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Archive for June, 2022

2022 CWS Finals: Ole Miss Wins!

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Ole Miss wins! Photo via Getty

Here’s how the finals between Ole Miss and Oklahoma played out:

  • Game 1 Ole Miss opted to go with a “bullpen game” instead of putting out their predicted starter on shorter rest, and it ended up paying off in spades. Reliever Jack Dougherty got the call. And he delivered, throwing 5 perfect innings to start the game before tiring in the 6th. Meanwhile Ole Miss’ bats delivered and put the game away in the 8th with back-to-back-to-back homers to win Game 1 10-3.
  • Game 2 saw a classic starter battle, as Ole Miss’ Hunter Elliott threw a solid 6ip 2run game, and Oklahoma’s Cade Horton was out of this world, striking out 13 in 7 1/3 innings. However, Horton ran out of gas, and Oklahoma’s bullpen absolutely imploded, giving up 3 runs in the 8th to seal their fate.

Your 2022 College World Series Champion: Ole Miss. They win their first ever CWS title, the year after Mississippi State wins their first. Great period for the southern state, a stalwart of baseball for decades. And they win without even getting to their ace starter. Amazing. Most pundits think Ole Miss was one of the last teams into this field of 64 (based on a losing SEC record and struggles during the latter part of the season), and now they’re champs.


This concludes the College Baseball season and our coverage of it for 2022.  I’ll post one more post that covers draftees and signing status for all local-connected players (prep and college) once the draft happens in mid July.


CWS links/resources

2022 CWS coverage:

Written by Todd Boss

June 27th, 2022 at 10:32 am

Posted in College/CWS

2022 CWS Group Play Recap and Final Prediction

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We’re to the final of the 2022 CWS tournament; here’s a recap of group play in Omaha.

Resources/links I use heavily during CWS time:


In the Top Bracket ( Notre Dame, #9 Texas, #5 TAMU, Oklahoma )

  • In the opening games, TAMU’s pitchers couldn’t find the plate and Oklahoma blew them out. Then in the night cap, Notre Dame showed why its so dangerous, shutting down Texas with solid veteran pitching and getting hits up and down the lineup to win comfortably.
  • In the first elimination game, TAMU won an interminable slog of a game over state rival Texas to stay alive and send Texas (and their hitting coach Troy Tulowitzki) home as the first team eliminated.
  • In the winner’s bracket game, Oklahoma played solid ball on both sides and cooled the confident Notre Dame team, putting them in the driver’s seat for the CWS final.
  • In the play-in game, Notre Dame could get nothing going against TAMU and the veteran team exited 5-1, earning TAMU an old-school Big12 rematch against Oklahoma in the group final.
  • In the group final, Oklahoma held serve, topped TAMU 5-1, and advanced to the CWS final loss-less.

Final Group standings: Oklahoma, #5 TAMU, Notre Dame, #9 Texas


In the Bottom Bracket ( #14 Auburn, Ole Miss, Arkansas, #2 Stanford )

  • In the opening games, Stanford’s Brock Jones hit a homer in the top of the first … and then it was all downhill from there for Stanford as they got obliterated by Arkansas 17-2. In the nightcap. Ole Miss continued to surprise, taking out Auburn 5-1 behind a dominant start from Dylan DeLucia.
  • In the first elimination game, the highest ranked team in the tournament (#2 Stanford) was sent packing by Auburn.
  • In the winner’s bracket game, Ole Miss looked unstoppable in racing away from Arkansas 13-5.
  • In the play-in game, Arkansas’ starter Will McEntire, their mid-week/#4 starter, was unhittable early and Arkansas battered Auburn’s taxed pitching staff to an easy win 11-1 and earn an all-SEC rematch in the group final.
  • In the group final, Arkansas won a nail-biter 3-2 to force the winner-take-all group final. From there though, DeLucia showed up again, throwing a 4-hit complete game shutout to send Ole miss to the final.

Final Group standings: Ole Miss, Arkansas, #14 Auburn, #2 Stanford


A strange CWS in that the unseeded teams really shined. However its important to remember that these are not your ordinary unseeded teams in Omaha.

  • Notre Dame was ranked as high as #2 this year by Baseball America in February and finished with the 2nd best overall record of any ACC team.
  • Ole Miss was literally the #1 team in the nation in March before struggling through its SEC slate and barely making the field.
  • Oklahoma kind of inexplicably didn’t get a national seed but headed into the post season ranked 9th by D1Baseball. It was only #19 in RPI .. but played a massive percentage of its games against top 50 opponents.
  • Arkansas was ranked #2 pre-season by d1baseball and is still a top 25 team.

CWS Preview and Prediction: one of the things I hate about the CWS final is that it gives the teams, who have been playing basically every day for a week, just one day off before a Sat-Sun-Mon final. This badly penalizes teams for getting their pitching stretched, and (for me) may dictate who wins. But logistically you can’t keep kids in Omaha for a month, so it is what it is.

