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weg313 - all messages by user

7/6/2011 6:18:27 AM
Topic:
EIGHT FOR OMAHA: The eight for 2012 (7/6)

weg313
weg313
Florida Beaver, I'm not sure what you're talking about. Stanford finished this season just as virtually everyone predicted in the preseason-- amongst the top 8 - 12 teamsin the country, and return just about everyone save for Pries and Reed from the pitching staff. Based on returning, proven talent, most would agree that the Cardinal and Florida should be favorites entering the 2012 season.

K, as the my Owls, strange that you made no mention at all of Rathjen, who will very likely return and who should be our cleanup hitter in 2012. Rice will probably bring back everyone save for Rendon, Cingrani and Gonzales from a very young team that overachieved due to a rash of crippling injuries this past season that forced a multitude of first time players into action.
7/6/2011 7:35:44 AM
Topic:
EIGHT FOR OMAHA: The eight for 2012 (7/6)

weg313
weg313
Kendall wrote:
weg313 wrote:
Florida Beaver, I'm not sure what you're talking about. Stanford finished this season just as virtually everyone predicted in the preseason-- amongst the top 8 - 12 teamsin the country, and return just about everyone save for Pries and Reed from the pitching staff. Based on returning, proven talent, most would agree that the Cardinal and Florida should be favorites entering the 2012 season.

K, as the my Owls, strange that you made no mention at all of Rathjen, who will very likely return and who should be our cleanup hitter in 2012. Rice will probably bring back everyone save for Rendon, Cingrani and Gonzales from a very young team that overachieved due to a rash of crippling injuries this past season that forced a multitude of first time players into action.


WG,
I had Jeremy's name written down ... finished that thing at 3 a.m., so forgot to include him. That's been fixed. Should be an interesting 2012 for Rice. I'm interested to see if David leaving makes any impact at all.


K, as oustanding a coach as Pierce was and is, I think his impact will be far less than the loss of other key assistant coaches. Why, you might ask? Well, though Pierce was responsible for working with the pitchers, the reality is that Wayne Graham has always been the pitching guru for the Owls. He is the one who has identified the mechanical flaws (e.g., Bryce Cox, Bryan Price, Tyler Duffey, Tony Cingrani) and suggested fixes to the delivery; the pitching coach's primary job at Rice is to carry out Coach Graham's instructions and to oversee the day-to-day bullpens.

BTW, your writeup on the Owls simply mentions Tyler Duffey as just another returning pitcher, without pointing out that he was one of the most effective-- and dominant-- relief pitchers in the country the second half of this past season. As I'vve mentioned before, I don't think anyone in the country returns the proven pitching depth that Rice does; especially if Reckling and Wall return, as expected. Even if you presume that McDowell will start the season in the bullpen (as he regains his arm strength and command after TJS), you've got Kubitza, Simms, Reckling, Wall, Connor Mason (the 3rd of the new generation Big 3 who sat out last season after surgery) and Brad Kottman (Soph transfer from Brown who sat out last season, but who pitched very effectively in Fall Ball and again this Summer) competing for weekend spot-- with four of those guys having weekend rotation experience, and an experienced bullpen anchored by Duffey and Chargois, but also including the losers in the starting spot sweepstakes, along with experienced guys such as McNair, Fant, Spurlin, McDowell and Fazio. And that doesn't even factor in three incoming Freshman studs (Stephens, Lemond, Williamson). The Owls pitching staff will be loaded with both experienced, proven talent, as well as 6+ power arms who boast low-to-mid 90s velocity.
7/7/2011 8:44:59 AM
Topic:
Texas signee Josh Bell (2nd rounder)

weg313
weg313
Kendall wrote:
He will soon begin summer school here in Austin ...... and though that has happened in the past and kids have signed, sources continue to tell me there's a tremendous chance, as in 70 percent or greater that Bell actually follows through and plays for the Longhorns.

Would be a huge, huge boost for UT.


Sorry, K, but I just don't buy it (and I'm willing to bet all your sources are pro-Longhorns). A guy drafted in the first three rounds of the draft has indicated to the scouting community that he's willing to sign; otherwise teams would not be risking such a high draft pick. You have guys such as John Simms, who made it very clear to the scouting community that he was committed to going to Rice-- and never gave a dollar figure, who slip to the 30+ rounds. Guys such as Austin Kubitza and Dickie Thom Jr made it very clear to the scouting community that it would take first round money to get them to sign...Thom was drafted in the 5th round and the Blue Jays coughed up the requisite 1.5MM to get him to sign; whereas Kubitza was drafted in the 7th round and the Pirates never antied up (and Austin matriculated at Rice).

