Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Blog Moving

Hey folks, I hope there are still some of you out there that are checking in here for updates. For those of you that have stuck with me I have a bit of an announcement for you.

Effective immediately (quite immediately) I will be moving all of my posts over to my new joint blog venture at sportsminds.org.

I say quite immediately because I will actually be throwing a new post up in just about an hour on the new roster additions for 2012, being as they were just released to me about 20 minutes ago.

All of the analysis, quotes and recaps you grew accustomed to here on the WSU Baseball Blog will continue over at Sports Minds.

I'm sorry for the inconvenience, it is simply easier for me to operate one blog than two. On top of my posts my two co-writers, Dan and Jordon, will have some exceptional posts for you as well.

Hope you enjoy the new blog and thank you so much for all the support with the WSU Baseball Blog, it was all your traffic that kept me motivated to post.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Paris Shewey signs with Houston Astros

After the conclusion of the 2011 MLB First-Year Player Draft on Wednesday, the Cougar players not drafted went out looking to sign free agent contracts. Paris Shewey is the first non-drafted Cougar to find one. Today Paris Shewey signed on with the Houston Astros, and will begin his career in Florida.

“I’m extremely blessed to have this humble beginning to my professional baseball career,” Shewey said in a press release. “I’m thankful to everyone who has helped me along the way.”

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Cody Bartlett drafted by Toronto Blue Jays

The Toronto Blue Jays, with the 1249th overall pick in this years First-Year Player Draft selected Cougar shortstop Cody Bartlett.

“Thank you to everyone who got me to this point,” Bartlett said in a press release. “From my youth days to everyone at WSU, I am forever grateful.”

I'm swamped at work, so for the interesting facts and in place of his statistics (until later today) here is a chunk of the official email sent out by WSU Sports Information.

A native of Kent, Bartlett started 37 games as a true freshman in 2007 and another 28 as a redshirt-sophomore in 2009. His breakout year came in 2010 when he made 56 starts (all at second base) and batted a team-leading .323 while adding seven home runs and 34 RBI. He added 16 doubles and was 8-for-10 in stolen bases. His two-run home run in the eighth inning provided Washington State an 8-6 victory over Kansas State in the first game of the NCAA Fayetteville Regional. Coupled with his stellar defense in Arkansas, he was named to the all-region team after garnering Pacific-10 Conference honorable mention.

As a fifth-year senior in 2011, Bartlett batted .283 with 12 doubles, two triples, one home run and 25 RBI. He started 51 games (30 at SS, 20 at 2B, 1 as DH). In his career, he made 125 starts as a second baseman and 46 as a shortstop. Toronto selected him as a shortstop.

Day 3 Preview

Today the MLB First-Year Player draft ends with rounds 31-50, round 31 will begin at 9:00 a.m. PST.

I'll be online hopefully most of the afternoon, keeping an eye on the MLB.com draft tracker, looking for any WSU names popping up. If I miss something by more than say, 30 minutes, it means I'm super busy at work so just post the update as a comment in whatever the most recent post is.

Names to look out for today:

  • Chad Arnold
  • James Wise
  • Paris Shewey
  • Cody Bartlett

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Cougar Baseball Players on Twitter

I've posted a lot today. I figured since I'm on a roll I might as well throw this up too while I have the time. The following WSU baseball players (that I'm aware of, there could be more) are on Twitter. List, with links:

So there you go guys, all the WSU baseball info I know of on Twitter. Of course you can always follow me @brett_gleason and @CougCenter too, we both provide WSU baseball/sports info regularly.

Finally, I'd like to plug two of my friends awesome blogs. If you have time, please check out Kylerancourt.com and Incrediblesources.com. They're both great reads.

MLB Draft: Day 2

Wow. After seeing no Cougar names come off the board yesterday in the first round and first compensatory round, we saw plenty of action today. First off, I'll throw up a list of drafted Cougs and the links to my original post.

If you're looking for information on these guys, the best thing to do would be to click on the links above. With each draft choice post I included the players 2011 numbers, a quote courtesy of WSU Sports Information and some interesting information about the player.