Here’s who i think these teams will throw as starters:

  • Game 1 Sat 6/26: Jake Bennett for Oklahoma (10-3, 3.66 ERA) vs Hunter Elliott (5-3, 2.70 ERA)
  • Game 2 Sun 6/27: Cade Horton for Oklahoma (5-2, 5-24 ERA) vs John Gaddis (3-2, 4.31 ERA)
  • Game 3 Mon 6/28: David Sandlin for Oklahoma (9-4, 5.59 ERA) vs Dylan DeLucia (8-2, 3.68 ERA)

Lets be honest: Oklahoma’s pitching is not why they’re here. They have a staff ERA of 5.33 (but have battered opposing pitching to a 7.24 ERA on the season). Their ace Bennett should hold the fort in game 1. Their 2/3 starters have outplayed their stat-lines in Omaha; Horton gave up 2 runs in 6 IP and struck out 11 to beat Notre Dame to continue his late-season dominance: by most accounts he’s made himself a 1st rounder in this CWS and has lowered his ERA several points in the last few weeks. Sandlin absolutely dominated TAMU (7ip, 5hits, 12 Ks) to win their group. So, they’re showing up at the right time.

Ole Miss had to burn DeLucia to get here, meaning he can’t go until Game 3 (and it’d be on just 3 days rest after a 119 pitch outing; ugh says every MLB scout). However, Elliott is their “Ace” on the year and dominated Arkansas on Monday, so Game 1 should be great on both sides of the ball. In game 2 Ole Miss probably goes tandem with Gaddis and their other spot starter (Jack Washburn), who both served as spot starters for the team this year. Gaddis and Washburn combined to throw 7 innings of 3-run ball against Arkansas, but it wasn’t enough and they took a loss.

However, for me the story is Ole Miss not getting a start out of DeLucia until its possibly too late. I think game one may be relatively close, but expect Oklahoma to score runs (they’ve scored 24 in 3 games so far in Omaha) and ride fresher pitching to the title.

Prediction: Oklahoma in two.

Star Power/Players to watch in the final. Keith Law posted his 5 players to watch; they’ve mostly been mentioned in this space here or before, but here they are:

  • DeLucia: Law sees him as an org-arm/4A starter ceiling, but his stuff can play up and he may make for a nice 6-10th round pick.
  • Hayden Dunhurst, Ole Miss’ Catcher. He’ll either shine or be exposed this weekend, as Oklahoma runs like heck. He started the season as a 2nd round projection, but had an awful season at the plate and might very well refuse to sign wherever he goes and try again next year.
  • Peyton Graham, SS for Oklahoma. Probably the highest ranked player remaining, outside of where Horton has ascended to.
  • Bennett: good control, 4th starter ceiling.
  • Horton, as mentioned, would be a great Cole Henry like pick for the Nats in like the 2nd or 3rd if he’s still there.

Written by Todd Boss

June 24th, 2022 at 9:09 am

Posted in College/CWS

2022 Prep Baseball Wrap: Virginia State Champs

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Thanks to Covid and to life, I havn’t covered High School baseball in this space in a while. We moved out of the DC area ahead of the 2019 season and we kind of lost track of the sport, especially when Covid basically cancelled the 2020 prep season.

However, I was spurred into action when I saw some coverage on Facebook about the HS tournament in Virginia, so I thought i’d do a quick wrap up. I’ve caught up the historical section of this post for 2019 and 2021 seasons (2020 was entirely cancelled), and now there’s a decent state-level history that includes posts i’ve made going back more than a decade.

So, here’s a recap of the 2022 Virginia High School baseball playoffs.


Virginia.

Regional brackets are here, and State brackets are here. As a reminder, Virginia is divided into six Classes (Class 6-1, largest to smallest) and four Regions (which cover different portions of the state, based on the class), but teams compete locally based on geography as opposed to size. So, you may have teams from three different classes in the same local “District” but once the playoffs occur they’ll compete against like-sized teams.

Class 6-A

  • Region 6A: #4 Manchester (14-9-1) and #2 Cosby (18-6-1) advanced with some upsets.
  • Region 6B: #1 Colgan (25-2) gave #2 Freedom (20-2) a rare loss in the regional final, and the teams conspired to eliminate region powerhouses Battlefield, Potomac, and Patriot early.
  • Region 6C: #1 Lake Braddock & #2 West Springfield continue to dominate Region 6C, which is comprised of mostly larger DC-area schools without much baseball pedigree (as compared to Region 6B and 6D).
  • Region 6D: Two 3-seeds in Herndon and South Lakes, who play little league together, took out traditional powerhouses to advance to the state tournanent.

In the Class 6 state tournament, Freedom-South Riding advanced all the way to the final to face Herndon, and shocked the baseball world in getting their first known Baseball state title. I’m not sure Herndon has ever advanced that far either, having been outshined for years by its neighboring schools from Vienna and Leesburg.


Class 5-A:

  • Region 5A: Hickory took out Cox after upsetting #1 seed First Colonial to make states.
  • Region 5B: Grandby also took a regional title after beating a #1 seed in Menchville, beating Nansemond River in the final
  • Region 5C: Glen Allen beat Freeman in a very chalk-y regional
  • Region 5D: Riverside beat Independence to take the title.