Again, I don't know anything about the Josh Bell situation, and he may very well end up in Austin come late August; however, had he not indicated a willingness to sign and turn pro at some signing bonus level, there is no way he would have been drafted in the second round. And his going to Summer school only indicates that he has a crafty agent who is trying to maximize his client's negotiating position. I can see the optimistic Longhorn fans viewing the odds at 30% - 40%, at best, but to say 70% odds of him showing up on campus at this point-- given his high draft status-- makes no sense.
edited by weg313 on 7/7/2011
7/7/2011 7:14:50 PM
Topic:
Texas signee Josh Bell (2nd rounder)

weg313
weg313
FullertonBaseballFan wrote:
"Again, I don't know anything about the Josh Bell situation"

Yet, you went on and on about it.

Josh Bell was the best HS bat in the draft. Period. He slid to the second round due to his signing demands. Pitt figured they would roll the dice due to the value of getting Bell there and if he didn't sign, they would get the pick back next year. IIRC, one of his parents is a teacher, if not both them, so his family has put a high value on education.


He would have slipped considerably further than the top of the second round had he been adamant about his unwillingness to sign. (Again, last year John Simms slipped from a sure Top 5 round pick (and, in all likelihood, top 3 rounds) to going undrafted-- with absolutely no one taking a risk on him even in the 40th round-- due to his refusal to even talk to the scouting community.) Again, I'm not saying Bell will sign; however, it appears he at least put forward signing demands (as did Dickie Thom Jr and Austin Kubitza), so one would think that if the Pirates were to ante up early first round money he could still be persuaded. Jamo Taillon put a very high value on education as well (and he had dreamed of pitching for Rice since he went to a Rice Baseball Camp when he was 13 years old), but he still was not prepared to turn down $6.5MM when the Pirates coughed up the money. All I'm saying is that if Josh Bell and his family had truly been adamant and insistent on upholding their commitment to attending Texas, without leaving the window open in their discussions with the scouting community, there is no way he would have been selected early in the second round.
7/14/2011 7:19:37 AM
Topic:
COACHES: Our in-depth look at 20 best jobs done

weg313
weg313
K, IMO, "best" coaching jobs for a given year should not be based on overalll standings or even finish, as many of these programs were loaded with upperclass returning talent and fully expected to be elite teams in 2011. Vandy, UVA, UT, Stanford, FSU and ASU were all consensus preseason Top 10. Coaches deserving of top billing for a given year are those who achieved the unexpected (e.g., Esquier, Fox, Childress, Casey, Heefner) or those who, through great coaching and player development, managed to overcome severe injury woes (e.g., Rice/Graham, amongst several others). Why in the world is Augie on a "best coaching" list for 2011? They were preseason consensus Top 10....sufferred almost no injuries to key personnel...yet finished slightly below where everyone expected them to finish?
7/30/2011 4:14:30 PM
Topic:
Cape League ASG feature

weg313
weg313
K, I have a high regard for Allan Simpson and his evaluation of prospects, but this artcle I found embarrassing; especially for a college baseball board. Appel and others weren't selected to play in the all-star game because there were more deserving pitchers, who have had better Summers so far in the Cape. The purpose of an all-star game is to reward those who have had the best Summers in a particular league; not to showcase the top prospects. The tone of the article I found incrediibly derogatory and arrogant...and was demeaning to those who played in the game. Sorry to have to say that, but I have to call a spade a spade.
7/30/2011 4:15:27 PM
Topic:
STORY: Cape League ASG lacks star power (7.30)

weg313
weg313
K, I have a high regard for Allan Simpson and his evaluation of prospects, but this artcle I found embarrassing; especially for a college baseball board. Appel and others weren't selected to play in the all-star game because there were more deserving pitchers, who have had better Summers so far in the Cape. The purpose of an all-star game is to reward those who have had the best Summers in a particular league; not to showcase the top prospects. The tone of the article I found incrediibly derogatory and arrogant...and was demeaning to those who played in the game. Sorry to have to say that, but I have to call a spade a spade.
8/11/2011 11:22:12 AM
Topic:
Signing deadline whispers: Wednes. edition (8.10)

