Saturday, August 18, 2007

Great article on Team USA's summer

The Utah Utes Media Relations department has released a great article about Team USA's summer. The article talks with Bill Kinneberg who is the head coach of the Utah Utes baseball program and acted as the pitching coach on the tour this summer. The article discusses how the great game of baseball is spreading throughout the world and the challenges that the team faced this summer in terms of travel. The full article is available here.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Harvard's Wilson signs with the Brewers

The Harvard Crimson released a special article about Steffan Wilson on Thursday. The article talks about how Wilson signed with the Milwaukee Brewers over coming back for his senior season. The article also discusses how many people are doubting the decision to go pro including Keith Law. The full article is available here.

Miami and LSU Announce Signing Classes has picked up wire reports announcing the incoming Miami Hurricanes and LSU Tigers incoming classes. Miami is bringing in 9 players, including 5 from the South Florida region.

Meanwhile, Paul Mainieri, a true class act and well respected SEC coach, has brought in his first full-year class at LSU. It includes 18 new players, of whom 7 were drafted this year. LSU only lost infielder Drew Cumberland to San Diego (46th overall pick).
LSU's class will be welcomed with the opening of the beautiful new Alex Box Stadium in Baton Rouge. A rendering of the new Stadium is pictured above, as LSU becomes the latest SEC program to upgrade its facilities in the recent facilities arms raise in the South.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

The University of Texas Baseball roster for the 2008 Season!

For the Roster, I have made some changes for the positional players.

Pitchers (19) Drew Bishop Jr, Riley Boening Soph, Hunter Harris Soph, Kenn Kasparek Jr, Pat McCrory Jr, Alex Posey Soph, Andy Reese Jr, Keith Shinaberry Jr, Juston Street Jr, Kyle Walker Jr, Blake Williams Soph, Austin Wood Jr. Garrett Clyde, Soph, Cole Green Freshman, Lee Johnson Freshman, Chance Ruffin Freshman, Stayton Thomas Freshman, Brandon Workman Freshman(3rd Rd Phillies), Casey Whitmer soph.

Catchers (5) Preston Clark Junior, Todd Gilfillian senior, Russell Moldenhauer Sophmore(OF), Cameron Rupp Freshman, Kawika Emsley-Pai Freshman.

Infielders(6) Travis Tucker Junior, Jeff Bose Junior, Brandon Belt Soph, Bobby Buckner Freshman, Tant Shepherd Freshman, Marcus Tackett Soph.

Outfielders (7) Jordan Danks Junior, Kyle Russell Junior, Kyle Lusson Sophomore, Clint Stubbs Sophomore, Runney Davis Freshman, Connor Rowe Freshman, Kevin Keyes Freshman

Note: I have move Brandon Belt and Marcus Tackett to the infield but they will also pitch. Also please note there 37 players and the Roster can only have 35.

Remember this is only my best guess as how I see it today:

1st Base. Brandon Belt
2nd Base Travis Tucker/Pat McCrory
Short Stop Pat McCrory/ Bobby Buckner
3rd Base Tant Shepherd/ Marcus Tackett
Left Field Kyle Lusson/ Davis/Rowe/Keyes
Center Field Jordan Danks
Right Field Kyle Russell
Catcher Preston Clark/Cameron Rupp
DH Russell Moldenhauer/Cameron Rupp
Friday Starter- Riley Boening
Saturday Starter- Casey Whitmer
Sunday Starter- Austin Wood

Closer- Lee Johnson/Keith Shinaberry/Drew Bishop

Mid-day starter- Brandon Workman/ Kyle Walker/Cole Green

When the schedules comes out later on in the fall you will see more 5 games in a week than in years past. That is also why Augie and staff has more pitchers than in years past.

Corbin Lands NAIA Star for '08 Class

Vanderbilt Head Coach Tim Corbin announced yesterday that he was remaining in Nashville. Just 10 hours after that decision,'s Mike Rapp broke the news that Corbin and Erik Bakich had landed coveted transfer candidate Drew Hayes.

Hayes will enter with this year's class and be eligible to play immediately as a Sophomore. A 6'1" 200 lb RHP, Hayes is described by Joshua Parrott of the Jackson Sun as having a body built like Casey Weathers, the former Vandy closer and #8 overall pick in this past draft. Parrott reports in today's paper that Hayes will be given the opportunity to use his mid-90s heater to earn the right to close games on West End.

Corbin and Bakich were not unfamiliar with Hayes, nor are his new teammates. Hayes is most well associated with Mikie Minor, the Vanderbilt and Team-USA standout LHP. Minor and Hayes competed for honors as 2005-6's top Tennessee baseball player. Minor ultimately drew the most acclaim, but Hayes bested the southpaw in the TSSAA State Championship game in an epic matchup. Hayes was recruited heavily by Vanderbilt; however, he chose to play at Bethel, where his father is the baseball head coach. Hayes batted .320 and carried a 6-4 record and 2.72 ERA on the hill.

Hayes joins another star-studded class of recruits that have all made it to Nashville without defection. Among them are Catcher Curtis Casali, LHP Kellen St. Luce, 1B/DH Aaron Westlake, LHP Ben Blanton, RHP Chase Reid, 1B Drew Fann, SS Gabe Ortiz, OF Joey Manning, LHP Sean Bierman and RHP Taylor Hill. Casali, Manning and Westlake are expected to push holdover starters at C, LF and 1B, respectively, while all six pitching recruits will join a solid redshirt class in replacing the six Vanderbilt pitchers who moved on to the professional ranks this year.
I would also be remiss if I did not link Kendall Rogers of's excellent article on Tim Corbin and the Oregon search. It touched on the topics I addressed in my late post last night, but Kendall actually attended the presser and knows Tim from attending a number of Vandy games and covering the Dores. It's an outstanding read for those of you who aren't sick of me talking about the Commodores yet.

