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Mid-Winter Thrills! - And Beyond - 2019

 
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dodgerblue6



Joined: 10 Aug 2005
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PostPosted: Wed 2/13/19 11:36 pm    Post subject: Mid-Winter Thrills! - And Beyond - 2019 Reply with quote

It's what we relish, and now, that date is almost upon us--dos mas dias until Opening Night of NCAA baseball!

And with Oregon State defending their CWS title, there is hope in the Pac-12 and much excitement for others as well, on the brink of the start of the new season. Heck, even UCI is making noise trying to get back into the field.

Baseball America's preseason top 25 rankings are as follows:

1 Vanderbilt


The Skinny: The Commodores bring back the bulk of a team that last season fell just short of Omaha, including eight of nine starters and seven of 10 pitchers who threw at least 20 innings. Right fielder JJ Bleday, a potential first round pick, and righthanders Drake Fellows and Patrick Raby, who both have Friday night experience, lead the strong returning core.

2 Louisiana State


The Skinny: The Tigers got a huge boost following the draft when the draft-eligible trio of righthander Zack Hess and outfielders Antoine Duplantis and Zach Watson opted to return to Baton Rouge and the top-ranked recruiting class in the country landed on campus. LSU this year will have an experienced pitching staff to go with a potent lineup.

3 UCLA


The Skinny: The Bruins have a veteran lineup led by Chase Strumpf, Michael Toglia and Jeremy Ydens that should make them formidable offensively and defensively. UCLA isn’t as experienced on the mound, but starters Ryan Garcia and Zach Pettway and closer Holden Powell give the pitching staff a strong nucleus.

4 Florida


The Skinny: The Gators will have a different look in 2019 after losing righthanders Brady Singer – the Player of the Year, Jackson Kowar and Michael Byrne, third baseman Jonathan India and catcher J.J. Schwarz. But Florida will still be plenty talented thanks to a series of top-five recruiting classes and has a shot to be the first team to make it to Omaha five consecutive years since Stanford did so from 1999-2003.

5 North Carolina


The Skinny: The Tar Heels last year advanced to Omaha with a team full of underclassmen. That group, led by slugger Michael Busch and righthanders Gianluca Dalatri and Austin Bergner, is back and has the potential to carry North Carolina on another deep postseason run.


6 Florida State


The Skinny: Mike Martin enters his 40th and final season as Florida State coach with a young but very talented team. The Seminoles will need the third-ranked recruiting class to step up, but they have veterans such as third baseman Drew Mendoza and lefthander Drew Parrish to guide them.

7 Stanford


The Skinny: The Cardinal last year won the Pac-12 Conference title in coach David Esquer’s first season back on The Farm. Stanford’s potent offense led by first baseman Andrew Dashbach and outfielder Kyle Stowers and shutdown bullpen anchored by All-American closer Jack Little can carry it a long way.

8 Texas Tech


The Skinny: The Red Raiders have made it to Omaha three times in the last five years and while there’s been some turnover from last year’s team, they have the firepower to do it again. Texas Tech’s potent offense will be led by All-American third baseman Josh Jung and outfielder Gabe Holt.

9 Mississippi State


The Skinny: The Bulldogs are coming off an Omaha trip in what was a roller coaster year in Starkville. With center fielder Jake Mangum back at the top of the lineup, lefthander Ethan Small at the top of the rotation, a top-12 recruiting class headlined by unsigned first rounder J.T. Ginn and the much-anticipated opening of the new Dudy Nobel Field, this has a chance to be a special year for Mississippi State.

10 Oregon State


The Skinny: The defending national champions will this season have a much different look, starting in the dugout where Pat Bailey was elevated to interim head coach following Pat Casey’s surprising retirement. On the field, Oregon State must replace three top-40 picks and its Friday starter, but All-American catcher Adley Rutschman, the early favorite to be the No. 1 overall draft pick, and righthander Kevin Abel, the 2018 Freshman of the Year, give the Beavers a pair of stars to build around.


11 Louisville


The Skinny: The time is now for the Cardinals’ junior class, led by first baseman Logan Wyatt, shortstop Tyler Fitzgerald and lefthander Nick Bennett.
They’ll form the nucleus of this team and Louisville will go as far as they carry them.

12 East Carolina


The Skinny: The Pirates in 2016 brought in their first-ever Top 25 recruiting class. That class now enters its all-important junior season, with All-American outfielder Bryant Packard and first baseman Spencer Brickhouse leading the offense. If ECU can figure out its pitching staff, it will be dangerous in the postseason.

13 Mississippi


The Skinny: The Rebels return most of their lineup from a team that a year ago won 48 games and the Southeast Conference Tournament. Their powerful offense, strong defense and deep bullpen will be key as they must also replace their entire weekend rotation.

14 Clemson


The Skinny: The Tigers have been the picture of consistency under coach Monte Lee, winning more than 40 games and hosting a regional in each of his first three seasons. Clemson must replace slugger Seth Beer, but it still has a powerful lineup and has improved its depth on the mound.

15 Georgia


The Skinny: The Bulldogs in 2018 broke out and hosted a regional in their first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2011. Georgia returns much of that team and looks especially strong on the mound, with ace Emerson Hancock and closer/third baseman Aaron Schunk back to anchor the staff.


