Gophers baseball season preview interviews with opener Friday

Gophers baseball season preview interviews, including with outgoing coach John Anderson

John Anderson officially begins his 43rd and final year as Gophers baseball coach on Friday. The Gophers will play California State-Bakersfield in Surprise, Arizona.

KSTP Sports spoke with Anderson, junior 2B Brady Counsell, and junior P Connor Wietgrefe (Prior Lake HS).

***Click the video box above to watch those conversations and to see the team in action at practice***

Anderson, the longest-tenured coach in Gophers history, announced in December that 2024 would be his last year. He first came to campus September 1974 as a player, and has never left.

Anderson is the all-time winningest coach in Big Ten baseball history. A search for his replacement is already underway.

Counsell, the son of Chicago Cubs manager Craig Counsell, led the team and was fourth in the Big Ten in 2023 with 147 assists. He slashed .248/.371/.316 and was the only Gopher to play in all 52 games.

Wietgrefe tied for a team-high 22 appearances out of the bullpen last season, leading the team with five saves. Th lefty struck out 58 batters in 44.2 innings and held opponents to a .209 average.