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Friday - June 30, 2006

Alumni news: Stubbs and McCulloch face off

Kyle McCulloch got into his first Minor League game yesterday. He pitched the 6th inning for the Great Falls White Sox in their game against the Billings Mustangs. He faced four batters: two flew out, one grounded out, and he hit the other. So, which one grounded out? Drew Stubbs. Heh. And, cool. So, Kyle's 1-up on Drew. 'Wonder how many more times they'll face each other?

By the way, Billings won the game 2-0 (link).

Posted by Joanna at 5:24 PM | Permalink

Thursday - June 29, 2006

Alumni news: J.D. Reininger hits grand slam

On Tuesday, J.D. Reininger hit a grand slam to lead his new team to a 4-1 victory. Here are his stats through yesterday's game:

   AVG  G  AB  R  H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO SB CS   SLG   OBP  E 
  .125  6  16  1  2  0  0  1   4  1  3  0  0  .313  .176  0

'Wonder if that grand slam will be the jump start he apparently needed?

Posted by Joanna at 5:36 PM | Permalink

Tuesday - June 27, 2006

Carson Kainer's new kidney

Good news: Carson found a match. His father and two brothers were tested and his father is the closest match. So, after the medical review board gives its okay, Carson's dad will be giving one of his kidneys to his son. I wish them both speedy recoveries.

Posted by Joanna at 9:09 PM | Permalink

Monday - June 26, 2006

CWS - Day 9

North Carolina v. Oregon State.

I had to work late this evening. At about 4 o'clock I started trying to remember if I'd told TiVo to record the game or not. I finally decided that I had so didn't worry about it again. I got home about 8:10, made a sandwich, called my grandmother and casually did my usual "I'm home now" stuff before heading over to the TiVo. And...no game. Damn.

So I tuned into the live action. I'm sure I missed some good stuff but, whew. I didn't miss the best stuff. Things were tied 2-2 in the top of the 8th with a runner at 1b and no outs. I checked GameTracker to discover that Johan Nickerson had gone 6.2 for the Beavers. Joe Patterson faced one (and walked him) before Eddie Kunz went in for the last out of the 7th. Kunz started the 8th by walking Josh Horton. And, I tuned in right after that. After Flack singled to put runners at 1b and 2b with no outs, Dallas Buck went in. He got a ground out to 1b. Runners at 2b and 3b. He intentionally walked Federowicz to load the bases and then struck Williams out on three pitches. Then, with a 1-2 count to Johnson (batting right handed), Horton tried to steal home. Johnson swung at the pitch and Mitch Canham held on to the ball for the strikeout. Wow! If he'd dropped that ball, Horton might well have been safe. Wow. Good stuff.

Daniel Bard had started for the Tar Heels and was still on the mound when North Carolina took the field in the bottom of the 8th. Canham, who'd just made the great catch to end the top of the inning, came up to bat and grounded out to 1b. Gillespie lined out to 2b. Then, Rowe walked. Graham hit a bloop single over the third baseman's head to put runners at 1b and 2b. 2 outs. NC sent Andrew Miller in to pitch. Miller got Gipson (pinch hitting) to hit a routine ground out ball to 2b. Alas, the North Carolina second baseman (Bryan Steed) threw the ball wide and the first baseman could not get to the ball! Wow. Poor guy. He'll be stewing on that throw forever. On the error, Rowe scored from 2b, Graham moved to 3b, and Gipson ended up at 2b. North Carolina sent Hovis to the mound and he got Kunda to pop out to ss.

In the top of the 9th, Buck stayed on the mound and Bryan Steed (he of the errant throw in the 8th) was the first batter due up. He went to the plate and struck out swinging. Cavasinni singled up the middle. Wow. Shelton walked on a full-count pitch. Tying run at 2b. Go ahead run at 1b. Kevin Gunderson went in to pitch for the Beavers. Things were so tense, ESPN did not go to commercial during Gunderson's warm-up tosses. Horton at the plate. He reached on a fielder's choice (36). Oregon State tried to turn the double play (361) but Horton just beat out the throw. Entertainingly, Gunderson lost his shoe as he ran off the mound to cover 1b. Chad Flack (with runners at the corners and 2 out) hit a fly ball to shallow cf to end the game. Oregon State won the game 3-2.

Oregon State is the 2006 NCAA Baseball Champion. Congrats to them. And, to North Carolina for making such a great series of the whole thing. Wow.

Posted by Joanna at 9:51 PM | Permalink

Sunday - June 25, 2006

Alumni news roundup

I saw an article about Brandon Fahey in the Washington Post a few weeks ago but forgot to link to it at the time: For Fahey, Offensive Showing by Jorge Arangure Jr. (Washington Post). The Orioles wanted to keep Brandon on their 25-man roster so have started playing him a bit in the outfield since regular second baseman Brian Roberts returned from the disabled list last month.

Beau Hale's return to health seems to be going well. At long last. He started for the Bowie Baysox a couple of days go, went 6 innings, allowed 1 run while striking out 4 and lowered his ERA to 1.73 (over 26 innings pitched). A couple of links: Hale still has major goal by Childs Walker (Baltimore Sun) and Persistent Hale shiles in Bowie by Corey Masisak (Washington Times). By the way, Ryan Hubele plays on the Baysox with Beau.

J.P. Howell had a very nice debut with his new team on Thursday. He pitched 5 innings, gave up 1 run, on 3 hits, with 3 strikeouts. He retired 10-in-a-row at one point. Alas, that one run was enough as the Bulls lost 1-0 (link). Scott Dunn also plays with the Bulls and also seems to be doing well since he was acquired by the Devil Rays.

Dustin Majewski was promoted to the New Hampshire Fisher Cats (Blue Jays Class AA affiliate) a couple of days ago. He's joining fellow Longhorns Kyle Yates and Curtis Thigpen.

Tim Moss was demoted from the Phillies' Class AA affiliate (Reading Phillies) to their A-advanced affiliate (Clearwater Threshers) on Monday. Tim was leading the team with 7 home runs and 23 runs batted in but was only hitting .180 with 82 strikeouts in 58 games with Reading.

The Dayton Dragons (Reds Class A affiliate) released J.D. Reininger on the 16th or so. Yesterday, he signed with the North Shore Spirit of the CanAm independent league.

Taylor Teagarden is undergoing rehab at the Rangers' spring training complex in Phoenix. He's recovering from Tommy John surgery and trying to strengthen his back after the discovery of a couple of stress fractures. He's hoping to be ready to play in the Fall Instructional League.

Posted by Joanna at 10:50 PM | Permalink

CWS - Day 9

North Carolina v. Oregon State. Robert Woodard, coming off his complete game victory over Clemson a few days ago, got the start for North Carolina. Mike Stutes, who stepped up when his team really needed him in Oregon State's second game against Miami, started for the Beavers. North Carolina got on the board first with a single run in the top of the 2nd on three back-to-back singles (all with two outs). In the bottom of the 2nd, Mitch Canham (OSU catcher) made a great dive at the 1b bag to reach on a ball he dribbled down the 1b line. He moved to 2b on a sac bunt and then made a mental error on a fly ball to the rf corner. He went to tag up and then seemed to think the right fielder wouldn't catch the ball so took a few steps off the bag. But, the right fielder did catch the ball. Canham went back, tagged, and tried to beat the throw. But, a great relay throw got him out at 3b for an unusual double play to end the threat. In the top of the 3rd, Fronk doubled down the lf line with one out. Horton then struck out and it looked like OSU might squeak their way out of trouble. Alas, Flack singled, plating Fronk. Then Cox and Federowicz hit back-to-back doubles, putting NC ahead 4-0 before Williams finally flew out to rf.