16 Baylor


The Skinny: The Bears finished last season strong, winning the Big 12 Conference Tournament for the first time in program history. With catcher Shea Langeliers and lefthander Cody Bradford, who both played this summer for USA Baseball’s Collegiate National Team, leading the way, Baylor looks primed to take the next step.

17 Auburn


The Skinny: Replacing the first-overall draft pick is an unenviable task, but Auburn has the pieces to succeed even without Casey Mize. Shortstop Will Holland, a potential first-round pick, leads the offense and righthanders Tanner Burns and Davis Daniel give the Tigers a strong 1-2 punch on the mound.

18 Arkansas


The Skinny: The Razorbacks last year came within a strike of winning the national championship for the first time in program history and now must regroup with a new-look team. There’s still plenty of star power, including Freshmen All-Americans Heston Kjerstad and Casey Martin, closer Matt Cronin and center fielder Dominic Fletcher, but Arkansas will need some new faces to step up.

19 Texas


The Skinny: The Longhorns last year announced their return to prominence with a Big 12 title and a trip to Omaha. But now they must replace All-American Kody Clemens, several key pieces on the pitching staff and shortstop David Hamilton, who in January was lost for the season with an injury. Texas has plenty of talent, but it also enters the season with several question marks.returning core.

20 Michigan


The Skinny: The Wolverines last season came on strong in the second half with a young team but just missed the NCAA Tournament. Now a year older, Michigan enters the season with high expectations and eager to break through for its first Big Ten Conference title since 2008.

21 Southern Mississippi


The Skinny: The Golden Eagles again enter the season as Conference USA favorites. They have to replace some key pieces, but All-American outfielder/righthander Matt Wallner gives Southern Miss a star to build around.

22 Duke


The Skinny: The Blue Devils are coming off a banner season that saw them win a program-record 45 games and advance to super regionals for the first time ever. Duke lost some sluggers from that team but should be strong on the mound with juniors Graeme Stinson and Adam Laskey leading the way.


23 Coastal Carolina


The Skinny: The Chanticleers are coming off another impressive season and again are Sun Belt Conference favorites. Coastal has a wealth of talent but must figure out how all the pieces fit together after losing some key veterans.

24 Minnesota


The Skinny: The Gophers have won the Big Ten three of the last four years and last year broke through to super regionals. The bulk of its lineup this year will be new, but Minnesota brings back Freshmen All-American righthanders Patrick Fredrickson and Max Meyer to anchor what should be a stout pitching staff.

25 UC Irvine


The Skinny: The Anteaters haven’t made the NCAA Tournament since 2014 but that figures to change this season. Shortstop Christian Koss and righthanders Andre Pallante and Trenton Denholm form a strong core for the team as Ben Orloff takes over the program from Mike Gillespie.
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forloveofthegame



Joined: 23 Oct 2009
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PostPosted: Thu 2/14/19 6:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This will be a fun season and thankfully it is here now! Even Mother Nature is cooperating with a dry day tomorrow after a soaking wet V-Day!

LSU is ranked No. 1 in the College Baseball Daily poll. That poll also came out in December! So, I do not know if anything significant has happened to change things. Rankings are linked here

See you at TG Stadium!
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dodgerblue6



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PostPosted: Fri 2/15/19 6:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

And we're just minutes away from the first pitch! Very Happy
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dodgerblue6



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PostPosted: Sat 2/16/19 9:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

And it was a successful opening night for our two local teams--despite cool and drizzly weather.

Because of likely rain on Sunday, SDSU's Sunday game has been moved up and a doubleheader will be played today.
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forloveofthegame



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PostPosted: Tue 2/19/19 5:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I did not attend the doubleheader. It was good enough to be there at SDSU on Saturday. But I will be back tonight for the game vs. UCI and maybe take in a game at Fowler Park soon, too.

The season is underway again and that is a good feeling!

Linda was it you who was talking about Mason Pelio playing for BC this year? Also what happened with the freshman infielder at Stanford? I did not check their box scores this weekend. There is such a flurry of games to keep track of all of a sudden. We should be grateful for that, though! Smile
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dodgerblue6



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PostPosted: Wed 2/20/19 9:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quite an opening weekend!
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sunnyblue



Joined: 22 Nov 2008
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PostPosted: Thu 2/21/19 10:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey ladies, it's good to have these games back.
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dodgerblue6



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PostPosted: Tue 2/26/19 10:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

More updating coming! And, SDSU vs. USD tonight!
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forloveofthegame



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PostPosted: Tue 2/26/19 3:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You know we are going to that game!
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forloveofthegame



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PostPosted: Fri 3/1/19 5:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cal's first baseman/pitcher Andrew Vaughn (won Golden Spikes Award last year) is featured in Baseball America. He ranks #4 on the top 200 prospects list but what most people are noticing most is his plate discipline. He does not strike out much, and if I were a scout I would be scoring that a big plus! Article linked here
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dodgerblue6



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PostPosted: Mon 3/4/19 8:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, Cathy. I keep meaning to check how Darren Baker is doing, too.