In the state tournament, Freeman took out Glen Allen in an all-Richmond state 5-A final. Freeman’s best ever finish before was the 5-A State final in 2014, while Glen Allen won the 2015 4-A title.


Class 4-A:

  • Region 4A: Two teams with losing records in Grafton and Warhill raced to the regional final. Fun fact; Grafton’s team is led by two brothers of a long-lost friend of mine and I followed along on Facebook their entire run.
  • Region 4B: State powerhouse Hanover did not give up a run en route to the regional title over 10th seed Moncacan.
  • Region 4C: Perhaps the smallest region in the state (it only features 4 total teams) came down to an all Winchester battle, with James Woods topping Millbrook
  • Region 4D: Lynchburg powerhouse Jefferson Forest topped Roanoke’s Salem in the region final.

In the state tournament, Hanover won its three state games by a combined score of 34-3 to win the title over James Wood to reclaim the state 4-A title for the first time since 2016. Hanover has made seven state finals since 2009, while James Wood has not been this deep in a state tournament since 1985.


Class 3-A:

  • Region 3A: New Kent outlasted Lafayette to win the region.
  • Region 3B: William Monroe took out Meredian (formerly known as George Mason HS in Falls Church)
  • Region 3C: Lynchburg’s Liberty Christian Academy (LCA) won three games by the combined score of 37-3 to win the region, topping Spotswood in the final. I’m not entirely sure why LCA is still classified as a 3-A school; they where 4-A for a while after converting and had some great battles with Hanover (read below), but now run roughshod over the smaller 3-A schools in the state as a private school that can essentially “recruit” players.
  • Region 3D: Abingdon defeated Christiansburg in the regional final.

In the state tournament, Liberty Christian took the final over Abingdon 6-5 to reclaim the state title it first won in 2017. Abington still seeks its first state baseball title; it was a state finalist in 2021 and in 2018 … and then way back in 1923.


In the smaller divisions state tournaments:

  • Class 2: Appomattox County (where the Civil war ended) defeated John Battle (Bristol) in the state final.
  • Class 1: Rappahannock defeated Rappahannock County HS 1-0. Interestingly, these two schools are … no where near each other, with Rappahannock County HS being located in Washington VA (kind of inbetween Culpepper and Front Royal), while Rappahannock HS is closer to the eastern shore of Virginia in a town called Warsaw.

In the VISAA divisions, Cape Henry topped the Miller school in Division I (the biggest), Highland took out last year’s champ Greenbriar Christian in Division II, and Walsingham Academy destroyed the competition to win Division III.


Recent Virginia HS champs:  Virginia has Class 6 (largest) to Class 1 (smallest). We used to call them 6-A, 5-A, etc, but as of 2019 the VHSL seems to just go by “Class 6.”  Before 2014, we just AAA, AA and A.

2021: See this Maxpreps link for the 2021 State Baseball tournaments

  • Class 6: Madison took out Lake Braddock and Colgan to return to the state championship.
  • Class 5: Cox blasted both Godwin and Woodgrove to dominate the Class 5 tournament
  • Class 4: Broad Run squeezed by powerhouse Hanover 3-2 to take the title.
  • Class 3: Independence high school, a relatively new school in Ashburn, took a shock title over Abington (who had topped the powerhouse Liberty Christian in the semis)
  • Class 2: Lebanon topped Poquoson 10-1 to take the crown.
  • Class 1: Auburn topped Essex to repeat as state champs in Class 1-A.

VISAA private schools competition, Benedictine won Division 1, Greenbriar Christian took Division II, and Walsingham took Division III.

2020: Entire season cancelled due to Covid-19

2019: See this post for the 2019 State tourney wrap-up in this space.

  • Class 6: Lake Braddock wins its first State title since 2012 6-2 over Westfield behind a huge day from All Met POTY Lyle Miller-Green‘s massive day at the plate.
  • Class 5: Stafford held on to beat Mills Godwin 4-3.
  • Class 4: Riverside literally “threw away” the game, losing on a 2-run error to Lafayette, completing an improbable run for the Williamsburg-based school.
  • Class 3: Fluvanna County out-slugged Tabb 16-10 for the title.
  • Class 2: Chatham beats Lebanon 23-5.
  • Class 1: Auburn defeats Lancaster 9-0 for the title.

2018: See this post for the 2018 state tourney wrap-up

  • In 6-A, West Springfield blew open the game late to defeat Western Branch 12-2 to take their first title since 2010.  Thomas Dale, Lake Braddock semis.
  • In 5-A, Prince George beats Potomac 8-0.  Freedom-South Riding, Deep Run semis.
  • In 4-A, Salem walked-off against Jamestown to win their first state title 2-1.  Grafton, Fauquier semis.
  • In the smaller classifications, Spotsylvania won 3-A, Page County won 2-A and Riverheads won 1-A.