Harvey and Striz heading to North Carolina

Matt Harvey of Fitch High School (CT) and Nate Striz of Sante Fe Catholic (FL) both will be heading to North Carolina after failing to sign professional contracts by the deadline on August 15th. Matt Harvey was expected to be a first round pick but slid to the third round (118th overall) where he was picked by the Los Anglos Angels of Anaheim. Teams were scarred away from drafting him with the association with Scott Boras. He was rated by Baseball America as the number 1 prospect in the senior class in February. He ended up being named the Louisville Slugger Connecticut Player of the Year. Nate Striz was a fifth round pick (182nd overall) by the Minnesota Twins. He was rated as the 95th best prospect by Baseball America before the high school season.

Both players are excellent additions to the North Carolina pitching staff. These players should be top of the line starters for the Tar Heels in the coming years while they try to make it to their third straight CWS Championship series.

UNC Release
LA Times Article on Harvey

Mike Moustakas signs

Baseball America is now reporting that Mike Moustakas has officially signed with the KC Royals. Moustakas was the second overall pick in the 2007 draft out of Chatsworth High School in CA. It looks like the report from the Kansas City Star from earlier this evening saying that Scott Boras had informed the KC Royals that Moustakas would be attending USC in the fall was just a bargaining ploy to make the Royals make a late offer which his client accepted. The deal went through 11 minutes before the signing deadline for 2007 draft picks.

Kansas City Star article about the signing

Baseball America Report

Yankees sign Brackman

The New York Yankees signed Andrew Brackman to a four year guaranteed deal which is worth a minimum of 4.5 million to a maximum of 13 million. The College Baseball Blog attended one of Brackman's starts in the 2007 season (sat about four people over from Keith Law of ESPN) and was less then impressed with his performance. He did not show me first round type material but throws a very hard fastball but his curveball needs a lot of work. The biggest issue that I have over Brackman is the arm issues he ran into at the end of the NC State season which hampered the Wolfpack's chances in the NCAA and ACC tournaments. There is not much mileage on his arm since he pitched in only 78 innings in 2007 while pitching in a combined 71.1 innings in his freshman and sophomore seasons. He was visiting famed surgeon James Andrews this week to look at his inflamed elbow where Tommy John surgery might be needed.

NC State Release
River Ave. Blues Article
CBB article on Brackman's start against Boston College

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

UCLA loses two recruits

The UCLA Bruins lost two big time recruits for the 2008 season in Ryan Dent and Jason Heyward. Dent was the 62nd overall pick in the 2007 draft by the Boston Red Sox. Dent received a $571,000 deal with the team. Heyward was the 14th overall pick by the Atlanta Braves. He received a 1.7 million dollar deal with the team. The rest of the UCLA freshman class will be attending classes in Los Angeles this year. The full press release is available here.

More on Corbin and the Oregon Coaching Search

With Tim Corbin's announcement today, Vandy fans stomachs finally settled. Mike Rapp and Chris Lee of, Kendall Rogers of, Brett Hait of the Nashville City Paper and Mo Patton of the Tennessean (and the College Baseball Blog) all covered the story in great detail. Early this morning, Coach Corbin announced, through Joe Fisher (the voice of Commodore athletics as announcer for all Vandy sports games), that he was staying in Nashville. Later in the day, Corbin hosted media to answer questions regarding the brief courtship.

Of interesting note, Corbin was not initially interviewing with Oregon. He was engaged by the University as a consultant to help build their program and advise on matters including the coaching search and facility construction. Much like Baylor, another program visited by Oregon officials, Vanderbilt is known to have among the best facilities in the country. However, during the courtship, Oregon upped the ante and offered Corbin a compensation package that dwarfed what Corbin currently receives at Vandy. Corbin is among the most well compensated coaches in the SEC, leading to speculation regarding just how large the package was -- speculation Corbin did not address.

Ultimately, Corbin told the media that the entire experience has been: “slightly embarrassing, to be honest with you, because my first feeling is this has happened before. The last thing I want is for people to think, ‘Here we go again.’ I don’t have a sign over my head that says, ‘I need a job,’ because I don’t.” Corbin flirted with LSU and Auburn in the past three years and appeared to be attempting some damage control. Corbin acknowledged that he has an outstanding situation at Vanderbilt, evidenced by turning down NIKE money that would reportedly have doubled his current compensation package. Nevertheless, he came across as honest and open regarding his status as Vandy's coach, his commitment to the program, and the fact that he will listen to offers if approached, as college baseball "is a performance driven business." In this case, although Corbin entertained the Oregon offer, when asked if he was close to accepted he said, "It wasn’t close physically, emotionally or anything."

Corbin also indicated what this blog suggested early last night. The presence of David Williams, Vandy's Athletics Czar, is a key factor in the coach's continued home in Nashville. So long as Williams is running the show, count on Corbin to turn down all offers outside of an opening at Clemson and in the Boston Red Sox organization. Corbin hinted that he has turned down more overtures than are public. Among those rumored are an immediate turn down of the University of Tennessee this past Spring.

Corbin's press conference can be viewed at and Coach talks about his situation at Vanderbilt, the offer received from Oregon, the nature of Oregon's program building and the departure of Chancellor Gordon Gee. Corbin also noted that recruiting coordinator Erik Bakich and pitching coach Derek Johnson have been approached and turned down opportunities at other schools.

To access the video of the press conference, you must register for free with's all-Access video service, which also allows you to watch all home Commodore baseball games live.

In the early afternoon conference, Corbin did not address the status of then unsigned David Price, Dominic De la Osa and Jonathan White. All-American RF De la Osa and reserve OF White are returning to Vanderbilt for their Senior years. De la Osa will join fellow All-Americans Pedro Alvarez (3B) and Ryan Flaherty (SS) to form one of the most lethal middles of the lineup in baseball for the second year in a row. Alvarez and De la Osa currently rank #1 and #4 among returning players in career home runs.

