Friday March 24th, 200612:01am
Ag Baseball Preview: texas tech
This is going to be pretty short (unless I start to ramble) as I just picked up a copy of Game of Shadows and I'd like to start reading that as soon as this texas/WV Sweet 16 game is over.
The red raiders are 18-7 on the season and in their first weekend of Big 12 play they split a series with texas 1-1 as the final game wasn't played due to inclement weather. Their best win besides the one game against texas was against Oral Roberts (ISR of 63) back on February 25th. You can get the deep scoop over at tech's website in their weekend press release.
Here are my comments on tech from my guest spot over at Baseball Analysts just before the season kicked off:Barring the arrival of some incredible transfers or freshmen, Texas Tech (34-25; 9-16; 8th) fans need to prepare for a long season in Lubbock. The Red Raiders lost a ton of players on both sides of the ball. They return 6 offensive players who accounted for less than 40% of last season's at bats and only two of those 6 hit over .300, Joseph Callender (.362/.410/.439) & Matt Smith (.321/.473/.429). On the mound they return 5 pitchers whose collective 2005 ERA was 5.87 and only two of those five had individual sub-5.00 ERAs (and none were below 4.00).
Miles Morgan deserves a special mention. He was named the #1 Prospect in Central Illinois League this past summer and then last Saturday he was simply outstanding against the longhorns:IP H R ER SO/BB HR PC GSc 9.0 4 1 1 15/0 0 132 90
That's nuts. Let's hope that the 132 pitches catches up to him this weekend.
The rotation for this weekend is as follows:Fri 7pm AJ Ramos (RHP; 29.1/5.22/.267/16/14) vs. K.Nicholson (RHP) Sat 7pm M.Morgan (RHP; 45.2/3.75/.253/60/11) vs. A.Creps (RHP) Sun 1pm TBA vs. C.Corgan (RHP) (IP/ERA/BAA/SO/BB)
One final note. You might remember that I attended the Rice/tu game way back on opening weekend at this year's Minute Maid Park Tournament. During the game I just happened to be sitting behind texas tech pitcher, Josh Tomlin's, mother and I got to talk to her and Josh for a little bit. As much as I despise and loathe texas tech, I have to say that Tomlin seemed like a really good kid. He was all "yes sir/no sir" when talking with my dad and just a really nice kid. I just wanted to put that out there.
B.T.H.O. texas tech! WHOOOOOP!
| Where are you?
Thursday March 23rd, 20066:17pm
Josh Barfield on ESPN.com
I just wanted to point out that Josh Barfield is on the front page of ESPN.com right this minute. The feature story is about position battles involving Barfield in San Diego and Ian Kinsler in Texas.
I've mentioned Josh a couple of times here (and a bit more here) but about 97% of you didn't even know this site existed back then.
Josh played ball with me on our JV team when I was a sophomore and he was a freshman. After that year he moved into Klien HS's area and played ball there the rest of his high school days. He committed to Baylor, where he would join fellow Klien alum David Murphy (and future 1st round draft pick), but signed with the Padres after they drafted him in the 4th round of the '01 draft.
I hope Josh earns his spot in the lineup. With Brad Halsey already planted firmly in the major leagues, who would have thought that Westfield HS's 1998 JV team would have produced 2 major league baseball players....and a baseball nut with a website?
| Where are you?
Ags Do Bounce Back in Houston
3/21/06 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 R H E TAMU 0 2 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 - 3 7 1 Houston 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 - 2 11 2
Well, we got to Farrington, or should I say Kyle Colligan got to Farrington? Colligan, whose red shirt was lifted this past Friday, went 2-for-4 with a HR, a triple, two runs scored, and two RBIs. In his first at-bat Farrington made him look kind of silly with a change up he missed by about 3 feet but a couple of pitches later he tagged a belt high fastball over the LF fence for a laser beam HR. His triple was a slicing line drive down the RF line, which was nice because we got to see that he has the ability to spray the ball to different parts of the field. Boy howdy we needed that shot in the arm.
The game was pretty good but got a little hairy there in the 9th. Hart Hering was brought in to close it out with a 3-1 lead but got hit around a bit and Childress brought in Jason Meyer to get the last out with the tying run on third and the go-ahead run on second. A fly out to RF later and we're on our way to the car with smiles on our faces.
The bullpen has been great this season but lately it seems that in just about every game one of them quasi-implodes, but it's a different guy each night which is what makes is kind of frustrating. I'm just really glad that we have so many arms that we can go to down there this season.