Stutes didn't have quite the stuff he had the other day against Miami so Oregon State sent Daniel Turpen in to pitch at the start of the 4th. Sadly, Turpen wasn't any more effective. After he gave up another run, OSU decided to send closer Kevin Gunderson to the mound. Gunderson entered with two out and a runner at 1b. He struck Josh Horton out to end the top of the 4th. In the bottom of the inning, Tyler Graham started things off by getting hit by a pitch. John Wallace then hit a single up the middle. With Chris Kunda at the plate, Graham stole 3b. But, Woodard ended up walking the bases full. Shea McFeely came up and hit the first pitch he saw down the lf line. Two runs scored and the runners advanced to 2b and 3b. NC sent Matt Danford in to pitch. He came in and struck Scott Santschi out. But then gave up a single to Darwin Barney; rbi, runners at the corners. A wild pitch off the catcher's knee during Canham's at-bat ricocheted into the OSU dugout...runner from 3b scored. The runner from 1b had to stop at 2b since the ball went out of play. Canham walked. Cole Gillespie struck out. Then Bill Rowe hit a monster home run into the rf bleachers. Wow. OSU scored 7 in the 4th to go up 7-5.

The 5th was relatively uneventful. In the bottom of the 6th, Barney walked. Canham reached on a bunt single. On the play, the NC third baseman gave up on the ball and Canham reached easily. Gillespie then reached on a fielder's choice (56, odd play with the fielder's shifting on the pitch apparently due to a planned pick-off play). Rowe singled (rbi). Gillespie advanced to 3b on a great run. Adam Warren went in to pitch. Then, Graham reached on a bunt single down the 1b line. The first baseman fielded the ball and could've probably tagged Graham but thought about getting Gillespie at home. He didn't have time, though, and by the time he turned to throw to the pitcher covering 1b, it was too late. Wallace walked to load the bases. Kunda hit a sac fly (foul) to rf. Rowe scored and Graham moved to 3b. Graham then scored on a wild pitch. Oregon State up 11-5 by the time the inning came to an end.

In the top of the 7th, with two outs, Cox was hit by a pitch. Federowicz then hit a long home run over the lf fence to bring NC back within 4 runs. The Beavers threatened again in the bottom of the inning but a double play and another pitching change (Tyler Trice went in) got NC out of the inning. Chad Flack hit a 2-out triple in the top of the 9th to make things a wee bit interesting but Jay Cox popped out to ss to end the game. Oregon State won 11-7. Wow.

And, now we get... One. More. Game. Yes! I'm lovin' it.

Posted by Joanna at 9:23 PM | Permalink

Alumni photo: Quintanilla

'Spotted this AP photo of Omar Quintanilla and couldn't resist sharing it with y'all:

Isn't it great? It was taken on June 20th in the Rockies/A's game. Omar was jumping over Nick Swisher on the front end of a double play. I wonder if Brad Halsey or Huston Street went in for the A's during the game? I could look it up but what fun would that be? At any rate, there were three Longhorns on the same Major League field that day. Cool.

Posted by Joanna at 3:24 PM | Permalink

Saturday - June 24, 2006

CWS - Day 8

Oregon State v. North Carolina.

I begin today's post with a bit of a rant. Have people completely forgotten the definition of the word "literal"? During the bumper at the top of the broadcast, Mike Patrick stated: "North Carolina literally sailed through this tournament so far." Never mind the shaky grammar. It's the use of the word "literally" that's so very very wrong. North Carolina has not sailed through anything. He's talking about baseball. Sailing has nothing to do with it. He can say that they "figuratively" sailed through. He can easily make a case for that. But, they did not "literally" sail through. That would've involved, at the very least, a body of water and some sort of vessel with sails. Argghhhhh!

Sigh. Okay...I'll try to put that behind me. 'Cause we're actually getting the chance to watch some baseball and we've got Mike and Harold in the booth. They're a lot better than any of the other jokers who've been broadcasting thus far. It's just...please, people, think about what the word means. You hear it all the time. Someone "literally died last night" and yet, they're talking to you. Alive and well. Not the least bit dead. Please stop misusing it. Please? Thank you.

End rant.

Andrew Miller got the start for North Carolina. Dallas Buck got the start for Oregon State. Oregon State got a couple of runners on in the 1st but were unable to score. In the bottom, Buck started out strong, getting the first two he saw out, but then walked the third and ended up giving up two runs. In the 3rd, Chris Kunda hit a ball that was ruled a double after a fan interfered with the ball by reaching over the outfield fence. Kunda did end up scoring to move Oregon State within one run of North Carolina. In the top of the 6th, John Wallace singled and then moved to 3b when Miller tried a snap pick-off throw to 1b that went wide of the first baseman. Cole Gillespie then hit his 13th home run of the season into the rf bleachers to give OSU the lead.

And, one pitch later (after a ball), everything came to a complete halt due to a nearby lightening strike. During the weather delay, ESPN showed a few innings of last year's championship game between Florida and Texas. Cool.

When play resumed a little over an hour later, North Carolina decided to replace Miller on the mound; Matt Danford went in. The Beavers got a couple on but were unable to score. In the bottom of the inning, OSU left Buck in. He gave up back-to-back singles to the first two batters he saw. He got the next batter to ground into a double play but then the fourth hit a single up the middle to tie the game at 3-3. When Gillespie came up again for OSU in the 7th with a runner at 1b, North Carolina sent Jonathan Hovis (1.20 ERA!) in to pitch. NC got out of the inning when the catcher (just barely) caught the runner trying to steal 2b.

In the bottom of the 8th, Chad Flack led off with a triple to the rf corner. He then scored on a ball that got past the catcher. He made a great slide to get around the tag from the pitcher (Joe Patterson, who'd gone in for OSU during the 7th). In the 9th, OSU got the tying run to 2b but then closer Andrew Carignan went in for NC and struck out the two batters he saw to end the game (earning his 15th save of the year). North Carolina won 4-3.

Wow. That was a good game. I'm looking forward to the rematch tomorrow night.

Posted by Joanna at 10:27 PM | Permalink

Thursday - June 22, 2006

CWS - Day 7

Oregon State v. Rice. I have to say I was disappointed to see that Coach Graham had Tyler Henley in at the start of the game. After the way he shoved Joe Patterson to the ground in last night's game, I really though he should've been out of today's game. At the very least, he shouldn't have started. Bad karma for Rice? Ah well.

Eddie Degerman got the start for Rice and Jonah Nickerson got the call for Oregon State. OSU scored the first run of the game in the 2nd: Bill Rowe started the inning off with a double down the rf line, moved to 3b on a wild pitch a couple of batters later, and then scored on a sac fly to lf. In the 5th, Kunda led off with a single past the 3b bag...his second hit of the CWS! Shea McFeely then doubled down the lf line. On the play, Kunda just beat the throw from lf. Wow. Scott Santschi struck out and then Darwin Barney walked to load the bases. John Wallace came up to bat with 1 out. He hit a hard ground ball up the middle that hit Degerman's left foot and ricocheted off toward the 2b/3b hole. The third baseman fielded the ball nicely and threw to 1b for the 2nd out. Kunda scored on the play. OSU up 2-0. Rice sent Bryce Cox in to pitch and he struck out Cole Gillespie to end the threat. Rice didn't manage their first real threat of the game until the 7th when Joe Savery doubled to the rf line with one out. He moved to 3b when Aaron Luna flew out to rf (Savery tagged up on the play to advance). He was stranded there when Danny Lehmann flew out to lf.

