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…
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.
A 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.
Categories: Baseball, General, Sport, Vanderbilt 2013 Preview, Baseball, Omaha, Scott Brown, Tim Corbin, Travis Jewett, Vanderbilt, Vandy Baseball, Week Behind Week Ahead
After 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.
Categories: Baseball, Sport, Vanderbilt 2013 Preview, Baseball, Carson Fulmer, Kevin Ziomek, Scott Brown, Tim Corbin, TJ Pecoraro, Ty Beede, Vanderbilt, Vandy Baseball, Week Behind Week Ahead
The 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…
Categories: Baseball, General, Sport, Vanderbilt 2013 Preview, Baseball, Conrad Gregor, Mike Yastrzemski, Recruiting, Rhett Wiseman, Spencer Navin, Tim Corbin, Tony Kemp, Vanderbilt, Vandy Baseball, Week Behind Week Ahead
With 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.
Categories: Baseball, Sport, Vanderbilt 2013 Preview, Baseball, Carson Fulmer, Dansby Swanson, Recruiting, Rhett Wiseman, Tim Corbin, Vanderbilt, Vandy Baseball, Week Behind Week Ahead
It’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…
Categories: Baseball, Sport, Vanderbilt 2013 Preview, Anthony Gomez, Baseball, Recruiting, Scott Brown, Tim Corbin, Travis Jewett, Vanderbilt, Vandy Baseball, Week Behind Week Ahead
It’s that fantastic time of year again when the Fall ball thwack of the BBCOR bat can be heard over at Hawkins Field and you can walk down and smell the fresh cut grass… wait… belay that last part. In an summer that saw some outstanding performances, a high level recruiting class and a new recruiting coordinator, the biggest change on West End is the installation of artificial turf in both Dudley Field and the Hawk. Coach Tim Corbin took some time to meet with the press today and discussed a variety of topics including the new field.
Click through to watch the video and for some preliminary thoughts, including the announcement that Collegiate Baseball magazine named the incoming VandyBoys the top recruiting class nationally. I’ll also set forth what I hope the schedule will be for my annual preview of the Commodores Baseball squad. Read more…
Accompanying the VandyBoys strong finish were multiple appearances from Brian Miller’s rescue beaver, Chance. Photo courtesy of Mike Rapp, VandySports.com.
So, I’m just a bad VandyBoys blogger. During the month-plus since my last post, the Vanderbilt baseball team has undergone a transformation in which a pitching staff matured and leaders emerged. Gone were the 1-7 and 7-15 starts and the Commodores finished with a flurry, including a 16-4 run down the stretch of the season.
All told, the Dores came up huge winning their last five games (two at LSU and a home sweep of the Rebel Black Bears) to ensure a record over .500 entering the SEC tournament at Hoover. They topped that off by getting to the tournament final undefeated, before being shut out by Mississippi State’s ridiculous pitching staff. It was a stellar run that included two victories over nemesis Florida, who had entered Hoover with a seven game winning streak over Coach Corbin’s boys. So what did we learn and see from this squad?
We saw TJ Pecoraro return early from Tommy John surgery and throw back to back complete games in the last two weekends of the season. We saw Connor Harrell emerge from a slump and start mashing the ball all over the park. We saw Tony Kemp run rampant on the basepaths and single-handedly cause a couple Ole Miss pitchers ulcers. We saw Sam Selman emerge into a legitimate lefty ace. We saw a stuffed animal (oops, sorry, a totally real Canadian beaver that Brian Miller found on the side of the road… completely not a gift from his mom) help inspire fear in the eyes of the Crimson Tide Rally Penguin and Florida’s silly pet goldfish. [You can follow Chance at @VU_RallyBeaver and Alabama's mascot at @BamaRllyPenguin]
Click through to catch up. Read more…
This is the prelude to a full season preview that I hope to release before next weekend.
A series of real world events have strapped me of the time needed to finish my annual preview of the Vanderbilt baseball team. As a result, I’m publishing instead this short weekend preview for the Stanford series.
I still intend to conduct a five-part preview of the (i) newcomers, (ii) pitchers, (iii) position players, (iv) season schedule and (v) future recruiting classes. That said, they likely won’t be done until the home opener next week, at the earliest. I also intend to continue the tradition of the Week Behind, Week Ahead recaps, starting Monday morning.
In the meantime, Vanderbilt has announced the starting rotation for the Stanford series this weekend. Some quick thoughts and a few videos after the jump.
Click through to keep reading.
Categories: Baseball, Sport, Vanderbilt 2012 Preview, Baseball, Kevin Ziomek, Sam Selman, Stanford, Tim Corbin, Ty Beede, Vanderbilt, Vandy Baseball, Week Behind Week Ahead