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Posts Tagged ‘Baseball’

WISM Special: The Greatest VU Baseball Team of the Corbin Era

May 1st, 2013 9 comments

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As we head into the stretch run of the 2013 season, one of the more interesting questions for fans looking for something to ponder in advance of the big weekend series at South Carolina is comparing the three greatest Tim Corbin squads at Vanderbilt.

The three Commodore teams that have held the #1 ranking in one poll or another have been the 2007 Nashville Regional squad, the 2011 College World Series team and this current crop of Dores. The 2007 team headed by All-Americans David Price and Pedro Alvarez held down the consensus #1 ranking for most all of the season, before faltering in the Nashville Regional. The 2011 squad led by Sonny Gray and Aaron Westlake was in the top 4 of all the polls for most of the season, alongside SEC East rivals South Carolina and Florida (who vanquished the Dores in Omaha). And this year’s Commodores, led by Kevin Ziomek and Tony Kemp, are just now starting to jump from the #2 spot in the polls to the pole position after a record setting 19-2 start in SEC play.

A comparison of the three is made difficult in that each is a fundamentally separate cohort participating in different baseball eras; a fact that is true even for the 2011 and 2013 squads which were comprised of several common key players. In this blog post, I’ll try not to get lost in a bevy of data and will endeavor to make an argument for the team I think, at this moment, is the best in Vanderbilt history.

Click through to read my perhaps too extensive analysis thereof. Read more…

Thoughts from Beyond the Bleachers – 4/22/13

April 22nd, 2013 Comments off

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Another thrilling week of Vanderbilt baseball is in the books, though the four games did see two contests end in a bit of frustration. That said, the week saw the Vanderbilt bats continue to stay relatively hot, outscoring opponents 30-18, while walloping eight home runs. The week saw two multi-homer games (Rhett Wiseman on Tuesday and Zander Wiel on Saturday), a feat performed only by Connor Harrell over the past years (Stanford in 2012 and Missouri in 2013).

While I’d like to spend some time discussing Zander Wiel and his spectacular SEC starting debut on Saturday and Sunday, a couple of other issues have taken precedence, namely an homage to Tony Kemp and the need to address a question I received on why Vanderbilt inserts a pitching ace in the starting lineup as designated hitter.  I’ll discuss those two topics, preview the upcoming week and remind folks that dropping a pair of games in a row is no big deal.

Click on through to read. (Header photo credit: Don Boyles) Read more…

Thoughts from Beyond the Bleachers – 4/9/13

April 9th, 2013 Comments off

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Another week down and another series win for the Commodores. Vanderbilt has won all eight of its weekend series (five by sweep) and is off to a program best 11-1 start in SEC play. So what is there to talk about this blog post? How about GameDay Grass?

I’ll get into my thoughts on the GameDay Grass, look at the top performers from last week (including your poll), and have a gander at our opponents this week.

Click on through to keep reading. (Header photo courtesy, Mike Rapp of VandySports.com) Read more…

Thoughts from Beyond the Bleachers – 4/4/13

April 4th, 2013 Comments off

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Not looking to do a full post today, but did want to note that, as the half-way mark of the season has passed, we’re starting to get more reliable projections of the NCAA brackets emerging. In this blog, I take a gander at those predictions revealed by Baseball America, SEBaseball and CBDaily.

I’ve also got a few quick thoughts about MTSU, a couple of records that could fall and a poll on which former Commodore will be next in the bigs. Click on through to read. Read more…

Triple Stealin’: Who did it best?

March 27th, 2013 2 comments

King of all Vanderbilt Baseball visual media, Will Hinson (AKA @TheVUCount) Vanderbilt media, Brandon Barca (@BrandonBarca), delivered this morning with the Youtube clip for Vanderbilt’s triple steal against.  The video raises the question of “who did it best” between the Xavier Turner-led called triple steal against Lipscomb or the Anthony Gomez-led “go if you got it” steal against Florida 10 months ago.

The triple play is something you don’t see every day. It has only occurred twice on the Major League level in the last 26 years, and even then the last instance (by Cleveland in 2008) was on a blown pickoff pickle in which the runners merely beat the throws. So let’s take a look at the two times Vanderbilt pulled off the feat (intentionally, at that).

Jump inside for thoughts and to vote.

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Vanderbilt Baseball 2013: Preview Part 5

February 15th, 2013 Comments off

LOGOA funny thing happened on Sunday of this week, as an idea I floated out as on a whim came to fruition. While planning my humble blog’s preview, I thought it would be a fantastic idea to seek some input from the Vanderbilt athletics beat and from some of the elite national baseball writers. Much to my surprise, not only did I get responses, I got great answers and a new Part 5 of the Season Preview was born.

In this segment, I’ll look at what the nation expects of Vanderbilt, breaking down the position in the polls and asking actual, real journalists i) what they expect out of Vanderbilt in 2013 and ii) what player need to step it up for the Commodores to compete for a national championship.

Click through to get to it.

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Vanderbilt Baseball 2013: Preview Part 4

February 15th, 2013 Comments off

LOGOAfter previewing the position players and setting forth a projected opening day lineup, it’s time to step up on the mound and take a look at the 17 young men who make up the inaugural Scott Brown pitching staff at Vanderbilt.

This Part 4 will briefly set forth the role expected for each young man, as well as scouting his arsenal of pitches.

Click through for Part 4.

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Vanderbilt Baseball 2013: Preview Part 3

February 13th, 2013 Comments off

LOGOThe first two parts of the Season Preview are in, looking at the transition to the 2013 season and the new recruits, which leads us to an examination of the product Commodore fans can expect to see on the field this Spring. I was unfortunately not able to make it down for the Black and Gold series in the Fall, so my preview is largely based on performances last year and reports on player development.

This Part 3 of my annual baseball prospectus will go through the Vanderbilt roster with a look at each of the positions around the diamond.

Click through for Part 3. Read more…

Vanderbilt Baseball 2013: Preview Part 2

February 12th, 2013 3 comments

LOGOWith Part 1 of the preview in the books, looking at the annual attrition, discussing what makes Vanderbilt a recruiting power and introducing the new coaches, it’s time to go through the group of young men that comprise Vanderbilt’s second consecutive #1 recruiting class. One year after the current Sophomore class was ranked first by Baseball America and second by Collegiate Baseball, the incoming Freshmen earned top honors from both publications.

This Part 2 of my annual baseball preview will introduce each of the new Commodores. Parts 3 and 4 will try to set forth how each of the players fit into the 2013 plan.

Click through for Part 2.

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Vanderbilt Baseball 2013: Preview Part 1

February 10th, 2013 Comments off

LOGOIt’s that time of year again. Tim Corbin has closed out another masterful performance at the annual baseball banquet, showing an incredible knowledge of his players that is part savant and part parent. Through his words, we learned a little bit more about what makes each of the spectacular young men who comprise the 2012/13 Vanderbilt baseball family. Also introduced were a pair of new coaches to join Coach Corbin and Volunteer Assistant Larry Day. Replacing new Oklahoma State Coach Josh Holliday and new Cubs Pitching Coordinator Derek Johnson are Recruiting Coordinator Travis Jewett and Pitching Coach Scott Brown, formerly of Arizona State and St. Johns respectively.

This Part 1 of my annual baseball prospectus will take a look at draft and graduation attrition and introduce the new members of the coaching staff. It will also consider the factors that make Vanderbilt a recruiting power.

Click through for Part 1. Read more…