LONG BEACH, Calif.—Before we get to the Tuesday Roundup, here are a few observations from the game I attended. On a chilly, wet night at Blair Field, Long Beach State hosted defending champion Arizona in its home opener, and the Dirtbags showed off their improved lineup before rain suspended play in the eighth inning, with LBSU leading 5-4.
Since the BBCOR bat era began in 2011, just seven home runs have been hit in college games at Blair Field. The Dirtbags didn't hit their first long ball at home until the final weekend last year, but they matched that season total in their first home game of 2013. With a stiff wind blowing out to left field, Josh Guerra launched a soaring two-run shot to left in the fourth inning, capping Long Beach's four-run rally against Arizona starter Nick Cunningham. One batter earlier, freshman catcher Eric Hutting had broken a 1-1 tie by flicking a breaking ball into left field for a two-run single. And in the third, No. 9 hitter Michael Hill smacked a triple off the left-field wall, then scored on a sacrifice fly.
Hutting, Guerra and Hill comprised the bottom third of LBSU's lineup, which appears to be very capable from top to bottom. Colby Brenner and Jeff McNeil bring speed and bat control to the top of the order, and the middle of the order has some thump with Ino Patron and Richard Prigatano. It certainly looks like a regional-caliber lineup.
Arizona's lineup is bookended by a pair of quality freshmen in speedy leadoff man Scott Kingery and heady shortstop Kevin Newman, who hits ninth. Those two are nice additions to a depleted lineup that will rely on veterans Johnny Field and Brandon Dixon to do much of the heavy lifting in the middle.
The Wildcats hope Cunningham can be a key contributor as a senior; poor command has held him back in the past. He did a nice job pounding the strike zone with his 88-90 fastball and 74-77 curve on Tuesday, though he wasn't overpowering. If he can continue to throw strikes, he will be a significant factor on this pitching staff. [...] Continue Reading »
Four Top 25 teams were in action Monday, and all four of them picked up victories to remain undefeated on the season. Top-ranked North Carolina jumped out to an early lead and cruised to a 7-1 win against Coastal Carolina, as three UNC relievers combined for 5 2/3 innings of one-hit, scoreless relief. Few teams have bullpens that can shorten games more effectively than UNC.
No. 6 Oregon State wrapped up an unbeaten run at the Palm Springs Tournament with a 5-4 win against UC Riverside in 11 innings. Tyler Painton provided six innings of one-hit, shutout relief for the Beavers, who won it on Joey Matthews' walk-off RBI double in the 11th. No. 14 Oregon completed a four-game sweep of Hawaii with a 4-2 win. J.J. Altobelli (3-for-4, 2 RBI) led Oregon's offense, which did most its damage in a three-run fifth.
And No. 11 Kentucky trailed 10-6 after seven innings but stormed back with four in the eighth and another in the ninth to win 11-10. Thomas Bernal delivered a game-winning pinch-hit RBI single in the ninth.
Let's move on to this week's mailbag question. As a reminder, you can submit questions for the mailbag on Twitter (@aaronfitt), or by emailing email@example.com.
I read your tweets from the USC game on Sunday, and I was wondering what you thought about the Trojans. I know they're young, but is the talent level improving? Is there any reason for optimism this year?
I was on hand for first-week Southern California head coach Dan Hubbs' first victory, a stirring 4-3 comeback Sunday against Nebraska. The Trojans trailed by a run heading into the ninth, but freshman Vahn Bozoian kickstarted a rally with a one-out single up the middle, and Adam Landecker capped it with a walk-off RBI single. [...] Continue Reading »
Who says the long ball is a thing of the past in college baseball? Florida's Zack Powers became the second college baseball player this weekend to belt two grand slams in one game, joining Virginia's Kenny Towns, who did it Friday. Powers finished with nine RBIs in Florida's 16-5 win against Duke.
We'll recap Sunday's Top 25 action below, but first let's take a look at some of the other major storylines of the day and the weekend:
• Pittsburgh bludgeoned Wichita State, 11-3, to complete a three-game sweep—the first time the Shockers have been swept in a three-game set at home since 1970. This series also marked WSU coach Gene Stephenson's first home losses ever in the month of February. The Shockers had been 69-0 all-time at home in February. On Sunday, the Panthers put up six runs in the first, and Rhys Aldenhoven (6.1 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 3 K) kept the Shockers in check.
