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Home » College Baseball Clubhouse » BREAKDOWN: Analyzing the Top 25 teams (CBT)

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1/22/2013 11:31:26 AM

Kendall
Kendall
Administrator
Posts: 7538
[font=Helvetica, arial]Here's an inside look at the Top 25 teams in our rankings in 8,500 words.
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http://www.perfectgame.org/Articles/View.aspx?article=7935

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Kendall Rogers, College Baseball Managing Editor
Follow me on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/#!/KendallRogersPG
Email me: mailto:kendall@perfectgame.org
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1/22/2013 3:39:32 PM

weg313
weg313
Posts: 134
K, I have no problem with your overall ranking of Rice (though I do think we should be several notches higher), but from your writeup it appears apparent you did not speak to The OG. The offense should be better than last year with the addition of Byrd (who will inflict as much damage with his legs as his bat), and with both Ratterree and Hoelscher having excellent Falls. (Let's not forget that Ratterree had two excellent seasons before his nightmarish 2012.) And I think you are grossly underestimating the depth and experience on the pitching staff. Both Kubitza (Friday) and Simms (closer) are proven studs...Stephens was excellent as a true Freshman until he suffered a mid-season blister, afterwhich he could not find the strikezone, but was lights out this Fall...Zech Lemond has an outstanding Freshman year in middle relief and will fight it out with McCanna for the Sunday and mid-week starter spots. Then there's McDowell, Spurlin, Fant and McNair, all of whom have shined in the past and who are returning from injury (the latter 3 all missed last season). And, in addition to McCanna, we have several other inexperienced arms who impressed this past Fall (Fox, Williamson, Ditman and Rutter).

Just my opinion, but I think you're underestimating USM (who come into the season with far more proven talent that UT and several of your other Top 25 teams), and overestimating Tulane (from your chat comments). Yes, Tulane should be solid, and do return several quality arms, but I question their pitching depth, as well as their offense. Agree that UCF lost a ton of talent, and are in rebuilding mode this year, while ECU's pitching staff was already decimated by the draft/graduation before losing Merritt and Joyner.

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In Wayne Graham we trust.
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1/22/2013 6:25:06 PM

HSF
HSF
Posts: 25
Here we go....Of course, your obsession with Texas continues.

This is where Walt screams at the rafters about how Texas is ranked only on reputation.

I don't know where you get this idea that Texas is so void of talent.

Texas had the #7 recruiting class this past season, and the #2 class the year before that. That is Baseball America's rankings, are you familiar with those guys?

Look at the roster, the Texas staff will be loaded this year, French, Peters, Boardman, Duke, Helmink, Culbreth, Cox, Hollingworth....look those guys up Wally, read what the scouts say, see how many were drafted....and then remember, I haven't even mentioned Knebel, Weiss, or Hinojosa yet.

Southern Miss is good,

But there is a reason Kendall has Texas ahead of Southern Miss...Texas will flat out be better

Please try to go 10 or 12 posts without mentioning something about Texas, $100 says you can't.
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1/23/2013 6:15:54 PM

Kendall
Kendall
Administrator
Posts: 7538
weg313 wrote:
K, I have no problem with your overall ranking of Rice (though I do think we should be several notches higher), but from your writeup it appears apparent you did not speak to The OG. The offense should be better than last year with the addition of Byrd (who will inflict as much damage with his legs as his bat), and with both Ratterree and Hoelscher having excellent Falls. (Let's not forget that Ratterree had two excellent seasons before his nightmarish 2012.) And I think you are grossly underestimating the depth and experience on the pitching staff. Both Kubitza (Friday) and Simms (closer) are proven studs...Stephens was excellent as a true Freshman until he suffered a mid-season blister, afterwhich he could not find the strikezone, but was lights out this Fall...Zech Lemond has an outstanding Freshman year in middle relief and will fight it out with McCanna for the Sunday and mid-week starter spots. Then there's McDowell, Spurlin, Fant and McNair, all of whom have shined in the past and who are returning from injury (the latter 3 all missed last season). And, in addition to McCanna, we have several other inexperienced arms who impressed this past Fall (Fox, Williamson, Ditman and Rutter).