During the top of the 8th inning, while Oregon State was batting, the trainer spent quite a bit of time working on Nickerson's right thumb. He appeared to have torn the nail off at the quick. It looked painful. Nickerson stayed in the game, though, and got the first batter he faced to ground out to 3b on a bunt attempt. He then struck out the next batter and was finally taken out in favor of closer Kevin Gunderson. Nickerson went 7.2 innings, gave up 2 hits, walked 3, and struck out 9. He threw 109 pitches. Wow.

Gunderson did his job, did not allow a base runner, and got his 19th save of the year to send Rice home. Oregon State won 2-0. Rice failed to score in the last 23 innings they played at Omaha...a CWS record. Amazing. The two teams combined for only 5 hits. What a nicely pitched game. Of course, the pitchers did have some help behind the plate as the umpire kept giving them pitches that looked awfully wide and low. He did not impress me. Not to mention the fact that the entire crew missed the foul ball off Savery's foot early in the game. That was the second time I saw that in the CWS. Not pretty.

Oregon State now faces North Carolina in the best-of-3 championship series. Neither team was a National Seed when the tournament field was set. They don't say it outright but North Carolina's Regional was paired with the Alabama Regional (#4) and Oregon State's was paired with ours (#3). So, the championship boils down to the #13 seed facing the #14 seed. I imagine they said it at some point but I never heard it: I wonder how many times the Championship game (or series, since the best-of-3 thing was instituted) has not included a top 8 seed?

I don't have a lot invested in the championship. But, I'll probably end up rooting for the Beavers. I like what I've seen of the North Carolina coach and team, though, so I won't be disappointed to see them win it. Baby blue uniforms, notwithstanding.

Posted by Joanna at 11:35 PM | Permalink

Alumni news: J.P. Howell, Jason Aspito and Ryan Russ

The Royals traded J.P. Howell to Tampa Bay on Tuesday. It's one of the first moves by the Royals' new general manager Dayton Moore. The story from the Royals' point of view: Moore's imprint already taking shape (MLB.com). And, from the Devil Rays: Rays trade Gathright to Royals by Bill Chastain (MLB.com). The Devil Rays apparently don't have much to say just yet. J.P. has been assigned to the Durham Bulls. Scott Dunn also plays with the Bulls. Ah. I found another link: Rays shuffle roster by Dennis Maffezzoli (Sarasota Herald-Tribune). It sounds like J.P. will be in the Bulls' starting rotation. (Thanks to Esther for this tip, by the way. It somehow slipped under my radar. There's only so much a gal can keep her eye on, eh?)

Jason Aspito was promoted to the Angels' AAA affiliate, the Salt Lake Bees of the Pacific Coast League. It's his first time at AAA. Congrats, Jason!

Ryan Russ was apparently released by the Vero Beach Dodgers (Class A Advanced Dodgers' affiliate) sometime within the last couple of weeks. He has now signed with the Coastal Bend Aviators, a member of the American Association independent baseball league. He'll be playing with a couple of Texas Exes: Jeff Ontiveros and Tim McGough (who transferred from Texas to TCU after the 2002 season).

Posted by Joanna at 7:03 PM | Permalink

Wednesday - June 21, 2006

CWS - Day 6

North Carolina v. Cal State Fullerton. Wes Roemer did get the start for the Titans and held up well until the 5th. North Carolina was ahead 4-3 when Roemer gave up back-to-back solo home runs to the 1st and 2nd batters he faced in the 5th. He stayed in the game and gave up a single to the next batter who then moved to 2b on a balk. The fourth batter tried to bunt the runner over but the ball (hit toward 3b) was too far from the line and Roemer was able to field it and get the lead runner at 3b. He struck out the next batter. On the play, the runner from 1b stole 2b. At that point, with a left-handed batter due up, lefty John Estes went in for Roemer to get the final out of the inning. Cal State Fullerton managed to chase the North Carolina starter, Daniel Bard, in the 7th (still behind 3-6) by opening the inning with a double and a single to put runners at the corners. Jonathan Hovis (1.23 ERA through 66 innings this season!) replaced Bard on the mound. Cal State Fullerton did get both runners across to pull within 1. With the tying run at 3b and 1 out in the bottom of the 8th, North Carolina sent their closer (Andrew Carigan) in to try and shut the Titans down. CSF tried to get the run across on a squeeze bunt but the ball went right at the pitcher who had an easy throw home to get the runner barrelling home for the 2nd out of the inning. The collision at the plate looked mighty painful. Ouch. The catcher did a great job to get the tag down and hold onto the ball. In the 9th, after two fantastic catches by the North Carolina center fielder and left fielder (the ball to left was only about 5 feet short of going out), North Carolina sent their #1 starter (Andrew Miller) in to pitch. He got pinch hitter Bryan Harris to ground out to ss on a very tough play to end the game. Oh my. Cal State Fullerton made it exciting to the bitter end. Alas, now they're headed home and North Carolina moves on to the Championship series.

Rice v. Oregon State. The Rice starter (Craig Crow) struggled from the start and was not able to make it out of the 3rd. With the bases loaded, one run across, and nobody out, he was replaced by Bobby Bramhall. Bramhall hit the first batter he saw to push another run across. The Beavers got one more across in the 3rd on a fielder's choice before going down on a strikeout and fly ball to lf. With 2 out in the 4th, Rice managed to load the bases but could not get a run across. And, that's how things remained until Shea McFeely hit a solo home run for the Beavers in the bottom of the 6th. The Oregon State starter (Daniel Turpen who hadn't started since April!) pitched a great game. He stayed in the game into the 7th while giving up 5 hits with 3 strikeouts, 1 walk, and 1 hit batter. He was replaced by Joe Patterson in the top of the 7th with 2 outs and a runner at 3b. Patterson walked the first batter he faced and then Tyler Henley hit a chopper down the 1b line. Patterson fielded and went for the tag on Henley. Henley lowered his shoulder and tried to run through Patterson, knocking him to the ground. Henley was then ejected from the game by the 1b umpire. Oregan State pushed another run across in the 7th and threatened more in the 8th but Rice got out of trouble by turning a nice double play to end the inning. Rice went down in order in the 9th. Oregon State blanked Rice 5-0. Wow. So the teams face each other again tomorrow night.

My buddy Sheri called me this afternoon to ask what I thought about how things were going and who I thought would win. I told her I could see both Cal State Fullerton and Oregon State winning tonight but that I doubted either would be able to take two to move on. Cal State Fullerton almost pulled it off tonight but couldn't quite do it. Oregon State, though. I think I'm gonna change my mind. I think they can beat Rice again tomorrow night. I kinda think they will beat Rice again. We shall see...

What fun!

Posted by Joanna at 11:42 PM | Permalink

Kyle McCulloch signs with White Sox

Kyle McCulloch signed with the White Sox on Tuesday and celebrated by throwing out the first pitch in the White Sox game against the Cardinals. His signing bonus: $1.05M. No word that I could find on where he'll be assigned.

Link: White Sox agree to terms with McCulloch by Leslie Parker (MLB.com).

UPDATE. Kyle will be joining the Great Falls White Sox (Advanced Rookie Affiliate) in Montana.

UPDATE #2. Here's a link to the Statesman's story on the signing.

