Results tagged ‘ Stephen Strasburg ’

PSP, Part II

PSP, if you missed yesterday’s post, stands for Post-Strasburg Pitching in the Minors. Yesterday, I ran through the pitching prospects who were in the 1-25 range of’s preseason Top 50 prospects list. Today, let’s take a gander at those in the 26-50 range and how they’ve fared to date:

28. Casey Kelly, RHP, Red Sox: He’s 20, focusing on pitching full-time for the first time and in Double-A. He’s got a 4.28 ERA and .292 BAA for the year, but if his first two June starts are any indication, he’s getting locked in. He’s given up one run over 11 innings in those outings, yielding just nine hits and two walks while striking out nine.

34. Julio Teheran, RHP, Braves: The Colombian is just 19 and already earned a promotion from Class A Rome to Class A Advanced Myrtle Beach. And he’s performed well there, as well. Combined, Teheran has a 1.39 ERA, a .201 BAA, 82 K’s and just 15 BB in 71 1/3 IP. He’s fourth in the Minors in ERA and 13th in strikeouts.

39. Tanner Scheppers, RHP, Rangers: After 14 dominant relief appearances across two levels, Scheppers made his first start on June 13. Overally, he’s got a 1.32 ERA and .153 BAA, striking out 48 and walking 10 over 34 combined innings.

41. Aaron Crow, RHP, Royals: The idea was that Crow would be a quick to the big leagues type and the 2009 first-rounder was sent straight to Double-A to make his official pro debut. He’s scuffled a bit, with a 5.66 ERA over 13 starts, as Texas League hitters have hit .294 against him. He’s walked 33 and struck out 44 over 70 innings of work. His best stat is his GO/AO, which is a robust 3.85 and leads all Minor League pitchers.

42. Jacob Turner, RHP, Tigers:  Detroit’s first-rounder in 2009, Turner missed some time early with a forearm issue, but seems just fine now, with a 3.18 ERA over three June outings. Overall, the big-armed high school product has a 3.72 ERA in the Class A Midwest League, with 49 strikeouts and just eight walks in 48 1/3 IP. The league is hitting .238 against the right-hander.

43. Mike Montgomery, LHP, Royals: Only an elbow issue, from which he recently returned, has slowed the lefty. Still, Montgomery is already in Double-A at age 20 and has a combined 2.01 ERA over 53 2/3 IP. In that time, he’s struck out 58 and walked only 14 while holding all hitters to a .200 batting average against.

47. Phillippe Aumont, RHP, Phillies:  Part of the haul the Phils got from the Mariners when they sent Cliff Lee there, Aumont seems to be going backwards. The 21-year-old Canadian began the year in Double-A, but after 11 starts of a 7.49 ERA, .284 BAA and 38 walks/38 K’s over 49 2/3 IP, he got sent down to Class A Adv Clearwater.In his first outing there, in relief, he gave up five earned runs on three hits and four walks in two-thirds of an inning.

49. Ethan Martin, RHP, Dodgers: The 21-year-old is showing the ability to make hitters in the California League swing and miss — he’s got 60 K’s in 57 IP. But he’s also walked 34. The league, typically a hitting-friendly one, is hitting .252 against him, yet he’s allowed just one home run. The command clearly has impacted him as he’s carrying a 5.68 ERA with him to date.

Post-Strasburg Pitching

Or PSP, if you like abbreviations.

Obviously, all the buzz about Stepthen Strasburg in the big leagues is warranted. And it’s not likely to die down any time soon. But now that he’s up with the big club, the question is: Who’s left in the Minors?

Any time Strasburg took the mound in a Minor League ballpark, it was the top news of the day. Now that he’s gone, it’s not like there are no pitching prospects worth talking about. Quite the contrary. They may not have the Q rating of the 2009 No. 1 overall pick, but they’re pretty good in their own right. You might see some of them take the mound out west in the All-Star Futures Game, to be held on Sunday, July 11 in Anaheim.

