Skip to main content

Oklahoma Softball 2023 Preview: The Pitching Staff

Jordy Bahl and Nicole May return in 2023, and the addition of talented transfer Alex Storako only bolsters Oklahoma's pitching rotation.

Leading into the 2023 softball season, is releasing a four part series to preview the Oklahoma Sooners. Up first today: the pitching staff.

Coming off back-to-back National Championships, Patty Gasso will still have an incredibly motivated pitching staff.

Freshman phenom Jordy Bahl took college softball by storm, posting an ERA of 1.09 and striking out 205 batters in 141 1/3 innings of work.

She won the NFCA Freshman of the Year for her dominant display, but her end to the season didn’t go as planned.

Bahl sustained an arm injury that held her out of OU’s postseason run until the late stages of the Women’s College World Series, and even then she wasn’t close to 100 percent.

While Bahl looks to finish off 2023 in a healthy fashion, teammate Nicole May will continue to fight for opportunities.

The talented right-hander finished the year with a 1.30 ERA, which ranked No. 11-overall in the entire country last year.

May struck out 99 batters while only issuing 31 walks across 91 2/3 innings, including four 1/3 combined scoreless innings across both WCWS Championship Series contests against Texas.

She’ll have plenty of competition for playing time within her own roster, as Gasso made another talented pitching addition in the transfer portal this offseason.

Hope Trautwein graduated after starring in her lone season in Norman, but former Michigan pitcher Alex Storako arrived to add a veteran arm to the pitching staff.

In 2021, Storako ended the year 22-3 with a 1.05 ERA and her 270 strikeouts to 35 walks in 146 innings earned her Big 12 Pitcher of the Year honors.

Her workload increased in 2022, having to pitch 200 1/3 innings, but she still sat down 300 batters.

Storako’s ERA did take a dip, dropping to 1.71, but she’ll have plenty of opportunity to make an impact while staying fresh in Norman.

Bahl, May and Storako will carry the load in the circle for the Sooners, but that’s not all Bahl is expected to do in 2023.

Just as she said she would when she arrived on campus last year, Bahl is planning to contribute to OU’s offense this year.

She showed off her power during the fall slate, launching home runs during Oklahoma’s Battle Series, and Bahl has also been working defensively in left field to keep her bat in the lineup when she isn’t slated to start at pitcher.

Gasso and OU associate head coach and pitching coach Jennifer Rocha are also excited to have a left-handed option to turn to this year.

The Sooners signed a pair of freshman in Kierston Deal and SJ Geurin who will look to carry the torch of talented lefties that the program is renowned for.

Deal committed to Oklahoma as the No. 1-ranked player in the 2022 class by Extra Innings Softball, posting a 0.64 ERA at East Forsyth High School in Winston Salem, N.C.

Geurin, a product of Leander, TX, was rated the No. 20 prospect last year by Extra Innings Softball, and ended the 2022 recruiting cycle as the No. 10-ranked prospect by FloSoftball.

She finished with a perfect 10-0 record for the Texas Bombers Gold travel ball team, striking out 43 batters over 44 innings and ending up with a 1.10 ERA.

The Sooners will have plenty of options to turn to in the circle, and the offense should provide plenty of run support again, combining to form a lethal duo for the unanimous No. 1 team in the country. 

Want to join the discussion? Click here to become a member of the AllSooners message board community today!

Sign up for your premium membership to today, and get access to the entire Fan Nation premium network!

Follow AllSooners on Twitter to stay up to date on all the latest OU news.

Get your OU tickets from SI Tickets HERE.