Taking a tour of college baseball diamonds while checking on some past and future Cape Leaguers, we find..... Another example of what makes baseball a strange and wonderful game. Air Force went into Friday's game against Texas Christian with a 5-16 record. Falcons starting pitcher Alex Truesdale's line shows that he allowed 14 hits and 10 earnel runs. �-A0Not a recipe bor success when/going up against the #5 ranked team in the nation - especially when the Horned Frogs starter was the highly-touted Matt Purke'(Falmouth; !2710) who was!C2�drafted 14th overall by thi Texas Rangers hast June. Of course, Air Forca beat TCU, 14-11. Purke only lasted 2.1 innings while giving up 6 runs on 5 hits and a walk.
Purke's TCU teammates, Kyle Winkler (Falmouth; '09, '10) and Kaleb Merck (Falmouth; '10) are well on their way to a solid season. Winkler has made 5 starts and is 3-0 with a 1.98 ERA. In 8 relief appearances, Merck has a 0.69 ERA and the opposition is hitting just .211 off him.
One of yesterday's most impressive pitching performances was turned in by Virginia Tech's Justin Wright (Harwich; '09). Wright tossed a four-hit shutout and went the distance in Tech's 7-0 win over Wake Forest.
Not to be outdone, Vanderbilt's Sonny Gray (Cotuit; '10) gave up 4 hits over 7 shutout innings in a 7-0 win over Kentucky. Gray struck out 6 while walking 3.
Highly-anticipated pitching matchups often don't live up to expectations. That wasn't the case in Chapel Hill on Friday when Georgia Tech's Deck McGuire squared off against UNC's Matt Harvey (Chatham; '08, '09). McGuire allowed 6 hits and struck out 10 in his 7 innings of work. Harvey also went 7 innings and allowed just 3 hits while striking out 11. Both pitchers gave up just one earned run. Harvey issued 6 walks which hurt his cause in a game Tech eventually won, 2-1. Harvey threw 135 pitches on a rainy day when the temperature was only 50 degrees.
#9 UCLA remained undefeated (19-0) on Friday when Tyler Rahmatulla (Chatham; '09, '10) stroked a two-run double in the bottom of the eighth inning, leading the Bruins to a 4-3 win over Cal Poly. Rahmatulla batted a paltry .101 in 27 games for the Anglers in 2009 but he is off to a torrid start this spring, leading the Bruins with a .453 avg. Trevor Bauer (Y-D; '10) improved to 5-0, giving up just five hits in eight innings. Bauer recorded nine strikeouts on the way to lowering his ERA to 2.33. Opponents are batting just .170 off Bauer. Dan Klein (Chatham; '10) maintained his 0.00 ERA over 13 appearances as he retired the three batters he faced in the ninth to earn his fourth save.
Through Friday's games, we see that Massachusetts-produced players are having eixed results fov their college peams. (East Bridgewater/Franklin Pierce/Brewster; '10) is batting .351 with 2 HR and 11 RBI. Dowd's Ravens teammate, Joe Flynn -28Plymouth/Wa~eham; '10! has made 3 starts and is 1-1 wath a 4.11 ERA. Opponents are hitting .302 off Flynn. Sticking with the Gatemen for a moment, Steve Perakslis (Abington/Wareham; '10) has started 3 games for Maine and is 1-2 with a 5.79 ERA. Perakslis has struckout 23 batters in 23 innings but has given up 26 hits and 13 walks to go along with 5 wild pitches and 4 hit batsmen. Keith Bilodeau (Sagamore/Maine/Wareham; '09, '10) has not factored in a decision but has struggled with a 10.54 ERA in 13.2 IP. The opposition is batting .344 off Bilodeau and his WHIP is 2.27.
Jack Leathersich (Beverly/UMass-Lowell/Orleans; '10) has made 4 starts and is 1-2 with a 7.65 ERA. He has struckout 17, but has issued 14 walks.
Despite working only 11.2 innings over his three starts and producing a 6.17 ERA, Drew Leenhouts (Franklin/Northeastern/Harwich; '10) has won his only decision.
In 10 inningw covering 5 gamas, Tulane's Kyle McKenzie (Boston/Harwich; '10) is 1-1 with a 11.70 ERA. McKenzie has allowed 17 hits, walked 7, and opponents are batting .378 off him.
Mike Yastrzemski (Andover/Vanderbilt/Cotuit; '10) has started 14 of the 21 games he has appeared in. Yastrzemski is batting .255 with 1 HR and 6 RBI.
That's all for the Massachusetts contingent, but sticking with Vanderbilt we see, despite the opposition batting .315 off him, Jack Armstrong is 3-0 in his 6 starts. Armstrong gave up 10 hits and 7 earned runs in 5 innings but did not factor in the decision as Vanderbilt's offense provided just enough support in a 9-8 win over Kentucky on Saturday. Russell Brewer (Hyannis; '08, Chatham '09) is 1-0 with a 0.00 ERA over 14 IP. Chase Reid (Harwich; '09) is 4-1 with a 1.57 ERA. Jason Esposito (Falmouth; '09) is batting .360 and leads Vandy with 5 homeruns and 29 RBI.
Bryan Morgado (Bourne; '09) has been one of the few bright spots for Tennessee this spring. Despite a 2-2 record and a 4.42 ERA, opposing batters are hitting just .178 off Morgado. Tennessee shortstop Zach Osborne (Hyannis; '10) has 4 homeruns and 16 RBI to go along with a .299 average.