The Ouch List Makes Its Debut
Ahhhh, now I’ve only got baseball to worry about. Over the previous eight Sundays I haven’t been able to contribute much at all to this baseball stuff due to my college hockey duties on ESPN.com. But now, I’m all yours baseball. Yep, no prob.
Well, the important part is that it’s getting about that time people. It’s mid-April now and the college hockey season is done, so it’s time for the Ouch List to make it’s debut here at College Baseball Today.
Here are the teams who suffered the most this weekend.
1- No. 11 Houston.
Weekend: 0-3 vs. No. 10 Louisville at home.
Today: Lost 10-3.
Why It Hurts: The Cougars just couldn’t figure out the Louisville bullpen, garnering just four hits in 9.0 innings of Cardinal relief work. The Cougars entered as the No. 2 ranked team in the RPI, but will certainly fall now. But redemption is near as they’ll take on Sam Houston State and South Florida next.
2- No. 28 Oklahoma.
Weekend: Lost all three games to Texas at home.
Today: Lost 8-1.
Why It Hurts: It wasn’t just that the Sooners lost all three games on their home field, but they lost by pretty hearty amounts too. Turns out the game I went to on Friday night was the only one with any intrigue to it, a 10-8 extra inning loss thanks to C.J. Hinojosa’s home run. The Sooners came in with a No. 86 RPI and as Roons pointed out in the Sunday ESPNU broadcast, they don’t play anyone with a Top 50 RPI remaining this season. Ack!
3- No. 2 Florida State
Weekend: Lost two of three at Georgia Tech
Total: Won 5-4.
Why It Hurts: The Seminoles lost some major cache points by dropping a series against a team that had barely been a blip on the screen this season… ’til now of course. Luke Weaver and Mike Compton both took on losses and the ‘Noles just didn’t play their usual dominant way.
Weekend: Lost two of three games at Lipscomb.
Today: Won 2-0.
Why It Hurts: This was a showdown between two teams who entered the weekend tied atop the Atlantic Sun standings. But the Bison took both of the first two games and the series. And as you know, any weekend loss can kill a mid-majors’ hopes at the post-season. Despite their still serviceable 28-10 record, let’s see how Boyd has them ranked in the morning.
5- No. 7 Vanderbilt
Weekend: Lost two of three at home vs. Texas A&M.
Today: Lost 8-2, despite out-hitting the Aggies 11-8.
Why It Hurts: The Commodores are generally regarded as having the best pitching staff in the country, but they gave up 23 runs, 20 hits and 13 walks in 27 innings of work. Remember, this is the same A&M team which got swept at Fresno State too.
6- No. 4 South Carolina
Weekend: Lost two of three at home to Florida
Today: Lost 6-5, allowing the Gators to win the series.
Why It Hurts: It was almost as if the Gators wanted to lose this series, having given the Cocks 10 free bases (five of them by walks). The Gamecocks have now lost three of their last four SEC weekends and are starting to lose their mystique.
7- No. 19 Mississippi State
Weekend: Lost two of three to hated rival Ole Miss on Super Dog Weekend.
Today: Waved a white flag, losing 12-2 in the getaway game.
Why It Hurts: First off, it hurts bad because it came at the hands of Ole Freakin’ Miss. How much worse can a series loss get? If not for a miracle comeback on Saturday, the Dogs would’ve gone 0-fer this weekend, much to the chagrin of the 39, 181 fans who filed through the turnstiles this weekend.
8- No. 22 UCLA
Weekend: Lost two of three at Arizona
Today: Lost 6-5 at the bottom of the 9th on an infield single.
Why It Hurts: The Bruins came into the weekend having lost just twice on the road so far this season, but they doubled their displeasure with a pair of losses in Tucson. On top of that, the Bruins are on a 3-7 skid right now.
Weekend: Got swept at home vs. Nebraska
Today: Lost 3-2 in 10 innings
Why It Hurts: The Gophers were on the cusp of being Big 10 contenders and had put together a handful of decent wins so far this season. But with the three losses to the Bugeaters they fell to 1-10 in games vs. NU since the Big Red joined the conference.
10- San Diego State
Weekend: Got swept at Nevada in three straight.
Today: Lost 11-4 to cap the crappy weekend in Reno.
Why It Hurts: The Aztecs started the weekend with an RPI in the low 40s, but had dropped into the 50s after the first two losses. We’ll see where they end up tomorrow morning. SDSU was held to just 17 hits in 27 innings and triple-digit flinger Michael Cederoth only pitched 1.1 inning on the weekend.