Photo courtesy of Mike Rapp at

D-Rays Set Record In Landing Big Fish

Mo Patton of the Tennessean is reporting that David Price will receive a record $11.25 Million package over six years, surpassing the "Prior" record of $10.4 Million over six years between Mark Prior and the Cubs. The son of two Vanderbilt alums, Prior also pitched in Nashville as a Freshman before transferring to USC for the remainder of his NCAA career.

Price will be introduced at a Friday press conference. Congratulations to the Devil Rays and David on coming together for this deal.
In other Signing Day news noted by Kendall Rogers of
-Texas 3B Bradley Suttle signed with the Yankees
-NC State RHP Andrew Brackman signed with the Yankees
-Texas OF Kyle Russell will return to Austin for another year
-Texas A&M's Blake Stouffer will return to school for a swan song
-Rice signee Carmen Angelini signed with the Yankees

Boston College News

According to a source, Boston College's ace pitcher Terry Doyle is expected to come back next season for his senior season. He is coming off a strong summer for the second straight year as he won Game 1 of the Cape Cod Baseball League Championship series on Monday. Doyle had an injury hampered season in 2007 while compiling a 4-5 record with a 5.87 ERA. This is huge news for Boston College as he is expected to lead the team to their first apperance in the ACC Tournament in 2008. If something changes, The College Baseball Blog will be all over it.

Texas Longhorns Summer League Recap

It was a busy summer for Texas Baseball as 23 current Longhorns and four newcomers stayed active with summer action throughout the country. Twenty-two players participated in collegiate summer leagues, while Jordan Danks spent the summer touring with the U.S. National Baseball Team.

Danks, who struggled early at the plate, rebounded to be one of Team USA's top hitters and helped the squad earn a silver medal at the Pan American Games in Brazil. Playing in a team-high 35 games, he led the team with 37 runs scored, 14 more than the nearest teammate. Danks hit .287 with four doubles, two triples, two home runs, five stolen bases and 12 RBI.


The best part of Collegiate summer leagues is being able to go and watch the players that you have watched at the University. I went to several games this summer and was able to get to know the Players better that played at Texas. It is a more relaxed atmosphere and the boys are always more than accommodating to my Son. We were able to get pictures with the players that Played on the Coppell Copperheads team of the Texas Collegiate League. We were also able to get pictures with the pitching Coach for Texas (Skip Johnson) and autographs on a baseball.

My point is go and see a Summer League game.

Coppell Copperheads win the 2007 TCL Championship!

The Coppell Copperheads edged past the McKinney Marshals 2-1 in the nail biting third and final game of the TCL Championship series. With the victory, the Copperheads become the only team in TCL history to win two TCL Championships. Coppell’s two-run sixth inning became the deciding frame as Preston Clark's suicide squeeze scored the eventual winning run to propel the Copperheads to their second TCL title.


Summer League Update from Yale

The Yale Athletic Department has a press release on the success of some Bulldogs this summer. Ryan Lavarnway hit .313 this summer with the Manchester Silkworms (NECBL). Lavarnway was up for several national player of the year awards during the 2007 season. He is expected to be drafted in 2008 according to several MLB scouts in the top 10 rounds. The article also discusses Steve Gilman who played with the Glacier Pilots of the Alaskan League, Chris Walsh for the Monroe Channelcats in the Southern Collegiate League, and Brian Irving who stayed around home by playing in the West Haven Twilight League. The full article is available by clicking here.

Baseball Prospectus copying our stuff?

The College Baseball Blog has recognized that there are striking resemblances between a post by Rany Jazayerli of Baseball Prospectus and our great site. We wrote an article on the upcoming Draft deadline in the early morning hours of August 14th and had a brief mention about Matt Porcello. Baseball Prospectus posted an article about this same topic today at 10:33 am.

Here is our full post on the draft

Teams that do not sign a top 2 Round pick will receive a comparable pick in the 2008 draft. If you fail to sign the 7th overall pick, you would receive pick 7A in 2008. For example, if Tampa fails to ink David Price and if Tampa finished last in the standings again, they would receive the first overall pick and then receive pick 1A (functionally, the second overall pick). This provides significant leverage by improving the team's BATNA (Best Alternative To a Negotiated Agreement). A draftee is in the same spot as before, but it's a little easier for the team to stick to slot guidelines knowing they would be forfeiting a whole lot less.

Everything must be done by midnight Wednesday. That means not just an agreement in principal. A signed agreement won't even cut it unless the player has passed his physical. It's hard to tell if a physical can be performed before a contract is signed, because all draft rules aren't public, but which unsigned stars go in for a doctor's visit tomorrow or Wednesday morning can probably be an indicator as to who's close to closing their deal.
Here is our post on Matt Porcello which we got from the Detroit Free Press

The Tigers are on the brink of announcing they have signed No. 1 draft pick Rick Porcello to a four-year major league contract with a guaranteed value of $7.285 million, according to multiple officials with knowledge of the negotiations.

The deal is the richest given to a high school player by the team that drafted him, and could increase in value if he attains certain roster bonuses.Porcello, a 6-foot-5 18-year-old right-hander from New Jersey, was considered one of the most talented players in the June draft, but slid to the Tigers at No. 27 overall because teams were concerned about his high price tag. He was expected to ask for a guarantee between $6.5 million and $8 million, and, it appears, that is exactly what happened. This signing hurts the North Carolina program as he was one of their top recruits for the 2008 season.

Baseball Prospectus full post

At this point, if Major League Baseball had enforced their slotting recommendations by threatening violators with being exiled to Siberia, I think Scott Boras would be coming to the podium today to announce that the Detroit Tigers had agreed to move their franchise to Novosibirsk.

In theory, as a result of the changes in the draft process this year, teams ought to have considerably more leverage than they have in the past. In theory. The creation of a firm August 15th deadline eliminates the ability of draftees to drag out the negotiations (by attending Junior College or playing in the independent leagues) until just a week before the following draft. More importantly, the new rules which gives teams that do not sign their first rounders a compensation pick in virtually the same slot next year, gives teams a considerably more palatable option than in the past, when they would only get a compensation pick at the end of the supplemental round.