• The Big West had a big weekend. Conference favorite Cal State Fullerton went 4-0, but UC Irvine also made serious noise with a dominating sweep of Baylor, capped by a 15-3 thrashing Sunday (more on the Anteaters in Monday's Three Strikes). Cal Poly completed a three-game sweep of a quality San Francisco club with a 10-5 win Sunday, as Chris Hoo smacked a grand slam to cap Poly's seven-run sixth inning. UC Santa Barbara erupted for eight runs in the seventh inning Sunday to beat Fresno State 11-3, clinching a road series against a talented club. And UC Davis won three of four against a Washington team that entered the season with some buzz. Nick Lynch (3-for-5, 2 RBI) led a 13-hit attack in UC Davis' 7-5 win Sunday.
• Georgia Southern pounded Georgia, 11-2, to clinch its first three-game series win against the Bulldogs since 1986. A record-setting three-game attendance of 9,225 took in the series in Statesboro.
• Clinton Freeman had a massive weekend for East Tennessee State, which won two of three against Penn State. Freeman, a junior first baseman/lefthanded pitcher, went 8-for-10 at the plate with a double, a triple, three home runs, five RBIs, seven runs scored and three walks. He also made two appearances on the mound, striking out three while earning a save in 1.1 innings of work. [...] Continue Reading »
It's been another long day of college baseball here in Southern California, so today's blog will just focus on the Top 25 results. UC Irvine and San Diego State made loud statements by clinching series today, and I liked what I saw from both of them. I'll have plenty on both teams in Monday's Three Strikes.
Weather wreaked havoc on the East Coast, causing a number of cancellations and postponements. Many Sunday games look to be in jeopardy as well.
We have two particularly notable individual performances to highlight before we get to the Top 25 roundup. Troy's Danny Collins hit for the cycle in a 22-5 win against Florida A&M, going 5-for-6 with three runs and six RBIs. And Texas A&M-Corpus Christi's Trevor Foss posted an sterling line in a 6-0 win against Texas-Pan American: 9 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 15 K.
Top 25 Showdowns
• (9) Stanford at (18) Rice: The Cardinal evened the series with a 3-2 win. Justin Ringo's RBI double in the eighth broke a 2-2 tie, and the Cardinal got strong relief work from Daniel Starwalt (3.1 IP, 3 H, 0 R) and Garrett Hughes (0.2 IP, 0 H, 0 R for the save). Jordan Stephens (7.1 IP, 5 H, 3 ER) was solid in a losing effort for the Owls.
• (14) Texas Christian at (13) Mississippi: The Rebels erased a 2-1 deficit with four runs in the eighth to pull out a 5-2 win, clinching the series. Tanner Mathis hit an RBI single to tie the game, then scored the go-ahead run on Auston Bousfield's RBI single. Preston Morrison (7 IP, 2 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 9 K) pitched very well into the eighth for TCU, but Ole Miss got to Justin Scharf and Andrew Mitchell. Aaron Greenwood (3.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K) sparkled in relief for the Rebels to earn the win. [...] Continue Reading »
College baseball's Opening Day is in the books, and there is plenty of action to digest. Quality pitching performances abounded, and there were even a few offensive explosions (led by Virginia DH/3B Kenny Towns' two-grand slam day in a rout of East Carolina). Let's round up the Top 25 showdowns and upsets, then touch on a few other highlights from a fun first day.
Top 25 Showdowns
• (9) Stanford at (18) Rice: Austin Kubitza (6 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 4 BB, 12 K) pitched much better than first-team preseason All-American Mark Appel (5 IP, 7 H, 5 R, 2 ER, 3 BB, 3 K), leading Rice to a 5-1 win. Kubitza set a career high for strikeouts in a game and escaped trouble by getting inning-ending strikeouts in the third, fourth, fifth and sixth. Zech Lemond (3 IP, 3 H, 1 ER) was strong in relief to earn the save.
• (14) Texas Christian at (13) Mississippi: Bobby Wahl (6.1 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 8 K) bested Brandon Finnegan (6 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 4 K) in a crisp pitcher's duel, as Ole Miss pulled out a 1-0 win. Tanner Bailey and Brett Huber combined for 2.2 innings of one-hit relief for the Rebels, who pushed across the winning run on Will Jamison's squeeze bunt in the fifth.