2017: See this post for 2017’s state tournament wrap-up for all 6 divisions

  • In 6-A, Western Branch d Cox 6-4.  Oakton, Patriot semis.
  • In 5-A, Briar Woods d Halifax 5-4 in 14 innings.  Menchville and Prince George semi-finalists.
  • In 4-A, Liberty Christian Academy d Hanover 8-5.  Harrisonburg, Great Bridge semi-finalists.
  • In the smaller classifications, Turner Ashby won 3-A, Dan River won 2-A and Auburn won 1-A.

2016: See this post for 2016’s state tournament wrap-up for all 6 divisions

  • In 6-A, Chantilly d Battlefield 3-2.  Hylton & Cosby state semis.
  • In 5-A, Nansemond River defeated Mountain View 5-3.  Potomac, Mills Godwin semi finalists.
  • In 4-A, Hanover d Liberty Christian Academy 13-12.  Jamestown, Kettle Run semi finalists.
  • In the smaller classifications, Rustberg repeated 3-A, Maggie Walker won in 2-A and Rappahannock won 1-A.

2015: See this post for 2015’s state tournament wrapup for all 6 divisions:

  • In 6-A, Madison d Chantilly 6-5.  First Colonial & defending champ Western Branch were state semifinalists.
  • In 5-A, Stone Bridge d Marshall 9-4.  2014 finalists Hickory & Freeman were state semifinalists.
  • In 4-A, Glen Allen d Jefferson Forrest 9-3.  Fauquier & Hanover were state semifinalists.
  • In the smaller classifications, Lafayette won 3-A, Virginia High repeated in 2-A and William Campbell won 1-A.

2014: see this post for 2014’s state tournament wrap up for all 6 divisions.

  • In 6-A, Western Branch d Chantilly 6-4.  McLean and Cosby were state semifinalists.
  • In 5-A, Hickory d Freeman 6-4.  Stone Bridge and the surprising Freedom-South Riding semi finalists.
  • In 4-A, Hanover d Millbrook 7-1.
  • In the smaller classifications, Loudoun Valley won 3-A, Virginia High won 2-A and Northumberland won 1-A.

2013: AAA: Hanover d Great Bridge. Hanover’s super-junior Derek Casey (committed to UVA) outlasts Great Bridge and their 1st round talent Connor Jones (now attending UVA after spurning a likely late 1st round draft position).  Lake Braddock and Oakton beaten in the semis. note: consider the accomplishment of Hanover here: they won the “AAA” title, then were reclassified to 4-A in 2014, competing fully two size-levels below most of the competition they were beating out in 2013 and prior.

2012: AAA: Lake Braddock d Kellam 4-0. Lake Braddock lost to West Springfield in the regional title game but then blitzed to a state championship.

2011: AAA: Great Bridge d South County in the state final, giving the powerful South County its first and only loss on the season after starting the season 28-0.  Lake Braddock was the regional finalist and lost to Great Bridge in the state quarters.

2010: AAA: West Springfield d Woodbridge in the final, giving Woodbridge its only loss on the year. WT Woodson regional finalist.

Complete history of Virginia HS Champions: from VHSL’s website. Go to https://www.vhsl.org/forms/, then click on Record book. Covers all sports and has results for a century.  Lots of fun to dig through.  Note: if this link fails, its because VHSL has moved it yet again; I have an updated copy of the history books in PDF format if you’re interested.

Written by Todd Boss

June 16th, 2022 at 9:41 am

Posted in High School

CWS 2022: Super Regional recap and CWS Preview

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Reminder, here’s my set of CWS resources:

Resources/links I use heavily during CWS time:

Here’s a quick run-through of the Super Regionals (the higher seed is the host in all cases; the teams are listed in classic 1-16, 8-9, 5-12 … format as this dictates the pools in Omaha. Bold = Winner.

  • #1 Tennessee vs Notre Dame: Notre Dame shocked the #1 team in the nation in Game 1, jumping way ahead early and holding on. Tennessee rebounded to blow out ND in game two 12-4 and force the decider. In that decider, ND’s senior leadership led to a huge upset, downing the #1 overall seed and ensuring that the #1 overall seed misses Omaha for the 3rd successive season with a 7-3. win.
  • #8 ECU vs #9 Texas: ECU dominated game 1, with Battlefield grad Zach Agnos playing SS and pitching the last two innings for the save. Texas turned the tables on ECU in game two, coming from 2-7 down in the 7th to walk it off in the 9th to force the game 3 decider. Unfortunately for ECU, Texas came out swinging in game 3 and blew away the Pirates to advance.
  • #5 TAMU vs #12 Louisville: TAMU got a walk-off win in game 1, winning in the 9th. In game 2 TAMU held on for a 4-3 win to be the first team to punch a ticket to Omaha.
  • #4 Virginia Tech vs Oklahoma: VaTech’s starter was wild early, and the Hokies couldn’t recover, dropping game 1 to the Sooners. Tech blew out Oklahoma in game two 14-8 to force the decider. In that decider, Oklahoma scored in 7 of the game’s 9 innings to overpower tech 11-2 to move to Omaha.
  • #3 Oregon State vs #14 Auburn: Game 1 turned into a bullpen game, and Auburn held on for the upset win. Oregon State won a tense 4-3 battle in game 2 to force the monday finisher. there, the SEC team held serve and held on to take another close battle to advance.
  • Ole Miss vs #11 Southern Miss: USM’s pitching melted down to give up 7 runs to put the game 1 out of reach. In Game 2, Ole Miss’ pitching was dominant, giving up just 3 hits to a 5-0 win and a two game sweep. Lest we forget, Ole Miss was a 3-seed in its regional, now they’re going to Omaha.
  • Arkansas vs #10 UNC: Arkansas controlled game one with stellar starting pitching. In a thrilling game 2 finish, Arkansas scored two in the 9th to get a comeback, walk-off win to break UNC’s hearts and advance.
  • #2 Stanford vs UConn: UConn destroyed Stanford’s starter (the Pac12 pitcher of the year Alex Williams, getting him for 7 runs in the first inning and a half … then somehow survived Stanford scoring 6 in the bottom of the ninth to come up just short in a 13-12 thriller. Stanford 1st rounder Brock Jones had a 3-homer day and it still wasn’t enough. Stanford won comfortably 8-2 in the second game to force the Monday close-out game. Stanford controlled game three and was never really in jeopardy, punching their ticket to Omaha as the favorite thanks to #1 Tennessee’s ouster.