weg313
weg313
K, have you heard anything about Rice commit, SS Chris McFarland of Lufkin HS? He was drafted in the 22nd round by Milwaukee, and all we've heard is that he's STILL "weighing his options". He was ranked as the 36th best prospect in Texas earlier this Spring, and is the only flight risk for the Owls. Obviously, Rendon, Gonzales and Cingrani are gone, but everyone else will be back,including Rathjen, Reckling and Wall...and McDowell has already started long tossing following his TJS, and should be throwing bullpens by Fall Ball.
8/23/2011 9:14:07 PM
Topic:
PG's 2011 Summer Collegiate All-Americans (8.23)

weg313
weg313
K, I'm scratching my head how neither JT Chargois or John Simms were amongst the six relief pitchers named to your team. Both were closers in The Cape (Falmouth, Brewster), and both had superior across-the-board stats than Kentucky's Goff (though Goff lead the Cape in saves). Simms ended the summer with 11 saves (including playoffs) and a perfect 0.00 ERA, averaging almost 1.5 Ks per IP...while Chargois also had 11 saves, a 0.59 ERA, averaged better than a strikeout per IP, and a 8:1 K:BB ratio. Coach Graham has already indicated that Chargois will be used primarily as closer in 2012, and expects him to be one of the best in the country. Simms and/or Duffey (one or the other may be a weekend starter) will join him to anchor a very deep and experience bullpen. Can't wait for Fall Ball to begin, as the Owls appear to have the strongest and deepest pitching staff in the Wayne Graham era...and, yes, that includes the great 2002 - '04 staffs, which were only 5 pitchers deep each year. Kubitza, Reckling, Wall, Simms, Duffey, Chargois, Fant, McDowell, Connor Mason (who was more highly regarded than Kubitza or Simms before injuring himself his Senior season in high school), Fant, McNair and Kottman (the LHP transfer from Brown who sat out last season)...and that doesn't even consider the strong incoming Freshman class. The competition for innings is going to be ferocious.
edited by weg313 on 8/23/2011
8/24/2011 7:19:49 AM
Topic:
PG's 2011 Summer Collegiate All-Americans (8.23)

weg313
weg313
K, here are their respective stats as of 8/3/11, with one week to go before the Cape Cod League playoffs. Simms ended up with 3 saves in the post-season, while Chargois had two saves the final week of the regular season, and added another in the post season...

JT Chargois: 18 app, 0-0, 7 saves, 22.0 IP, 0.32 ERA, 16 hits (2 extrabase hits) 3 BBs, 21 Ks
John Simms: 14 app, 0-0, 8 saves, 19.2 IP, 0.00 ERA, 5 hits (0 extrabase hits), 6 BBs, 30 Ks

Neither allowed an earned run after 8/3/11, and each pitched a perfect inning at the all-star game. I think Chargois ended up with 22 appearances overall (including post-season), with Simms ending up with 18 or 19 appearances.
edited by weg313 on 8/24/2011
8/24/2011 10:48:50 AM
Topic:
PG's 2011 Summer Collegiate All-Americans (8.23)

weg313
weg313
Thanks, K. Not sure how they were "next in line" when they had superior across-the-board stats, and both throw in the low-to-mid 90s, but whatever.
9/7/2011 5:46:09 AM
Topic:
PROSPECTS: Cape Cod Top 100 (9.6)

weg313
weg313
Hmmm. Tyler Duffey doesn't even crack the Top 100?
9/7/2011 7:25:55 AM
Topic:
PROSPECTS: Cape Cod Top 100 (9.6)

weg313
weg313
CAT, I believe the ranking of prospect by Alan Simpson has nothing to do with actual Summer League performance, but rather coincides with his overall ranking of high school and college prospects.
9/27/2011 7:30:54 AM
Topic:
FALL PROFILE: Rice Owls feature (9.27)

weg313
weg313
Nice article, K. IMO, Rice pitching this season should be off-the-charts; certainly the best since the Big 3 of 2003/04, but with much more talented depth (as those past staffs were really only five deep, with only one reliable bullpen arm)...and probably amongst the top 3 - 5 in the country. In addition to the know quantities that are Kubitza and Duffey (he was lights out as co-closer the second half of last season), both Simms and Chargois were exceptional in closer roles this past Summer in The Cape. Reckling has as good stuff as anyone on the staff, and opposing batters hit just .214 against him last year. His only problem is one of command, and he appears vastly improved in that regard so far this Fall (yesterday throwing 3 one-hit innings, with 4 Ks and 0 BBs). If Reckling throws strikes he is as good as anyone nationally. A bullpen anchored by at least two of the three amongst Duffey, Simms and Chargois (with either Duffey or Simms possible as a weekend starter), joined by veteran returnees Fant, McNair and Spurlin, should bring back memories of Rice's great 2008 bullpen (CSC, Bell, Price, Evers). And then there's Mason (who was even more highly regarded than Simms and Kubitza after his Junior high school saeason, before getting injured), LHP transfer Brad Kottman and the two true Freshmen studs (Stephens and Lemond). Put simply, Wayne Graham has never had a staff so deep and loaded...and Chase McDowell (weekend starter last season before going down with injury) should be fully rehabbed from TJS to see action on the mound (if needed) by the start of Spring intrasquads.