Top 25 Upsets
• Indiana vs. (4) Louisville: Joey DeNato (4 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 3 K) and Evan Bell (4 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K) stifled Louisville's offense in a 2-0 upset at the Big East/Big Ten Challenge. The Big Ten favorites got two hits apiece from Kyle Schwarber and Dustin DeMuth and pushed across runs in the fourth and fifth against Chad Green (4 IP, 7 H, 2 ER). [...] Continue Reading »
Florida junior righthander Karsten Whitson, a third-team preseason All-American and unsigned 2010 first-round pick, will miss the 2013 season following cleanup surgery in his shoulder, according to his father, Kent Whitson.
The good news is Whitson's labrum and rotator cuff are in good shape, and Dr. James Andrews was able to locate and repair an impingement that was causing him discomfort.
"When they went in, there was not a definitive thing they were looking to do. They were looking for what was causing the discomfort, and they found it," Kent Whitson said. "It was the least invasive thing they could do. Now, putting a scope in your arm is invasive in itself. Honestly, you're talking about eight weeks before you can pick a baseball back up. That's why this year is going to be a scratch for him. There's really not a way for him to get himself caught back up. It would be silly to pitch the last two weeks of the year, burn a year (of eligibility), burning opportunities that down the road you probably would wish that you didn't do. So for him, it's just going to be better to not pitch this year. Realistically, Andrews told him four months before you can pitch again."
That timetable opens the possibility that Whitson could return to pitch in summer ball and try to boost his stock with scouts, but Kent Whitson said it's too early to determine whether Karsten will try to do that or just direct all his energy toward preparing for his redshirt junior season and the 2014 draft.
"He's going to come back 100 percent, without the pain, and he's going to be lights-out," Kent Whitson said. "He is really going to be tough come the spring of next year. He's never had a fall, a break, a spring, then rolling into competition. It hasn't worked out that way for him. I think what he'll do is just redshirt and go into '14 still having options open." [...] Continue Reading »
John Manuel met up with N.C. State's Carlos Rodon and Trea Turner and North Carolina's Kent Emanuel and Colin Moran to talk about the upcoming college baseball season and present them with copies of the new cover on which they star.
Hours after Southern California fired Frank Cruz and elevated Dan Hubbs to head coach, Hubbs spoke with Baseball America about his whirlwind first day as head coach at his alma mater and his vision for the future of USC baseball.
I'm sure this was a strange day for you; can you describe the emotions of becoming head coach at your alma mater, and having to take over for your friend two days before the season starts?
"I told my wife and I've told other people, it's bittersweet. I'd be lying if I didn't say this was a job that I've always dreamed of. I played at SC, I love the school, my wife and I met there. But a really good friend of mine lost his job and I'm taking over. And (Cruz was) someone who gave me an opportunity to come back and coach at my alma mater. So I'm kind of sad in that respect and I'm excited for the opportunity. But he's a great friend—I don't know a better way to put it. I think Frank Cruz is a great person who I respect a ton. I think he's a great coach, I think he's a great person, and I think he's a great friend. I think it's unfortunate and sad, everything that's come about, but I told the team, we have to look forward now. We don't have time for anything other than that. We start our season—against Fullerton of all people—in two days. It's not like it wasn't going to be tough enough."
How did the players react to the news?
"The players have been very receptive. I think they're excited for me. We kind of stopped practice in the middle, when everything went down. They played really hard when we practiced, they were very energetic. So that piece was good. My message to the team was we have to focus forward now." [...] Continue Reading »
UPDATED: Wednesday, 1:49 a.m. ET
Southern California fired head coach Frank Cruz on Wednesday, six days after it suspended him pending an investigation into an NCAA rules infraction. Dan Hubbs, in his second season at USC, has been elevated from associate head coach to head coach.
In a release, the school said it was dismissing Cruz for "knowingly violating NCAA Countable Athletically-Related Activities limitations within his program."
Those CARA rules restrict the number of hours student-athletes can spend in activities directed by or supervised by the coaching staff. USC has also self-imposed a reduction in the number of practice session hours for its baseball team this season and next season.