Summary: the seeds and hosts got shredded. #1 out, #3 out, #4 out, #10 and #11 swept by non-seeds.

My Super Regional predictions: #1 Tennessee, #9 Texas, #5 TAMU, Oklahoma, #14 Auburn, Ole Miss, Arkansas, #2 Stanford.

Super Regional actuals: Notre Dame, #9 Texas, #5 TAMU, Oklahoma, #14 Auburn, Ole Miss, Arkansas, #2 Stanford

So I got 7 of 8 predictions right. Missed on Tennessee like everyone else … though i will say the d1baseball guys really thought Notre Dame had a chance there, so its not a huge surprise.

Here’s your 2022 CWS field.

  • top half: : Notre Dame, #9 Texas, #5 TAMU, Oklahoma
  • bottom half: #14 Auburn, Ole Miss, Arkansas, #2 Stanford

Field discussion/Conference representation: 

  • ACC: 1: Notre Dame
  • SEC: 4: TAMU, Ole Miss, Arkansas, Auburn
  • Big12: 2: Texas, Oklahoma (ironically, both moving to SEC soon)
  • Pac12: 1: Stanford

SEC comes up big here, sending 4 teams to Omaha and 2 more who are actively moving to the SEC.  The ACC, despite being nearly on a par with the SEC from a conference ranking perspective, really came up short.


Star Power in the CWS: Here’s some of the big names and top 2022 draft prospects in the CWS. Not a lot; maybe a couple guys who could go in the back half of the first, maybe a couple 2nd rounders. This is definitely not like years past where we had upper 1st round arms all around.

  • Notre Dame: Jack Brannagan, RHP/3B two way guy, might be a 6th/7th rounder
  • Arkansas: Cayden Wallace, 3B. Perhaps a 3rd rounder. Helium guy, can play 3B or OF, great arm, showing a ton of power.
  • Arkansas: Robert Moore, 2B. Son of KC GM Dayton Moore, may be a 4th/5th rounder. Bat has struggled but still has speed.
  • Arkansas: Peyton Pallette, RHP: TJ surgery earlier this year, so not actually playing but projected as a 1st rounder perhaps before surgery. Might go 2nd round.
  • Oklahoma: Peyton Graham, SS. Perhaps a 2nd rounder. Really tall and skinny guy, unclear if sticking at short.
  • Oklahoma: Jake Bennett, LHP: Nats pick in 2019, big body lefty who can bring it mid 90s. 2nd/3rd rounder. His showing against Virginia Tech may have bumped him up a round or so, could be a riser.
  • Texas: Ivan Melendez, 1B; national leader in homers this year with 29 and made a run at the division 1 triple crown. 1B only, but will get drafted 2nd/3rd round
  • Texas: Silas Ardoin, C. Little recruited out of HS 3 years ago, now a solid C prospect; Perhaps 3rd round.
  • Texas: Trey Faltine, SS: defense-first, has slipped since being more highly regarded out of HS. Seems like a 5th rounder
  • Texas: Pete Hansen, LHP. Pitchability guy without overpowering stuff, maybe an 8th rounder
  • Ole Miss: Hayden Dunhurst, C. Not a big bat, likely an 8th-10th rounder
  • Ole Miss: Derek Diamond, RHP; not big stuff, might go in the teens.
  • Stanford: Brock Jones, OF who blew up in the super regional and looks like a late 1st rounder.
  • Stanford: Kody Huff, C might be a 5th/6th rounder.
  • Auburn: Sonny Dichara, 1B who is the team’s biggest slugger. Has just ridiculous stats this year (.392/.560/.809) but was undrafted out of HS and may go in the 5th-6th round.

Predictions? 

