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g-mann17

Fixing Zips Baseball

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First is there a problem or are we just young.

Second, why can't we compete to get better guys then the rest of the MAC. I'm not saying we should be able to compete with Georgia or Arizona, but we should have no problem gettin top tier MAC talent to play here. Is Lee Jackson a problem, history? Bad recruiting, coaching turnover?

Just curious what the issue is. A 9-2 whooping in front of 1800+ people really kind of sucks.

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First is there a problem or are we just young.

Second, why can't we compete to get better guys then the rest of the MAC. I'm not saying we should be able to compete with Georgia or Arizona, but we should have no problem gettin top tier MAC talent to play here. Is Lee Jackson a problem, history? Bad recruiting, coaching turnover?

Just curious what the issue is. A 9-2 whooping in front of 1800+ people really kind of sucks.

It sort of seems like after a decent start to the season, the wheels basically came off after some disappointing MAC homestands. Were injuries a problem? The pitching really fell off as the season progressed. Maybe the club baseball team needs to lend a hand. BTW, I haven't heard too many reports on club baseball this year. What''s up with that, RFR44?

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The best way to improve the baseball team would be to move the University to Florida.

If the varsity baseball team could be improved by adding anyone from the club team, it's time to drop varsity baseball.

I have added you to the "then-than" list.

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First is there a problem or are we just young.

A 9-2 whooping in front of 1800+ people really kind of sucks.

You must be young! Are you saying eighteen hundred people turned out to see the University of Akron baseball team? Where at? Back in the good ol' days of the OVC, when Mike Birkbeck was on the mound, they were lucky to get 18 people at the game. All I remember from Akron baseball was how more than once in the same game, the umps were unable to tell if a ball that landed deep fell inside or outside the fence, because there was just a chain link fence separating the OF from Exchange Street, with no canvas even covering it. Was that a HR or a Ground Rule Double? Ask the center fielder? :P

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Good point. I was going to suggest that g-mann probably has more fingers and toes than the number of college teams that average 1800+ in attendance, but I was unsure how frequently and with what degree of skill, he operates power tools.

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First is there a problem or are we just young.

Second, why can't we compete to get better guys then the rest of the MAC. I'm not saying we should be able to compete with Georgia or Arizona, but we should have no problem gettin top tier MAC talent to play here. Is Lee Jackson a problem, history? Bad recruiting, coaching turnover?

Just curious what the issue is. A 9-2 whooping in front of 1800+ people really kind of sucks.

great topic! this is a question that i can speak to. the answer is simple....pitching pitching pitching! if you are an above average pitching prospect in the state you are either going to osu or Can't State. the other teams fight over the rest. another issue is the facilities. the bullpen is a joke and the field needs re done badly. until they find a way to bring in quality pitching and upgrade the facilities we will continue to see teams that are young and get beat up on only to mature to .500 teams that can hit a little.

pains me to say that but that's where the program stands

:screwks:

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I just don't understand how we can be 2-4 in the Big Ten, lose by a total of 4 runs in 2 games to #20 in the nation, Pittsburgh, and be 3-23 in the Mid-American Conference...

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First is there a problem or are we just young.

Second, why can't we compete to get better guys then the rest of the MAC. I'm not saying we should be able to compete with Georgia or Arizona, but we should have no problem gettin top tier MAC talent to play here. Is Lee Jackson a problem, history? Bad recruiting, coaching turnover?

Just curious what the issue is. A 9-2 whooping in front of 1800+ people really kind of sucks.

great topic! this is a question that i can speak to. the answer is simple....pitching pitching pitching! if you are an above average pitching prospect in the state you are either going to osu or Can't State. the other teams fight over the rest. another issue is the facilities. the bullpen is a joke and the field needs re done badly. until they find a way to bring in quality pitching and upgrade the facilities we will continue to see teams that are young and get beat up on only to mature to .500 teams that can hit a little.

pains me to say that but that's where the program stands

:screwks:

Why is the field so bad? It looks good to me, but I don't play on it or have walked it. I thought the put $100,000 in redoing the infield and leveling the outfield a few years back. Do the elevated bullpens really suck? Please bring me up to speed.