"Adhering to all NCAA rules is paramount for each one of our coaches, student-athletes and staff members," USC athletic director Pat Haden said in the release. "Those who knowingly break NCAA rules are subject to termination."
Cruz started his college coaching career as an assistant under Mike Gillespie at USC from 1993-96, then spent 12 seasons as the head coach at Loyola Marymount, leading the Lions to three regionals. He joined Chad Kreuter's staff as a volunteer after he was fired from LMU, then became the interim head coach when Kreuter was dismissed in August 2010. [...] Continue Reading »
Florida righthander Karsten Whitson, a Freshman All-American in 2011, will be sidelined to start his junior season, the school announced today in a brief press release, which did not specify how long he will be out.
"Karsten has been battling continued shoulder fatigue," Florida baseball head athletic trainer Pat Hassell said in the two-paragraph release. "We have pursued a conservative management plan to treat this issue. Karsten is evaluating further options at this time that will allow for a healthy and productive return to baseball."
Baseball America has learned that Whitson will meet with Dr. James Andrews today, and more details about the nature of his injury could emerge by this afternoon.
Whitson, the unsigned No. 9 overall pick in the 2010 draft, turned down a $2.1 million offer from the Padres and attended Florida, where he had a strong freshman year (8-0, 2.45) but an injury-marred sophomore season. Gators officials blamed lingering forearm tendinitis for limiting him to just 33 innings last year, and he left the Cape Cod League after three innings due to shoulder stiffness last summer.
He flashed his characteristic explosive stuff—a mid-90s fastball and a wipeout slider—during the fall and even at times during practice this spring, but he continued to be dogged by shoulder discomfort, although examinations have revealed no obvious structural damage in the past. Whitson refused to speak with Baseball America for a College Preview feature story last month, further clouding his health status.
Southern California has suspended head coach Frank Cruz from his coaching duties pending an investigation by the university to determine whether NCAA Countable Athletically Related Activities occurred within his program. Associate head coach Dan Hubbs will serve as interim head coach during the investigation.
NCAA bylaws restrict the number of hours that players can spend in activities directed by or supervised by the coaching staff.
"We take any potential NCAA infraction seriously," UCS athletic director Pat Haden said in a statement. "USC Vice President for Athletic Compliance Dave Roberts and his staff will investigate whether the baseball program exceeded the allowable CARA hours, and will do so diligently and expeditiously. Pending the results of the investigation, we have suspended Coach Cruz from all coaching duties." [...] Continue Reading »
Just two years ago, California's baseball program was preparing to head into its final Division I season, unless a frantic fundraising effort succeeded in saving it from the chopping block.
Not only did supporters save the program, but the future of Cal baseball now looks brighter than ever. The school announced Thursday that Evans Diamond, which has served as Cal's home field on campus since 1933, will receive a $2.25 million upgrade this spring, with the installation of a new sports lighting system and scoreboard.
Heading into the 2013 season, Cal is the only Pac-12 school without permanent lighting at its baseball field. When the Golden Bears found themselves in position to host a super regional in 2011, they had to scramble to find an adequate venue, eventually hosting Dallas Baptist at Santa Clara's stadium. The recent launch of the Pac-12 Networks made it imperative for Cal to install lighting, in order to maximize its opportunity to appear on television. The lights are scheduled to be ready in time for Cal's Pac-12 home opener on March 28 against Southern California. [...] Continue Reading »
Get your DVR ready! Here is every college game scheduled to be on television for all teams in the Southeastern Conference, Atlantic Coast Conference, Pacific-12 Conference and Big 12 Conference, as well as any other preseason Top 25 team and any team with a prospect on Baseball America's overall Top 50 list for the 2013 draft.
UPDATE: ESPN has released its complete 2013 college baseball schedule, which includes 151 regular-season games across all of its platforms (ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU and ESPN3), an increase of 41 games from a year ago. ESPNU's Thursday night SEC game of the week returns on March 28, while the ACC Monday package of five games begins March 25. Here's a link to the entire ESPN schedule. And here's a link to the Big Ten Network's complete schedule and several games are also available online at CBS Sports' ULive site.
