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Home » College Baseball Clubhouse » EIGHT FOR OMAHA: 2014 edition

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6/27/2013 1:33:16 AM

Kendall
Kendall
Administrator
Posts: 7488
Here's our inside look at Eight for Omaha, 2014 edition, with an inside look at eight teams we expect in Omaha in 2014, as well as five teams to watch and three potential surprises:

http://www.perfectgame.org/Articles/View.aspx?article=8705

--
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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6/27/2013 8:11:50 AM

weg313
weg313
Posts: 134
Unbelievable, K-- Rice returns far more proven talent than many of the teams you mention. Yes, the Owls lose Kubitza and Simms, but every other pitcher returns including all-american candidates Stephens and Lemond, and all-Freshman Fox (not to mention McDowell and McCanna), Offensively, we return 4 .300+ hitters (Hoelscher, Aquino, Cook, Stainback), along with up and coming supestar in Byrd, as well as 1B Ewing (vastly underrated and would expect a breakout 2014 season after seeing first action this year) and C Kopycinski (along with the #1 JUCO catcher to replace Parrott). How is that not preseason Top 10? Kopycinski more than filled in for Parrott in the post-season, and Ewing and Teykl are budding stars. How can you possibly consider Texas (or UNC, Oregon, LSU or K-State) ahead of Rice going into next season based on returning talent?

--
In Wayne Graham we trust.
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6/27/2013 8:53:19 PM

Dodger Matt
Dodger Matt
Posts: 2076
Walt, thanks for jumping in here. Gives me something to do.

Once again, you show that you are too close to the Rice program to be objective. Your knowledge of that program and its players is unreal, but your incredulity over Kendall's ranking several teams above Rice is almost comical. Forget crawling through the weeds for a second (because you know the rice paddy weeds all too well, but I think you know little to nothing about Oregon weeds, or LSU or UNC weeds), let's look at the teams you mention from a higher perspective, how they performed in 2013 in terms of ISR and RPI compared to Rice.

Legend:
K8 = Kendall’s eight for Omaha
N5 = Next five
S3 = Surprise three
Ri = Rice

* = A team Walt called out as a questionable choice to be listed ahead of Rice.

Here we go:
ISR
N5* 1 North Carolina
K8 2 Cal State Fullerton
K8 3 Oregon State
N5 4 Vanderbilt
N5* 5 Louisiana State
K8 6 UCLA
K8 7 Virginia
N5* 8 Oregon
N5 9 North Carolina State
K8 10 Mississippi State
K8 11 Florida State
K8 12 Indiana
K8 14 South Carolina
S3* 16 Kansas State
S3 19 Clemson
Ri 20 Rice
S3* 70 Texas
Those three N5 teams you called out are all in the top 8 ISR. Look at Rice down there at #20. Even Surprise Kansas State is above Rice. Your only real beef is with Texas, at #70, getting one of those three “surprise” votes.
RPI
N5* 1 North Carolina
N5 2 Vanderbilt
K8 3 Virginia
K8 4 Oregon State
N5* 5 Louisiana State
K8 6 Cal State Fullerton
N5 7 North Carolina State
K8 8 Mississippi State
K8 9 UCLA
K8 10 Florida State
N5* 11 Oregon
K8 12 Indiana
K8 13 South Carolina
S3* 16 Kansas State
S3 17 Clemson
Ri 26 Rice
S3* 72 Texas
UNC and LSU are at the same spots. Oregon drops from 8 to 11, but Rice drops from 20 to 26, so the top three N5 teams are still far better. K-State also stays at 16, so Rice looks overall even worse from an RPI standpoint. Texas’s pitiful 72 again stands out.

Regardless of the measuring stick, Kendall’s eight for Omaha are all within the top 14 from 2013. His next five are all within the top 11. Rice is nowhere near any of these. The only complaint you might justifiably have is with Kendall's throwaway comment about three “surprise” teams, but Clemson and Kansas State look like legitimate picks to me.

So really, Walt, you’re just venting about the only other team on this list that you might know anything near as much about as you know about Rice: Texas. I’ll give you that one. But they played like crap in 2013 and can only go up. That really would be a surprise, wouldn’t it? Would Rice finishing in the top 20 be as big a surprise?

Last thing: I know you qualify your incredulous pique with “based on returning talent”—and nobody knows Rice on this board better than you—but would you care to do a line-by-line comparison of Rice’s “returning talent” with UNC’s? Or Oregon’s? Or LSU’s? Let’s see where your grievance bears weedy fruit.
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6/27/2013 9:30:20 PM

weg313
weg313
Posts: 134
Dodger Matt wrote:
Walt, thanks for jumping in here. Gives me something to do.

Once again, you show that you are too close to the Rice program to be objective. Your knowledge of that program and its players is unreal, but your incredulity over Kendall's ranking several teams above Rice is almost comical. Forget crawling through the weeds for a second (because you know the rice paddy weeds all too well, but I think you know little to nothing about Oregon weeds, or LSU or UNC weeds), let's look at the teams you mention from a higher perspective, how they performed in 2013 in terms of ISR and RPI compared to Rice.

Legend:
K8 = Kendall’s eight for Omaha
N5 = Next five
S3 = Surprise three
Ri = Rice

* = A team Walt called out as a questionable choice to be listed ahead of Rice.