There are a couple of ways to look at the top pitching prospects in the Minors. First, we’ll start with the Top 50 Prospects list from the start of the year. Strasburg was No. 2 on that list. Here’s how the others are faring (excluding ones already in the big leagues):

10. Madison Bumgarner, LHP, Giants: Concerns over his drop in velocity have dissipated as he tweaked his mechanics and looks more like the guy who everyone was all excited about to begin with. His June hasn’t been as thrilling, but he went 3-0 with a 0.94 ERA in six May starts. Overall, he’s a 20-year-old who’s gone 6-1 with a 3.13 ERA in the Triple-A PCL.

17. Kyle Drabek, RHP, Blue Jays: The key to the Roy Halladay trade, Drabek has spent the year in the Double-A Eastern League and has a 7-5 record to go along with a 3.24 ERA, .238 batting average against. He’s ninth in the EL in ERA and tied for the lead in K’s.

18. Martin Perez, LHP Rangers: The young lefty has scuffled a bit in the Double-A Texas League. He has struck out more than a batter per inning, but his 5.32 ERA over 11 starts is a result of less-than-stellar command (27 BB in 45 2/3 IP) and being somewhat hittable (.280 BAA). He missed some time with a fingernail injury and just came back last Sunday.

20. Jeremy Hellickson, RHP, Rays:  Can’t complain about how he’s pitched this year. He’s tied for the International League lead with eight wins, is second in K’s with 84 (in 81 2/3 IP) and is fourth with his 2.42 ERA. A good argument could be made that he’s been the most consistent non-Stras ptiching prospect in baseball this year.

21. Jarrod Parker, RHP, Diamondbacks: Following Tommy John surgery, Parker is throwing from a mound and seems to be ahead of schedule.

23. Christian Friedrich,  LHP, Rockies: The lefty was slowed earlier this year, missing nearly a month with elbow soreness, but the good news is he’s been taking his regular turn in the Double-A Tulsa rotation. The bad news is he hasn’t been particularly effective and is currently 0-4 with a 4.89 ERA and .302 batting average against.

That’s 1-25. Stay tuned for 26-50 tomorrow…


OK, so maybe that title was weak. They can’t all be winners.

It’s now been a few days since the big Strasburg debut in Altoona on Sunday. I’m sure the nation and beyond has caught its collective breath, at least in time for his home debut in Harrisburg on Friday (by the way, Aroldis Chapman’s on the same schedule).

Reports had it that there were 70+ credentials handed out for the game on Sunday. There were 10 TV stations in attendance, five radio stations (not including the broadcasters for the game) and tons of newspapers and websites there to chronicle it all.

I thought it’d be fun to try and link to a bunch of the subsequent reporting here. Of course, we’ll start with my story on the Strasburg start as well as a side story on fellow first-rounder Drew Storen.

As for others… (some of these require subscriptions, just so’s you know):

The list goes on and on. Needless to say, a good time was had by all and I must admit, it was fun to be a part of all of that, the packed house, the hoopla, the media frenzy and watching him pitch. I saw his no-hitter against Air Force a year ago, so seeing him take that next step was fantastic.

I know everyone was all excited to see Strasburg in action, but I kind of hoped more would’ve been written about Storen. The guy was the No. 10 overall pick in the Draft, after all and should get to the big leagues just as quickly, if not faster, than Strasburg. He seems to get that he’s going to be painted as the sidekick, the Robin to Strasburg’s Batman, if you will, but man, was he lights out on Sunday. And seeing the Strasburg starting, Storen finishing formula in action must get Nats fans excited.

OK, onward and upward. I’ll be back soon, I hope, with some Draft tidbits for the class of 2010.

So, what did everyone think?

Now that the show is a part of broadcasting history, tell me what you thought. I see some things on Twitter and some stuff in comments and I’ll try to respond to some things over time (there might be a chat in the works for later on, but we’ll see), but I need more validation from folks. So leave some comments here to make me feel better.