Posted by Joanna at 12:46 AM | Permalink

CWS - Day 5

Cal State Fullerton v. Clemson. I needed yet another call from Dad to remember to tune into GameTracker for the CSF/Clemson game. So, I "watched" from work for a bit and Clemson was ahead 6-3 when I left the office. 'Got home just in time to see the Titans tie it up at 6 in the 7th. The starter was still in for Cal State Fullerton. The starter for Clemson lasted only one-third of an inning. The Titans scored a go-ahead run in the top of the 8th on a single followed by a wild pitch followed by two more singles. In the bottom of the 9th, Clemson's first batter reached on a double. So, CSF sent their closer in. He'd been suffering from an upset stomach and didn't even arrive at the park with the rest of the team. He struck out the only batter he faced and Wes Roemer (the Titan's #1 starter) went in. Roemer got Stan Wildmann to fly out and then struck out pinch-hitting Ben Hall to send Clemson (the #1 seed in the original field of 64) packing. Now the Titans have to beat North Carolina twice in order to advance to the Championship round. That'll be awfully tough. I'm pulling for 'em, though. Although, I have to say that I've really enjoyed the attitude shown by the North Carolina coach. He just grins at all the drama and seems to be out there to have a good time. 'Gotta admire that.

Oregon State v. Miami. Both starters were rather rusty. The Miami starter hadn't pitched in about a month; the Oregon State starter in a couple of weeks. It seemed to me that OSU had the advantage...despite the 11-1 thumping they'd gotten a couple of days ago. In fact, maybe because of that thumping. That opening round loss to Miami was very unusual. And, as it happened, Miami did have to replace their starter (Carlos Gutierrez) in the top of the 3rd after he'd allowed 2 runs on 4 hits. He left the game with runners at the corners and no outs. Both of those runners did go on to score...along with an extra to chase the second Miami pitcher (Marcelo Albir) of the inning. He left after giving up a double, a single, and that earned run. Jon McLean entered with a runner at 1b and 2 outs. McLean got Chris Kunda to fly out to rf on the first pitch he threw to put an end to Miami's 3rd inning blues. In stark contrast, Oregon State's starter (Mike Stutes) kept Miami hitless until the 5th. Miami's only score proved to be a solo home run in the 7th. And, Oregon State went on to win 8-1. So, Miami heads home (leaving North Carolina as the only ACC team still in Omaha) and Oregon State goes up against Rice tomorrow evening.

Posted by Joanna at 12:30 AM | Permalink

Tuesday - June 20, 2006

Alumni news: Drew Stubbs in Billings

It seems weird to be talking about Drew as an alumnus. But, there you have it.

There's a nice article on Drew Stubbs in his new local paper: Mustangs' No. 1 draft pick used to dealing with expectations by Mike Scherting (Billings Gazette). The article includes a photo of Drew in his new uniform. 'Looks kinda funny in red! Heh.

Posted by Joanna at 9:25 PM | Permalink

Monday - June 19, 2006

CWS - Day 4

Dad called sometime in the middle of the afternoon to ask if I was following the game on GameTracker. Ummm...no. I'd forgotten about it. He gave me the score and I went back to work. I remembered to fire up GameTracker during the 7th inning or so.

Oregon State v. Georgia. When I first checked in, Oregon State was ahead 4-2 and their starter was still in the game. Georgia was on their 3rd pitcher of the day. I went back to work and checked back in to find the game in the bottom of the 9th. Both teams had scored single runs in the 8th Georgia was batting in the bottom of the 9th. They got a runner on with one out. Then, another. Go-ahead run at the plate. Then, nothing. And, again...nothing. So, I called Dad to find out what was going on. Go-ahead run at the plate he says. So, I go back to work and he calls a couple of minutes later to say the batter hit into a double play to end the game. GameTracker continued to note the go-ahead runner at the plate for quite some time. Then, I noticed that it said Game Over and had winning and losing pitcher information. But, still...no indication of what had happened to bring about the end of the game. Odd. Ah well. Oregon State won 5-3.

That means both teams from Georgia have been sent packing. And, the SEC now joins the Big 12 on the CWS sidelines. It's rather surreal.

Miami v. Rice. I didn't get home 'til about 8 o'clock and then I stopped to take photos of some birds in the alley behind my house before tuning into the game. I'd called Dad, though, so knew things were close. I tuned in just in time to see Miami pull within 1 in the 7th to take the score to 3-2. Miami was the home team and threatened in a big way in the bottom of the 9th. Miami had runners at the corners with one out but Bryce Cox managed to strikeout the last two batters to get the save. The Rice closer, Cole St. Clair, actually started the game and got the win. Final score: 3-2.

So, now Rice gets a day off and waits to meet the winner of tomorrow evening's elimination game between Miami and Oregon State. Again, I say: go Beavers!

Posted by Joanna at 11:05 PM | Permalink

CWS - Day 3

Cal State Fullerton v. Georgia Tech. I got to see the first 1.1 innings and that was it. 'Sounds like I missed a good game. Georgia Tech scored 3 in the 1st (I saw the first score before leaving to have a very nice late lunch with Mom, Dad, Jennie and Eddie for Father's Day). It didn't look very good for the Titans as I headed out the door. However, trailing 4-5 going into the top of the 9th, Cal State Fullerton managed to score 3 and then hold on to win 7-5. So, Georgia Tech is out and headed home.

Clemson v. North Carolina. I got to see most of this game and it was a very good game. North Carolina's Robert Woodard threw a complete game shut out while giving up just 3 hits. It was impressive. North Carolina scored 2 in the 3rd and that proved enough to win 2-0. North Carolina is now in the driver's seat in Bracket 1. They only need to win one more game to move on to the championship series.

Cal State Fullerton and Clemson are scheduled to play on Tuesday for the right to play North Carolina on Wednesday.

Posted by Joanna at 1:09 AM | Permalink

Saturday - June 17, 2006

CWS - Day 2

Georgia v. Rice. That Eddie Degerman is one entertaining pitcher to watch. He sure is a spastic fella (and I mean that "spastic" thing in the very best way possible). He fidgets and talks to himself and roams the area around the mound. I suspect it can be rather nerve-racking for opponents. Not to mention his own team and coaches! And, nevermind his throwing motion. Wow. Both pitchers had no-hitters going into the 4th when Rice finally got a couple of hits off Brooks Brown and scored the first run of the game. 'Course that doesn't really tell the story. Both starting pitchers were a bit wild and walked several batters in the first few innings so we were all rather surprised that neither team had managed to score before the 4th. In the 6th, Rice loaded the bases with no outs (on two singles and a hit batter) to chase the Georgia starter. They only got one run across, though. In the 7th, Georgia finally got to Degerman: they ended his no-hitter (chasing him out of the game), scored, and went on to take a 4-2 lead. Rice went back on top in the bottom of the inning (scoring 4 of their own). See-saw city. 'Gotta love it. Rice did hold on after the 7th to win 6-4.

Miami v. Oregon State. Miami jumped out in front and would not let Oregon State into the game. It went into a rain delay as the 8th was about to start with Miami ahead 7-0. The delay lasted about 90 minutes. Sadly, as soon as the teams got back on the field, things started up right where they left off. Miami went on to win 11-1. When Oregon State blanked Stanford 15-0 in the Super Regional, I couldn't believe that was the same Stanford team that had dominated the Austin Regional so thoroughly. As I watched the game this evening, it was déjà vu. All over again! Could this possibly be the same team that beat Stanford so very soundly just a week ago? Wow.

Posted by Joanna at 10:49 PM | Permalink

Summer ball

Several Texas players are playing summer ball in various leagues around the country. I note that Adrian Alaniz and Randy Boone are both playing. That could be an indication that they're planning on coming back next season. It doesn't necessarily mean that, though. Just noting something interesting.