There is a principle in negotiations known as BATNA – short for Best Alternative To a Negotiated Agreement. Basically, this refers to your fallback plan in case a negotiation breaks down. In previous years, the BATNA for a team negotiating with its first-round pick would be the compensation pick at the end of the supplemental round the following year. As the BATNA would typically be a lesser player than the first round pick, a team’s leverage was not very high. If the alternative to signing, say, Brien Taylor was to get the 50th overall pick the following year…well, that’s why the Yankees ponied up the big bucks to sign him.

The change in compensation rules for this year dramatically improves the BATNA for teams. If the Devil Rays don’t sign David Price, they get the #2 overall pick next year. Given that Price would be back in the draft himself, you could make the argument that the Devil Rays’ BATNA is equivalent in value to Price. They can play hardball with him, knowing that if he doesn’t sign, they can replace him with equal value next year. The same goes with the Royals, who if they don’t sign #2 overall pick Mike Moustakas will have the #3 or #4 (if Price also doesn’t sign) pick next year; and the Cubs, who will have the #4, #5, or #6 pick next year if Josh Vitters doesn’t sign.

But here’s the catch, and here’s why Scott Boras is such a brilliant negotiator: the value of the BATNA drops the deeper into the draft you go. If a top talent like, say, Rick Porcello – a consensus Top-5 draft pick on talent alone – were to drop deep into the first round, the BATNA of whichever team drafted him would not be a comparable player. Meanwhile, no matter where Porcello is drafted, his BATNA – to go to college – doesn’t change at all.

The Detroit Tigers could not resist when Porcello fell to them with the 27th overall pick. And with the deadline approaching, they apparently could not resist giving Porcello almost everything he was asking for. And for good reason: the Tigers’ BATNA was pick 27A next season, and the odds that a player of Porcello’s caliber will fall that deep into the draft again are slim to none. The Tigers don’t appear likely to be drafting at the top of their first round on their own accord anytime soon, so from their standpoint, this might be their last opportunity to nab a premier player in the draft for a very long time.

This is classic game theory: a rule change that should give teams more leverage in general – because they have a better BATNA than before – gives a specific team in a specific circumstance (a team that drafts a top talent late in the first round) less leverage specifically. And we know it only takes one outlier to drive up values for the market as a whole. For proof, just look at Scott Boras’ work every winter.

The irony is that, had Porcello been drafted by the Royals or the Cubs or some other team at the top of the draft, he would have been less likely to get the $7-million-plus contract he was asking for, because those teams would have had a better BATNA; they would have been compensated with a higher draft pick in 2008 if they had failed to come to terms, and so they could have held firm with a lesser offer. In other words, the farther Porcello fell in the draft, the more money he was likely to earn. And by announcing to teams ahead of the draft that Porcello really wanted to go to college and would only sign for Josh Beckett money (inflation-adjusted), Boras helped his client fall deep into the draft. Which was exactly what he wanted.

Also note that Porcello hasn’t officially come to terms yet, but that didn’t keep the baseball world from learning the news that Porcello was getting a record-breaking contract. With a little more than 24 hours until the deadline, news of Porcello’s signing only increased the pressure on teams at the top of the draft to sign their players, while increasing those players’ market value. Two of those players, Moustakas and Vitters Matt Wieters, are Boras clients.

It’s Scott Boras’ world. And we’re all just living in it.

It looks to me that Rany Jazayerli checked out my blog yesterday and took the information he found on this site and used it in his article without giving any credit to The College Baseball Blog. Our writer NYDore points out that the term BATNA comes from Law School which makes this post by Baseball Prospectus really suspicious. I thought our loyal readers would like to know that we are providing great information to our readers by using our contacts around the College Baseball world and if we get information from somewhere else we at least tell our readers.

Vandy's Shea Robin picks up Sportsmanship Award

HYANNIS, Mass. – Strong-armed catcher Shea Robin (Vanderbilt) has joined six other Hyannis Mets alumni as a winner of the Cape Cod Baseball League’s Daniel J. Silva Sportsmanship Award.

The Vanderbilt junior enjoyed a solid first season in the CCBL, appearing in 29 games as catcher for the Mets. He batted .229 with a home run and eight RBI. Robin’s performance both on and off the field made a strong, positive impression on those around him as his character and selfless attitude demonstrated the true definition of a student-athlete at his best.

Robin’s selection continues what is becoming a tradition – selecting a catcher as recipient of the Silva award.

Last year’s winner, Brewster second baseman Matt LaPorta (Florida), was actually a catcher in high school and early in his college career. He wound up being chosen by the Milwaukee Brewers in the first round of the 2007 MLB draft as a first baseman. Wareham catcher Joel Collins (South Alabama) was the award winner in 2005, following two other Hyannis catchers, Chris Robinson (Illinois) in 2004 and Richard Mercado (Arizona) in 2003. The position requires extreme concentration, discipline and leadership qualities and demands strong communication skills.

Other Hyannis Mets who have won the Silva award are Curtis Sapp (North Carolina State), 1999; Will Vespe (Miami), 1988; Jim Howard (Siena), 1983, and Brick Smith (Wake Forest), co-winner in 1980.

Combined with his strong arm and willingness to pitch out, Robin has been an integral part of the Mets’ late-season surge. They came within a whisker of making the post-season playoffs, only to be upset by last-place Wareham on the next-to-last day of the regular season. Those who have watched Robin in action have been impressed. “Shea has a strong arm and he is not afraid to throw out at any time, particularly to first and third base” noted John Garner, CCBL director of public relations and broadcasting.

Robin’s ambitious approach to the position has been a reflection of his strong character. Standing 5-11, the Woodland, Tex., native has always been a well-rounded athlete. He has also earned awards for his academic achievements, including a spot on the SEC 2007 academic honor roll, as well as Vanderbilt’s 2007 dean’s list.