You can check out my breakdown of the Top 50 list. You can check out the complete list, all with cool video. You can email in your own Top 10 list (not just bloggers here, but fans, too, should chime in). You can even watch the entire show if you need to catch it again or (gasp) missed it the first time.

Things to address:

1. Heyward vs. Strasburg at the top: Did you think Stras should’ve been No. 1. I think an argument could be made for either, but I see a lot of support for Heyward out there (though in early fan voting, noted above, Stras was getting a bunch of No. 1 votes). It’ll be interesting to see what some of the other experts have to say out there.

2. Jesus Montero: This seems to be the one getting people the most riled up. I knew it was coming. Good split in the comments on the story about where he is. I could see him moving up some, but it’s the defense that kept him lower in some scouts’ minds. Thoughts on Montero are welcome here.

3. Aroldis Chapman. For the record, if you didn’t watch the show when I explained it. When I finalized the list, he hadn’t yet signed and I don’t consider players who aren’t yet with an MLB organization. If I did, I’d have to start considering amateur talent from college or high school ranks before they even are drafted and that’s not something I’ll do.

3. The obvious who is/isn’t on the list — who do you think should’ve made it, who you think shouldn’t have been on there at all. And remember, this is a prospect list, not a good players in the Minors list. There’s a difference.

4. What did you think of the shirt? Wish you could’ve seen all of the tie. Had purple in it, which made the shirt work even better. I think I pulled it off. Did you?

Believe it or not, I did not get to everyone who had graciously sent in guest prospect rankings. So I’ll keep them going the next couple days. Tonight, before I sign off and get some rest, I give you the Top 20 from Seth Stohs. You can catch his work on and follow him on Twitter @SethTweets. Guy knows a ton about the Twins farm system. You can find out just how much if you go to his site (or straight to this link) and pre-order his Twins 2010 Prospect Handbook.

Anyway, looks like Seth knows a thing or two about prospects in all organizations. Some interesting names on his list.

1.) Jason Heyward – OF – Atlanta Braves
2.) Brian Matusz – LHP – Baltimore
3.) Stephen Strasburg – RHP – Washington Nationals
4.) Aroldis
Chapman – LHP – Cincinnati Reds
5.) Jesus Montero – C – New York
6.) Jeremy Hellickson – RHP – Tampa Bay Rays
7.) Buster Posey – C
– San Francisco Giants
8.) Carlos Santana – C – Cleveland Indians
Madison Bumgarner – RHP – San Francisco Giants
10.) Pedro Alvarez – 3B –
Pittsburgh Pirates
11.) Neftali Feliz – RHP – Texas Rangers
Dustin Ackley – 2B – Seattle Mariners
13.) Domonic Brown – OF – Philadelphia
14.) Aaron Hicks – OF – Minnesota Twins
15.) Justin Smoak – 1B
– Texas Rangers
16.) Starlin Castro – SS – Chicago Cubs
17.) Mike Stanton
– OF – Florida Marlins
18.) Derek Norris – C – Washington Nationals
Jaff Decker – OF – San Diego Padres
20.) Josh Bell – 3B – Baltimore

24 hours away

That’s right, folks. We’re just about 24 hours away from the big Top 50 prospects show on the MLB Network (8 p.m. ET, also simulcast on Exciting stuff — I’m at the airport now waiting to fly home to Pittsburgh after what I think (I’ll let you guys be the judge tomorrow) was a very successful taping of the show. I have to say, working with Greg Amsinger and John Hart was a real treat. Hope you guys feel that came off, because I had a blast.

