Summer Collegiate Team Rankings

Allan Simpson

New England Collegiate League Showdown
In Works: No. 1 Newport vs No. 2 Keene

The Newport Gulls will be playing the Keene Swamp Bats tonight in a key New England Collegiate League game with more than just league bragging rights at stake.

Both teams have identical 22-6 records and lead their respective divisions by wide margins, but a showdown of the NECBL’s two best clubs will have rare national implications at stake as Newport and Keene moved into the Nos. 1 and 2 positions today in Perfect Game’s weekly ranking of the nation’s top 30 summer-league teams.

That’s rare territory for any summer-college league not known as the Cape Cod League, but the Gulls and Swamp Bats, historically the NECBL’s most-successful franchises, have been as hot recently as almost any teams in the country with 13 wins apiece in their last 15 games. Keene recently had a 10-game winning streak snapped.

The Cape League’s Harwich Mariners had occupied the No. 1 spot in PG’s weekly rankings since the outset of the 2012 season, but are in the throes of a four-game losing streak that has knocked the team down to No. 4.

Though slumping Harwich, at 16-10 overall, still boasts the best record in the Cape Cod League, that standing is very much in jeopardy as the Mariners have their own showdown encounter tonight when they face the hard-charging and new No. 5-ranked Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox, one of four teams in the Cape with identical 15-11 records. The Red Sox have been the hottest team in the Cape recently.

As appealing as the Harwich/Yarmouth-Dennis confrontation promises to be, it may not be as intriguing as the one between Newport and Keene, played about 100 miles away in Keene, N.H.

Newport and Keene have dominated the NECBL to date, with both clubs running 1-2 in the league in team batting average and team ERA. Newport has been slightly the more dominant of the two with an aggregate run differential margin of 244-123, vs. Keene’s ratio of 196-126, and earned the No. 1 national ranking mainly on that basis. Newport, No. 5 a week ago, leads the NECBL with a .316 team batting average, while Keene, No. 3 a week ago, is tops with a 3.51 ERA.

Teams are ranked on the following criteria: won-loss record, league dominance, depth and quality of professional-level talent and the overall strength of the league. To receive consideration, teams must have at least a .500 record overall.