Robin’s .311 batting average during the 2007 college baseball season was an important component of Vanderbilt’s surprise win at the SEC championship last spring. His roommate at Vandy is fellow catcher Andrew Giobbi, who spent this summer with the Falmouth Commodores.

Robin helped Vanderbilt hold the No. 1 spot in the USA TODAY/ESPN Coaches' Poll for nine straight weeks and was selected as catcher for the SEC All-Tourney team.

Ticketed for the starting catcher’s job as he returns for his third year at Vanderbilt, Robin, a converted outfielder, has displayed determination and a desire to constantly improve, resulting in a smooth transition to the position of catcher.

Robin previously spent his college summers competing with the Waterloo Bucks of the Northwoods League. He has displayed a consistent batting average throughout his baseball career and has also been a reliable run-producer.

This summer, Robin’s sportsmanship has made a profound impact on those around him. “Shea is sociable and a hard worker,” says Mets General Manager John Howitt, “ He has many qualities you do not often see in someone his age.”

Robin has built strong relationships with teammates, coaches and umpires. He has displayed respectful conduct and a gracious attitude for the game of baseball while showing strong competitive spirit combined with good character -- important attributes when being considered for this award.

Since 1973, the Daniel J. Silva Award has been one of the Cape League’s most prestigious honors. The league’s umpires are charged with the task of picking the winner. The umpires witness a player’s sportsmanship first-hand and are in a unique position to make the selection.

The award honors the memory of “Danny” Silva, the league’s first commissioner in the so-called “modern” era, and a former CCBL umpire-in-chief. Silva was posthumously inducted into the CCBL Hall of Fame in 2000.

Thanks to Joe Sherman and John Garner for the Cape Cod League information.

Officially Corbin set to stay at Vanderbilt

Tim Corbin has officially announced that he will stay at Vanderbilt after overtures from the University of Oregon according to the press release from the official Vanderbilt athletic site. The full press release is available here.

Corbin set to decide about Oregon

The College Baseball Blog is on top of this breaking news that Tim Corbin has, in fact, been heavily courted in the last week by the University of Oregon. Despite public denials, solid information but uncorroborated information indicates that Corbin has been offered the job and the opportunity to play with NIKE founder Phil Knight's substantial checkbook. The offer almost certainly includes a massive paycheck, first-hand input on stadium construction with a budget of approximately $10 million and the veritable NIKE name. Furthermore, as Brett Hait of the Nashville City Paper notes, the departure of Chancellor Gordon Gee to Ohio State removed one of Corbin's biggest supporters in the building of the Vanderbilt program into a national power. Nevertheless, Corbin has strong ties to the Vanderbilt community and advantages in place in Nashville. Among his closest friends is Basketball coach Kevin Stallings (whose son Jacob is believed to be the Commodores #1 recruiting target at Catcher). And Vice Chancellor and athletics czar David Williams remains the driving force behind improvements to Hawkins Field.Corbin has assembled a stellar and very well compensated assistant coaching staff led by recruiting coordinator Erik Bakich and former National Pitching Coach of the Year Derek Johnson. Corbin also values the ability to sell a globally elite education and a University endowment in excess of $3 billion that allows Vanderbilt to be among the most liberal universities in the nation for providing aid and grants to all students.

Corbin met with Vanderbilt officials Tuesday morning and is expected to withdraw his name or accept the job sometime in the coming days. In 2005 and 2006, Corbin was offered and turned down offers to take over Auburn and LSU's programs after courtships. This past Spring, Corbin rebuffed interest from the University of Tennessee. Sources in the media (including Aaron Fitt of Baseball America and Kendall Rogers of and in Nashville have indicated a belief that Corbin is more likely to remain a Commodore.

YD wins Cape Cod League Championship Again

The Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox repeated as Cape Cod League Champions in the 2007 season by knocking off the Falmouth Commodores 2-0 to take the Championship in only two games. Both teams received great pitching on Tuesday night as Yarmouth-Dennis starter Trevor Holder (UGA) gave up one hit and struck out ten batters as he picked up the MVP award for the Championship series. The winning run scored on a suicide squeeze by Nick Romero which brought home Buster Posey (FSU) with the first run of the game. The YD Red Sox would bring home another run on a passed ball to set up the final scoreline. Nick Cassavechia (Baylor) worked the ninth inning by working around a double and striking out two batters. CodBall has a recap available here and Right Field Fog also has one available here.

Thanks to Codball for providing the picture.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

NCAA Loosens Scholarship Minimum

Much ado was made of the NCAA's proposed restriction that required each scholarship player to receive no less than 1/3rd of a scholarship. Legendary Mississippi State coach Ron Polk was, purportedly, so displeased with the rule that he was prepared to walk away from the game. Well, influence from folks like Polk forced the NCAA to blink... at least one eye.

As reported by many, including Mike Knobler of the AJC, the NCAA has reduced the restrictions and will only require that each scholarship player receive 1/4th of a scholarship. Furthermore, certain non-athletic aid will be permitted to count toward the 25% minimum grant.

The NCAA stood by its recent ban on text messaging.

Tigers, top pick Porcello agree to deal

The Tigers are on the brink of announcing they have signed No. 1 draft pick Rick Porcello to a four-year major league contract with a guaranteed value of $7.285 million, according to multiple officials with knowledge of the negotiations.

The deal is the richest given to a high school player by the team that drafted him, and could increase in value if he attains certain roster bonuses.Porcello, a 6-foot-5 18-year-old right-hander from New Jersey, was considered one of the most talented players in the June draft, but slid to the Tigers at No. 27 overall because teams were concerned about his high price tag. He was expected to ask for a guarantee between $6.5 million and $8 million, and, it appears, that is exactly what happened. This signing hurts the North Carolina program as he was one of their top recruits for the 2008 season.