Now, it's basically required I say this: Conley, Jones and Ard are all underclassmen. What this means is that if they are not able to come to terms with a contract with their respective teams, or decide they do not want to take the step to the pros just yet, they still have the option to return to school next year. 

Being picked so high, I don't see Conley coming back*. With Jones and Ard being picked lower in the draft, I would not be surprised to see them back in Crimson next season. Now that is anything but a guarantee they will be back, I would be equally unsurprised to see these two sign with their respective teams. It all comes down to a matter of, are these teams willing to pay them enough to convince them to come out of school early. That or, does the player feel "ready" to take that next step.

*UPDATE: Conley and his fiance just posted a picture on Facebook of the two of them in a sports store. Both are wearing baby blue shirts and Marlins hats. I know it doesn't mean much, but this pretty much solidifies my assumption that Conley will not be back next year. Take this for what it is though, just a picture on FB.

Sidenote: This has nothing to do with WSU, but I'd like to use this space to congratulate my friend, Cody Hebner. Cody was drafted today with the 143rd overall pick by San Diego Padres. I've been going to school with Cody for years and he's a great guy, I wish him all the best. Good luck in making your choice between ASU and the Padres!

Matt Argyropoulos drafted by Colorado Rockies

The Colorado Rockies, with the 828th overall pick in this years First-Year Player Draft selected Cougar third baseman Matt Argyropoulos.

“I’m blessed and excited to have this opportunity,” Argyropoulos said in a press release. “Playing professional baseball has been a dream since I began playing at a competitive level.”

For those of you interested, here is the line for Argyropoulos in 2011 at WSU:

Matt Argyropoulos 166 47 14 5 42 28 21 .283 .368 .452 .820 .163 .169 .414 .350

Taylor Ard drafted by Boston Red Sox

The Boston Red Sox, with the 772nd overall pick in this years First-Year Player Draft selected Cougar first baseman Taylor Ard.

“Getting drafted by a pro team is an honor,” Ard said in a press release. “The round didn’t matter to me. It was a relief to hear my name called and we’ll see what happens next.”

Ard played at WSU for his first year in 2011 after transferring from Mt. Hood Community College. Last year, Ard led the stacked Pac-10 Conference in HR (10) and RBI (55). Ard lead the Cougar offense this year in AVG (.337), doubles (17), runs (40) and SLG% (.577). 

For those of you interested, here is the line for Ard in 2011 at WSU:

Taylor Ard 196 66 18 10 25  55 40 .337 .408 .577 .985   .240 .240   .419   .344
*P-ISO is how I will now abbreviate PECOTA ISO. Writing it out will sometimes mess with the sizing of the chart and make it look bad. So just remember, P-ISO = PECOTA ISO.

Derek Jones drafted by Baltimore Orioles

The Baltimore Orioles, with the 395th overall pick in this years First-Year Player Draft selected Cougar outfielder Derek Jones. Jones was drafted as a right fielder.

“I am proud to be a Cougar,” Jones said in a press release. “I will always be a Cougar. I am happy about what WSU has given to me and what I can give back to the program. I’m excited about the opportunity and the decision ahead.”

The junior right fielder ranks on the WSU all-time lists in: walks, 31 (second); total bases, 91 (T-sixth); HR, 32 (eighth); and SLG%, .450 (10th).

In his time at WSU, Jones was named honorable mention All Pac-10 twice, in 2010 and 2011. 

For those of you interested, here is the line for Jones in 2011 at WSU:

Derek Jones 193 53 22 8 50 33 39 .275 .370 .477 .847 .192 .202 .434 .326
*P-ISO is how I will now abbreviate PECOTA ISO. Writing it out will sometimes mess with the sizing of the chart and make it look bad. So just remember, P-ISO = PECOTA ISO.

Adam Conley drafted by Florida Marlins

The Florida Marlins, with the 72nd overall pick in this years First-Year Player Draft selected Cougar lefty Adam Conley.

"I didn't have any expectations about what team or what round I would go in so it was a relief to hear my name called," Conley said in a press release. "I immediately started thinking about Florida and its organization and I am really excited and feel blessed to have an opportunity with the Marlins."

