Louisiana State RHP Joey Bourgeois (Hyannis, '10) has some big shoes to fill in the early part of the Tigers season. Bourgeois is taking the place of ace righthander Anthony Ranaudo (Y-D, '08) while the Tigers coaching staff proceeds with caution in getting Ranaudo back into the rotation. Bourgeois joins Austin Ross (Y-D, '09) in the rotation for the defending NCAA champions. Things did not go well for Bourgeois in his start against Kansas yesterday. He lasted only 1.2 innings and gave up 5 hits, 3 walks and 6 earned runs as the Jayhawks went on to beat LSU, 11-9. Bourgeois had two excellent starts prior to yesterday's shaky outing. He pitched 6 innings of 4-hit, shutout ball against Centenary in a 4-0 LSU win and followed that up with 7 shutout innings while allowing Pepperdine just one hit in a game that LSU won, 3-2. In those two starts, Bourgeois allowed only 2 walks while striking out 10 over the 13 innings of work. Staying with LSU for a moment... offensively, the Tigers are being lead by three Cape Leaguers who are batting .400 or better through their first 13 games - Micah Gibbs (Y-D, '09) is leading the way at .422. Gibbs is followed by Blake Dean (Wareham, '07-'08) who is hitting at a .407 clip and Leon Landry (Harwich, '09) who is batting .400. In a recent article posted to lsusports.net by Chad Vignes, Landry referred to his summer in the Cape League as one that has helped transform him from a free-swinger to a more complete hitter. Landry said "I ended up hitting .364 there, which is good for a wooden-bat league, which favors pitchers. It really signaled my transformation from a pull hitter to someone who could utilize all fields."
Boston College's Mike Dennhardt (Chatham, '09-'10) and Andrew Del Colle (Chatham, '10) have gotten off to very tough starts for the Eagles. In three starts, Dennhardt is 1-2 with a 12.66 ERA. Del Colle is 0-1 with an ERA of 39.00. Del Colle has the unwanted distinction of not lasting more than 1.1 innings in any of his three starts. On a positive note for the Eagles, freshman C/DH Matt Watson (Y-D. '10) is batting .364 with 2 HR and 11 RBI. Watson drove in all three runs as BC beat 13th-ranked Miami 3-0 last night.
Texas' Tant Shepherd (Brewster, '09) cracked a home run in the bottom of the 10th inning last night to help the Longhorns post their third consecutive come-from-behind victory in a 2-1 win over Iowa
In the opener of the biggest series of the weekend, #1 Virginia beat #3 Florida State, 5-0. Virginia's Dan Hultzen (Hyannis, '10) limited FSU to 2 hits over 6 innings. He struck out 6 and did not issue a walk. Hultzen improved to 3-1 for the year. Hultzen was followed to the mound by Tyler Wilson (Hyannis, '09-'10) who pitched two perfect innings. Dan Grovatt (Harwich, '09) lead the way offensively for the Cavs, going 4-5 with 3 RBI. Virginia handed FSU's Sean Gilmartin (Harwich, '10) his first loss of the year as he fell to 3-1. Gilmartin was touched for 4 runs while allowing 11 hits in his 6 innings.
Yesterday afternoon, UC Santa Barbara's Mario Hollands (Cotuit, '08; Y-D. '09) struck out 16 in a complete game effort against Northern Illinois. Hollands gave up just 5 hits in UCSB's 5-1 victory. The 16 K's ties a school record that was held by Barry Zito (Wareham, '97-'98).
The early leader for "Name of the Year" in the CCBL may belong to Duke outfielder Will Piwnica-Worms (Orleans). It's also somewhat fitting that Oklahoma infielder Chad Kettler will be playing in Cotuit for the Kettleers this summer.
Jared Mitchell, ranked as the number one prospect in the Chicago White Sox organization by Baseball America, was badly injured while making a catch and crashing into a wall during an exhibition game yesterday. According to various media reports, Mitchell has a torn tendon in an ankle that will require surgery. He could miss the entire 2010 season. Mitchell played in five games for Yarmouth-Dennis in 2008.
Let's hope the infamous Sports Illustrated cover jinx doesn't strike Baltimore Orioles star catcher Matt Wieters (Orleans, '06). Wieters is on the cover of the current issue, dated March 15. Mentioning Wieters' name reminds me how quickly time moves on. I can't believe it has been almost four years since I saw him blast a homerun onto the bandstand at Eldredge Park.
Tyler Burgoon who won the Russ Ford Award as the CCBL's top relief pitcher last year while pitching for Y-D is now working as a starter at Michigan. Burgoon is 2-1 with a 7.71 ERA. Through the Wolverines' first 11 games, infielder Anthony Toth (Wareham, '10) is batting .318.
Univ. of Florida freshman 1B/DH Austin Maddox (Bourne, '10) is second on the team in batting with a .357 avg. and his 4 HR and 18 RBI leads the Gators. Shortstop Nolan Fontana (Bourne, '10) is batting .341. Two future Orleans Firebirds have gotten off to strong starts for Florida. Preston Tucker is splitting time with Maddox as the 1B/DH and is batting .357. Sophomore LHP Alex Panteliodis is 4-0 with a 1.10 ERA. Panteliodis has 17 strikeouts in 16.1 innings.