  • In the top-half…#5 TAMU over #9 Texas.
  • In the bottom half…#14 Auburn over #2 Stanford

Final: TAMU wins.

Written by Todd Boss

June 14th, 2022 at 9:31 am

Posted in College/CWS

2022 Draft Coverage: Early Mock Drafts

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Here’s the first collection of this year’s Mock Drafts.  We usually see the first crazy-early mock just after the 2021 draft (from Baseball America), then again after the end of the 2021 season when the draft order is more or less determined, then it really starts to heat up in April/May.

I’ll keep adding to this list as Mocks come in; they’re generated all the way up to the day of the draft by the major pundits.  If i’m missing a ranking here, please let me know. I generally try to capture every mock from a handful of credible scouting websites: Baseball America, MLBpipeline, Keith Law/The Athletic, Kiley McDaniel/ESPN, and Eric Longenhagen/Fangraphs. I also try to include CBSSports/Mike Axisa and D1Baseball folks because they have good insight. I generally do NOT include fan-boy team-blog mock drafts that just arbitrarily pick players without any insight that the professionals do, nor do I put much credence into fantasy site-driven mocks.


Here’s the Mock draft collection.  The Nats pick at #5 this year, so no need to scan down and project deep into the 1st.  This year i’m ordering them Chronologically as rec’d instead of grouping by pundit…. this should let us see kind of an evolution of the top of the draft.  Players are bolded the first time they’re mentioned, not again afterwards.

  • Baseball America (Carlos Collazo) Way too Early 2022 Mock, 7/14/21, done the day after the 2021 draft. top 5: Elijah Green, Jace Jung, Brooks Lee, Kevin Pareda, Terrmar Johnson. I have to admit … this mock is darn accurate to what the pundits continue to predict 10 months later. Bravo.
  • MLBpipeline (Jonathan Mayo): Top 20 projected 2022 Mock 7/22/21: Green, Dylan Lesko, Jacob Berry, Jackson Ferris, Johnson.
  • MLBpipeline (Jim Callis) top 10 Mock Draft 2022 published 12/16/21: Johnson, Druw Jones, Berry, Lee. Nats take Green. First mention of Druw Jones, who only continued to rise from here on out.
  • Baseball America (Carlos Collazo) v1.0 Mock Draft 2/11/22: Jones, Johnson, Green, Lee, Nats take Berry.
  • Baseball America (Collazo) 2.0 Mock draft 4/1/22: Jones, Lee, Lesko, Johnson, Nats take Green.
  • Baseball America (Collazo and an anonymous industry insider) Mock Draft 3.0. 4/28/22: Lee, DJones, Green, Lesko. Nats get Jung.
  • MLBpipeline top 10 Mock draft 5/11/22: Jones, Green, Jackson Holliday, Lee, Nats take Parada.
  • The Athletic (Keith Law) first mock draft 5/18/22: Berry, Jones, Holliday, Lee. Nats take Parada. His thinking; O’s take Berry at 1-1 to save a ton of money (he’s not really projected this high at this point), then use that on a prep kid in the supplemental and 2nd rounds to overpay. Nats reportedly “on Parada” heavily, despite his being a catcher and despite having just acquired what looks to be their starting Catcher for the next 6 years last off-season in Kiebert Ruiz. Repeat after me: you don’t draft in baseball based on what’s on your current MLB roster; you take the best player available, always. Parada might very well be the collegiate player of the year this year, and if he works his way up the minors in 2 years and suddenly you have two starting catchers … you deal with that problem then.
  • MLBPipeline (Callis) Mock Draft May 2022: Holliday, Jones, Parada, Lee. Nats take Elijah Green.
  • Baseball America Mock 4.0 6/2/22: Holliday, Jones, Green, Lee, Nats take Parada. BA notes that the Nats are heavily focused on Parada right now, and take him over Terrmarr Johnson in this scenario.

So, we’re starting to see a pretty clear consensus from the regular mockers.

  1. O’s seem to be going the under-slot deal to save enough money to overpay a prep kid who’s fallen early in round 2 or in the supplemental draft. The O’s pick 1st, 33rd, and 42nd this year, meaning they’ll get basically three “first round” talents out of this draft if they spend wisely.
  2. Arizona/Texas/Pittsburgh then have their choice of the top talents, and those seem to be three of Drew Jones, Jackson Holliday, Brooks Lee, and Elijah Greene.
  3. It seems like most think its going to be Jones, Holliday and Lee, leaving us to choose between Parada and Green.
  4. I’d be ecstatic if Brooks Lee fell to us; he was a mid-1st rounder out of HS, and has only improved since.
  5. Green by most accounts has the “highest upside” in the draft, but is of course 3-4 years away.
  6. Parada at #5, if Lee is gone, seems like the safer/faster pick.
  7. Termarr Johnson is also on the board in most of these mocks, and was projected higher earlier in the season, but he’s a little more risky as a prep SS.
  8. Anyone else would be a reach that the team shouldn’t do.