The pick in the second round made Conley the seventh-highest Cougar drafted in the June Amateur Draft, right behind Don Long who was drafted 70th overall by the San Francisco Giants in the 1983 draft.

For those of you interested, here is the line for Conley in 2011 at WSU:

Adam Conley 108.0 408 113 3 83 27 15 42 3.50 1.30 3.71 6.92 2.25 0.25 .277

Still waiting to possibly hear their names called are Taylor Ard, Derek Jones, and Chad Arnold, who are in my opinion the other Cougar players likely to get drafted this year. Keep in mind, for those players that are underclassmen (Conley, Jones and Ard), being drafted does not necessarily mean they will sign with the team. Last season, Chad Arnold was drafted but could not come to terms on a contract, returning to school for his final season. 

I'll update here and on Twitter if anything new comes across regarding WSU players drafted.

Monday, June 6, 2011

MLB Draft: Day 1

UCLA saw two pitchers, Gerrit Cole and Trevor Bauer, get taken in the top three picks of todays 2011 MLB First-Year Player Draft. Sandwiched in between these two picks was one surprising pick made by the Seattle Mariners, taking the southpaw starter Danny* Hultzen from Virginia.

*Not going to lie, I wanted to get Rendon here so bad that instead of typing Danny the first time through, I typed "Anthony Hultzen." Sigh... Oh well, Hultzen will be an electric pitcher.

Many were expecting (hoping?) to see Cougar starter Adam Conley go late in todays action, most likely during the compensatory picks immediately following the 1st Round. Conley did not go, however. I would expect to see Adam get his name called early tomorrow when the second round kicks off. Tomorrow will be rounds 2-30, for those of you wondering.

I'll be at work all day tomorrow, but will be following the action as much as my workload will allow. That being said, I'll throw something up as soon as possible once Conley is picked up.

Derek Jones and Taylor Ard are also two possible Cougar draft picks, although I'd expect them to go late tomorrow or Wednesday, if they go at all.

Conley is a great guy, and I'd love if we could show him some support. You can give him a shoutout on Twitter @Adamconley29. Let Conley know he's got Cougar nation behind him!

Friday, June 3, 2011

2010 to 2011 Player Comparisons (Part 1)

 When thinking of offseason posts to make, my first idea was to examine the differences in performances for players that were on both the 2010 and 2011 teams. Instead of making one massive post, I'm going to break this up into two very long posts. This first part will examine the nine seven hitters who saw playing time on both teams.

Obviously, 2010 saw much more success for the team than 2011 so I expected to see significant declines in all offensive metrics for players who were on both teams. Just discussing the fact that these players "regressed" hard and fast isn't enough though, I'm going to attempt to find reasons for the bad season we just endured. 

When reading these breakdowns, please refer to this spreadsheet for all my numbers. I'll link each stat the first time it is mentioned to a page describing it, for those of you who may not fully understand everything.

Be you warned, since this is college baseball we're talking about the sample sizes will be smaller than we'd prefer and the translation of stats from MLB to this level might not be satisfactory (minus FIP in my next post, which I specially tailored to the Pac-12). However, they can still tell us interesting things and we should all be open to what they have to say.

After the jump, a breakdown of each player and some commentary on what might have been at play this season. Let's go!

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Finally, New Post Coming Soon!

It's finally time for a new post! I'm currently spending way too much time at work converting the WSU baseball teams stat sheet into my sabermetric stat sheet, as well as reworking the Pac-12 FIP I created earlier in the year. 

The post should be up within the next few days and will be part numbers presentation, part analysis of these numbers. 

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Stanford Series Recap

School has been an absolute time-sucking nightmare as of late. For this reason the best I can do series recap wise is paste my story that is running in the Evergreen tomorrow. Since its mine, I can do whatever I want with it. So after the break, my not so in-depth review of the Stanford series.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Some Info To Pass Along

I just recently got an email from WSU Sports Info telling me that the team has added two new games to our schedule. The two game will be:

May 9: @ Portland - 3 p.m.
May 25: @Seattle in Bellevue - 6 p.m.

