Tyler Melko

Tyler Melko will lead a talented Destroyers team Thursday night in the Mansfield’s home opener against Hornell.

The Mansfield Destroyers players and staff are anxious for the team’s inaugural season in the New York Collegiate Baseball League to begin.

Fielding talented players from across the country, the Destroyers look to bring competitive, entertaining baseball to Mansfield for the summer.

One of the older players on the team, Tyler Melko, from Knoxville, hopes to lead the Destroyers with his experience.

“I realize I’m the oldest kid here. I’m going into my senior year, I’ve got 150 games under my belt, some of these kids just got out of high school. I want to look to be a leader” Melko said.

Melko joins a diverse group of players, which he said has the potential to do something special.

The league gives college players the opportunity to play and work on their skills throughout the summer. Melko hopes to work on his mental game during hte season. He said he wants to be more comfortable in uncomfortable situations.

The.e isn’t much time between introductions and taking the field as head coach Brian Hill noted, “The guys are all excited to be here. They just came in last night so they are ready to go.”

Wednesday morning was the team’s first practice.

Their first game, of the 46 game regular season, comes the very next day on Thursday, June 6.

“That is one of the great things about summer ball is the guys show up and two or three days later you are playing in the game,” Hill said.

Thursday’s home opener starts at 5:35.