Here we go:
ISR
N5* 1 North Carolina
K8 2 Cal State Fullerton
K8 3 Oregon State
N5 4 Vanderbilt
N5* 5 Louisiana State
K8 6 UCLA
K8 7 Virginia
N5* 8 Oregon
N5 9 North Carolina State
K8 10 Mississippi State
K8 11 Florida State
K8 12 Indiana
K8 14 South Carolina
S3* 16 Kansas State
S3 19 Clemson
Ri 20 Rice
S3* 70 Texas
Those three N5 teams you called out are all in the top 8 ISR. Look at Rice down there at #20. Even Surprise Kansas State is above Rice. Your only real beef is with Texas, at #70, getting one of those three “surprise” votes.
RPI
N5* 1 North Carolina
N5 2 Vanderbilt
K8 3 Virginia
K8 4 Oregon State
N5* 5 Louisiana State
K8 6 Cal State Fullerton
N5 7 North Carolina State
K8 8 Mississippi State
K8 9 UCLA
K8 10 Florida State
N5* 11 Oregon
K8 12 Indiana
K8 13 South Carolina
S3* 16 Kansas State
S3 17 Clemson
Ri 26 Rice
S3* 72 Texas
UNC and LSU are at the same spots. Oregon drops from 8 to 11, but Rice drops from 20 to 26, so the top three N5 teams are still far better. K-State also stays at 16, so Rice looks overall even worse from an RPI standpoint. Texas’s pitiful 72 again stands out.

Regardless of the measuring stick, Kendall’s eight for Omaha are all within the top 14 from 2013. His next five are all within the top 11. Rice is nowhere near any of these. The only complaint you might justifiably have is with Kendall's throwaway comment about three “surprise” teams, but Clemson and Kansas State look like legitimate picks to me.

So really, Walt, you’re just venting about the only other team on this list that you might know anything near as much about as you know about Rice: Texas. I’ll give you that one. But they played like crap in 2013 and can only go up. That really would be a surprise, wouldn’t it? Would Rice finishing in the top 20 be as big a surprise?

Last thing: I know you qualify your incredulous pique with “based on returning talent”—and nobody knows Rice on this board better than you—but would you care to do a line-by-line comparison of Rice’s “returning talent” with UNC’s? Or Oregon’s? Or LSU’s? Let’s see where your grievance bears weedy fruit.


With all due respect, what does this year's final ISR or RPI have anything to do with preseason ranking going into the 2014 season? The latter is based on 3 things in order of importance: (1) returning, proven talent, (2) key players departing, and (3) incoming recruiting class. Personally, I give the the recruiting class only negligeable weight, as even the most highly regarded true Freshmen oftentimes struggle for much of their Freshman season.

I think I know Oregon reasonably well since Rice just won the regional out in Eugene, and we played them 3 times. No question they'll have one of the Top 3 - 5 pitching staffs in the country next year (though very heavily left-handed laden), but with Healy gone, and Thomas likely gone, as well, where are they going to find any offense? No question, Horton will still have them as a Top 15 - 20 club, especially with their pitching, but Top 8 heading into the season with little to no returning offense? Sorry, I think that's quite a stretch.

As for LSU, even loyal Tigers fans recognize that they'll have to totally rebuild both their offense (save for Bergman) and bullpen. Again, no question Top 15 - 20, but Top 8 with all that they've lost? Not in my books. UNC? Fox is an unbelievable recruiting and I have no doubt he'll bring in another banner crop of Freshman. However, he's losing his #1 and #2 starting pitchers, and four of their top 6 hitters-- including two consensus first team all-americans in Moran and Emanuel. That's an awful lot of talent lost to argue that they'll enter the season as one of the Top dozen teams.

Yes, Rice loses some key cogs, as well, but not nearly the level of impact players as those teams...and Rice has several players who had their first taste of regular D-1 action this past season and are likely to improve in 2014 (including Aquino, Byrd, Ewing, Fox, Teykl and Kopycinski). We do return five of our top six hitters from this past season, including our top power hitter and RBI man (Aquino), as well as two all-american pitching candidates in Juniors-to-be Zech Lemond (who was 3rd team all-american this past season by BA and the Writers) and Jordan Stephens (who was lights out the second half of the season), and all-Freshman reliever Blake Fox. In fact, the pitching staff returns everyone save for Kubitza and Simms.

So, unless you're basing your preseason 2014 rankings on how teams finished in 2013, without taking into account key players that each program lost, I do think Rice brings back more proven talent-- with a balance of offense and pitching-- than UNC, Oregon, LSU and several others named by Kendall.

--
In Wayne Graham we trust.
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6/27/2013 9:42:46 PM

Dodger Matt
Dodger Matt
Posts: 2076
Kendall did not say any of those teams you question will finish in the top eight, BTW. They are the next five.
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6/28/2013 2:51:46 PM

Dodger Matt
Dodger Matt
Posts: 2076
Walt, go on over to Aaron Fitt's website and complain that he didn't pick Rice to make it to Omaha either.

Fitt's picks for the 2014 College World Series, listed in alphabetical order.
  • Cal State Fullerton
  • Florida State
  • North Carolina State
  • Oregon
  • Oregon State
  • South Carolina
  • Vanderbilt
Eight More For Super Regionals
  • UCLA
  • Clemson
  • Florida
  • Indiana
  • Louisiana State
  • Louisiana-Lafayette
  • Mississippi State
  • North Carolina
Nine More To Make Top 25
  • Alabama
  • Cal Poly
  • East Carolina
  • Kentucky
  • Miami
  • Southern Mississippi
  • Rice
  • Texas
  • Texas Christian
He even got Rice out of alphabetical order, which may indicate that they were a late addition to the top 25 "extra nine" list.
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