Tuesday, October 21, 2008
College Players in the World Series
The World Series is set and it should be one for the ages. In todays post we thought we would show how this years Series is proof that college players are a big part of the success of professional baseball. The players and their college stats are as follows (courtesy of the official MLB web sites):
First, the Phillies do have their share of college stars on their roster. Brad Lidge was a graduate of Notre Dame and was named the Big East Conference Pitcher of the Year in 1998 and led the conference with 93 strikeouts in 80.1 innings.
Joe Blanton attended the University of Kentucky...led the Southeastern Conference and finished eighth among all NCAA Division I pitchers with 133 strikeouts in 2002
Jamie Moyer attended St. Joseph's University (PA), ( a long time ago) setting records in wins (16), ERA (1.99) and SO (90) in 1984. He had his jersey (#10) retired in November 1997 and was one of three inductees into the first class of the St. Joseph's Baseball Hall of Fame and the first-ever retired number. Completed his college degree from Indiana University in 1996,
Chase Utley attended UCLA and hit .342 with 174 RBI in 177 career games at UCLA; hit .382 with 22 HR, 69 RBI in 64 games his junior year...Ranks 4th on school's all-time HR list (53)...108 hits ranks tied for 2nd on UCLA's single-season list...Named Outstanding Player of the 2000 Oklahoma City Regional...Selected as 1st-team All-American by The Sporting News and NCBWA.
Eric Bruntlett graduated from Stanford University with a degree in economics...helped the Cardinal to three appearances in the College World Series, including the title game in 2000, and at least a share of four Pac-10 titles...twice named to the NCAA Regional All-Tournament team (1999, 2000)
Ryan Howard attended Southwest Missouri State (now call Missouri State)...
and, finally Pat Burrell attended University of Miami and in three years hit .442, 61 HR, 187 RBI, 170 BB, 94 SO, 162 games. His career .442 average ranked seventh on the NCAA's all-time list...His career .888 slugging % ranked 2nd all-time in NCAA behind Pete Incaviglia (Oklahoma State), .915...As a freshman, named 1st-team All-American by Collegiate Baseball, Baseball America; 1st freshman to win NCAA batting title (.484)...Most Outstanding Player in Central I Regional, .772, 4 HR, 8 RBI, 1.611 slugging %, 5 games...MOP in College World Series, .500, 2 HR, 8 RBI, 1.071 slugging % in 4 games...As a sophomore, named 1st-team All-American by Collegiate Baseball, Baseball America, The Sporting News...1998 winner of Golden Spikes Award as the nation's top amateur player.
The Tampa Bay Rays on the other hand are the new MLB. Players with college pedigrees and short stints in the minors. Starting with their pitching staff…
Matt Garza is a product of Fresno State, where he was named Most Outstanding Pitcher and second team All-Western Athletic Conference in 2004...named WAC Pitcher of the Year and ﬁrst-team All-WAC in 2005.
J.P. Howell was 10-0 with a 0.09 ERA as a senior earning the Cal-Hi Sports Player of the Year Award and later attended the University of Texas.
David Price was a number one pick from Vanderbilt and is only 17 months removed from his last pitch there.
Chad Bradford attended Hinds Community College in Raymond, where he earned NJCAA Second Team All-America honors in 1995...Also played one year at Southern Mississippi University, going 5-4 with a 3.59 ERA in 1996
Evan Longoria studied criminology at Long Beach State and was named the Cape Cod League's Most Valuable Player in 2005 after leading the wood-bat league in homers (8), RBIs (35), slugging (.500), extra-base hits (16) and ranked third in hits (49)...Baseball America named him a first-team summer All-American.
Carlos Pena attended Wright State University in Ohio in 1996 before transferring to Northeastern University in Massachusetts. As a junior at Northeastern University in 1998, he batted .342 (50x146) with 45 runs, seven doubles, a triple, 13 home runs, 52 RBI and 12 stolen bases.
Gabe Gross attended Auburn University, where he played baseball and football (quarterback).
Ben Zobrist was drafted out of Dallas Baptist University...also attended Olivet Nazarene (IL) and played two summers in the Northwoods Summer League for the Wisconsin Woodchucks in Wausau, WI and was named team MVP in 2003.
Andy Sonnanstine is a recent graduate of Kent State and Jason Bartlett attended the University of Oklahoma.
So there’s proof that college is having a major impact on today’s top MLB programs. We doubt that Fox will tell you where they attended school…it probably won’t be in their graphic...But, someday both the NCAA and MLB will get together and realize how just a mere mention of what college a pro player attended can have a exponential affect on awareness and the growth of the college game. It's that way in football and basketball...It will get to that level in baseball too. We can't wait.
As a side note, we would like to thank all of those that read our blog yesterday. It was the most visitors we have ever had in our history.