Also, tonight is $2 Tuesday admission for the Gonzaga game. So get out and support our Cougs!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Chad Arnold Possibly Back

It looked like everything was pointing towards Chad Arnold making his first start of the 2011 season this Sunday at home against Utah Valley. Donnie had talked about it, and so did Craig Lawson of Sports Info. I'd say this press release from the WSU Sports Information Department would only confirm that. As of right now Arnold is scheduled to face off against Utah Valleys Kyle Beecher (1-0, 3.60 ERA) this Sunday.

This is huge, I'd say that throwing the 1-2-3 of Adam Conley, James Wise and Chad Arnold (in order) at Utah Valley should make for a very successful series this weekend.

EDIT: Here's Chad's line from last year. I won't go into any analysis right now, other than to say this kid is good, very good.

Chad Arnold 108.1 94 6 80 49 7 45 3.74 1.32 4.51 6.65 4.07

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

6-4 Postgame Interviews: Game 2 Against Dallas Baptist

So instead of writing up a game recap I decided to throw up my postgame interviews with Coach Marbut and starter Brandon Williams for you guys. I'd write a recap but I'm in the middle of studying for my Soc exam, not enough time.

Anyways, click on for the transcript after the jump! The questions for Donnie were asked by Craig Lawson of sports info, questions for Brandon Williams were me.

Monday, March 7, 2011

5-4 Game Recap: Game 1 Against Dallas Baptist + What's Wrong With This Team?

Nothing to see here, this game never happened. If only it was that easy... This game did happen, this game went horribly, and Head Coach Donnie Marbut summed it up perfectly for me after the game.

"We're not very good."

But why? Why is this team underachieving as much as it is? A team we all had high hopes for, a team admittedly with sights set on Omaha. Do not get me wrong, this season is not over, all our problems can be fixed. I'm here to tell you how to fix them.

What's the best way to present these ideas? Why in bullet point form of course! Let's do this.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Todays Baseball Game Cancelled

It snowed a good amount last night and it continues to fall right now. Due to the snow, WSU and UCSB have decided to cancel their final game of the series today.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Donnie Marbut Post Game Interview

Going to leave the intro short here, the questions on this were asked by my fellow Evergreen baseball writer, Adam Lewis. Transcript after the jump!

4-1 Game Recap: Doubleheader Game 2, WSU-UCSB

Walking away with a doubleheader sweep is always nice; winning the second game today, 7-3 WSU was able to wrap up the day up 2-0 in the series against UCSB looking to sweep during tomorrows game. Get the brooms out Coug fans! UCSB got out to an early lead but Wise settled down and turned in a great performance riddled with zeros.

  • Again, good pitching will almost always trump good hitting in cold weather, and boy was today the definition of cold weather. Wise struggled a little early, giving up 3 in the 2nd but got into a groove after that, putting three zeros on the board after that before being pulled for J.D. Leckenby. In his 5 IP, Wise strung up 6 Ks while only walking one on only 3 hits. Quite impressive, a good day for WSU starting pitching.
  • When Leckenby came in he looked strong, for the first batter. He lost control quickly after that and only made it through the 6th before being replaced by Paris Shewey to close out the 7th.
  • Shewey pitched a good 7th in a non-save situation, only giving up one hit and racking up a K in the process.
  • Jason Monda had one stellar day on the diamond for WSU, at the plate and in the field. Batting, Monda went 3-6 (.500) while driving in two. He continued to show his ability to get extra base hits, smacking a double in the first game of the day. In the 6th during the second game, Monda made one incredible diving catch in left to save two runs. Sprinting to his right he laid out full extension to grab a smoked line drive, causing the crowd to erupt, well as much as 50 people can "erupt". 
  • Cougars played a lot of small ball, stealing as often as possible, showing bunt and putting on the hit-and-run regularly. I'm a big fan of small ball, and it's hard to argue against it when a team is able to execute it so well anyways.
  • On a side not I need to talk about Butch really quick. This is by far the best Butch I've seen in my nearly two years at WSU. It says even more that this great performance came in 14 degree weather DURING A BASEBALL GAME! Usually at baseball games, Butch stays for 1-2 innings and leaves, even during decent weather games. This Butch was all over the place, either handing out free coffee, playing with kids, singing into his tail as a microphone, and doing Angels in the Outfield and Titanic impressions. Huge props to Butch, very well done sir, we all appreciate it.
Tomorrow the final game goes off at Noon, assuming we don't get the 4-5 inches of snow we're predicted to get tonight. Even with snow, they may clear the field and play anyways. I'll listen to my post game interview with Coach Marbut in a few and post the transcript in another post. Go Cougs! 