Detroit Free Press

Draft Deadline: The new rules

When MLB changed it's draft rules last October, there were two key points to note:

1) Teams that do not sign a top 2 Round pick will receive a comparable pick in the 2008 draft. If you fail to sign the 7th overall pick, you would receive pick 7A in 2008. For example, if Tampa fails to ink David Price and if Tampa finished last in the standings again, they would receive the first overall pick and then receive pick 1A (functionally, the second overall pick). This provides significant leverage by improving the team's BATNA (Best Alternative To a Negotiated Agreement). A draftee is in the same spot as before, but it's a little easier for the team to stick to slot guidelines knowing they would be forfeiting a whole lot less. Source and a list of the unsigned first rounders.

2) Everything must be done by midnight Wednesday. That means not just an agreement in principal. A signed agreement won't even cut it unless the player has passed his physical. It's hard to tell if a physical can be performed before a contract is signed, because all draft rules aren't public, but which unsigned stars go in for a doctor's visit tomorrow or Wednesday morning can probably be an indicator as to who's close to closing their deal. Source.

Notable unsigned players as of yesterday include #1 Price (Tampa Bay), #2 Mike Moustakas (Kansas City Royals), #3 Josh Vitters (Chicago Cubs) and #5 Matt Weiters (Baltimore Orioles).

UPDATE: Yahoo Sports has written an article on this topic. It is available here.

Who's the fastest rising program?

Kendall Rogers of College Baseball has counted down his top 10 rising programs with a series of articles. Here's the list.

10. Memphis
9. Coastal Carolina
8. Michigan
7. UC Riverside
6. Texas A&M
5. Louisville
4. Missouri
3. San Diego
2. UC Irvine

Kendall also answered some interesting questions in his latest Mailbag. Addressed were the draft decisions for a trio of Longhorns and Rick Porcello. Also discussed are the prospects for the NC State Wolfpack and Western Carolina's hiring of Bobby Moranda.

Oregon comes calling

Oregon may not be earning any friends at OSU by talking to Pat Casey, but were there really any friendships there to begin with? Brian Meehan of the Oregonian weighed in on coaching search etiquette. You can read the column here. The article has some info on the folks who are on NIKE's wish list (Dave Serrano of UC Irvine, Pat Casey of OSU and Dave Brundage of the Braves AAA team).

Meanwhile, Mo Patton of the Tennessean reported that Vanderbilt skipper Tim Corbin was out in Eugene over the weekend. You can read the article here. There is an uncorroborated rumor that Corbin was indeed offered the opportunity to restart the Duck program in 2009. Corbin flirted with LSU's vacancy last year and Auburn's two years prior. Corbin turned down both opportunities but noted that the interviewing process is a good means of information exchange in the building of programs. From a Vanderbilt fan perspective and as a massive supporter of Corbin, considering Oregon makes sense for two reasons: 1) the opportunity to learn about Oregon's plans for building a program for the bottom up and 2) the challenge involved (turning Vandy around was a challenge in which Corbin has and is succeeding famously). On the other hand, Corbin has no connections to the Northwest. The X-Factor? The departure of Chancellor Gordon Gee (to OSU) removes one of the biggest promoters of Vanderbilt baseball. This blogger says: just another in a line of Corbin paying respect with a visit and bringing home ideas to build on the Commodore foundation. After all, is Corbin willing to give up the recruiting advantage he and recruiting coordinator Erik Bakich share with Stanford, Rice and Tulane that Will Kimmey documented two years ago?

Monday, August 13, 2007

FSU loses two players

The Tallahassee Democrat is reporting that Danny Rosen and D'Vontrey Richardson will not return in the 2008 season. Rosen has signed with the Arizona Diamondbacks. Rosen was expected to be the main set up man in the 2008 season for the Seminoles. He pitched in 26 games in 2007 while compiling a 5.52 ERA. Richardson will not return to the baseball field as he plans on focusing on football for the next few years. He was a surprise contributor in 2007 when he batted .351 in 51 games including starting 35. FSU has picked up freshman football player Taiwan Easterling who was drafted in the sixth round in 2007 by the Florida Marlins. The full article is available here.

Doyle leads YD to Game 1 victory over Falmouth

SOUTH YARMOUTH, Mass.- The Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox were in control of game one of the Cape Cod Baseball League Championship Series from the first batter all the way to the end. After both teams swept their divisional series, the Red Sox kept their momentum going while taking the wind out of Falmouth’s sails winning 8-2.

Game two of the Championship series will be played at Guv. Fuller Field in Falmouth at 7 PM August 13 as the Red Sox will be looking to win their third title in four years. Tonight’s crowd of 4.335 is expected to matched tomorrow in what could be the last game of the 2007 season.

Falmouth starter Shooter Hunt (Tulane) was chased from the game after pitching just 2 1/3 innings giving up four runs on four hits. Hunt started the game by relinquishing a homer to the first batter he faced, Grant Green (Southern California) who also blasted a solo shot in the fifth inning off of reliever Preston Claiborne (Tulane).

The second year starter for Falmouth, who also allowed Buster Posey (Florida State) to score on a sacrifice fly by Gordon Beckham (Georgia) in the first, left the game in the third after giving up a single to Jason Castro (Stanford) and a walk to leftfielder Aaron Luna (Rice) to start the inning. Preston Claiborne, Hunt’s college teammate, came in and gave up a walk to load the bases, but the Red Sox could not cash in on the opportunity as Claiborne struck out Collin Cowgill (Kentucky) and induced a ground ball out from Joey Railley (University of San Francisco) to end the threat.

The Red Sox scored twice in the second off of Hunt thanks to an RBI double by second baseman Railley that drove in Cowgill and a ground ball by the tall middle infielder turned first baseman Green that plated Railley to go up 4-0. Green moved to first base for the postseason after an elbow injury to Sean Ochinko (LSU) in the last game of the regular season left a hole in the lineup for Y-D.

For Yarmouth-Dennis Terry Doyle (Boston College), the 2006 Co-Outstanding Pitcher of the Year, collected the win giving up just two runs on four hits. He struck out seven Commodores, walking three and racking up four wild pitches in his last Cape League start in 6 1/3 innings of work.

