Valley League Weekly Honors – July 9, 2007

-Courtesy of Valley Baseball League-

Complete Week 5 League Notes

Players of the Week

Matt Payne (Hiddenite, N.C.), a junior outfielder from North Carolina State, hit .385 last week for Staunton. Payne helped to pace the Braves with two home runs, five RBIs and two runs scored. He led all players with an .846 slugging percentage and also posted a .357 on base percentage.

David Dennis (El Cajon, Calif.), from Oklahoma City University led Harrisonburg with a .455 batting average, while also finishing tied for second in the league with two home runs. Overall, Dennis collected 10 hits including a double and the two home runs, three RBIs, five runs scored and 17 total bases.

Pitchers of the Week

Scott Shuman (Valdosta, Ga.), the freshman righthander out of Auburn carried a no-hitter into the ninth inning when the Royals hosted Covington on Friday. Overall, Shuman went 1-0 in two appearances, with a 1.80 ERA. He struck out eight and allowed just four hits over 10 innings.

Joel Brookens (Fayetteville, Pa.), out of North Carolina State, lead the league with three saves and help Front Royal complete a 5-0 week. Brookens appeared in three games, pitching 3.1 innings, struck out 10 and allowed only one hit. He also picked up the save for the North team in Sunday’s All-Star game to complete a solid week of pitching.

NSU coach could return to Alabama as assistant

TUSCALOOSA – Mitch Gaspard is expected to rejoin the University of Alabama baseball coaching staff as its top assistant, two sources said Monday.

Gaspard could resign his post as the head coach of Northwestern State University, where he has been since the 2002 season, as early as today.

Simultaneous announcements from Alabama and Northwestern State will come when the move is official, likely Wednesday.

Complete story

Beavers get chance to swing bats again

CORVALLIS — After pretty much destroying the field at last month’s College World Series, Oregon State’s baseball team found something else to demolish on Monday morning.

A handful of the Beavers, with bats in hand, began knocking down a house to make way for a new home for a deserving family on the television program “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition.”

A group from OSU’s national championship team — head coach Pat Casey, pitchers Eddie Kunz and Blake Keitzman, infielders Lonnie Lechelt and Brett Casey, outfielders Scott Santschi and Braden Wells, catcher Erik Ammon, injured catcher Casey Priseman and manager Peter Hughes — spent much of the morning at the job site in Lewisburg, just north of Corvallis. The players eventually got to blow off a little steam by clubbing walls, windows and fixtures for the cameras.

Shortly thereafter, a pair of backhoes began the heavy demolition of the home that formerly housed Rob and Rachel Byers and their family. Their 8-year-old daughter, Jenessa, has a form of childhood cancer and is fighting a recurrence.

Complete story

Western Carolina interviewing several coaches

Two more candidates, including a member of the Western Carolina baseball “family,” are getting a shot this week at becoming the Catamounts’ next head coach.

Jeff Sziksai, a Reynolds graduate and former WCU player, met with Western officials on Monday in Cullowhee. Georgia Tech associate head coach Bobby Moranda will also get an interview this week.

WCU assistant coach Eric Filipek, former N.C. State assistant Chris Roberts and Vanderbilt assistant Erik Bakich got their chances last week.

Complete story

TCL All-Star Game!

Derek Wiley, second from right, celebrates his three-run homer.

After losing the first three Texas Collegiate League All-Star games, the Rogers Hornsby Division finally broke through.

McKinney’s Derek Wiley hit a three-run home run in the sixth inning to lead the Hornsby All-Stars past the Tris Speaker Division 3-0 Monday. Wiley, who is from Belmont University, was named the game’s MVP.

“I was looking for a good pitch and I was down 0-2, so I was going to battle,” Wiley said. “I got a good curveball to hit and just put a good swing on it.”

The Hornsby pitching staff held the Speaker All-Stars to three hits.

Greer a hit

Former Rangers outfielder Rusty Greer is making his mark in the TCL.

Greer, the first-year manager of the Colleyville LoneStars, managed the Speaker All-Stars and received a loud cheer from the fans during pregame introductions.

“It’s a big honor,” Greer said of his All-Star nomination. “Hopefully, it means I’m doing something right.”

Greer’s team is 6-10 and in last place in the division, but the 2007 Rangers Hall of Fame inductee created a buzz when he was first introduced as the Colleyville manager and has helped give the TCL a familiar face.

“That’s kind of why I took this job,” Greer said. “I wanted to help out not only the Colleyville LoneStars but the league as well.”