As good as Rendon is/was, he did not have a particularly good year in 2011. Yes, he got on base with his 80 walks, but he repeatedly failed in the clutch, and did not hit with much pop. Rathjen, Manuel and Ratterree provide three proven, upperclass hitters in the middle of the lineup...Stringer provides a proven left-handed bat towards the top of the order (I believe he hit .333 last year for JUCO champion Navarro)...and I'm expecting a breakout season for Shane Hamilton offensively. If Fuda returns to his Freshman and Sophomore years form (when he hit over .330 each season), and either McDowell or Lewis provide offensive punch from the left-side at 1B, the offense should be vastly improved and more than potent enough to support this pitching staff. (Unless McDowell or Lewis or true Freshman Ewing cannot demonstrate proficiency defensively at 1B, I suspect Chargois will be limitted to the DH role, as he is already being penciled in as one of our co-closers out of the bullpen.)

Defensively, this team cannot help but be improved, given the year under the belts for SS Hamilton and 3B Hoelscher (and, remember, Hoelscher had never played 3B before being forced there after Rendon's injury), and with Stringer replacing Ratterree at 2B. Catchers Manuel and Perrot have improved defensively each season, and provide veteran stability for the pitching staff...and you're not going to find two better defensive OFers than Fuda and Rathjen.

People forget that this team copped a national seed last season despite starting as many as five first time D-1 players in the field at times (Hamilton, Hoelscher, Cook, Chargois, Perrot and Aquino). This could be a very special team for the Owls, with realistic Omaha or bust expectations.
9/27/2011 7:31:42 AM
Topic:
FALL PROFILE: Rice Owls feature (9.27)

weg313
weg313
Nice article, K. IMO, Rice pitching this season should be off-the-charts; certainly the best since the Big 3 of 2003/04, but with much more talented depth (as those past staffs were really only five deep, with only one reliable bullpen arm)...and probably amongst the top 3 - 5 in the country. (How many college teams ever return five pitchers with signficant experience as weekend starters (Kubitza, Reckling, Wall, Simms, McDowell)? In addition to the known quantities that are Kubitza and Duffey (he was lights out as co-closer the second half of last season), both Simms and Chargois were exceptional in closer roles this past Summer in The Cape. Reckling has as good stuff as anyone on the staff, and opposing batters hit just .214 against him last year. His only problem is one of command, and he appears vastly improved in that regard so far this Fall (yesterday throwing 3 one-hit innings, with 4 Ks and 0 BBs). If Reckling throws strikes he is as good as anyone nationally. A bullpen anchored by at least two of the three amongst Duffey, Simms and Chargois (with either Duffey or Simms possible as a weekend starter), joined by veteran returnees Fant, McNair and Spurlin, should bring back memories of Rice's great 2008 bullpen (CSC, Bell, Price, Evers). And then there's Mason (who was even more highly regarded than Simms and Kubitza after his Junior high school saeason, before getting injured), LHP transfer Brad Kottman and the two true Freshmen studs (Stephens and Lemond). Put simply, Wayne Graham has never had a staff so deep and loaded...and Chase McDowell (weekend starter last season before going down with injury) should be fully rehabbed from TJS to see action on the mound (if needed) by the start of Spring intrasquads.

As good as Rendon is/was, he did not have a particularly good year in 2011. Yes, he got on base with his 80 walks, but he repeatedly failed in the clutch, and did not hit with much pop. Rathjen, Manuel and Ratterree provide three proven, upperclass hitters in the middle of the lineup...Stringer provides a proven left-handed bat towards the top of the order (I believe he hit .333 last year for JUCO champion Navarro)...and I'm expecting a breakout season for Shane Hamilton offensively. If Fuda returns to his Freshman and Sophomore years form (when he hit over .330 each season), and either McDowell or Lewis provide offensive punch from the left-side at 1B, the offense should be vastly improved and more than potent enough to support this pitching staff. (Unless McDowell or Lewis or true Freshman Ewing cannot demonstrate proficiency defensively at 1B, I suspect Chargois will be limitted to the DH role, as he is already being penciled in as one of our co-closers out of the bullpen.)

