville High School, where he posted a 1.11 ERA his senior year and won three Class 5A State Championships.
While the transition won’t be easy, Greenhill is excited at the prospect of joining the rotation.
"I was a starter in high school, so I kind of know the ropes," said Greenhill in an interview with AuburnTigers.com. "I'm excited to get back to work. Having a full year with Tim [Hudson] is going to help a lot. Can't wait.”
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Greenhill often went multiple innings in relief, averaging around 2.5 innings per appearance.
As a pitcher, he’s gotten his velocity up to 97 MPH, although will most likely tone the speed down if he wants to pitch a starter's workload. He commands his fastball on both sides of the plate with some late sinking action and offers a cutting changeup and a slider.
“We continue to think that his breaking ball and his off-speed offerings will develop by being a starter," Thompson said. “To me, it’s just a gradual evolution.”
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