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Many problems:

1) Terrible Facilities, my highschool and the NAIA school i played for before transferring here had much better facilities.

2) Location, kids dont want to play in the cold midwest and especially not for non established programs.

3) TERRIBLE COACHING/Recruiting We really aren't getting great talent. Compared to schools like Can't or OU (MAC wise) we have no credibility and therefore do not get the top local athletes. Add to that the fact that Bangston has to be the worst local talent evaluator possible and you have a deadly combination.

The first and easiest step to fixing these problems is obviously to fire the coach and bring in someone else with a fresh perspective on things. Bangston just isn't cutting it. Next renovate the ballpark and turn it into a REAL ballpark and then at least we could compete in a lower tier baseball conference like the MAC.

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Why is the field so bad? It looks good to me, but I don't play on it or have walked it. I thought the put $100,000 in redoing the infield and leveling the outfield a few years back. Do the elevated bullpens really suck? Please bring me up to speed.

A big problem is the space. That should be fixed by the new soccer stadium moving north a little bit. They also need to enclose the stadium and make it a little more professional.

Playing surface wise, i've played on Lee Jackson a half dozen times or so (recently) and i would give the infield a C- in terms of quality. It wasn't built properly and has a terrible lay to it. It would need to be rebuilt entirely.

Another thing i've never liked about it is it doesn't have anything that sets it apart from other ball fields. The dimensions are boring, the layout of foul territory is boring, everything about the park is just plain boring.

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First is there a problem or are we just young.

Second, why can't we compete to get better guys then the rest of the MAC. I'm not saying we should be able to compete with Georgia or Arizona, but we should have no problem gettin top tier MAC talent to play here. Is Lee Jackson a problem, history? Bad recruiting, coaching turnover?

Just curious what the issue is. A 9-2 whooping in front of 1800+ people really kind of sucks.

great topic! this is a question that i can speak to. the answer is simple....pitching pitching pitching! if you are an above average pitching prospect in the state you are either going to osu or Can't State. the other teams fight over the rest. another issue is the facilities. the bullpen is a joke and the field needs re done badly. until they find a way to bring in quality pitching and upgrade the facilities we will continue to see teams that are young and get beat up on only to mature to .500 teams that can hit a little.

pains me to say that but that's where the program stands

:screwks:

Just a question, since you seem so knowledgable about the baseball program.....

We won a MAC title about 10-12 years ago. Beat OU in the title game, if I remember correctly. Were the elite player not going to OSWHo and Ken+ at that time? Facilities could not have been an issue either, since I believe the facilities were the same? What did we have then that we don't have now?

And...I have watched some baseball games over the years.....I have not experienced a time where there was more than maybe....maybe....100 people at a home game on our home field.

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In response to all the comments regarding attendance, it must be pointed out that UA and K.E.N.T. have been playing a featured game at Canal Park every year for the last few years now (as discussed in the lead story). As far as I know, this is the only game that has a an attendance figure anywhere near 1800 and much of this is because the game is part of a charity fundraiser.

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A big problem is the space. That should be fixed by the new soccer stadium moving north a little bit. They also need to enclose the stadium and make it a little more professional.

As I understand the plans, the soccer field is moving north to make room for the soccer stands, i.e., "fix" the space problem for soccer...the team that drew over 4100 for it's final home NCAA playoff game last season. I'm not saying baseball doesn't deserve decent facilities, but I'm not sure the new soccer stadium helps baseball much, if any.

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UC Irvine and Cal State Fullerton are two mid major programs that always have nationally ranked teams. Why? because they are in Southern California where there is a ton of baseball talent, and, they can play all year long. Ohio just doesn't produce allot of top talent. Much of that has to do with weather. Even Ohio State isn't very good compared to the southwestern and southeastern schools. With that said, Akron does have the facilities to compete in the MAC, and occaisionally we do have a pretty good team, just not with the same consistency as other schools in our conference.

