Ohio State baseball will be without its Friday starter next spring after right-handed pitcher Nate Haberthier announced Sunday that he would transfer to 2022 regular-season Big Ten Champion Maryland.
Haberthier was a standout high school pitcher at Lakota East High School in West Chester, Ohio — a suburb of Cincinnati. He was the No. 12 high school recruit in the state according to Perfect Game and the No. 11 prospect according to Prep Baseball Report. Other schools like Tennessee, Cincinnati, Ohio University, Indiana, North Carolina-Charlotte, Miami University and Dayton showed interest in his ability.
He made his Ohio State debut in 2021 against Illinois, recording 2 2/3 scoreless innings while allowing five hits and collecting a pair of strikeouts. Haberthier finished that season at 0-1 with a 14.04 ERA in 8 1/3 innings pitched.
The following season, Beals handed Haberthier the ball on Friday nights and claimed he was the most equipped pitcher in the Ohio State locker room for the task. It was a vote of confidence from Beals, who would rely on Haberthier to set the tone for the weekend against non-conference and Big Ten opponents.
“We recruited Nate Haberthier because of his ability to sink his fastball,” former Ohio State head coach Greg Beals said. “When he trusts his stuff, he’s as good as they come.”
However, Haberthier never found the rhythm he was looking for in 2022. He appeared in 14 games with 13 starts across 70.2 innings and ended the year with a 1-6 record. He struck out 54 batters but allowed 87 hits, 53 earned runs, and 16 free bases in the primetime role.
With student-athletes using the transfer portal more frequently in recent seasons, it has become common practice for transferring players to share their status in the portal. Still, that practice is not a requirement. Haberthier announced his decision on Twitter, telling his followers and the collegiate baseball world that he would be a Terrapin in 2023.
“I’m excited to announce that I will be transferring to Maryland University to continue my academic and baseball career!” Haberthier wrote. “Thank you to everyone who has helped me get to this point. Go Terps!”
Maryland went 48-14 last season with an 18-5 record in the Big Ten. The Terps were third in the conference in opponent batting average (.245) and strikeouts (538), fourth in ERA (5.03) and fifth in hits allowed (520).
If Haberthier finds consistency in 2023, his arm talent will immediately bolster the Terrapins bullpen, and he can potentially push for a starting role later in the season. It will be up to Maryland head coach Rob Vaughn and pitching coach Anthony Papio to unlock that potential.
Ohio State will return its Saturday and Sunday starters from last season. Rising junior Isaiah Coupet started 13 times for the Buckeyes in Game 2s, logging 64.2 innings with 98 strikeouts, 42 earned runs and a 5.85 ERA. Rising senior Wyatt Loncar took the mound 10 times in Game 3s, collecting 51.1 innings with 73 strikeouts, 26 earned runs and a 4.56 ERA.