By Ray Hamill — The Humboldt Crabs are back and ready for action.
The players began to arrive in town this week in preparation for Friday night’s season opener against the Corvallis Knights at the Arcata Ball Park.
As usual for opening weekend, the coaching staff will have a limited number of players at their disposal, with 17 expected to suit up.
But team manager Robin Guiver expects that to be just enough for what should be a competitive three-game series.
“We have nine position players, so we’re set as long as everybody stays healthy,” Guiver said. “And we should be fine on he mound. We’ve got enough arms to get us through the weekend.”
A number of this year’s players are still playing with their respective college teams, but Guiver feels more than happy with what he’s seen from the players that have been at practice this week.
“We’ve got a bunch of guys in the tournament, guys that will be a big part of our summer, but I like what we’ve got here,” he said. “I like what I’ve seen from the guys we’ve got here.”
This year’s squad will feature a number of familiar faces, including a couple of local returners.
Former McKinleyville High and College of the Redwoods star Dylan Campbell, who impressed at Mount Mercy University this spring, is back, as is Kokko Figueiredo, a Fortuna grad who also enjoyed two big years at CR.
Figueiredo is coming off a big spring at Cal State Monterey Bay, where he has had an immediate impact for the Otters.
Former Eureka standout Aidan Morris, who plays at Santa Rosa JC, also joins the Crabs this season after impressing last year for the Humboldt B52s.
The weekend series gets under way on Friday at 7 p.m., with additional games on Saturday at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 12:30 p.m.
And Guiver is expecting a tough battle.
“I’d imagine they’re not that different from us in terms of having players available,” he said of the Knights. “But I know they’ll have a bunch of good players. They always do.”