Kyle Thebeau had a really good outing on the mound. It wasn't his best performance but, like Corgan on Sunday, he battled extremely hard out there and fought through a couple of jams. One other thing about Kyle that I noticed was he gets a tremendous amount of little dribblers back to the mound....that's a good thing in most instances.
There were a couple of calls that I thought were off but the worst was after Thebeau threw a strike to one of the Cougar's batters and the 3rd base umpire came running towards home plate after the pitch and called a no-pitch because the UofH batboy was behind the home plate area when the pitch was thrown. What doesn't make sense is that no one signaled timeout until after the pitch was in the catcher's glove. I understand that the intent is to protect the batboy but doing so after-the-fact makes absolutely no sense to me. Thebeau went on to strike the guy out anyways.
I wanted to mention that both Ryan Hill and Jose Salazar had some good at-bats where they really battled at the plate. Hill worked two walks after fouling off a ton of pitches and Salazar went 2-for-4 with an RBI single over the SS's head.
I wanted to mention that by chance the fella sitting behind me at the game was Tom, who posts in the comments section quite frequently. It was nice running into him and getting to talk some baseball with him.
The best part of the game was hanging out with my old man and my brother, who is a student at Houston (for the time being, hopefully). We always have a good time when it's just the three of us (not that having my mom or Jennifer around is any sort of drag).
After the game we went to eat at the "59 Diner". Holy geez, they have the best chocolate shake in the city....and let it be known that if you get an order of onion rings it will take about 4 people to finish them all. The place has been around forever so one thing that we found pretty funny was that they still have a neon sign outside that says "Air Conditioning" on it as an enticement to go in and eat. What struck us as being even funnier was that on the door they had a sign that said "We have Wi-Fi". I suppose at the 59 Diner you can have your cake and eat it too.
Ags victory + Eating well = Good Evening
Tuesday March 21st, 200612:01am
Ags Look to Bounce Back in Houston
The University of Houston will be the baseball team's host tonight as we play the first game of our annual home-and-home series with the Cougars (they return the favor on April 18th).
Coach Rayner Noble continues to play one of the more challenging schedules in the nation year after year and this season is no different. They're 13-11 and they've already played texas, TCU, Arizona State (x3), Baylor, LSU (x3), & San Diego (x3)....this year it is magnified a little more now that they're fighting for a conference championship with Southern Miss, Tulane and Rice.
Last season the Cougars had something ridiculous like 2 seniors and 17 true freshmen on their squad. There is a little more balance this season but they are still a young team and the roster is chalked full of Houston-grown talent. I think Noble is going to have himself another really solid ballclub in the next couple of years.
I'm thankful that we're not facing their weekend rotation Ricky Hargrove (So.; 39.0 IP, 1.85 ERA, .212 BAA), Brad Lincoln (Jr.; 49.2/2.17/.213), & Luis Flores (Fr.; 33.0/2.45/.261). Flores is a true freshman from Corpus and was a two or three-time All-State player....his brother was UofH's captain last year as one of the seniors. We are, however, facing senior Matt Farrington who last year at the Minute Maid Park Tournament completely shut us down....IP H R ER SO/BB HR GSc ============================= TAMU 7.0 4 1 1 6/2 1 69
He went on last season to beat LSU, Tulane (and All-American Micah Owings), and Long Beach State (and their 1st round pick Cesar Ramos). LSU was ranked 3rd, Tulane was ranked 1st, and A&M was ranked 9th at the time he beat them.IP H R ER SO/BB HR GSc ============================= LSU 6.0 4 1 1 5/3 0 62 LBSU 8.0 4 1 1 6/1 0 75 TUL 6.1 7 3 3 5/3 1 49
He is coming off of a win against Baylor last Tuesday. Basically, I'm trying to say that he isn't a typical weeknight pushover starter.
Offensively the Cougars are less of a threat. They're hitting .261/.334/.366 as a team. Brad Lincoln, who could very likely be a 1st round pick in June, is leading the team with 5 HRs and 22 RBIs while hitting .281/.323/.494. Luis Flores also plays every day for them behind the plate when he's not on the mound and is hitting .311/.416/.392 (Dustin Kingsbury leads the team at a .337 clip). I also noticed that while Travis Tully, who was one of my dad's favorite players, left school early to sign with the Diamondbacks it appears that the Cougs have replaced him in the OF with Bryan Tully, who surprisingly is not related to Travis. Iím somewhat surprised that Travis signed because he was a 23rd round pick and still had another year of eligibility left.