Two of those wild pitches led to a Falmouth run as second baseman David Adams (Virginia) took both third and home on pitches that hit the dirt in front of the plate and got by Buster Posey (Florida State). The 6 foot 2 inch 205 pound power hitter, who led the Commodores with 51 hits on the season, reached second base on a double that just missed leaving the park bouncing off the left field fence in front of the score board at Red Wilson Field.

Adam’s scored the second Falmouth run in the sixth inning after reaching on a single, stealing second base, advancing to third on another Doyle wild pitch and coming home on a sacrifice fly by third baseman Phil Carey (Winthrop).

The Red Sox collected three insurance runs in the eighth of off reliever Erik Bird (Nebraska). Green collected his fourth RBI of the night, and Posey and right fielder Matt Long (Santa Clara) each drove in one run putting the final tally at eight for the Red Sox.

DJ Mauldin (Cal Poly State) shut down the Falmouth Commodores to close out the game, pitching 2 2/3 shutout innings to keep Doyle’s seventh win of the season in tact.
For Doyle, there couldn’t be a better way to finish his Cape League career than with back-to-back championships.

“It would be great (to win again), last year was a lot of fun but to be able to go back to back, which nobody’s done in a while, would be great. I mean, everybody likes winning,” said Doyle.

Photo is courtesy of Codball

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Yarmouth-Dennis and Falmouth to meet in CCBL Championship

The Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox and Falmouth Commodores will meet in the Cape Cod Baseball League in the best of three series which starts on Monday at Red Wilson Field in South Yarmouth. The Red Sox defeated Chatham on Sunday by a score of 4-0 on the strength of a two run homer by Gordon Beckham of Georgia. The Commodores picked up a 4-2 victory over Bourne in a battle between Rick Zagone and Kyle Gibson who both play for Missouri. Codball provides excellent recaps of the playoffs here.

Championship Series Schedule
Monday: Falmouth at Yarmouth-Dennis 3 pm Live Audio Live Video
Tuesday: Yarmouth-Dennis at Falmouth 7 pm Live Audio Live Video
Wednesday: Falmouth at Yarmouth-Dennis 3 pm Live Audio Live Video (if necessary)

Western Carolina hires two assistants

Nick Mingione and David Haverstick have recently been added to Bobby Moranda's staff at Western Carolina. Nick Mingione comes from Kentucky where he served as a volunteer assistant coach for two season. David Haverstick comes from Savannah College of Art and Design where he served as the pitching coach for five seasons. He will continue in the role with the Catamounts. The full release is available here.

Best College Program?

I want to be a Sports Agent website checks in with an article about the most successful baseball programs based on MLB players drafted and making it to the Majors. Using their calculations, They have USC in the top spot with 275 players drafted and 94 players making it to the Majors. Texas holds down the second spot followed by Arizona State, Stanford, and UCLA to round out the Top 5. The full article is available here.


Brandon Belt's three-run double in the seventh inning propelled Coppell to a 4-1 victory over McKinney Saturday night, forcing a third and final game in the Texas Collegiate League championship series. Belt's two-out flyball hooked toward the rightfield line, out of the reach of Marshal outfielder Zach Chamberlin, clearing the bases and breaking a 1-1 tie.

The loss snapped an eight-game winning streak in TCL playoff games for McKinney. The Marshals are now 3-1 in the 2007 playoffs after running the table to go 5-0 en route to the 2006 championship.

Texas Collegiate League


The Texas Collegiate League is known for preparing the elite prospects in college baseball for a big league journey. Every season there is immense talent throughout the league and this summer was no different.

Player of the Year Chris Richburg (Texas Tech) was consistently dangerous at the plate throughout the 2007 summer posting some of the league’s top overall numbers. Looking at the league leaders, Richburg’s name is plastered on almost every category as he finished out the season leading the league with 44 hits, 15 doubles, 5 triples, 33 RBI and a .591 slugging percentage. The Red Raider outfielder also ranked in the top five in batting average (.346), on-base percentage (.436) and runs scored (25). Richburg was named Player of the Month during his torrid July hitting .403 with 10 doubles, three triples, and 22 RBI. The Lubbock, TX native led the Roughnecks to the Rogers Hornsby division top seed for their second consecutive playoff appearance (third overall).

Pitcher of the Year Justin Murray (Kansas State ) proved to be nearly unhitable tallying a 5-2 record with a miniscule 0.54 ERA only giving up three earned runs all summer. The Wildcat hurler was dominant striking out 48 and allowing only eight walks in 50 innings of work. Murray led the TCL in ERA, wins (tied with three others), third in innings pitched and fourth in strikeouts. TCL’s June Pitcher of the Month led the Marshals to their second consecutive division title and trip to the TCL championship series. Murray becomes the second Marshal to be named Pitcher of the Year with Austin Creps being honored in 2005.

Freshman of the Year Casey Whitmer (Texas) led the Bombers to the playoffs in their inaugural season as the ace of the staff. The Kilgore, TX native led the league with 51 strikeouts, posted a remarkable 1.57 ERA and held opponents to a .163 average. He was named the starting pitcher for the Speaker division in the All-Star Game and at that time had 19 more strikeouts than the next closest pitcher. Whitmer, who attended Florida State in the spring, will head to Austin to pitch for the Longhorns for the 2008 season.

The head coaches throughout the TCL elected Johnny Cardenas as 2007 Coach of the Year in voting conducted at the end of the regular season. Cardenas guided the Roughnecks to a first place finish in the Hornsby division registering a 25-18 overall record earning their second consecutive playoff appearance (third overall). Wichita Falls was an offensive machine leading the league in hitting (.270 -tie), doubles (68), triples (12) and second in RBI (199). The Roughnecks offense was led by Player of the Year Chris Richburg and TCL batting champion John Dao, who finished out the season with a .365 average. In Cardenas ’ second season, he boosted the Roughnecks’ winning percentage to .581, which was 143 points better than the previous season.