Posted by Joanna at 3:16 PM | Permalink

CWS - Day 1

Wow. Who would've predicted that? In the first game, Georgia Tech was coasting along 4-0 in the 8th when Clemson went nuts. They scored 8 in the bottom of the 8th and won 8-4.

And then, in the nightcap, in what was being touted as a big-time pitchers' duel, North Carolina and Cal State Fullerton both scored early. The game was tied at 5 in the 5th when the pitchers' duel started up. And went on and on and on and on and... Finally, in the 13th, North Carolina scored two. Cal State Fullerton, who'd missed a couple of chances to win the game, wasn't able to answer and North Carolina won 7-5. Wow.

As I was thinking about things this morning, I decided that Cal State Fullerton was the team most likely to win this side of the bracket. But, they've sure set themselves up for a tough road by going so many extra innings and then losing. They've got lots of pitching. But, do they have enough after that first game? I guess we'll find out in due time, eh?

Posted by Joanna at 1:05 AM | Permalink

Thursday - June 15, 2006

CWS preview

Still interested in the CWS? Okay, then. Here's a preview for you from Baseball America. Have at it.

Posted by Joanna at 7:34 PM | Permalink

Wednesday - June 14, 2006

News grab bag

According to Cedric Golden (Statesman), Drew Stubbs signed with the Reds today. His signing bonus: $2M. He's been assigned to the Reds' advanced rookie camp in Billings, Montana, where Sam Lecure played last year. (Sam is now playing for the Sarasota Reds.)

Also from Cedric Golden: Carson Kainer's been told that he needs a kidney transplant. Carson's doctor told him his kidney function went down to 13 percent. I recall reading somewhere shortly after the draft that Carson thought his stock had fallen due to his kidney problems. Based on the doctor's prognosis, Carson has decided not to turn pro at the moment and now plans to return to UT next year. While that's great news for UT, it's awfully sobering for Carson. I wish him all the best and hope he finds a transplant match soon.

And, again from Cedric Golden: Joey Parigi has elected to transfer to Arizona State. I always liked his herky-jerky motion. He's hoping for a better fit with the Sun Devils and I wish him well.

UPDATE (June 15th). A couple of links to more in-depth articles about Drew and Carson: Longhorns' Stubbs signs with Reds by Cedric Golden and Longhorns outfielder Kainer needs kidney transplant by Cedric Golden.

Posted by Joanna at 8:30 PM | Permalink

Monday - June 12, 2006

Super Regionals - Day 4

The field is now set.

The Owls put a 5-spot on the board in the bottom of the 6th. That made all the difference as Rice sent the last Big 12 team in the hunt (the Sooners) home. Final score: 9-5.

Georgia, ahead 4-3, scored 7 in the 7th and went on to beat South Carolina 11-6. I didn't have much invested in this game one way or the other. Two SEC schools, after all. But, I was kinda rooting for the Gamecocks since they were the underdogs. And, they'd put on that home run clinic on Saturday. But...eh.

Ole Miss sent their closer (Garrett White from Round Rock...he must've played with Nick Peoples since they went to the same high school and they're both Juniors) to the mound in the 6th with 1 out and a runner at 1b (John Jay) after Miami tied things up on a sac fly. (Miami, by the way, sent their closer in at the top of the 5th...must be "do or die" time, eh?) Jay promptly stole 2b and then 3b on the first two pitches thrown by White. On the steal of 3b, the ball bounced in the dirt short of the third baseman and ricocheted off Jay's right foot as he was sliding head-first into the bag and he easily made it all the way home for the go-ahead score. Damn! (Aside: I really like the name of the Miami first baseman. Yonder Alonso. Yonder. Yonder? Heh heh. I like it!) In the 7th, Chris Coghlan took the first pitch he saw over the rf fence. Game all tied up. How exciting. But then. But then. Miami scored 5 in the bottom of the 7th. All with 2 outs. Four of those runs on a grand slam (the 2nd home run of the night by Danny Valencia). Ole Miss did not go down quietly. They loaded the bases on consecutive singles to open the 9th. They managed to get one run across. That was it, though. Miami won 14-9. Heart break for the Ole Miss crowd. Second year in a row they lose a Super Regional after winning the 1st game. At home. Poor guys. Wow.

So, that leaves me rooting for Oregon State and Rice as we head into the CWS. Go, Beavers! Go, Owls! Heh. Not very fierce sounding, eh? Ah well...

Posted by Joanna at 9:40 PM | Permalink

Super Regionals - Day 3

The 2-3-6-7 side of the bracket wasn't nearly as efficient as the 1-4-5-8 side. Three of the losers from Saturday came back to win on Sunday so there are three CWS spots yet to be determined. None of the games were very close at all. Today should prove interesting.

Oregon State really stomped on Stanford (winning 15-0) to move on. So, there will be one team from last year's CWS field in this year's CWS. It really is surprising to me that Stanford didn't put up more of a showing in Corvalis...especially after the way they took care of business here in Austin. I really did expect Stanford to win easily. 'Just goes to show that you really never know, eh?

Earlier in the day, Oklahoma fell behind Rice but came back and shut down the Rice offense to win 11-5. Georgia bounced back from the home run fest they served up to South Carolina on Saturday to win 11-5 (same score, spooky). And, Miami blanked Ole Miss 7-0.

Oddly, enough, the NCAA/ESPN folks have scheduled the OU/Rice game for a noon start and the other two games for a 6 PM start. I don't understand why they're not airing one of the games at 3 PM. Very odd.

Posted by Joanna at 7:23 AM | Permalink

Sunday - June 11, 2006

Super Regionals - Day 2

Well, the teams that won on Friday all won again yesterday so the first four spots in the CWS have been decided: Clemson, Cal State Fullerton, Georgia Tech, and North Carolina. Missouri was not able to do much of anything against the Cal State Fullerton starter Laren Gagnier. He held the Tigers hitless through the first 7.2 innings when they finally broke through on a solo home run by catcher J. C. Field. Alas, that was the only run the Tigers managed to get across. The Titans, meanwhile, scored 3 in the first and never looked back. Elsewhere, Clemson had to come from behind again (this time in the 8th rather than the 9th) to break the Golden Eagles' hearts. The Alabama/North Carolina game had a pretty exciting finish. Trailing 2-4, North Carolina scored 4 in the bottom of the 8th to go up by 2 (3 of those runs on a 3-run home run by Chad Flack). Alabama's Alex Avila then hit his own 3-run home run in the top of the 9th to retake the lead. Chad Flack...yes, again...hit a 2-run walk-off home run in the bottom of the inning to grab the CWS berth. Wow. I felt rather sorry for the stunned Alabama crowd. Just minutes earlier, they'd been on an amazing high. And, then boom. I could relate.

Yesterday, I wrote about the South Carolina/Georgia game in progress. South Carolina went on to win 15-6. South Carolina hit 2 more home runs in the game (both 3-run shots). So, all of the South Carolina runs came off home runs. 8 home runs, 15 runs scored. 5 of those home runs were hit back-to-back in the 2nd. I've never seen anything like it. In other 1st game action, Rice stomped all over Oklahoma and won 10-4. We were not able to see any of that game. Miami and Ole Miss slugged it out with Ole Miss ending out on top 11-9. And, Oregon State managed to edge out Stanford 4-3. I got to see a little bit of that game, but not much...as we were being held hostage to the no-hitter blow-out being thrown by Cal State Fullerton. So, once again, the home teams came out 3-1 on Day 1 for the other side of the bracket. I doubt they'll go that way again today. It's practically unheard of for 8 best-of-3 series to all be decided in 2 games. But you never know.