My old man is meeting me at the ballpark for what will be our third game in less than 2 weeks. That however is no where near our record 3 games in one day back in 1996 when we saw Rice play texas tech, U.Houston play texas, and the Astros play the Padres....I've still got all three ticket stubs to prove it. 27 innings of baseball = a perfect Saturday afternoon/evening/night. I'm not sure I'll ever be able to persuade him into that again but I'm up for it if he challenges.
B.T.H.O. Houston! WHOOP!
Sunday March 19th, 20065:52pm
Rough Weekend All Around for Aggie Men
I'll start with the hoops team.
WOW. What an incredible game and an incredible season for the Men of Reed.
I got to watch the first half and the first 10 minutes of the second half before leaving for an engagement party being thrown for one of my good friends.
You can read all about the game here but I'll give you some of my thoughts from what I saw.
Dominique Kirk and Josh Carter were huge for us in the first half hitting their threes. I thought that Martellus did a good job on the boards as well as playing solid defense against Glen Davis. Kavaliauskas had a great heads-up play as the clock was ticking down before the half as he tipped in a missed Acie Law 3-pointer.
The second half was pretty much defense on defense. I left the house with 10 minutes left in the game and listened to Dave South until the game ended. We got to the restaurant with about a minute left in the ballgame and sat in the car to rejoice Acie's go-ahead bucket.....and then to yell in agony when Mitchell hit their go-ahead 3pointer....and then painfully hear Dave say, "and the ballgame is going to end with the ball on the floor."
It was a heckuva, even miraculous, season for the Ags. We saw the incredible growth of Acie Law, Josh Carter, and Dominique Kirk as well as the strong emergence of Anatanas Kavaliauskas.
Next season brings high hopes with 7 of our 8 most experienced players returning to the squad as well as a promising freshman recruiting class. The biggest face we're going to be missing is senior Chris Walker, who probably encompasses the Aggie Spirit more than any other player on the squad. Not only did Chris play with incredible passion and grit but he was the virtual 12th Man of basketball rising from the student body as a walk-on to beloved starter (starting every conference game in his two seasons). We will certainly miss #10 next year.
3/18/06 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 R H E Missouri 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 4 0 0 1 - 6 13 2 TAMU 2 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 1 0 0 0 - 5 16 2
Obviously, I didn't get to see any of the game Saturday night. I came home to find that we blew this one in the 9th inning behind a big error then tied it back up before a hitch in the pitching gave up the game winner in the 12th.
Austin Creps continued his masterful season on the mound.IP H R ER SO/BB HR NP GSc =================================== A.Creps. 6.0 7 1 1 4/2 0 56
His record should be 6-0 after pitching like that.
3/19/06 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 R H E Missouri 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 2 - 3 5 0 TAMU 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 - 0 3 1
Speaking of incredible pitching going to waste, Chance Corgan was robbed blind.IP H R ER SO/BB HR NP GSc ====================================== C.Corgan.. 7.2 3 1 0 10/4 0 123 77
Hands down the best performance of his career. His last two performances have really been encouraging as it seems he is starting to conquer some of the mental aspects of the game and work his way through rough situations.
I have to admit, I was surprised when he came back out in the 7th inning because I already had him at 96 pitches. I was shocked when he came out again for the 8th. This was the first time on the season that Childress has stuck with his starter this deep into a pitch count. 123 pitches donít really bother me but I did raise an eyebrow. I think that Childress is trying to teach Chance to continue to battle out there.
If I had to bring up one negative it was that 17 of the 32 batters he faced were started off with a ball. Later in the game he did a much better job with this though starting off only 5 of the last 16 batters he faced with a ball.
We just couldn't get the job done with the sticks again. We had 16 hits on Saturday but only a combined 6 hits on Friday and Sunday.
Part of me is afraid that the pitching is going to start pressing to overcompensate for the hitting which is what I think happened last season. Hopefully Childress can keep them away from this mindset.
Not a great way to start off conference play but we've got to bounce back on Tuesday on the road at Houston and then again this next weekend as we host texas tech.
The 6-seeded ladies basketball team tips-off in the Women's NCAA Tournament tonight against 11-seed TCU at 8:30pm on ESPN2. The ladies softball team had a strong weekend (starting on Wednesday) out in California as they went 5-1 beating #1 Arizona, #14 OU, & #15 Washington before finally falling to Cat Osterman and the #4 longhorns 1-0 this afternoon.
B.T.H.O. TCU! WHOOP!
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