Defensively, this team cannot help but be improved, given the year under the belts for SS Hamilton and 3B Hoelscher (and, remember, Hoelscher had never played 3B before being forced there after Rendon's injury), and with Stringer replacing Ratterree at 2B. Catchers Manuel and Perrot have improved defensively each season, and provide veteran stability for the pitching staff...and you're not going to find two better defensive OFers than Fuda and Rathjen.

People forget that this team copped a national seed last season despite starting as many as five first time D-1 players in the field at times (Hamilton, Hoelscher, Cook, Chargois, Perrot and Aquino). This could be a very special team for the Owls, with realistic Omaha or bust expectations.
edited by weg313 on 9/27/2011
9/27/2011 6:57:36 PM
Topic:
Some additional Rice scoop/bits (9.27)

weg313
weg313
Thanks, K. BTW, it's Shane Hoelscher. As for Chargois, everything we're hearing is that he'll be focused primarily on the co-closer role (along with Duffey and/or Simms), but could DH. He'll only play 1B if the current contenders (McDowell, Lewis, and true Freshman Skyler Ewing) cannot demonstrate proficiency defensively. Both Stephens and Lemond looked good yesterday, in their first intrasquad, and Reckling was exceptional in his 3 innings of work. 15 scouts on hand today to see Kubitza and Simms take the bump for the first time this Fall. IMO, though Spurlin has potential (and looked very good in several outings last season), Jeremy Fant has the better stuff, and is the more experienced pitcher.
9/28/2011 6:31:25 AM
Topic:
Some additional Rice scoop/bits (9.27)

weg313
weg313
K, as I said previously, I'd be hard pressed to name a superior all-around pitching staff in the country. No one has the experienced depth that Rice brings back...and with regards to talent level, we probably have as many as seven guys who have the pure stuff to be drafted within the Top 5 rounds (Kubitza, Simms, Chargois, Reckling, Duffey, Mason and Stephens). I'm a little surprised Jr Tyler Duffey isn't getting more love (either from you or Allan Simpson) as he was every bit as lights out as Tony Cingrani was the second half of last season, and he was even more of an inning-eater out of the pen. Can you imagine Simms, Chargois and Duffey all working out of the pen? If either Mason regains his pre-injury form or Stephens is ready to step up from the get-go, watch out. As for the offense, we averaged 5.5 runs per game last year, and this year's lineup should be vastly improved (even without Rendon). If you had UT as a Top 8 preseason club last year, I don't see how Rice is not a Top 8 preseason club this year. We've got more depth (and just as much talent) on the pitching staff, and a far superior offense (at least on paper).
10/10/2011 8:25:45 PM
Topic:
***2012 College Baseball Schedules*** POST!

weg313
weg313
RICE
------

http://www.riceowls.com/sports/m-basebl/sched/rice-m-basebl-sched.html

Games against last year's post-season teams:
Stanford x 3, Arizona x 2, Texas, Texas A&M, Arkansas (at Minute Maid?), Texas St. x 2, Dallas Baptist x 3, Sam Houston x 2, UCF x 3, USM x 3, ECU x 3
1/18/2012 7:41:35 AM
Topic:
Upswing programs: Who are they? (1.17)

weg313
weg313
K, not sure how in the world Arizona gets on an "up and coming" listing of programs. Sure, they had a couple down years, but so too did Stanford several years back. And while I gave great respect for the development of the Texas State program, I'd be hard pressed to put them ahead of Sam Houston State or Dallas Baptist as programs on the upswing.
1/18/2012 4:34:13 PM
Topic:
Upswing programs: Who are they? (1.17)

weg313
weg313
K, with regards to the Owls, this is the most optimistic preseason we have been in quite some time. The 2009 squad had a great returning offense, but we lacked pitching depth and sufferred through too many injuries....and still made it to the LSU Supers (being jipped out of a national seed). This year's team boasts the best and deepest pitching staff we have had since the Big 3 left in 2004. We're so loaded that John Simms will likely join Tyler Duffey and JT Chargois in the back of the bullpen, and Taylor Wall may move from weekend starter to the Abe Gonzales/Bobby Bramhall jack-of-all-trades bullpen role. Barring injury, the offense and defense should be vastly improved, given the year of experience by Hamilton and Hoelscher. Fuda, Rathjen, Ratterree and Manuel are all proven hitters...and Ryan Lewis had an exceptional Fall at 1B (returning to the form he flashed as a Freshman in '09). Can't wait for Opening Day.
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