And, I suppose it's worth pointing out that Oregon State remains the only team from last year's CWS field that still has a chance to return to Omaha this year (they're the only team that made it to the Super Regional round). If Stanford manages to win the next two games, it'll be the first time in about 50 years that no teams from the previous field returned to the CWS. Amazing. 'Course, Stanford has to win those two games. We shall see. As they say: that's why they play the games.

Posted by Joanna at 9:59 AM | Permalink

Saturday - June 10, 2006

Four Horns on Freshmen All-American Team

Four Longhorns tabbed Freshman All-Americans by Collegiate Baseball (TexasSports.com link). The four are: Austin Wood (1 of 7 relief pitchers selected), Bradley Suttle (1 of 8 second basemen), Jordan Danks and Kyle Russell (2 of 16 outfielders). Roger Kieschnick (of) of Texas Tech (who may or may not be distantly related to Brooks) was also selected.

Other Big 12 players selected: Miles Morgan (p, Tech), Ben Hornbeck (rp, KSU), Beamer Weems (ss, Baylor), and Jordy Mercer (ss/p, OSU). Weems is only a freshman? Wow. I don't think I realized that when we played them earlier this year. Huh.

Interesting that there are 4 Texas players versus 5 from all of the rest of the Big 12. I do believe that may bode very well for the Horns in the next year or two, eh? Here's hopin'.

Oh. And, here's a link to the full list in case you're interested.

Posted by Joanna at 11:16 AM | Permalink

Super Regionals - Day 1

I checked the scoreboard yesterday afternoon and was very surprised to see that Oral Roberts beat Clemson by a score of 8-7...they'd scored 3 in the top of the 9th to win. Wow. Then, I went back later to see how things were going in the North Carolina/Alabama game and noticed that...no...Oral Roberts had not won. The game was apparently in the bottom of the 9th when I checked the score. Clemson actually managed to load the bases with one out when Tyler Colvin hit a grand slam. Clemson won 11-8.

Then, late last night Missouri sent Max Scherzer to the mound. He pitched a perfect game through the first 4 innings. As he was about to go on in the 5th, ESPN interviewed George Horton (CSF head coach) who immediately pointed out three or four times that Scherzer had a perfect game going. Jinx city. Scherzer gave up a single (I think it was on the first pitch). The runner was erased on a double play. Missouri still up by one. The Titans tied things up in the 6th on a couple of doubles. Then, all hell broke loose in the 7th. The Titans scored 5 and went on to win 7-1. Missouri had a lot of chances to score in the first few innings and only managed to get one run across. It seemed that the 3rd base coach could've been a little more aggressive but...shrug. Who knows? It's all academic now.

Georgia Tech (hosting College of Charleston) won 5-0 and Alabama (host) was beat rather soundly by North Carolina 11-5. So, host teams up 3-1 on the day.

There are 8 games scheduled for today. South Carolina is up 9-0 over Georgia in the 2nd as I type this. This on a 3-run homer by Andrew Crisp in the 1st and a 2-run shot by Neil Giesler in the 2nd which was immediately followed by back-to-back-to-back-to-back solo shots by Justin Smoak, Phil Disher, Andrew Crisp (yes, again), and Robbie Grinestaff. I've never seen anything like it. Wow. The Georgia team and crowd is stunned. To say the least. Wow. All of those homers came on 2 outs, by the way. Wow. That's 6 home runs, 5 of them in a row. The 5 in the 2nd came on 9 pitches...from two pitchers. Wow.

Posted by Joanna at 10:40 AM | Permalink

Friday - June 9, 2006

More on the draft

'Thought I'd post a few stories from the local press (local to the team doing the drafting, not local to Austin) about Drew and Kyle...

Sadly (but not surprisingly), there was not much to be found about players drafted in later rounds.

And, on a sligntly different note: Lake's Lemon reveling in draft pick by Rangers by Joe Williams (Orlando Sentinel). If the famliy sticks to their signing bonus requirements, we might well see Marcus Lemon in a Texas uniform next year. Interesting, eh?

Posted by Joanna at 6:48 PM | Permalink

Thursday - June 8, 2006

Alumni News: Kade Johnson

Here's a blast from the past. I was reading through the sports transactions and came across the following:

Can-Am League: NASHUA PRIDE - Agreed to terms with C Kade Johnson.

I think that's the same Kade Johnson who played c/of for the Horns back in '97/'98 before transferring to a Junior College (due to academic reasons as I recall). Amazing how a name just jumps out at you, eh? As I recall, Kade was extremely enthusiastic about playing for the Horns. I hope he's doing well.

Posted by Joanna at 6:17 PM | Permalink

Wednesday - June 7, 2006

2006 MLB Draft: 2nd day

Adrian Alaniz (36th round, Cardinals), Randy Boone (38th round, Twins), and three more signees (Carmine Giardina (28th, Red Sox), Taylor Hammack (46th, Giants), and Clint Stubbs (49th, Rangers)) were drafted today.

Which means that Chais Fuller, Hunter Harris, Joseph Krebs, Brett Lewis, Nick Peoples, Clay Van Hook, and Chance Wheeless were not. I really am surprised about Nick. I guess that means those guys will all be back (except for Hunter who's a senior).

I got email asking about the likelihood that Carson and Adrian will come back. I doubt very seriously that Carson will come back. Adrian might if he thinks he can boost his numbers. But, I kinda doubt it. I was looking through my draft summary page from last year and see that a lot of those guys down in the bottom of the draft went ahead and signed. One name that stands out, though, is Edward Degerman (rhp, Rice). He was drafted by the Red Sox in the 41st round last year. This year, the Cardinals picked him in the 4th. That's a huge move. So, if Adrian thinks he can do something like that, he just might come back. On the other hand, I pointed out Patrick Egan from Qunnipiac who was picked in the 35th last year and the 36th this year. You just never know what'll happen. So, it depends on how much of a gambler a player (and his parents...or whoever it is that's advising the player) is. I kinda think, though, with the way that Adrian was talking in post-game interviews the other day, that he won't be back. He might've been thinking he'd go higher when he was giving those interviews, though. And, since he's only a sophomore, he's got an extra bargaining year available to him that most 4-year college players don't get.

You just never know...

Oh. And, don't forget to check out this year's summary of the draft for info on (non-UT) players of interest.

Posted by Joanna at 6:16 PM | Permalink

Tuesday - June 6, 2006

2006 MLB Draft: Day 1 complete

Carson Kainer and several more signees (Nathan Karns, Brandon Belt, and Jordan Walden) were drafted in subsequent rounds of the draft today. I just posted my 2006 MLB Amateur Draft Summary page so check it out for details. The draft was suspended after the 18th round and will continue tomorrow. I'll update the draft page as news warrants and time permits.

Posted by Joanna at 6:38 PM | Permalink

2006 MLB Draft: 1st four rounds

Through the first four rounds, we've got 4 drafted...two current players and two signees: Drew Stubbs (1st round, 8th pick overall, Reds), Kyle McCulloch (1st round, 29th pick, White Sox), Russell Moldenhauer (signee from Boerne, 3rd round, 102nd pick, Angels), and Marcus Lemon (signee from Sanford, FL, 4th round, 118th pick, Rangers).

I'll have a draft summary page up at some point this evening with more news.

Posted by Joanna at 2:58 PM | Permalink

Alumni News: Omar called back up

The Rockies called Omar Quintanilla back up over the weekend: Quintanilla provides versatility; Rookie infielder will add speed and athletecism to lineup by Matthew Borenstein (MLB.com). Way to go, Omar!