Fort Worth Star Telegram

TCL ALL_STAR RECAP

University Of Texas inks 15th Signee for 2008!

Freshman
Pitcher
Bats: Leftt
Throws: Left
6’5″ 195 lbs.
Hudson High School
Lufkin, Texas
#12 BRANDON BELT

Prior to SJC:
Randon was the most valuable player of his high school district and also earned All-State and All-american distinctions. 2006 drafted by Boston Red Sox.

The University of Texas baseball squad added pitcher and outfielder Brandon Belt to the squad when UT Athletics compliance office validated his National Letter of Intent on Monday.

Belt, a 6-foot, 5-inch, 190-pound left-hander originally signed a letter of intent for the 2007 season but opted to play at San Jacinto College. Last season, Belt helped lead the Gators to the JuCo World Series with a 7-2 record, 2.82 ERA and 45 strikeouts in 51 innings on the mound and a .421 batting average with 11 doubles, nine home runs and 57 RBI at the plate.

TexasSports.com press release


North earns 2-0 Shutout over South in VBL All-Star Game


FRONT ROYAL, Va., July 8, 2007 – Woodstock’s Shayne Moody drove in both runs while Front Royal’s Bennett Davis doubled and scored a run to lead the North All-Stars to a 2-0 shutout over the South All-Stars in the 2007 Valley Baseball League All-Star Game on Sunday evening at Bing Crosby Stadium.

Davis, who was also hit by a pitch, was named Most Valuable Player of the North squad in a pitching-dominated game. Just seven total hits were recorded in the game. Davis and South MVP Zach Barrett of Staunton were the only players to hit an extra-base hit, each with doubles.

The North squad was composed of players from Fauquier, Front Royal, Haymarket, Luray, Winchester, and Woodstock. The South included the two best teams in the Valley League in Waynesboro and Harrisonburg, along with Covington, New Market, and Staunton.

The first run of the game came in the third after Davis led off with a double. He advanced to third with two outs and came in to score on Moody’s sacrifice fly to center field. The other run came in the fifth inning. After the North loaded the bases on a walk, hit batter, and bunt single, Moody hit into a fielder’s choice to score Fauquier’s Jeffrey Hartwig.

No pitcher worked more than an inning in the ball game with 23 total hurlers seeing action. Robert Gilliam of Luray earned the victory as the pitcher when the first run was scored. Covington’s Robbie Andrews allowed the run to take the loss.

The evening also included a home run derby, which was won by Covington’s Jason Kipnis. Haymarket’s Spencer Wiggins won the 60-yard dash.

Railroad donates land for new Marshall stadium

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – Marshall University and CSX are currently working together to make an on-campus baseball field more than just talk at the office water cooler.

CSX, a railroad company based along 5th Avenue, wants to donate a seven-acre tract of land to Marshall in order to move the baseball field closer to campus, according to Head Baseball Coach Jeff Waggoner.

The seven acres to be donated, adjacent to Village Apartments on 22nd Street, have been toxically contaminated over an extended period of time, Menis Ketchum, chair of Marshall’s board of governors, said.

Marshall University must first remediate the land before it can be donated, Ketchum said.

Complete story

Omaha Royals prez: two stadiums can work

Omaha Royals President Alan Stein said his group is open to any sort of possibility regarding the future of baseball stadiums in Omaha.

That includes, he said, having a hand in building a new stadium in the north downtown area, even if Rosenblatt Stadium is refurbished for the College World Series.

Among the possibilities being considered by the city is a $26 million upgrade in and around Rosenblatt Stadium. Another is a new, smaller stadium in the NoDo area with expandable seating for the CWS.

Two new stadiums? Out of the question, Stein said.

“But I’m not so sure that one new stadium and an appropriately upgraded one doesn’t make sense,” he said. “One of the options I’ve seen and heard is $50 million for a new stadium for both the CWS and the Royals.

Complete story

Team USA salvages final game


Team USA took the final game of their series with the Japan University All-Stars by a score of 7-3. The USA team took advantage of three walks and two errors by the Japanese team to score six runs in the inning. Tommy Medica (Santa Clara) led the offense by going 2-3 with two runs scored and a run driven in. Mike Minor (Vanderbilt) pitched three innings in relief while giving up only one run on three hits to put his record for the summer at 4-0. Pedro Alvarez (Vanderbilt) was named Team USA’s MVP for the series while Shinya Muramatsu was given the MVP award for Team Japan. The USA national team now heads to the Pan-American games which start on July 14th against the Dominican Republic.

Team USA Release