3-1 Game Recap: Doubleheader Game 1, WSU-UCSB

It takes a lot to stand outside in 14 degree weather. It takes even more to run in it. It takes extreme dedication to play baseball in it. Despite the cold, WSU pulled off a 5-1 win in the first game of their Saturday doubleheader. In cold weather pitching will always dominate, combine the cold weather advantage with an already stellar pitcher and you have a scary combo.

  • Adam Conley started for WSU in game one and threw a gem. 9 Ks for his second consecutive outing in 6 IP while issuing his first two walks of the season. He had great command of his pitches throughout, seeming to work away from right handed hitters nearly the whole time. Even the few times he went inside on a righty he blew it past them with inside heat. At least 4-5 of his strikeouts came on some sick changeups, totally fooling the hitters. By the time he left (after the 6th) he had 111 pitches and a great outing.
  • This game was defined by small ball on the part of the Cougs. Stealing and taking advantage of their openings to jump out to a 5-0 lead. 
  • Collin Slaybaugh hit an impressive triple early in the game. Impressive not because of the actual hit (a misplayed ball by the UCSB left fielder) but because of the speed Slaybaugh displayed to turn the hit into a triple. Most hitters, that is a double, Slaybaugh used his speed to help create a run, very impressive.
  • Me and my fellow Evergreen writer noted that Taylor Ard could stand to practice some better pitch selection. Might be the pressure of being "that guy that hits" or transitioning into D1 pitching, but he was swinging at pitches that make a hitting coach want to pull his hair out. If he corrects that he's going to be a even more of a force at the plate than he already is.
  • The UCSB team seemed to come out flat and only got more complacent as the game went on. Not a good sign for them, seeing as they still have 7 more innings to play.
  • Near the end of the game there were a few scoreboard problems, but that's bound to happen with a new system. Apparently, inputting double plays breaks the scoreboard, who knew. 
  • More fans than I anticipated would be out here in this weather. The paying section (with the seats, right in front) was cleared but the two student sections on the sides were not. The cleared section was probably about 50% filled.
That's it for the first game, second game scheduled to go off at 3:00.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Weekend Baseball Schedule Update

Just got the email from Sports Information on the weekend schedule, so here it is!

Todays postponed game is moved to Saturday, turning Saturday into a doubleheader. First game will start at Noon and go 9 innings. Second game will start soon after the first, and go 7 innings.

Sunday game scheduled for Noon is staying as scheduled.

Hey! Readers!

So if my "stats" are telling me the truth, I'm finally getting some steady readership. I'm so excited! Glad I can be providing a place for Cougar baseball fans, or even just baseball fans, to come and get some quality information.

I just thought it would be cool to get to know my audience a little before the first home series this weekend. Leave some comments on this post, I'd love to get to know the people that are visiting the site!

Also quick note: I said it in my last post, but once the weekend schedule is set up for the team, I'll let you know. I'm on the Sports Info email list, so I can actually get it out before anything usually goes up on wsucougars.com.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Friday Baseball Game Postponed

The last few days it's been snowing pretty good over here on the Palouse, add on the fact that the high tomorrow is predicted to be 16, and you have plenty of good reasons for the baseball team to do exactly what they've done. Deciding to postpone the Friday game against UCSB.