Posted by Joanna at 12:57 PM | Permalink

Super Regional info

Five games were played yesterday and the Super Regional field is now set:

The Big 12 ended up 14-12 in the Regionals. Mizzou (toughest #4 seed in the land, poor Pepperdine) and OU move on. Both teams came through the loser's bracket to win their regionals. We saw how well that worked for Texas last year. Maybe it'll work for Mizzou and OU this year. Both teams now hit the road (OU for the first time this post-season) and face stiff competition. Yikes! Good luck to them both. But, especially the Tigers!

Posted by Joanna at 7:17 AM | Permalink

Monday - June 5, 2006

A note about tomorrow's draft

The following categories of players are eligible to be drafted in the MLB Amateur Draft (which starts tomorrow):

The list of Texas players eligible to be drafted in this year's draft:

Please note that I only included players who appeared in at least a few games this year. There are other juniors and seniors eligible who rarely (or never) played this year.

I thought Adrian Alaniz was "safe" for UT this year since he's a sophomore. But, he's 22 (born March 12, 1984, according to his TexasSports.com bio) and was apparently eligible last year as well. I wonder why nobody drafted him last year. Kenn Kasparek is just missing out on the "21 within 45 days of the draft" thing by a couple of months (born on Sept. 23, 1985, according to his TexasSports.com bio). Whew.

How likely is it that any of these players will be drafted? I don't know. Most of 'em probably will be drafted. I guess the question should be: how likely is it that they will sign after being drafted? That depends a lot on how high they go in the draft. Hunter Harris is a senior and can't come back but he's the only one on the list. I suspect Drew will go in the first round to a team that hopes they can get more power out of his bat with some work in the minors. There seems to be a lot of interest in Kyle whenever he's pitching (lots of radar guns show up behind the plate) so he'll probably go in the first round or two. I have to think Carson's stock is pretty high. Same goes for Nick. Adrian's probably also pretty high on the list. I really can't say about the rest of the gang, though. You just never know what a team is looking for. I wouldn't count on seeing most of the guys on that list in a Longhorn uniform next year.

Posted by Joanna at 12:52 PM | Permalink

Not the Austin Regional - Day 4

Things are winding down...

The Big 12 is now 12-11 in the tourney. Baylor, Mizzou, and OU are still in the mix.

Posted by Joanna at 1:41 AM | Permalink

Austin Regional - All Tournament Team and a comment on Stanford

The All-Tournament team:

Granted, I didn't see any games from any of the other Regionals (I was at all the Austin games and I don't have ESPN-U) so my take is doubtlessly a bit limited. But, I have to say that I think Stanford's chances have to be pretty good to advance past the Super Regional and go deep at the CWS. For a team to come into Disch-Falk and dominate the way they did is pretty impressive. Mark Marquess hasn't won a CWS in nearly 20 years. He did get teams into the Championship game/series in three of the last six College World Series, though. Do you suppose he's due?

Posted by Joanna at 1:07 AM | Permalink

Sunday - June 4, 2006

Austin Regional - Day 3, Game 6 (Stanford at North Carolina State)

Stanford ended up beating NC-State 17-7 to win the Austin Regional. It was actually a very close game for the first half of the game. The score was tied at 5 at the end of the 5th. But, the Wolfpack ran out of pitching and things fell apart after that.

Some random notes:

Scoreboard at the end of the game:

[photo of scoreboard]

Posted by Joanna at 11:46 PM | Permalink

Austin Regional - Day 3, Game 5 (North Carolina State at Texas) (Game 62)

Texas lost to North Carolina State this afternoon 3-6. It's the first time since 1996 that Texas did not win a Regional (or Super Regional) tournament hosted here in Austin. It's funny how you get spoiled by success. It never really occurred to me last week that Texas might not be hosting a Super Regional next weekend. Even though this year's team has struggled. You just assume they'll work it out. Augie Garrido teams usually do. However, Coach Garrido will be the first to tell you that he's never managed to snag back-to-back championships. It's a really hard thing to do. Bibb Falk did it. Rod Dedeaux did it a few times. Mark Marquess did it once. And, Skip Bertman did it once. And, that's it. It's only been done twice in the last twenty years. Texas did get back to the CWS in 2003 after winning it all in 2002. Alas, it's not meant to be this year. Too bad. But, there's always next year.

It was in the 8th after Randy Boone came in and struck Mangum out on three pitches (with the score tied at three) that I really started to think the Horns were gonna pull it off. I thought that if Randy could get the next guy out, then they'd only need three more outs. The Horns could no doubt score 1 run in the bottom of the 8th or 9th, right? I even started thinking that if Randy could get the job done quickly, maybe they'd go ahead and start him in the game against Stanford...saving Riley Boening for the Championship game on Monday. And, then it was over. The Wolfpack scored two more runs. And, then a third. Damn.

And, so...here's how things went today for the Horns:

One more thing. Gib Hobson. He threw a great game for the Wolfpack. He had a very shaky outing against Stanford on Friday and was yanked in the 2nd inning. He only threw 35 pitches before leaving the game and I figured he'd be back so I wasn't surprised to see him get the start. I was surprised that he managed to get a complete game in, though. I thought he'd surely tire in the 5th or 6th and then the Horns would be able to feast on the bullpen. Alas. It didn't happen. Wow.

Scoreboard at the end of the game:

[photo of scoreboard]

Posted by Joanna at 10:33 PM | Permalink

Not the Austin Regional - Day 2

And, now for the rest of the tournament field...

The Big 12 is now 6-7 in the tourney. Baylor's a day behind due to the rain delay.

Posted by Joanna at 1:36 AM | Permalink

Saturday - June 3, 2006

Austin Regional - Day 2, Game 4 (Texas at Stanford) (Game 61)

Last night I posted:

Stanford looked solid and are in great shape going into tomorrow's action.

Apparently, I was not wrong. Damn. Sometimes, I really hate when that happens. The Horns lost 8-12 to Stanford this afternoon. They showed a few flashes of inspiration. But, it was clearly not enough. Nick Peoples was hit in the face by a grounder that bounced weirdly. He was bleeding profusely from his nose and had to leave the game. I'm guessing he won't be available tomorrow. I hope I'm wrong. I saw Keith Moreland talking to him after the game but Keith did not give an update on his condition. At least, not while I was listening. I admit that I did not hear the whole post-game show. Anyway, on to the game...

By the way, I'm pretty tired so won't be going over as many details as I did last night. Sorry about that.

The good things as far as the Horns are concerned:

I wish I had more for you but I just don't. The ugly:

The Horns now have to win 3 games in order to move on. That means they have to beat North Carolina State at noon. They have to turn around and beat Stanford at 4. And then do it again on Monday at 6. They did win the toss and will be the home team for the NC-State game so have a little bit going for them. And, they did turn this trick last year. I was doubtful that they could do it last year and they proved me wrong. I was just reading through the stuff I wrote about that team (scroll down to the June 3rd entry and then read up from there) and have had a little bit of my faith restored. Here's hoping I get to go to three Texas games in the next couple of days!

Scoreboard at the end of the game:

[photo of scoreboard]

Posted by Joanna at 11:52 PM | Permalink

Austin Regional - Day 2, Game 3 (North Carolina State at UT-Arlington)

As I predicted, UT-Arlington gave North Carolina State a run for their money but ended up losing 5-6 in 10 innings to be eliminated from the tournament. Both teams used lots of pitchers. The Wolfpack's starter (Eryk McConnell) went 4.1 and gave up all the UT-Arlington runs. The Maverick's starter went 2 and gave up the first three Wolfpack runs. He was replaced by Ryan Riddle who actually did a pretty good job. He went 6.1 and gave up 2 runs.