Anyway, got a few more guest rankings to try and get through here. Tonight, we’ll let Dustin Mattison from The Cardinal Nation (and, of course on Twitter @dustin_mattison) give it a whirl. He went 40 deep, for which he gets no extra credit, but I will run all 40. So here goes:

Stephen Strasburg
Jason Heyward
Buster Posey
Brian Matusz
Jesus Montero
Desmond Jennings
Aroldis Chapman
Neftali Feliz
Madison Bumgarner
10.  Carlos Santana
11.  Christian Friedrich
12.  Justin Smoak
13.  Pedro Alvarez
14.  Casey Kelly
15.  Mike Stanton
16.  Michael Taylor
17.  Wade Davis
18.  Dustin Ackley
19.  Aclides Escobar
20.  Brett Wallace
21.  Dominick Brown
22.  Jeremy Hellickson
23.  Jhoulys Chacin
24.  Martin Perez
25.  Kyle Drabek
26.  Fernando Martinez
27.  Chris Carter
28.  Mike Montgomery
29.  Tyler Matzek
30.  Lonnie Chisenhall
31.  Matt Moore
32.  Dan Hudson
33.  Aaron Hicks
34.  Ryan Westmoreland
35.  Todd Frazier
36.  Jenrry Mejia
37.  Brett Lawrie
38.  Starlin Castro
39.  Jarrod Parker
40.  Aaron Crow

A lot of different names in there, which I love. And a vote for Stras atop the list, the first one like that we’ve had here in a while.

OK, gotta make a run to the smoothy stand before I board the plane. Random celebrity sighting here at Newark Airport: Former US Senator and NBA Hall of Famer Bill Bradley.

Top 50 Preview: Guest rankings No. 2

Well, we kicked things recently by running Mike Newman’s Top 30 from Scouting the Sally.

Now it’s time for Round 2. This Top 20 Prospects list comes courtesy of Jordan Tuwiner over at (Follow him on Twitter @Orioleprospects). That sure is a fun site these days with all the work they’ve done in that system in the past few years.

Anyway, on to Jordan’s list:

  1. Stephen Strasburg, RHP, Washington Nationals 

  2. Jason Heyward, OF, Atlanta Braves
  3. Buster Posey, C, San Francisco Giants
  4. Brian Matusz, LHP, Baltimore Orioles
  5. Desmond Jennins, OF, Tampa Bay Rays
  6. Pedro Alvarez, 3B, Pittsburgh Pirates
  7. Mike Stanton, OF, Florida Marlins
  8. Carlos Santana, C, Cleveland Indians
  9. Neftali Feliz, RHP, Texas Rangers
  10. Dustin Ackley, OF, Seattle Mariners
  11. Martin Perez, LHP, Texas Rangers
  12. Jesus Montero, C, New York Yankees
  13. Chris Carter, 1B/DH, Oakland Athletics
  14. Justin Smoak, 1B, Texas Rangers
  15. Dominic Brown, OF, Philadelphia Phillies 
  16. Madison Bumgarner, RHP, San Francisco Giants
  17. Jeremy Hellickson, RHP, Tampa Bay Rays
  18. Christian Friedrich, LHP, Colorado Rockies
  19. Michael Taylor, OF, Oakland Athletics
  20. Freddie Freeman, 1B, Atlanta Braves

Pretty good list, no? Nice to see the differing opinions, with Jordan putting Stras No. 1 and Mike having Heyward in the top spot. That’s what makes this such an interesting exercise.

I’ve got one more guest rankings to post, either this weekend or on Monday. But there’s time yet for you to email me your list if you want me to throw it up there before the big Top 50 show on the MLB Network on Wednesday at 8 p.m. ET.

Putting money where his arms are

I love it when someone is willing to stand behind his team. I’ll get to exactly what I mean in a minute.

As I’ve discussed the last couple of days, the Arizona Fall League is teaming up with the Joe Niekro Foundation for a great
fundraiser/awareness-raiser this week. Any pitcher from one of the
seven organizations Joe Niekro pitched for who strikes out a batter
this week helps raise money for aneurysm awareness and research. Four
sponsors have agreed to donate $36 (Niekro’s number during his playing
days) per strikeout. That’s $144 per K.

