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'19 District Preview - Class 8A-District 5

Teams: Plant, Sickles and Steinbrenner

Reigning district champion: Sickles

Coach: Dennis Braun, 14th season
Record last season: 23-6, district runner-up, region finalist
Notable Returners: Matt Coker, Sr., P/MIF; Leo Oshinski, Sr., LHP; Gabe Rincones, Sr., OF; J.D. Urso, Sr., MIF

Editorial take:Underdog status - Taking a hit from departing leaders is nothing new for Plant, which has one of the county's richest baseball legacies and saw three of its alums reach the Major League level in 2018. This season will be no different in that department, as the Panthers look to fill the voids left behind by Miami Marlins first-round draft pick Connor Scott and leading pitcher and RBI-man Brock Fagler from a season ago. So yes, there won’t be dozens of scouts at all its practices and the team starts a little bit more choked up on the bat this season, but a “down year?” C’mon, it's Plant.

The Panthers will be fine and be a battle for any team in the area again this season. However, this d…

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