NC-State jumped to a quick 3-run lead in the top of the 2nd after UT-Arlington second baseman (Daniel Rieder) made a crucial throwing error. He actually made a really nice "ice cream cone" snag on a grounder headed to the outfield but then couldn't control his throw to 1b for the 3rd out of the inning. The throw went sailing into the NC-State dugout and two runs scored. The Mavs scored one in the bottom of the 2nd on a solo shot by Robby Winn that just cleared the lf fence. The Mavs moved ahead in the bottom of the 5th on a bases-clearing double by Collin Garner. That was followed by an rbi-single by Daniel Rieder to chase the NC-State starter. The Wolfpack scored single runs in the 7th and 8th to tie things up. In the 7th, Aaron Bates reached on a double and was brought home a couple of batters later [note: I first wrote "a couple of innings later" here...heh heh] on a single by Brian Aragon. The 8th was kind of weird. Pond singled to cf and was replaced by pinch-runner Jones. Mangum reached on a bunt single (moving Jones to 2b). Then, some of the weirdness. Diaz was trying to sac bunt the runners over and dropped the ball right at the plate. Frankly, the ball appeared to go foul and then spin into the field of play. The runners were off at the crack of the bat and the catcher made a great play to gun the lead runner down at 3b. The third baseman then threw to 1b to get Diaz out (double play). Mangum moved to 2b on the play. Camp then singled to lf to plate Mangum. Game tied. UT-Arlington threatened in the bottom of the 8th. With runners at the corners, Winn hit a come-backer to the pitcher who threw home to get the lead runner. He got caught in a run-down (1251) and was tagged out. Runners at 1b and 2b. They advanced on a balk after the first pitch to the next batter. The NC-State coach argued the balk call vehemently but lost the argument (naturally) and then yanked his pitcher. The batter at the plate then grounded out and the next flew out to end the threat. Both teams threatened again in the 9th but both threats were cut short by double plays. NC-State scored the go-ahead run in the top of the 10th on a squeeze bunt. Wow. In the bottom of the 10th, the Mavs got the tying run to 2b with one out but could not get him home (strikeout and ground out). Game over. Mavs go home.

Scoreboard at the end of the game:

[photo of scoreboard]

Posted by Joanna at 11:10 PM | Permalink

Austin Regional - Day 2 - Quick note

Sadly, Texas lost today. So did UT-Arlington. I'll be back with more after the WCWS game is over.

UPDATE (11pm). Well, that sucked. Too bad the Horns couldn't get any offense going. A sad end to a sad day as a Longhorn fan, eh? Okay. 'Back in a bit with info on how things went at Disch-Falk today...

Posted by Joanna at 9:41 PM | Permalink

Not the Austin Regional - Day 1

So. A few comments about what's going on elsewhere in tournament play:

Several tournaments are in rain delay. Wow. The Big 12 is 3-3 on the day with one game pending due to weather.

Posted by Joanna at 2:43 AM | Permalink

Friday - June 2, 2006

Austin Regional - Day 1, Game 2 (UT-Arlington at Texas) (Game 60)

The offense exploded for the Horns today as they beat up on UT-Arlington 9-1. Kenn Kasparek got the start for Texas and had his longest outing of the year. He went 7.1 innings and gave up that one earned run on 8 hits (including 3 doubles and 1 home run) with 7 strikeouts and 2 walks. By my count, he threw 129 pitches. Joseph Krebs came on for the final 1.2 innings. He did hit one batter but coaxed three ground outs and two fly outs out of the other 5 batters he faced. Defensively, the Horns played error-free which always helps things along tremendously. And, so...the game:

Funny story. In the 4th, Chance Wheeless hit the 1st pitch to him on a soft liner into the crowd a bit below and to the left of us. Several people tried to catch the ball. It bounced off at least one person before a pretty big guy grabbed it and pumped it in the air like it was a big deal. We all laughed and cheered (remember, it did not go screaming into the crowd). The guy next to him (another big guy) hollered out very loudly something along the lines of: "He saved me!!!" He then gave the guy who caught the ball a big bear hug. Then, we really laughed at them. Spontaneous comedy show. I loved it.

Scoreboard at the end of the game:

[photo of scoreboard]

Posted by Joanna at 11:59 PM | Permalink

Austin Regional - Day 1, Game 1 (Stanford at North Carolina State)

Stanford jumped on the NC-State starter (Gib Hobson) with a vengence. They scored 1 in the 1st and 4 in the 2nd and went on to win 7-2. The Wolfpack basically went to a pitch-by-committee game plan after falling behind so far in the 2nd. Hobson pitched the first 1.2. Their second pitcher (Jason Duncan) pitched 3.2 innings and gave up one more run. Then the committee thing began: Davis High went .2 innings, Branden Knapp went 1+, Kyle Rutter went 1, Joel Brookens went .1 (giving up the final run), and Joey Cutler threw the final .2 (the 7th pitcher of the game...wow). Stanford, in stark contrast, got a complete game effort out of Greg Reynolds. He threw 123 pitches by my count and gave up 2 earned runs on 7 hits with 7 strikeouts and 2 walks. He was only one batter over the minimum through the first 5.2 innings. Amazing. His defense did help him by turning 2 double-plays in that period (3 total in the game). NC-State left 4 stranded, 3 in scoring position. I have to say that I was rather surprised that NC-State didn't make more of a game of things. I imagine that falling into that 5-run hole so early left them feeling a little shell-shocked.

On the offensive side of things, the Wolfpack managed to string together three singles in a row in the 6th. It looked like they were finally getting to Reynolds. Alas, the hits all came after two outs and they only managed to push one run across. Their final run came in the 8th when pinch-hitter Matt Mangini hit a 1-out triple to the lf/cf gap. That was followed by an RBI-single to lf by Matt Camp. Ramon Corona ended the threat, though, by hitting into one of those double-plays. Seven of Stanford's batters had at least one hit, five had at least 2. The #'s 8 and 9 batters (Randy Molina and Jim Rapoport) went a combined 6-for-7 with a sac bunt and 2 doubles. Wow. I'm wondering it they'll move up in the order tomorrow. Stanford looked solid and are in great shape going into tomorrow's action. I think NC-State will have their hands full with UT-Arlington if they play like they did today.

Scoreboard at the end of the game:

[photo of scoreboard]

Posted by Joanna at 11:58 PM | Permalink

Quick note about the Austin Regional

I'm about to head out to Disch-Falk. I won't have access to a computer so won't be posting anything until sometime this evening. Here's hoping I have good news for y'all!

Posted by Joanna at 9:36 AM | Permalink

Thursday - June 1, 2006

Odd coinky-dink or good omen?

I just noticed that the Texas women also received a #3 National seed when the softball regionals were announced. They made it through to the WCWS in fine fashion. Here's hoping the men do likewise, eh? Hook 'em!

By the way, I also noticed that the 8 teams that made it to the WCWS were the top 8 seeds. Hmmm...

By the way #2, as I type this, the women are winning their first WCWS game 2-0. Go, Horns!

Posted by Joanna at 6:14 PM | Permalink

Alumni news: Kyle Yates gets his first AA win

Kyle Yates got his first AA win for the New Hampshire Fisher Cats (Blue Jays AA affiliate) last night. He tossed a complete game 4-hit shutout against the Connecticut Defenders. Entertainingly, Curtis Thigpen hit a single to advance the runner that eventually scored the lone run for the Fisher Cats. Curtis was not catching for Kyle, though. He was playing DH. I checked the Fisher Cats roster and there are no other Texas Exes on the team. Heh.

Posted by Joanna at 12:35 PM | Permalink

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