The Miami New Times dropped a bombshell on baseball today, reporting on a Coral Gables-based anti-aging clinic that it describes as "the East Coast version of BALCO." In addition to implicating University of Miami benefactor Alex Rodriguez—for whom the Hurricanes' home field is named—the story links Miami's baseball strength and conditioning coach and two former players to the clinic.
The New Times turned up numerous handwritten notebooks and payment records that connect Rodriguez and former Hurricane stars Yasmani Grandal and Cesar Carrillo to performance-enhancing drug purchases from Biogenesis, the clinic run by Tony Bosch. Jimmy Goins, who is in his ninth year as the strength and conditioning coach, is also listed in multiple Biogenesis client lists, according to the New Times.
"The University of Miami is aware of media reports regarding one of our employees and an intensive review is underway," UM's athletics department said in a statement. "We will not comment further on personnel matters." [...] Continue Reading »
The National College Baseball Hall of Fame took a major step toward becoming a reality Tuesday, thanks to a $5 million capital campaign grant from the Moody Foundation.
The grant brings the total raised toward the campaign to build a Hall of Fame in Lubbock, Texas, to approximately $7 million, not including the value of the land committed by the City of Lubbock. The total campaign goal is $13 million, with $9 million needed for facility construction and a $4 million endowment.
"This is a momentous day for our organization," Mike Gustafson, executive director of the College Baseball Hall of Fame, said in a release. "This is a huge step forward for the capital campaign and the mission of the musem."
Frances Moody-Dahlberg, executive director of the Galveston-based foundation, said the College Baseball Hall of Fame and its mission of preservation and education was a natural fit for the foundation. [...] Continue Reading »
CHICAGO—College coaches no longer gripe about BBCOR bats, which have suppressed offense dramatically since becoming mandatory two years ago. In fact, American Baseball Coaches executive director Dave Keilitz said 86 percent of Division I coaches now support the new bats, according to the results of a survey he conducted of his membership.
But even though coaches are content with the less lively bats, there is a new movement to switch to a livelier ball—specifically, the ball used by professional leagues. That was one of the more notable topics of discussion at the 2013 ABCA convention, where coaches gathered for the annual Division I business meeting on Thursday night.
Clemson coach Jack Leggett led the push for switching to the professional ball this fall, prompting Keilitz to study the issue. Currently, Keilitz said, the NCAA does not mandate any ball standards for regular-season play except that the ball’s coefficient of restitution (COR) cannot exceed .555. The higher the COR, the farther a ball will travel. Professional baseball uses a ball with a maximum COR of .578.
In the NCAA tournament, games must be played with an official Rawlings ball with seams that are higher than the seams of a pro baseball. For that reason, college conferences generally use the raised-seam ball during the regular season to prepare for the postseason.
[...] Continue Reading »
North Carolina State coach Elliott Avent told Baseball America on Monday that the Wolfpack has parted ways with senior catcher Danny Canela.
Canela has 17 homers in three seasons at N.C. State, and he's coming off his best season in 2012, when he hit .348/.457/.507 with six homers, 18 doubles and 46 RBIs. He was slated to hit cleanup for the 'Pack as a senior, and he would have provided a much-needed lefthanded bat in the middle of the lineup.
"He is a great player, and he served us well, so I wish him well," Avent said. "For three years, he's been a good guy and a good player. At some point this fall, we just kind of parted ways."
Scouts have questioned Canela's work ethic for years, wondering why he hasn't been able to firm up his round frame (listed at 5-foot-9, 241 pounds). But he's always had a knack for making quality contact at the plate. Canela is headed to NAIA Lee (Tenn.), coach Michael Moody confirmed Tuesday, and he will be immediately eligible this spring.
For a Wolfpack team with legitimate College World Series aspirations, losing Canela is a blow, but NCSU should be able to overcome it. Sophomore catcher Brett Austin, an unsigned supplemental first-round pick in 2011, figured to be the primary catcher anyway, but losing Canela takes away N.C. State's security blanket in case injury should strike. Now Austin and freshman John Mangum are the only catchers on the roster, Avent said.
Austin's prospect pedigree is built on his offensive potential, as many scouts believed two years ago that he would eventually have to move to another position, but Avent said he worked hard this summer to improve behind the plate.
"He went to the Cape, he caught and did pretty good," Avent said. "Austin's receiving has cleaned up, although he still misses a ball occasionally. If he stays healthy, we'll be OK behind the plate.