2007 Texas Collegiate League All-League Team:
C – Heath Pugh, Denton (S am Houston State)
.295, 9 2B, 23 RBI
INF – Matt Curry, Coppell (Howard JC)
.280, 7 HR, 25 RBI, .512 slg
INF – John Dao, Wichita Falls (NE Texas CC)
.365, 10 2B, 16 RBI, .519 slg
INF – Tyler Ladendorf, Denton (Howard JC)
.295, 10 2B, 15 RBI, 18 SB
INF – Jason Seefeld, Wichita Falls (T exas Tech)
.306, 4 HR, 23 RBI, 6 2B
OF – Chris Richburg, Wichita Falls (Texas Tech)
.346, 15 2B, 5 3B, 33 RBI, .591 slg
OF – Bo Coffman, Mineral Wells (Grayson CC)
.312, 4 HR, 24 RBI, 9 2B
OF – Joey Butler, Weatherford (New Orleans)
.347, 7 2B, 20 RBI, 15 SB
DH – Brandon Belt, Coppell (San Jacinto JC, Texas)
.333, 4 HR, 22 RBI, 7 2B, .581 slg
RHP – Justin Murray, McKinney (Kansas State )
5-2, 0.54 ERA, 48 SO
LHP – Jon Kibler, Weatherford (Michigan State)
5-0, 1.36, 29 SO, .154 opp
Reliever – Tyler Davis, Brazos Valley (McNeese State)
2-1, 1.72, 6 SV, 31 SO

Player of the Year – Chris Richburg, Wichita Falls (Texas Tech)
Pitcher of the Year – Justin Murray, McKinney (Kansas State)
Freshman of the Year – Casey Whitmer, Brazos Valley (Texas)
Coach of the Year – Johnny Cardenas, Wichita Falls

Texas Collegiate League

The Texas Collegiate League Championship Series!

Marshals starter Justin Murray scattered five hits over seven innings and allowed only one run as McKinney defeated Coppell 3-1 to earn a one-game-to-none lead in the TCL Championship playoff series in front of a great crowd full of Marshals faithfuls.

Murray walked three and struck out six in earning his sixth win of the season on the day he was announced as TCL Pitcher of the Year for 2007.

Daniel Meadows pitched a scoreless eighth, striking out two Copperheads and Chris Wright closed out the ninth for the save, his fifth of the season. Wright also had two strikeouts as the Marshals staff fanned ten Coppell batters on the night.

Brandon Glover's one out single in the top of the seventh ignited the Marshals. Glover stole second before Tyler Hohman fought off a tough two strike pitch to single to right and score Glover, breaking a 0-0 tie

Cape Cod Playoff Day 1 Recap

The Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox knocked off the Chatham A's 4-3 with a walkoff RBI from Matt Long. has an excellent recap available here. The teams will be back in action in Game 2 of the best of three series on Sunday at 7 pm in Chatham.

The Falmouth Commodores took Game 1 of their series with Bourne on Saturday by a score of 7-2. Aaron Crow started for Falmouth and went 6 innings while giving up only one run on three hits to pick up the win. Codball has a full recap available here. The teams will head to Falmouth for Game 2 at 7 pm.

Waynesboro wins Valley League

Courtesy of Valley League

LURAY, Va., Aug. 10, 2007 - Top-seeded Waynesboro broke a 3-3 tie with a three-run eighth-inning rally and defeated third-seeded Luray on its home turf at Bulldog Field to capture the Jim Lineweaver Cup as the Valley Baseball League 2007 champion.

Waynesboro won the best of five series three games to one over Luray, the defending champion from 2006. Game four was the first game in the series won by the visiting team. It was the first league championship for the Generals since 1998 when they swept Staunton 3-0.

This season, Waynesboro went 30-13-1 overall to earn the VBL's top seed. The Generals have the best regular season record over the last two seasons combined with a 27-15 mark in 2006. Skipper Lawrence Nesselrodt was honored with his second straight VBL Coach of the Year honor this year.

Danny Williamson (Middleburg, Fla./North Florida C.C.) earned the victory for Waynesboro, pitching three innings of no-hit relief with two strikeouts to improve to 3-1. Jimmy Stanley (Lexington, Ky./Belmont) pitched a perfect ninth for his 13th save of the season. Kenny Cedel (Staten Island, N.Y./Long Island) took the loss for the Wranglers, allowing all three runs in the eighth.

Russ Brewer (Norwood, N.C./Vanderbilt) had the big hit for the Generals, a solo home run that proved to be the game winner in the eighth inning. All-Valley League selection Kurt Davidson (North Canton, Ohio/Akron) followed with a two-run double to break the game open to the 6-3 final.

Luray jumped on board first in the contest with two runs in the third inning. All-league short stop Tyler Kuhn (Louisville, Ky./West Virginia), the 2006 league MVP, hit an RBI double to plate Alec Lowrey (Weston, Fla./Louisville). Gerard Hall (Washington, D.C./Old Dominion) also scored on the play on the second of four Waynesboro errors for the night.

The Generals struck right back in the fourth with a two-run single by Brewer, who finished the night with three RBIs. Luray regained the lead, however, on a Justin Miller (Dayton, Va./Ohio State) home run to lead off the bottom of the fourth, his fifth of the season. Once again the Generals had the answer in the fifth with an RBI single by Ryan Adams (Burlington, N.C./Elon).

The 3-3 score held up until the three-run outburst by the Generals in the eighth. Waynesboro finished the night with six runs on nine hits and four errors. Luray scored its three runs on six hits with no errors.

Brewer finished 2-for-4 with three RBIs and a run scored. Adams also had two hits with a run and RBI. Davidson was 1-for-2 with two RBIs and a walk. Luray had no players with multiple hits. Kuhn and Miller had the only RBIs.

Box Score and Play-by-Play