1Newport GullsRINew England Collegiate League22-6
NECBL's best hitting team getting productive summers from Rutgers C Jeff Melillo (.400-3-22), Washington State OF Yale Rosen (.367-10-31), Arizona State OF Kasey Coffman (.348-5-26); Gulls batting .316 with 39 HRs as a team
2Keene Swamp BatsNHNew England Collegiate League22-6
St. John's C Frankie Schwindel (.389--6-20), Central Connecticut State IF J.P. Sportman (.388-5-32) swinging hot bats for Bats, while Washington State RHP Scott Simon (3-0, 1.90) still unbeaten on NECBL's best pitching staff
3Amsterdam MohawksNYPerfect Game Collegiate Baseball League26-7
Mohwaks getting dominant starting pitching from Kentucky RHP Chandler Shepherd (5-0, 1.35), Auburn RHP Rocky McCord (4-0, 1.31), Wake Forest RHP Matt Pirro (4-0, 2.70), New Jeresy Tech RHP Mark Leiter (2-0, 1.50)
4Harwich MarinersMACape Cod League16-10
Power-hitting trio of Samford OF Phil Ervin (.337-8-19), Notre Dame 3B/OF Eric Jagielo (.298-7-15) and Stanford OF Austin Wilson (.294-6-19) all struggling to maintain hot early-season pace, but rank among top five in Cape in home runs
5Yarmouth-Dennis Red SoxMACape Cod League15-11
Marshall RHP Aaron Blair (5-0, 1.19, 30 IP/35 SO) has been Cape's best starter, but trio of freshmen--Washington 2B Robert Pehl (.385-3-22), Indiana 3B Sam Travis (.353-3-23), Stanford SS Alex Blandino (.325-3-19)--have swung big bats
6Mankato MoonDogsMNNorthwoods League34-12
MoonDogs have dropped three in a row, but still boast best record in Northwoods; Parkland (Ill.) JC LHP Zack Hall (4-1, 3.02) has been team's top starter, Oklahoma City RHP Patrick Goelz (0-1, 3.94) has saved league-best 13 games
7Santa Barbara ForestersCACalifornia Collegiate League24-11
Deep, dominant pitching staff led by Southern California RHP Ian McCarthy (4-1, 1.15), Washington RHP Nick Palewicz (4-2, 1.86), Nebraska RHP Brandon Pierce (3-1, 1.54), Texas State closer Hunter Lemke (1-0, 0.59, 6 SV)
8Edenton SteamersNCCoastal Plain League27-12
Washington OF Michael Camporeale (.333-7-30) leads CPL in RBIs, slugging (.614), one of three Steamers to share league lead in homers; Norfolk State RHP Jordan Egan (2-1, 1.19, league-high 14 SV) a stalwart in bullpen
9Cotuit KettleersMACape Cod League15-11
Michigan OF Pat Biondi (.400-0-10) leads Cape in hitting, while Vanderbilt LHP Kevin Ziomek (3-0, 1.27, 28 IP, 6 BB/36 SO) is second in ERA, strikeouts and Notre Dame RHP Dan Slania (1-0, 2.04, 6 SV) is tops in saves
10Wenatchee ApplesoxWAWest Coast League25-11
Gonzaga LHP Derek Callahan (3-2, 1.67, 38 IP/43 SO) continues to lead WCL in strikeouts, Gonzaga IF Mitchell Gunsolus (.353-1-28) in RBIs, Washington RHP Tyler Kane (1-0, 1.40, 11 SV) in saves
11San Luis Obispo BluesCACalifornia Collegiate League25-12
12Winchester RoyalsVAValley League26-11
13La Crosse LoggersWINorthwoods League30-15
14Chatham AnglersMACape Cod League15-11
15Baltimore RedbirdsMDCal Ripken Sr League21-9
16Orleans FirebirdsMACape Cod League15-11
17Fayetteville SwampdogsNCCoastal Plain League24-12
18East Texas PumpjacksTXTexas Collegiate League25-10
19West Virginia MinersWVProspect League25-13
20Cincinnati SteamOHGreat Lakes League19-8
21Nashua Silver KnightsNHFutures League25-7
22Bethesda Big TrainMDCal Ripken Sr League20-12
23Falmouth CommodoresMACape Cod League14-12
24Humboldt CrabsCAFar West League26-6
25Liberal BeejaysKSJayhawk League24-11
26Waynesboro GeneralsVAValley League23-11
27Butler Blue SoxSelProspect League26-14
28Leesburg LightningFLFlorida Collegiate League19-9
29Willmar StingersMNNorthwoods League27-19
30Palm Springs PowerCASouthern California Collegiate League31-6

OTHERS RECEIVING CONSIDERATION: Anchorage Glacier Pilots / Alaska (17-16); Bellingham Bells / West Coast (21-12); Columbia BlowFish / Coastal Plain (23-15); Corvallis Knights / West Coast (21-14); Dodge City A's / Jayhawk (22-11); DuBois County Bombers / Prospect (25-14); Duluth Huskies / Northwoods (26-20); Forest City Owls / Coastal Plain (24-16); Green Bay Bullfrogs / Northwoods (26-19); Harrisonburg Turks / Valley (24-12); Hornell Dodgers / New York Collegiate (20-10); Kenai Peninsula Oilers / Alaska (20-13); Lima Locos / Great Lakes (18-10); Mohawk Valley Diamond Dawgs / Perfect Game Collegiate (21-13); New Bedford Bay Sox / New England Collegiate (20-12); Regina Red Sox / Western Major (26-8); Rockville Express / Cal Ripken (22-9); St. Joseph Mustangs / MINK (25-14); San Diego Force / Western Baseball Association (28-7); Southern Ohio Copperheads / Great Lakes (15-8); Syracuse Jr. Chiefs / New York Collegiate (21-8); Terre Haute Rex / Prospect (23-16); Trenton Generals / Atlantic Collegiate (23-9); Victoria Generals / Texas Collegiate (24-11); Wilmington Sharks / Coastal Plain (23-14); Winter Park Diamond Dawgs / Florida Collegiate (17-11); Wisconsin Woodchucks / Northwoods (26-19).