Written by Todd Boss

June 9th, 2022 at 3:17 pm

CWS 2022: Regionals Recap and Super-Regionals preview

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Here’s a quick recap of the Regionals, which saw an astounding 9 of the 16 competitions head to the “extra” game. An exciting post-season so far for sure.

These are ordered by the national seeds/regional matchups. So instead of doing them alphabetically or in order of national seed, they’re done 1-16, 8-9, etc.


Resources/links I use heavily during CWS time:


Quick predictions for the 16 regionals, ordered by National Seed super Regional matchup. Bold = winner

  • #1 Tennessee had to dig deep to avoid going the extra game against Georgia Tech, but advanced. The regional ended up chalk, but Campbell as a #3 seed got the early upset of GaTech.
  • #16 Georgia Southern was upset as expected by ACC’s Notre Dame and finished third behind them and Texas Tech in a clear indictment of the tournament seeding’s decision not to give Notre Dame the host site.
  • #8 East Carolina made it to the winner’s bracket but was stretched to the extra game by Coastal Carolina, who took out UVA to make it 1-3 in the end. It didn’t matter: Coastal couldn’t repeat their magic from 2016 and lost in game 7.
  • #9 Texas advanced without losing a game, but it was 4th seed Air Force who made the regional final. Bravo to the service academy for going that far and taking out a couple of baseball powerhouses.
  • #5 Texas A&M takes advantage of a soft regional and advanced without losing a game.
  • #12 Louisville was upset early by #3 seed Michigan, but blew them out 20-1 to force the Monday game 7, where they held on for an 11-9 win.
  • #4 Virginia Tech cruised through its regional, taking out #3 Ivy winner Columbia in the final.
  • #13 Florida came back from a game down to force the Monday finisher with Oklahoma, while local team Liberty goes two-and-out. In game 7, Oklahoma took out the host and advanced.
  • #3 Oregon State was stretched to the Monday finish by Vanderbilt, who lost their first game but blew out the competition to get to regional game 7. There, Vandy’s luck ran out and Oregon State avoided the huge upset.
  • #14 Auburn battered its way to the title, winnings its games 19-7, 21-7, and 9-0, the last game of which was interrupted by rain.
  • #6 Miami won its opener, but them lost two straight to not even advance to the regional final. Instead, a Monday game will decide between Ole Miss and Arizona in a battle of college baseball royalty. The final game turned out to be a laugher, as Ole Miss destroyed Arizona 22-6 to move on.
  • #11 Southern Miss was beaten in the winner’s bracket by LSU, but fought back to force Monday game. IN game 7, Southern Miss held on for a back and forth battle to win.
  • #7 Oklahoma State and Arkansas didn’t show a ton of defense en route to a monday final; Oklahoma State’s games were 10-5, 12-20, 29-15, and 14-10. In the final game, Arkansas won with a more reasonable score of 7-3 to move on.
  • #10 UNC was stretched to a Monday game by #3 seed VCU. However, UNC held on to advance.
  • #2 Stanford lost early to Texas State, but came back to force a Monday finish. A concerning wobble for the #2 overall seed. In that final, Stanford needed a captivating 9th inning come back to walk off the win.
  • #15 Maryland had to go extras to force the Monday finisher against Big East perennial powerhouse UConn. There, UConn got the big win and moved on.

Fun facts:

  • Not ONE #1 seed lost on day one. That’s gotta be a first.
  • Highest Seed out: #6 Miami
  • Nine of the Sixteen regionals stretched to game seven.
  • Most dominant Regional win: Either Texas A&M or Auburn.
  • Worst showing by #1 seed: Georgia Southern or Miami. Probably Miami, the highest seed to lose.
  • Best showing by #4 Seed: Air Force Academy

Super Regionals:

  • #1 Tennessee hosts Notre Dame: Tennessee is on a run, though Notre Dame is the kind of senior team that can stretch them.
  • #8 ECU hosts #9 Texas: I’m favoring the big12 school here; they are clicking.
  • #5 TAMU versus #12 Louisville: i think the SEC team has the advantage here.
  • #4 Virginia Tech vs Oklahoma: Tech may be the seed, but Oklahoma may be the better team.
  • #3 Oregon State vs #14 Auburn: I’m thinking Auburn has the advantage here. I just don’t rate Pac12 teams in college baseball right now.
  • Ole Miss vs #11 Southern Miss: Love this all-Mississippi matchup. Ole Miss is the SEC power, but they’ have to go to their junior cousin to win.
  • Arkansas vs #10 UNC: UNC is the seed and host, but Arkansas is the hot hand
  • #2 Stanford vs UConn; Uconn has to fly 3000 miles for this one; can they push the Pac12 champ?

Conference representation in the Super Regionals:

  • SEC 5: Tennessee, TAMU, Auburn, Ole Miss, Arkansas
  • ACC 4: Notre Dame, Louisville, Virginia Tech, UNC
  • AAC: 1: ECU
  • C-USA: 1: Southern Miss
  • Big East: 1: UConn
  • Big12: 2: Texas, Oklahoma
  • Pac12: 2: Oregon State, Stanford

As expected, heavy on the two big baseball conferneces … and the two Big12 teams are moving to the SEC soon.