But now there’s more to make this interesting. Oneri Fleita is the VP of Player Personnel for the Chicago Cubs, one of the seven teams Niekro played for. When he heard about what was going on in the AFL involving his pitchers, he wanted to get involved. So he’s standing behind them and putting his money where his arms are. Should the Cubs pitchers strike out the most batters this week, he will make a donation to the Joe Niekro Foundation in his pitchers’ names.

I’m hoping the other six teams involved in this great effort will see how Fleita has stepped up and will follow suit. It would make for an exciting contest — as well as raise more money and awareness for the Foundation if every team got involved in this way. I’ll be sure to update here if and when others make the same fantastic pledge Fleita has made.

With that in mind, let’s see what the totals are after Day 2 of Aneurysm Awareness Week:

Andrew Oliver, Tigers (Javelinas) — 4 K
Daniel Meszaros, Astros (Saguaros) — 2 K
Day Total: 6 K x $144per K = $864
Grand Total: 17 K = $2448

OK, Tuesday was a little light, but there weren’t that many pitchers from those organizations going. Today, the Padres’ Steve Garrison gets the start for the Saguaros, as does the Cubs’ Andrew Cashner for the Solar Sox (a good chance for Fleita’s Flock to jump into the lead). And it sometimes works that the relievers coming in back of the starters are from the same organizations, so here’s hoping for a huge Wednesday. Here are the organizational standings through two days:

Tigers — 7 K
Twins — 5 K
Astros — 3 K
Cubs — 1 K
Yankees — 1 K

Some quick notes and Stars of the Day. Royals’ first round pick Aaron Crow, discussed in this brilliant article (OK, it was written by me) not long ago, makes his AFL debut today for the Rafters. As for stars, going to make them brief:

Hitter: Jose Tabata, OF, Pirates (Scorpions) — Hitting leadoff for Scottsdale, Tabata went 3-for-6 with a double, a homer and six RBIs. That’s no easy feat, driving in a half-dozen from the leadoff spot. His home run came in the second inning off of Nick Hill, a three-run shot with two outs to highlight a four-run second. Tabata, at age 21, seems to be prepping for the start of his big-league career. He’s hitting .326 and slugging .535 so far this fall and by all accounts simply punishing the baseball on a regular basis.

Pitcher: Stephen Strasburg, RHP, Nationals (Desert Dogs) — As much as I wanted to give it to Oliver for racking up 4 K’s for the Niekro Foundation, it’s hard to look past what Strasburg did in this bounce-back effort. The No. 1 overall pick went four innings without giving up a hit, allowing just a single base knock in the fifth before leaving the game. In 4 1/3 IP, he gave up just the one hit and one run, while walking two and striking out five. No Pitch FX from that game, so I’m not sure what he was throwing, but it seemed to be working for him on Tuesday.

AFL over the weekend

Greetings all. Lots to talk about.

Let’s start with our continued efforts to provide AFL interactivity online. First, in the blogosphere, head over and say hello to Jeff Lyman, the Braves reliever who just posted for the first time. You guys have done a great job in leaving comments for the Giants’ Steven Edlefsen, so do the same for Jeff, will you?

And on Twitter, we’ve had a veritable explosion. Rather than just point out the new ones, here’s a complete list of all the AFLers who are “tweeting” from Arizona:

Richie Lentz, Red Sox — @RLentzAFL
CJ Retherford, White Sox — @CJRetherfordAFL
Jonathan Gaston, Astros — @JGastonAFL
Scot Drucker, Tigers — @Utbaseball30
Garrett Parcell, Marlins — @GParcellAFL
Hank Conger, Angels — @HCongerAFL
Trayvon Robinson, Dodgers — @TRobinsonAFL
Joseph Dunigan, Mariners — @JDuniganAFL
Drew Storen, Nationals — @drewstoren

Drew’s also blogging, so if 140 characters isn’t enough for you, check out his thoughts over on Notes from NatsTown.