Pity all the Socal teams hosting series this weekend and trying to get all three games in. Because of rain, most were able to only work in two.
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dodgerblue6



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PostPosted: Tue 3/5/19 12:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

BA.com's rankings after the third week of the season are as follows:

1

Vanderbilt


2

UCLA

BA.com notes: A moment of appreciation for UCLA reliever Kyle Mora, who has been virtually unhittable this season. He threw two scoreless innings in each of the first two games of the series against Sacramento State. In 13 innings across eight appearances, he has a 0.69 ERA, a 21-to-3 strikeout-to-walk ratio, and an .098 opponent batting average.

3

North Carolina


4

Stanford


5

Florida


6

Florida State


7

Oregon State


BA.com notes: A much-anticipated pitching matchup between West Virginia’s Alek Manoah and Oregon State’s Kevin Abel ended up not living up to expectations in Game 1 of last weekend’s series, but that’s only because OSU took the suspense out of the game so quickly. They plated seven runs (four earned) off of Manoah in the second inning and never looked back.
Meanwhile, Abel threw six innings of one-hit, one-run baseball with three walks and 11 strikeouts.


8

Mississippi State


9

Texas



10

Louisiana State



11

Texas Tech


12

Mississippi


13

Louisville


14

East Carolina


15

Georgia


16

Arkansas


17

Auburn


18

Michigan


19

Coastal Carolina


20

South Carolina


21

Clemson


22

Duke


23

North Carolina State


24

UC Irvine


BA notes: What was supposed to be UC Irvine’s three-game series on the road at Missouri State turned into a Friday doubleheader between the two teams, as they worked to get in as much baseball as they could before inclement weather rolled into Springfield, Mo. The Anteaters made the most of the double dip, taking home wins in both halves.

25

Baylor
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forloveofthegame



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PostPosted: Wed 3/6/19 4:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Did you happen to see the score of the USD-UCR game last night - it is one of those kinds where you think it might be a football score. Toreros won 31-3. I had even thought of getting out to that one since I had a Tuesday free for a change. We ended up back at Montezuma Mesa, though, where the Aztecs lost to (No. 11) Texas Tech, 5-1.
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forloveofthegame



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PostPosted: Mon 3/11/19 3:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Report on the local teams and how they fared over the weekend - linked here
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dodgerblue6



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PostPosted: Tue 3/12/19 8:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Also, the Dodger Stadium Classic was played in L.A. over the weekend--UCLA beat USC in the finale. Big weekend coming up for the No. 2 Bruins when they meet No. 6-ranked, and defending CWS champions, Oregon State at Jackie Robinson Stadium. The Beavers have moved up to No. 3 in this week's rankings by Baseball America (see below), and Oregon State up a notch from No. 7.


1

Vanderbilt


2

UCLA


3

Stanford


4

Florida


5

Florida State


6

Oregon State


7

Mississippi State


8

North Carolina


9

Texas Tech


10

Texas


11

Louisiana State


12

Mississippi


13

Louisville


14

East Carolina


15

Georgia


16

Arkansas


17

Auburn



18

Clemson


19

Coastal Carolina


20

South Carolina


21

North Carolina State


22

UC Irvine


23

Michigan


24

Duke


25

Tennessee
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sunnyblue



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PostPosted: Fri 3/15/19 3:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We were at the Dodger Stadium Classic last Sunday. USC vs UCLA. It's been a rough week for Trojans.
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dodgerblue6



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PostPosted: Fri 3/15/19 6:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

At first I thought, ???? Then I realized. Smile

Jackie Robinson will be rocking tonight! Smile
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forloveofthegame



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PostPosted: Sat 3/16/19 11:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Matt Rudick had a walk off single in the 10th as the Aztecs beat Seattle last night, 6-5 in the 10th inning. It was a sloppy game defensively since both SDSU had 4 errors (trying to beat themselves) & Seattle had 2.
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dodgerblue6



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PostPosted: Sun 3/17/19 10:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for that update because I was so focused on watching livestreaming of the action out of Jackie Robinson Stadium, that I didn't leave my computer for a game.

Bruins took the series from the Beavers.
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dodgerblue6



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PostPosted: Tue 3/19/19 4:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is a new No. 1 team in the nation, and it's the UCLA Bruins.
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forloveofthegame



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PostPosted: Fri 3/22/19 1:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We got to check out USD baseball on Tuesday night as they were hosting CS Fullerton. Toreros won, 6-2! Titans have really had a tough first month to this season, still under .500. For the Toreros, Louie Crow pitched 3 1/3 innings in relief of Noah Owen and got the win.

USD is 15-6 now. They are doing better than SDSU (11-8 ). Might go back to Fowler Park this weekend to see USF series. USD will go to Irvine next week and that should be a good series! Anteaters are 12-4.
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dodgerblue6



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PostPosted: Sun 3/24/19 6:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, and this is the time of year when things get really crazy, because MLB is starting, too.

The Pac is looking strong with both UCLA and Stanford sweeping their home series this weekend (over Arizona and Utah, respectively). The Bruins improve to 17-4, and the Cardinal to 15-3.
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