Predictions: Tennessee, Texas, TAMU, Oklahoma, Auburn, Ole Miss, Arkansas, Stanford.

Written by Todd Boss

June 7th, 2022 at 9:11 am

Posted in Nats in General

June 1st Roster Shakeups

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So, apparently according to Nats brass, the amount of time a player needs in the minors to completely dominate a level before getting moved up is exactly … 2 months.

Because on June 1st, a number of players who have clearly shown they’re too good for the level they’re currently in were moved up. Lets take a look at some of the more notable prospect moves over the last few days:

Nationals:

  • Called up Evan Lee, gave him his first start
  • Re-called, finally, Luis Garcia after he slashed .314/.368/.531 the first two months in Rochester.

Yes, I know both of these were more about Lee/Garcia covering for injuries, but they were still merit induced and both may actually stick in the majors. Lee’s rotation spot won’t be there for long (not as long as Strasburg is pitching 6 nearly-no-hit innings in AAA), but Josh Rogers just hit the D/L with a very scary sounding “shoulder impingement” injury. We don’t know if this is season-ending, career-ending, or a two week stint. Meanwhile, Garcia steps in for Alcides Escobar, who hit the D/L with a hamstring injury but who probably should just be released after he posted a 61 OPS+ for the first two months.

AAA:

  • Promoted Cole Henry from AA
  • Promoted Matt Brill from AA

Henry was a long time coming; In 7 starts/23 innings, he gave up a grand total of five (5!) hits and had a 28/9 K/BB ratio. Can we please stretch this guy out longer than an 9yr old little league pitch count restriction? Meanwhile, Brill is an under-the-radar RHP 8th/9th inning guy who was closing in Harrisburg and now can see if he can sustain his excellent numbers in AAA.

AA:

  • Promoted Jake Irvin from High-A
  • Promoted Zach Brzykcy from High-A

So, Irvin wasn’t nearly as dominant as Henry, but he still proved he had nothing left to prove at High-A. This is great news coming off of two lost seasons for him. Meanwhile, NDFA Brzycky continues climbing up the ladder for this team. Best $20k they’ve ever spent. Harrisburg also gets a RHP reliever named Edgar Garcia (at least for the next few days), who was pretty good for the last few years in Minnesota’s AAA team and who has MLB experience in three different seasons. Not really sure why he’s in AA, but Washington does this often with MLFAs it finds on the scrap heap

High-A:

  • Promoted Rodney Theopile from Low-A

In the most obviously needed move of all, Theopile takes his dominant low-A stats (9 starts 1.29 ERA, 62/11 K/BB in 48IP) to the next level. It really is amazing how many times we see a pitcher scuffle at a level one year then dominate it the next. Add another example here.

Low-A:

nothing yet; they just activated Mason Denaburg to join the rotation, and they have a couple of starters sitting on the DL, so they’ll seemingly refill from within for now.


New Look rotations per level:

  • MLB: Corbin, Lee, Adon, Grey Fedde (at least for now: when Stras comes back probably Lee to Long Relief or back to AA)
  • AAA My guess is Cavalli, Sharp, Tetreault, Henry, and Verrett, with Jefry Rodriguez going to swing man and Abbott continuing to not be a starter.
  • AA: Fuentes, Kilome, Reyes, Gausch, Henry, with Troop continuing to be excellent long man. Carrillo still hurt, Herrera just put on the DL.
  • High-A: Cate, Parker, Cuevas, Theopile, then two from Shuman and Merrill
  • Low-A: Denaburg, Cacheras, Lara, Collins and Rutledge. I guess. Rutledge is now floundering in Low-A while Henry and Cavalli now sit on the AAA roster. Wow.

Written by Todd Boss

June 4th, 2022 at 9:07 pm

Voth DFA; end of an era

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Voth runs out of chances with the Nats. Photo mlb.com official

It finally happened. Nine pro seasons, all three options, starter roles and reliever roles, long man and middle relief roles … Austin Voth finally got cut from this pitching staff yesterday.

His stat line this year: 18 IP, 34 hits, a whip north of 2, an ERA north of 10 … it was finally enough for even a last place team who’s entire goal this season is to groom soon-to-be FA players for the trade deadline to squeeze more prospects out of contending teams.

Voth seems likely to clear waivers (who’s going to give a 25-man spot to him based on his performance this year) and then faces an interesting choice; does he accept an outright or does he take his chances elsewhere? I’m betting he accepts the outright, unless some other team tells him during the waiver period that they’re interested in signing him and a better opportunity exists. But think about it; if he accepts the outright, he goes to AAA and when we trade half the bullpen in July he may very well get called back up for one last chance at redemption before an inevitable non-tender next fall.

You hate to see players go that you’ve been talking about for a decade. He was a 5th rounder college sign who made it; we can’t say that about a lot of our 5th rounders over the last decade. So bravo for that. I hope he sticks around, cleans up at AAA, and earns another shot.

Written by Todd Boss

June 1st, 2022 at 9:48 am

Posted in Majors Pitching