The teams still plan on playing all three games this weekend (most likely meaning a doubleheader on Saturday) but the schedule is not yet set. When it is decided upon I'll let you all know!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Small Site Change

Quick note for my awesome readers. I've added a new "page" to the blog titled Daily Evergreen Articles. Here you will find the baseball related articles I write for the Daily Evergreen, which will mostly consist of series recaps and individual player profiles. Nothing too exciting, but if you'd like to check it out I'd very much appreciate it! I won't post on the front page every time I update that page, just simply update it as new articles are published. Thanks, have a great night!

First Home Series: UCSB

On Friday the Cougs are kicking off their first home series of the 2011 season against UC Santa Barbara after winning the season opening series 2-1 against Cal St. Bakersfield.

I'm not sure how many know, but I also cover the baseball team for the Daily Evergreen, WSUs student run newspaper. Since I'm official press I'll get to sit in the press box for home games. Having access to internet (and most importantly, heat) should help me improve my in game coverage and being able to see the game in person will help me improve my post-game analysis.

If the internet is working (they tell me it is) then I will be Tweeting as often as possible before and during the game. So for the best WSU baseball coverage you can get pre/mid/post game, follow @brett_gleason on Twitter and check in here after the game for my post-game recaps.

After all home games I have the ability to interview my choice of players and coaches, normally these interviews will be composed of questions geared towards my Evergreen articles. But if you have something in particular you'd like me to ask, post a comment and I'll try my best to get it answered. Obviously not everything can be put in my articles, so I'll post my interview transcripts here for you all to read the entirety of the conversations.

If you're a student with a sports pass and you read this blog, you have no reason to not go out and support our boys! They don't get the attendance numbers they deserve and it would be nice to see larger crowds out there this season!

Quick Addition: I'm not going to have time write a series preview, so if you'd like to take a gander at some stats on UCSB, here you go.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

2-1 Game Recap: Rubber Match at Cal St Bakersfield

FINAL SCORE: WSU 4 - Cal St. Bakersfield 3

2-1 is a much better way to start out a season than 1-2, that much is obvious. But if not for this teams incredible ability to rally, 1-2 is what we'd be staring at right now. Between last season and this, the series with Cal St Bakersfield is at 4-3 in favor of the Cougs. Spencer Jackson struggled mightily in game two (I'm going to pin that on first game jitters, Jackson has good stuff) and James Wise took the mound today to close out the series with a good performance.

I'll be doing a series preview, but it's running in the Evergreen on Tuesday, so instead of posting it here I'll link to the story when it runs. On to the game notes!

  • Like I said, the first 6 innings were a grind for the Cougs, finding themselves down 3-1 going into the 7th, where things started to happen...
  • Again it was the new kids that came up big in the 7th for the Cougs. Adam Nelubowich doubled to kick off the inning and was driven in by Trace Tam Sing on a single. I've talked a lot about Taylor Ard and he's done nothing but back up my big expectations so far. For the second time this weekend Ard dropped one over the fence to give the Cougs the lead.
  • Wise pitched a good game today, giving up 5 hits, 3 runs (2 earned) and three walks over his 6 1/3 innings, while also fanning 6. It's hard to judge a pitchers performance when you can't actually see anything other than his little animated no-armed torso throwing an animated oversized baseball.
  • Paris Shewey came in for the save and got himself in a little bit of trouble in the 9th, but nothing he couldn't get himself out of with a nice DP. 

Sorry todays is so short and maybe not as detailed as I'd like, but I'm a little crunched for time so I'll have to leave it here. 

Friday, February 18, 2011

1-0 Game Recap: Game 1 Cal St Bakersfield

Well a win is always a great way to start a season, pile onto that a highly impressive win by Adam Conley and one stellar debut from Jason Monda and you have the makings of a near perfect season opener.

Since this is the first game recap, I'll let you know how I plan on running these now and in the future. Instead of writing some lengthy post on each game I'll quickly recap the game in a paragraph or two, then after that I'll list interesting plays, performances, and facts/stats in bullet form afterwards. So, on to the bullets!