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Most of the problems and solutions have been covered. The university could improve facilities and coaching. But the conference could also get involved because it's not just Akron that sucks in baseball, it's almost the entire MAC.

Part of the problem could be solved by having the MAC drop baseball as a mandatory sport. It makes no sense as a northern league. Maybe three or four MAC teams drop it to save money, and the talent pool becomes a little less diluted.

Another part of the problem is the game of baseball itself. No major sport is more boring to watch when your team is losing than baseball, except maybe soccer.

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Most of the problems and solutions have been covered. The university could improve facilities and coaching. But the conference could also get involved because it's not just Akron that sucks in baseball, it's almost the entire MAC.

Part of the problem could be solved by having the MAC drop baseball as a mandatory sport. It makes no sense as a northern league. Maybe three or four MAC teams drop it to save money, and the talent pool becomes a little less diluted.

Another part of the problem is the game of baseball itself. No major sport is more boring to watch when your team is losing than baseball, except maybe soccer.

Let's not get crazy here. Baseball is far more interesting to watch (even when you are losing by 15 runs in the middle of the game like today) than soccer. I know it's a matter of personal preference but obviously baseball is due to the fact that baseball is FAR more popular at every level from High School on up.

Also, I spoke with a parent of a recruit for a second today and he had just asked me and some others if we thought that Bangston would still be there next year. I told him i would think so (but i wish he wouldn't be) but i got the feeling he wasn't asking that for assurance but more so hoping that he would be gone.

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Most of the problems and solutions have been covered. The university could improve facilities and coaching. But the conference could also get involved because it's not just Akron that sucks in baseball, it's almost the entire MAC.

Part of the problem could be solved by having the MAC drop baseball as a mandatory sport. It makes no sense as a northern league. Maybe three or four MAC teams drop it to save money, and the talent pool becomes a little less diluted.

Another part of the problem is the game of baseball itself. No major sport is more boring to watch when your team is losing than baseball, except maybe soccer.

Let's not get crazy here. Baseball is far more interesting to watch (even when you are losing by 15 runs in the middle of the game like today) than soccer. I know it's a matter of personal preference but obviously baseball is due to the fact that baseball is FAR more popular at every level from High School on up.

Also, I spoke with a parent of a recruit for a second today and he had just asked me and some others if we thought that Bangston would still be there next year. I told him i would think so (but i wish he wouldn't be) but i got the feeling he wasn't asking that for assurance but more so hoping that he would be gone.

I can think of about 100 million folks who watched the UEFA Champion League final today who might disagree with this.

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I think the problem is we recruit locally for several reasons (budget, warm weather schools).

Locally players are drawn away from baseball. Peer pressure. The football head coach gets ahold of them and calls them names if they play baseball instead of lifting. It's just where the emphasis is in this part of the country. High school football games on TV, on the 11:00 news, front page of the paper.

Meanwhile in a school like Wadsworth, we have a great ball team, put all 8 seniors into college, and nobody talks about them. It's all about the underachieving football team. The state champ wrestlers feel their pain, trust me.

We're recruiting for baseball players in a football culture. And I question the recruiting when none of the 8 Wadsworth players came to Akron. A couple went to Can't State and another YSU IIRC.

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I think the problem is we recruit locally for several reasons (budget, warm weather schools).

Locally players are drawn away from baseball. Peer pressure. The football head coach gets ahold of them and calls them names if they play baseball instead of lifting. It's just where the emphasis is in this part of the country. High school football games on TV, on the 11:00 news, front page of the paper.

Meanwhile in a school like Wadsworth, we have a great ball team, put all 8 seniors into college, and nobody talks about them. It's all about the underachieving football team. The state champ wrestlers feel their pain, trust me.

We're recruiting for baseball players in a football culture. And I question the recruiting when none of the 8 Wadsworth players came to Akron. A couple went to Can't State and another YSU IIRC.

I had offers from multiple D1 schools but i never even spoke to anyone at Akron. No surprise.