Just my opinion, but I think you're underestimating USM (who come into the season with far more proven talent that UT and several of your other Top 25 teams), and overestimating Tulane (from your chat comments). Yes, Tulane should be solid, and do return several quality arms, but I question their pitching depth, as well as their offense. Agree that UCF lost a ton of talent, and are in rebuilding mode this year, while ECU's pitching staff was already decimated by the draft/graduation before losing Merritt and Joyner.


Walt,
Good comments on individual players. I agree with you that Leon Byrd is a spark plug type of guy, but counting on a true freshman to have a huge year offensively is asking for a lot .... I could give you a list of 200 guys over the last 10 years that I've been told had great falls as freshman, only to struggle in the spring. You just never know. As for Jordan Stephens, I think he has all the potential in the world, but the several times I saw him last season, he just did nothing for me and struggled mightily with command. I knew he got some things fixed, but the proof is still in his performances.

I'm really intrigued to see McCanna in that opening series against Stanford. Our guys thought very highly out of him out of high school and that's going to be a fantastic first test against a very good Cardinal offensive lineup.

--
Kendall Rogers, College Baseball Managing Editor
Follow me on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/#!/KendallRogersPG
Email me: mailto:kendall@perfectgame.org
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1/23/2013 7:00:16 PM

weg313
weg313
Posts: 134
K, some additional info...

1. When did you see Stephens last year? He was lights out against both Tennessee (at Minute Maid) and at Stanford the following week. He put together 5 - 6 consecutive outstanding outings before incurring a cyst in the wrist of his pitching hand, afterwards he could not find the strike zone. The command returned this Fall, following having the cyst removed over the Summer.

2. Just heard that McDowell has regained the feel and command on his curveball (during January bullpen sessions), to go along with his low 90s heater and changeup. He could challenge McCanna and Lemond for the Sunday starter spot (which he had in 2011 before getting injured and having TJS).

3. Clearly, you know little about Zech Lemond. I'd check his stats from last year (2 starts, 15 appearances, 36.0 IP, 2.52 ERA, .216 BAA, 32 Ks, 15 BBs), where he was both outstanding and consistent in his middle relief role (along with a couple late season mid-week starts). He's got great stuff and is a strike thrower. If not a weekend starter this year, he certainly will be next season.
edited by weg313 on 1/23/2013

--
In Wayne Graham we trust.
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1/24/2013 11:29:04 AM

Kendall
Kendall
Administrator
Posts: 7538
weg313 wrote:
K, some additional info...

1. When did you see Stephens last year? He was lights out against both Tennessee (at Minute Maid) and at Stanford the following week. He put together 5 - 6 consecutive outstanding outings before incurring a cyst in the wrist of his pitching hand, afterwards he could not find the strike zone. The command returned this Fall, following having the cyst removed over the Summer.

That's great news if so ... .the Owls talked about that after fall workouts, but again, let's see it happen in the spring.

2. Just heard that McDowell has regained the feel and command on his curveball (during January bullpen sessions), to go along with his low 90s heater and changeup. He could challenge McCanna and Lemond for the Sunday starter spot (which he had in 2011 before getting injured and having TJS).

McDowell has the tools ... if he can piece it together after his rash of injury bugs, watch out. Agree that his rise would make that staff even better.

3. Clearly, you know little about Zech Lemond. I'd check his stats from last year (2 starts, 15 appearances, 36.0 IP, 2.52 ERA, .216 BAA, 32 Ks, 15 BBs), where he was both outstanding and consistent in his middle relief role (along with a couple late season mid-week starts). He's got great stuff and is a strike thrower. If not a weekend starter this year, he certainly will be next season.

Who said I didn't know anything about him? Considering I saw Rice several times last year, I am very much aware with him, just didn't address him specifically in my previous post.

--
Kendall Rogers, College Baseball Managing Editor
Follow me on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/#!/KendallRogersPG
Email me: mailto:kendall@perfectgame.org
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