WHAT I SAW AT CESAR UYESAKA STADIUM
(This one will have to be brief, it’s getting late)
One team I didn’t include in the Ouch List above is Cal State Fullerton, though I certainly should’ve. But I made the trek up the coast to Santa Barbara to see how this Big West weekend would turn out. It was another nip-and-tuck game between these two, but the Gauchos held on for a huge 2-1 win in both the game and the series.
CSUF – 000 010 000 – 1 8 0
UCSB – 000 200 00x – 2 9 1
WP: Kenny Chapman, 1-0
LP: Phil Bickford, 3-2
Save: Dillon Tate, 8th
- Matt Chapman, 2-for-3, RBI
- Tyler Kuresa, 2-for-4
- Jackson Morrow, 2-for-3
- Cal State Fullerton, 18-13, 3-3 Big West
- UC Santa Barbara, 22-8, 4-5 Big West
IN A NUTSHELL:
The Gauchos got a pair of unconventional RBI on a deep flyout to centerfield by Cameron Newell and an infield RBI single up the middle by Billy Fredrick to take a 2-0 lead on the Titans in the 4th inning. The pitching of starter Kenny Chapman, Greg Mahle and saves ace Dillon Tate. Fullerton scored a single run in the top of the 5th inning on a screaming Matt Chapman RBI single. Then Fullerton threatened in each of the 7th, 8th and 9th inning but Mahle and Tate made enough of the right timely pitches to put the Titans out to pasture.
IT WAS OVER WHEN…
- Fullerton couldn’t get any clutch hits.
As mentioned above, the Titans had their chances late in the game, getting a man to 3rd base in both the 7th and 8th inning, but was not aggressive enough to put the ball in play and give them a chance to tie it.
GAME BALL GOES TO:
- Dillon Tate, UC Santa Barbara reliever.
The bespectacled saves ace came on to toss 2.0 innings, giving up just one hit and striking out four Titan batters in the process. He inherited a runner at 2nd with no outs in the 8th and struck out the side to preserve the 2-1 lead.
I decided to talk to Fullerton’s Rick Vanderhook, win or lose today. Part of my convo I am going to include in my ESPN weekend Notebook this coming week. But he was one angry SOB after the game today. I asked him immediately after the handshakes were done if he’d be okay to talk with me after meeting with his team and he shrugged and said, “Okay.”
Then he proceeded to read his team the riot act. He got in their grills about the effort his team was making and the tentative approach at the plate his offense has taken. It got a little loud. But anyway, here’s part of what he said to me after he talked to his team…
Coach, I heard you being very “animated” with your team in right field just now, what did you say to them?
Dude, the offensive guys are just in fear of failure, and that’s what I told them. All we do is swing to touch the ball, then when we get two strikes and we just clam up. We had two innings in a row there where we had a total of five swings. You can’t hit the ball if you don’t swing at it. And you are allowed to swing at the ball and miss it. It’s not a rule that you have to hit the ball everytime you swing. For some reason we’re just tentative.
Do you like your team’s work ethic? Is that a problem?
Oh they work at it. Yeah that’s not a problem. But did you watch the fight last night?
No, sorry I didn’t.
Okay, well Pacquiao beat the crap out of Bradley. He beat the crap out of him. And Bradley said, “Well I was trying to knock him out.” And he had another excuse, “I hurt my leg in the second round.” These guys are the human excuse. As an example, J.D. Davis has a guy on second base three times and strikes out every time. And him, Chapman and Pinkston are the only guys who hit on this team so when we get guys on and we move them over, those guys have to actually hit. And they haven’t done that.
Is that the biggest problem then?
There’s no accountability on this team. Nobody to hold anyone else accountable here, especially the offense. They don’t say a word to each other. We have a guy try to stretch a single into a double and gets out by 10 feet. Then after that we get a couple base hits but we don’t score a run. That’s three base hits in one inning and we don’t score.
You have to be happy with the way your freshman Phil Bickford pitched today.
Bickford was wonderful today. He made a mistake and hit a guy (to load the bases) and they ended up scoring a couple runs, but he pitched as good as anybody on either team this weekend. I was happy with the way he competed.
More coming soon.
A few images from today’s UC Santa Barbara win over the Titans.
Okay, hitting the hay now. Weekend’s done.