Rather than go back and hand out Stars of the Day for Friday and Saturday, I figured I’d look at the first week of AFL action and nominate some candidates for Player and the Pitcher of the Week. Feel free to vote for your own in comments. The AFL might be doing an official version of that later today, but here are my own thoughts:

Player of the Week Nominees

Brandon Laird, Yankees: Starting off 10-for-16 isn’t too shabby. That’s a .625 batting average and he’s got a 1.500 OPS. He went 9-for-11 in his first two games and though he had just one hit in his third game, it was a homer and his 3 RBIs in that game give him 7 in the early going.

Mike Stanton, Marlins: Sure, he strikes out a bit (6 in 4 games), but he’s also hitting .533 (8-for-15) during his four-game hitting streak. He hit a monster homer on Oct. 17 and expect more of that before the AFL is over. He’s got three steals to boot.

Chris Heisey, Reds: Heisey’s following up a 20-20 season with a hot start in Arizona. The outfielder is also off to an 8-for-15 start. His 15 total bases tie him for the league lead (two doubles, a triple and a homer).

Andrew Lambo, Dodgers: He’s tied with Heisey with 15 total bases, having gone 8-for-17 in four games. He’s got five RBIs and two steals as well.

Casper Wells, Tigers: In three games, Wells has gone 7-for-13 with a 1.533 OPS and 6 RBIs. Three of his seven hits have been for extra bases.

Russ Mitchell, Dodgers: He’s tied for the league lead with his 8 RBIs and he’s got 2 homers as well. His 1.667 OPS tops all AFL hitters.

Clearly, there are plenty of hitting candidates for the week. But what about the pitchers?

Pitcher of the Week Nominees

Chia-Jen Lo, Astros: He’s been close to perfect in his two outings thus far. In four total innings, he’s yielded just one hit and one hit batter while walking none and striking out six. The 6 K’s lead the AFL.

Donnie Veal, Pirates:
It was just one outing, but it was perfect. The lefty went two innings in his stint and struck out three, giving up no hits and more importantly for him, no walks.

Dustin Richardson, Red Sox:  He’s made two appearances thus far and over 3 1/3 IP, has allowed just one hit and one walk while striking out five.

Sergio Santos, White Sox:  Like Lo, he’s gone four innings without allowing a run. He has yielded five hits, but hasn’t walked anyone and has struck out four. Plus, it’s a cool story since Santos played in the Fall League a few years back as a shortstop.

Stephen Strasburg, Nationals:
I’m checking the fine print, but I think I’m contractually obligated to mention him every time I talk about pitching in the AFL this fall. Besides, now I can include him in my Tags. In his “pro debut” of sorts, Strasburg went 3 1/3 scoreless innings, allowing two hits and a walk while striking out two. He goes again on Thursday in Peoria, so you can check out the Pitch FX on Gameday to see just how his stuff is playing.

AFL news: Strasburg to debut in Fall League

I know I promised some info on the AFLAC All-American Game played last weekend, but that’ll keep. Instead, I want to talk about the Arizona Fall League.

Now, I always like talking about the AFL. As I’ve been saying for years, I think it’s the best-kept secret in baseball. It should be a great vacation destination for baseball fans, but it tends to be relatively desolate on the fan front.

That might change, at least in terms of people paying attention to the elite finishing school for Minor Leaguers. That’s because it seems likely that Stephen Strasburg, the No. 1 pick of the 2009 Draft, will make his unofficial pro debut in the AFL, which begins its 18th season on Oct. 13.

Strasburg, of course, made headlines when he agreed to a record-setting $15-million-plusstrasburg.jpg Major League contract with the Nationals right at the signing deadline. He was introduced to Nats fans at a press conference/event on Friday. Now it appears the first time he’ll represent the organization on the mound will be in the desert. He’ll be a member of the Phoenix Desert Dogs, who will be aiming for their sixth straight AFL title. The odds seem pretty good that he’d be a part of the Rising Stars Showcase, set to be held in Surprise, Arizona on Nov. 7.