  • First off, Jason Monda, the freshman out of Olympia, had an impressive collegiate debut today going 3-3 with an RBI, a 3B, 2 R and a HBP in his final at bat in the 9th. Coach Marbut has said that he loves what he sees in Monda and so far I can see why. 
  • Interesting fact (via WSU Athletic Department): Greg Monda, father of Jason is the WSU career leader in AVG, at .369.
  • Adam Conely came up big time for the Cougs, carrying a no hitter into the 6th before giving up consecutive hits and 2 runs in the inning. With 9 Ks in his 8 inning performance Conely pitched probably the best, and his longest, outing of his career. 
  • Conely struggled twice but in both situations was able to get clutch Ks to help him get out of jams, showing the ability to pitch himself out of a corner.
  • Obviously I couldn't actually see any of the game, but Ard seemed to show why he was such a big hitting prospect coming into the year, although he only went 1-4 his one hit was an important 2 out double in the 4th. He went on to score the first WSU run of the season on a Matt Argyropoulos single.
  • Colin Slaybaugh, Taylor Ard, and Jason Monda (all making their collegiate debuts) went 6-9 with 2 RBIs and 4 runs for the Cougs.
  • Richie Ochoa got the save, pitching a 1-2-3 9th with 2 Ks.

Overall a great performance today from the Cougs to get the win with huge performances from the new kids. Next game is tomorrow with a 1 p.m. first pitch.


Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Donnie Marbut Tuesday Teleconference

EDIT: Finally got the embedding tool to work on this video, here it is! 

Okay, the video embedding tool isn't working for this video, so I will just have to simply link to it. I'll add my thoughts on the teleconference after I get my classwork done tonight or tomorrow morning, I'll post it as an update to this story.

Season Almost Underway

Sunday the team ran it's final scrimmage leading up to their opening series this Friday at Cal State Bakersfield. The scrimmage was set up as five individual, two inning games. Running the 8th and 9th inning with various pre-determined gamestates to test the pitchers and defenses. To read a good recap, head here (the Daily Evergreen) to read the recap my fellow baseball writer Adam Lewis threw together.

Also, the great staff over at the WSU Athletic Department caught up with Coach Marbut and James Wise after the scrimmage. I'll post the video and a few quick thoughts after the jump, don't want to weigh down the front page with videos.

Another Random Video Dump

Thought this was pretty funny. It's also too bad these guys are gone after this year, it's always sad to lose a program.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Random Video Dump

Not much to say about this, other than this must be staged, it must be.

Hitter: Oh no you didn't!
Pitcher: Oh damnit, here we go, another fight.
Hitter: Imma come at you like a spider monkey!
Pitcher: ...
Pitcher: Oh he's serious.

Great Books For The Baseball Fan

So I know I said there would be a post up between now and Sunday on a counting statistic that just doesn't cut it, and that post is still in the works. For now though, during one study break, I thought it would be fun to give you some insight on good reading material.

Over the last few months I got back into reading for fun, a nice break from these text books. Over this time I got completely hooked on baseball books, and I read four. Might as well share these books with you guys maybe you'll like what you hear and go read them yourselves!

Maybe one of the best sports books
ever written.

I'm going to start with a book I'm sure many of you have heard of, Jim Bouton's Ball Four. A few months ago I posted on another blog called Lookout Landing asking the other readers for ideas on baseball books I could read and Ball Four was by far the most recommended one of the lot. I decided to give it a shot and bought my copy the first day of my Christmas break. I couldn't read it fast enough.

Ball Four is written as a daily diary of Bouton's 1969 season with the expansion Seattle Pilots and Houston Astros.

I couldn't believe how well written, hilarious, and eye opening this book was. I had read books before that offered some juicy insights as to what goes on in major league and minor league clubs, but this is the book that started the whole trend. Before Ball Four MLB was seen as a league composed of God-like people, who could do no wrong. Oh boy was the public wrong on that one. The biggest thing that Ball Four pushes for is that these players are just like anyone else you know, they are everyday people, who get to play a game for a living.

If you call yourself a baseball fan then Ball Four is absolutely a MUST READ. Also, just in case you enjoy hating the Yankees as much as I do, this book does nothing but give you plenty of more reasons to fuel your hatred. Screw the Yankees.