"There will be more pressure on him, but I think he's good enough to handle it. If he gets hurt is my biggest fear. That's when I think we'd go backwards."
Longtime Jacksonville University coach Terry Alexander announced Wednesday that the 2013 season will be his last at the school. JU athletic director Brad Edwards also said the school will name pitching coach Tim Montez head coach-in-waiting at the end of the year, the Florida Times-Union reported.
The changes come on the heels of an immensely disappointing 2012 campaign. The Dolphins entered the season as favorites to win the Atlantic Sun Conference and were regarded as a legitimate contender to win a regional. But they finished in last place in the A-Sun and 18-38 overall—the worst season in Alexander's 23 years as head coach.
Alexander's tenure has been overwhelmingly successful. He has been a member of the JU coaching staff since 1980, and since taking over as head coach in 1991 he has led the Dolphins 10 regionals a 713-590-2 record, making him easily the winningest coach in school history. Jacksonville has made four trips to regionals in the last seven years, but 2012 was trying. Even so, the 57-year-old Alexander told reporters that was not the reason for his departure.
"The wheels kind of fell off last year with a lot of injuries and other things that were happening," he said. "I just couldn't walk away then. I had to come back another year and try to go out a winner. I wanted the seniors to go out a winner."
Alexander also indicated he isn't ready for retirement yet. [...] Continue Reading »
Vanderbilt has had plenty of success bringing Northeasterners to Nasvhille—from coach Tim Corbin to players like Pedro Alvarez, Ryan Flaherty and Mike Yastrzemski. Now the Commodores have tapped into their Northeast pipeline again, hiring Scott Brown away from St. John's to be their new pitching coach.
Brown replaces Derek Johnson, who left to become the Cubs' minor league pitching coordinator last month. Like Johnson, Brown has a great baseball mind and has earned the respect of his peers and professional scouts alike.
"Being from the northeast, Scott is someone that I have followed for quite some time," Corbin said. "When you ask about young pitching coaches that have made a difference, Scott's name is widely mentioned . . . He is one of the most respected young coaches in our profession."
Brown spent the last nine seasons as an assistant under Red Storm coach Ed Blankmeyer, helping to lead St. John's to seven regionals and five Big East championships. The Red Storm reached super regionals for the first time this year, losing to eventual national champion Arizona. Before that, Brown coached at Division III power Cortland (N.Y.) State. He also has experience coaching in the New York Collegiate Baseball League and the New England Collegiate Baseball League, where he won the 2004 manager of the year award after guiding the Sanford Mainers to the NECBL title.
There was never any doubt that Vanderbilt would make a strong hire to replace Johnson, and that's just what it did.
Buddy Bolding, who shepherded Longwood from Division III to D-II to D-I during the course of his 35-year tenure, will retire after the 2013 season, the school announced Tuesday.
Bolding coached the Lancers to 26 consecutive winning seasons from 1979-2004, a stretch that included six trips to the D-II NCAA tournament and two appearances in the D-II College World Series. The Lancers completed the transition to D-I in 2008 and have posted four straight winning seasons since then. They have found a home in the Big South Conference, after starting as a D-I independent.
Since taking over as head coach in the fall of 1978, Bolding has led Longwood to a 927-516-4 mark. Nine of his players have been drafted since 1988, most notably Michael Tucker, who spent 12 years in the big leagues as an outfielder.
"We now stand at the threshold of a new day for Longwood's rich athletic history and for Longwood's well-conceived ambitions for a bright future," Bolding said in an uncommonly colorful statement. "The prudent time for me to pass the baseball torch along to another is at hand, and I joyously extend that torch forward while it yet burns bright. Countless professional scouts, opponent coaches, and others have over the years said that Buddy Bolding possessed the greatest batting practice arm known to man; and even I might agree with that assertion; but as that arm is now seven-plus million pitches well-worn, it cannot continue to develop great Lancer batsmen for a successful future in the Big South Conference, as will be needed.
"In short, I cannot be Buddy Bolding forever, and my standard, and the pride I have had in throwing that BP, is such that I cannot suffer to offer my hitters less than they deserve. I, therefore, walk away from the ball yard having given my best and having left nothing on the diamond for the crows to pick over. In scriptural terms, I have fought the good fight."
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