It also could be a springboard to a quick rise to the big leagues. A year ago, Orioles first-rounder Brian Matusz got his first taste of pro ball in the AFL and landed in Baltimore’s rotation after the All-Star break.

Strasburg will not be the only high pick from the 2009 Draft likely to be a part of the Fall League this season. Fellow National pitcher, and No. 10 pick overall, Drew Storen, is also expected to pitch for the Desert Dogs. The reliever out of Stanford has gotten off to an outstanding start to his pro career, signing quickly and already up in Double-A. Through Saturday’s games, the right-hander had a 2.35 ERA and seven saves in 30 2/3 IP across three levels. He’s held hitters to a .180 batting average and had a ridiculous 42:5 K:BB ratio. He’s yet to give up a run in six Double-A innings.

No. 2 pick Dustin Ackley should get a chance to take his hacks against the Nationals’ duo. The newest member of the Mariners organization, out of the University of North Carolina, will go to instructs in Peoria and then stay to play for the Javelinas. Joining him in Peoria, but on the other AFL team there — the Saguaros — will be No. 7 pick, LHP Mike Minor (Braves), and the No. 8 overall selection, RHP Mike Leake. Leake, of course, will be in familiar surroundings after starring for three years in Tempe for Arizona State.

Official rosters will be released in the near future and if this early news in any indication, the Arizona Fall League could be ready for its best season in what’s been a very, very successful run.

Conference Tourney Time!

I know I’ve been college heavy of late, but that’s just the way it is. I promise to have more in the way of high school stuff later in the week, particularly in my next Draft Notebook.

But today is a great day for draft — and college baseball — fans. While some may have started yesterday (though rain interrupted the Big East), most of the big college tournaments start in earnest today. Here are some highlights:


5 p.m. CT: Vanderbilt vs. LSU
You get lefty Mike Minor against top-seeded LSU (Jared Mitchell, DJ LeMahieu, etc) right off the bat.

Big 12

4 p.m. CT: Missouri vs. Texas A&M
I was hoping for a Kyle Gibson  vs. Brooks Raley game, but you’ll have to deal with just Gibson. Raley will pitch for A&M on Friday.

Big 10

3:35 p.m. ET: Indiana vs. Purdue
Eric Arnett
should get the ball for the Hoosiers. There was some concern when he didn’t pitch over the weekend, their last regular-season series. From what I’ve been told, there’s nothing to worry about. Arnett had thrown a LOT of pitches in his previous few starts and while college coaches don’t worry too much about abusing arms to get wins, when the Big 10 regular season title wasn’t up for grabs when Arnett’s usual turn came up, they decided to let him rest to put all of the proverbial eggs in the conference tourney basket. It should be interesting to see how he does with the extra rest, and if he’ll pitch more than once in the tourney should the Hoosiers get that far.

Atlantic Sun
3 p.m. ET: Lipscomb vs. Mercer
Lipscomb is the No. 2 seed and will send Rex Brothers to the mound in the opener against the fifth-seeded Mercer. His last start was washed out by rain in the early going. Could be the last look at him and he’s the type teams are probably still trying to figure out a bit.

Mountain West

3 p.m. CT: San Diego State vs. New Mexico
You didn’t think I could get through a post about college baseball and not mention Stephen Strasburg, did you? SDSU won their first game yesterday to move into the winner’s bracket. The 4th-seeded Aztecs take on No. 2 seed New Mexico and give the ball to Strasburg. The Lobos have the best offense in the conference and have five .400 hitters in the lineup. That didn’t seem to bother Strasburg when he faced them in Albuquerque during the regular season. He tossed a seven-hit shutout with 14 K’s.

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