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The idea that summer leagues are all about pitching, and to a lesser extent, about offense, almost seems like an ancient idea at this point.
With many summer leagues having already completed their seasons, we've spent the past two weeks taking an inside look at some of the top performers in each league. And in each case, the offensive numbers -- not the incredibly low ERAs -- have been the story.
That also was the case with the New England Collegiate League.
The league featured some of the hottest hitting sluggers of the summer, as evidenced by the fact 25 batters finished the summer with batting averages of .320 or better. Furthermore, only five pitchers finished the summer with ERAs under three.
Offensively, no player had a more impressive summer in the NECBL than Troy's Danny Collins. Collins was absolutely fantastic for the Laconia Muskrats, hitting .390 with 62 hits (second in the NECBL), nine doubles, 19 homers and 37 RBIs. He also induced 19 walks and hit into just two double plays.
With another summer season completed, we take an in-depth look at the top performers at the New England Collegiate League.
3B Danny Collins, Troy -- After having a fantastic spring for the Trojans, Collins put together quite the summer at the New England Collegiate League. He batted a league-best (100 or more at bats) .290 with nine doubles, 19 homers and 37 RBIs. He also struck out 30 times and walked on 19 occasions, while he finished second in the league in hits with 62.
C Frank Schwindel, St. John's -- Schwindel certainly had a solid spring for the Johnnies, hitting .332 as he helped his club reach an NCAA Super Regional. He also had a sensational summer, hitting .380 with five doubles, nine homers and 30 RBIs. He also struck out just 12 times and walked on five occasions.
3B Paul McConkey, Kentucky -- He hit well over .300 in a limited number of at bats for the Wildcats this past spring. He had a huge summer, though, batting .358 with 11 doubles, a triple, four homers and 22 RBIs. He also struck out 29 times and walked on eight occasions, while also recording four stolen bases.
OF Jordan Hagel, Maryland -- Hagel hit over .300 for the Terrapins this past spring, and he followed that up with an equally impressive summer at the NECBL. He batted .356 with eight doubles, a triple, four homers and 21 RBIs. He also struck out 25 times and walked on 12 occasions, while also recording seven stolen bases.
INF JP Sportman, Central Connecticut State -- Sportman had quite the year from a consistency standpoint. After hitting .353 for CCSU this past spring, he followed that up with a big-time summer campaign. He batted .355 with eight doubles, six homers and 41 RBIs. He also walked 10 times.
INF Alex Black, Columbia -- What a fantastic year Black has had on the diamond. After hitting well over .300 this past spring, he had a fabulous summer. He batted .333 with 10 doubles, eight homers and 35 RBIs. He also induced 15 walks and seven hit-by-pitches.
OF Yale Rosen, Washington State -- What a transformation Rosen has made over the past few months. After hitting under .100 in a limited number of at bats for the Cougars this spring, he had a successful summer. Rosen batted .330 with 10 doubles, 12 homers and 36 RBis.
INF Jared Walsh, Georgia -- Walsh had a tough first campaign for the Bulldogs, having just a limited number of at bats for Dave Perno's club. However, he had a very strong summer, hitting .326 with seven doubles, 10 homers and 29 RBIs.
1B Mike Orefice, Marist -- Orefice put together a very consistent year on the baseball diamond. He batted over .310 this past spring, while also putting together quite the summer. He batted .322 with 11 doubles, seven homers and 39 RBIs. He also induced 29 walks with just 26 strikeouts. He also stole six bases.
OF Jeff Roy, Rhode Island -- Roy had a very impressive summer on the diamond. He batted over .350 for the Rams this past spring, and certainly impressed this summer. He batted .333 with 11 doubles, two triples, a home run and nine RBIs. But most impressive is the fact he induced 21 walks and swiped 4 bases.
LHP Brian Derner, George Washington -- Derner had some consistency issues for the Colonials this past spring, finishing with a 5.80 ERA. However, he had a very strong summer, tallying a 1.91 ERA in seven games and 37 2/3 innings of work. He also struck out 47 and walked 12.
RHP Pete Kelich, Bryant -- The talented righthander had a sensational spring, and also put together a very solid summer at the NECBL. He worked in 12 games, tallying a 2.20 ERA in 41 innings. He also struck out 49 and walked 11.
RHP Scott Simon, Washington State -- The righthander had an ERA just over four for the Cougars this past spring, but is ready to take a big step forward after having a very successful summer. He appeared in six games and had a 2.52 ERA in 35 2/3 innings. He also struck out 27 and walked 10.
RHP Donald Murray, Holy Cross -- Murray finished the spring with a very hearty 3.12 ERA in over 50 innings of work. The Crusaders righty also had a solid summer, appearing in seven games and tallying a 3.06 ERA in 35 1/3 innings of work. He also struck out 29 and walked 11, while allowing just five extra-base hits.
LHP David Speer, Columbia -- The lefthander didn't have a great spring for the Lions, tallying a 4.91 ERA. However, he bounced back in strong fashion this summer, working in seven games and tallying a 3.21 ERA in 47 2/3 innings of work. He also struck out 33 and walked seven.
RHP Casey Delgado, Austin Peay -- The Governors righthander finished the spring with a rather unimpressive earned-run average, but put together a strong summer at the NECBL, working in nine games and tallying a 3.22 ERA in 36 1/3 innings of work. He also struck out 38 and walked 12.
RHP Brett Houseal, Marist -- The Red Foxes righthander had a 4.00 ERA in the spring. He also put together a strong summer at the NECBL, working in nine games and tallying a 3.25 ERA in 63 2/3 innings of work. He also struck out 37 and walked 14.
RHP Daniel Wright, Arkansas State -- After tallying an ERA over five this past spring for the Red Wolves, he put together a very impressive summer at the NECBL, working in eight games and tallying a 3.94 ERA in 45 2/3 innings. He also struck out 42 and walked 11.
LHP Tripp Davis, New Jersey Tech -- Davis tallied a 3.19 ERA for NJIT this past spring, and had a respectable summer. He worked in 10 games and tallied a 4.63 ERA in 44 2/3 innings of work. He also struck out 42 and walked 14.
RHP Kevin McAvoy, Bryant -- The talented righthander tallied an ERA under three this past spring, and had a respectable summer at the NECBL. He worked in seven games, tallying a 3.43 ERA in 44 2/3 innings. He also struck out 36 and walked 12.