Ole Miss Ace Dylan DeLucia is Steadying Force for the Rebels
Ole Miss ace Dylan DeLucia will get the ball in game one for the Rebels against Arizona in the Coral Gables Regional, something fans have grown accustomed to at this point.
Early in the season, though, DeLucia’s role was different. The Port Orange, Florida native spent the first month or so as a reliever. But in the series-deciding game three against UCF, he proved he was a force to be reckoned with, throwing four scoreless innings of relief, giving up just one hit and striking out six.
On the road against Auburn, he earned his first SEC win while pitching three and a third innings of relief and striking out five.It wasn’t until the third week into conference play, however, that DeLucia got his first start of the season.
He drew the Friday night start versus Kentucky on the road and pitched six-and-a-third innings, allowing just four hits, a run (which was unearned) en route to striking out five.
That start gave Mike Bianco what he had been looking for, a guy who can go out in game one of the series and take care of business.
— Ole Miss Baseball (@OleMissBSB) April 30, 2022
“Pitching in front of all these (SEC) fans kind of just put me on another path,” DeLucia said in Thursday’s press conference in Coral Gables.
“I’ve just gotten more comfortable in that role, seeing all the fans at like Arkansas, South Carolina, at home. It prepared me for this point.”
Dylan DeLucia on pitching on the Regional stage
DeLucia hit a little bump in the road at home against Alabama, but what’s a good roller coaster without some ups and downs? Over the next three weeks, he would shine as he led the Rebels to three consecutive game-one victories over South Carolina, Mississippi State and Arkansas.
Over those three games, DeLucia threw a combined 23.2 innings while giving up only five earned runs and notching 21 strikeouts. In all three games he pitched at least seven innings — which included a complete-game victory over State.
Hotty Toddy! Congrats to Ole Miss pitcher Dylan DeLucia and the Rebels on beating State, 4-2, in game one of the series!
Here’s Dylan’s final complete-game line: 💪🏼🔥
— The Rebel Walk (@TheRebelWalk) April 22, 2022
He showed his toughness on the road in Baton Rouge as he threw seven complete innings, over the span of two days, in a win over LSU in Alex Box. He allowed just three hits, three earned runs and struck out nine.
“I want to be that guy, at the end of the day,” DeLucia said prior to the Rebels’ SEC tourney game against Vanderbilt.
“I want to be the one people goes up to and give the ball every chance he can. If my arm’s up for it I’m going to.”
This season, DeLucia owns a record of 5-2. He has proven time and time again he has the ability to rise to the occasion, and there is no one else the Rebels would want starting game one of regional play versus Arizona than Dylan DeLucia.
“When you look back, there’s reasons why we got here, but I don’t know if there’s a bigger one than Dylan in a sense of him stabilizing things,” Coach Bianco said of his Friday-night ace.
“Even weeks when we were losing two out of three, we won Friday. We won a bunch on Friday’s. I saw an SEC stat page, and he’s right up there among all of them in wins, and he didn’t even start the first four games. He had 60 percent of the starts of everyone else. He’s been a difference maker.“
Mike Bianco on Dylan DeLucia
Day one of the NCAA Baseball Regional in Coral Gables, set to begin today, has been postponed until Saturday, June 4 due to weather, as announced Friday morning.
On Saturday, game one between No. 1 Miami and No. 4 Canisius will begin at 11:00 a.m. (CT). In game two, No. 2 Arizona and No. 3 Ole Miss are set to play 55 minutes after the conclusion of game one.
Nick Filipich was born and raised in Biloxi, MS. He is an Ole Miss senior majoring in Sports and Recreation Administration. A sports junkie with a great passion for all things Ole Miss, Nick played baseball and football in high school — which is where he discovered his love for sports. He is an avid Braves and Saints fan, and in his free time enjoys spending time with family, friends and his black lab, Dixie.