One of the players from Wadsworth that went to Can't and never even got a look from Akron is Andy Sonnanstine, he's spent multiple years in the Rays starting rotation, even pitching in the World Series. The other is Drew Saylor who tore it up for Can't State after starting his career at Cincinnati, he is not playing for the Crushers single A team in Avon. It's amazing how much talent Akron passes up locally.

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I think the problem is we recruit locally for several reasons (budget, warm weather schools).

Locally players are drawn away from baseball. Peer pressure. The football head coach gets ahold of them and calls them names if they play baseball instead of lifting. It's just where the emphasis is in this part of the country. High school football games on TV, on the 11:00 news, front page of the paper.

Meanwhile in a school like Wadsworth, we have a great ball team, put all 8 seniors into college, and nobody talks about them. It's all about the underachieving football team. The state champ wrestlers feel their pain, trust me.

We're recruiting for baseball players in a football culture. And I question the recruiting when none of the 8 Wadsworth players came to Akron. A couple went to Can't State and another YSU IIRC.

I had offers from multiple D1 schools but i never even spoke to anyone at Akron. No surprise.

One of the players from Wadsworth that went to Can't and never even got a look from Akron is Andy Sonnanstine, he's spent multiple years in the Rays starting rotation, even pitching in the World Series. The other is Drew Saylor who tore it up for Can't State after starting his career at Cincinnati, he is not playing for the Crushers single A team in Avon. It's amazing how much talent Akron passes up locally.

+1

Freshman Evan Campbell from West Branch didn't get a look at from Akron from what I've known, but Can't State gave him a scholarship, and he is now their starting 2B all season and is batting around .300

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First is there a problem or are we just young.

Second, why can't we compete to get better guys then the rest of the MAC. I'm not saying we should be able to compete with Georgia or Arizona, but we should have no problem gettin top tier MAC talent to play here. Is Lee Jackson a problem, history? Bad recruiting, coaching turnover?

Just curious what the issue is. A 9-2 whooping in front of 1800+ people really kind of sucks.

great topic! this is a question that i can speak to. the answer is simple....pitching pitching pitching! if you are an above average pitching prospect in the state you are either going to osu or Can't State. the other teams fight over the rest. another issue is the facilities. the bullpen is a joke and the field needs re done badly. until they find a way to bring in quality pitching and upgrade the facilities we will continue to see teams that are young and get beat up on only to mature to .500 teams that can hit a little.

pains me to say that but that's where the program stands

:screwks:

Just a question, since you seem so knowledgable about the baseball program.....

We won a MAC title about 10-12 years ago. Beat OU in the title game, if I remember correctly. Were the elite player not going to OSWHo and Ken+ at that time? Facilities could not have been an issue either, since I believe the facilities were the same? What did we have then that we don't have now?

And...I have watched some baseball games over the years.....I have not experienced a time where there was more than maybe....maybe....100 people at a home game on our home field.

you are correct although it was 13-14yrs ago. i played with many of those players and the reason they won the mac is they had the pitching. that was the last few years for the coach who had been with the university for years and made a lot of in roads for recruits. the coaches that followed him have done a bad job of bringing in talent and a poor job finding quality pitching. fix that and they can contend. i have no idea if or when they will put money into the facilities. every time that i've asked some one from the a.d. if there are plans to upgrade the diamond they look at me like i'm crazy but they have to know that the complex is in the bottom third of mac.

:champs:

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Don't want to rain on the ZN baseball supporters, but if it's a question of money, here what Id do with it. First, I'd spend it first on putting up a first class soccer stadium. The men are unquestioned top 5 in the country and coach Pfau has been vocal about his goal of getting the women in the top 25. Next, I'd develop the track complex with additional seating, concessions, toilets, electronic scoreboard, and pressbox. Our men's and women's programs are good enough to draw fans and host big meets. Then I'd turn to a new tennis facility for the ladies, complete with seating, lights and the ability to announce matches. Finally, I'd redo the baseball stadium. My first move would be to move it towards Exchange street to accomodate stands, toilets, space behind the plate foul areas. Until baseball earns it, I would use my resources elsewhere.

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