Short Review On Todays Short "Scrimmage"

Hey all. Yesterday the team held a short unofficial scrimmage during practice to simulate the 7th, 8th, and 9th innings. I'm assuming to let them get a look at their set-up men. I wasn't able to stay for the whole scrimmage as I had prior commitments, to my grades, but I was there long enough to get a little bit of handy info.

  • For the seventh inning they put freshman Scott Simon of Central Valley HS in Spokane on the bump. Simon is the tallest kid we have on the roster at 6'7" (3 inches taller than the second tallest, Jason Monda and Chad Arnold) which of course instantly made me think of Doug Fister. Simon gave up solid contact to the first two batters, but still coming up with two outs. He ran the third batter of the inning to a 2-1 count (after starting the at-bat with a sick breaking curve first pitch) before giving up a single into left. No matter though, first pitch of the next at-bat Jay Ponciano threw out the runner by at least 3 feet. Simon pitched 2 innings giving up 3 hits and 1 ER.

  • Bottom of the 7th and fellow freshman Kellen Camus was on the hill. Maybe the exact physical opposite of Simon, Camus stands at 5'9". He may be short, but Camus can pitch, and the team likes what he can bring to the pen this year. The most notable event while Camus was throwing was the massive hit he gave up to Matt Argyropoulos in the bottom of the 8th. Argy hit it deep into the gap in right-center and landed it on the track, trying to stretch the guaranteed double into a triple Argy was thrown out at third, bailing out Camus. Kellen pitched two innings and gave up 2 hits and 1 walk.

  • So let's talk about JC transfer Taylor Ard for a minute. Ard comes in as a huge addition to the lineup as a kid who can flat out rake. I hadn't seen anything from him until last night, and although I only saw one at bat, I liked what I saw. Ard is a presence at the plate, at 6'0" and 229, he is a big kid. Great level swing and an eye for the strike zone as he knows how to draw a walk too. In the only at-bat I saw from Ard he roped a double into the right-center gap. Now he may not be the best runner but hey, when you can hit like this kid can it doesn't really matter all that much.

  • Last thing I have to say is unfortunately the new scoreboard was not up and running, so I can't say what the video quality is like. It should be running on Sunday however, so I'll let you know how it looks then.
That's all I've got until the last scrimmage on Sunday, I'm planning a post about another counting stat I despise in between now and then, we'll see how my study schedule allows me free time.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Briefly Defining FIP And Presenting My Findings

I'll start off by briefly defining FIP, so you have a little bit of context behind the findings I'd like to publish here. FIP stands for Fielding Independent Pitching and in the most basic terms possible, is a replacement statistic for ERA that tries to evaluate the pitcher in a vacuum. This means when looking at this statistic we will not be taking into account the performance of the defense surrounding a pitcher, only the pitchers performance.

FIP is expressed as a number in the same way as ERA (0.00) so that we may have a good method of comparison between the two. FIP is also known as "ERA plus", and by that I mean, that's what I call it. It's a pitchers true ERA, better reflecting the run impact a pitcher had on his games that pure ERA by itself.

So, I may or may not go into more depth on FIP at a later date (I probably will) but right now I'm going to segue into my findings. Check in after the jump to see.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Pac-12 FIP Constant

Hello people, I just thought I would give you and update on a project I'm working on, although I guess an update on a project you didn't know existed is more of an announcement of said project...

Anyways, what I've been up to (since this morning) is deriving a league constant for the Pac-12 to be used in the Fielding Independent Pitching (FIP) formula. For those of you who don't know what FIP is or how it's calculated, I'll write up a post on it and share it here before I reveal my Pac-12 constant.

The constant used when determining the FIP for a MLB pitcher generally hovers around 3.2 (it changes every season). I've gotten through WSU and UW in my statistics compilation and as of now the constant is at 3.38. If I had to guess, I'd say it ends up being somewhere in the 3.30-3.35 range, let's see how close I get!

I should be done with the stats tonight and have a constant, but I'll write up that FIP post first, to give a little insight into the stat.