Teams of the Week, the Britney Spears meets the shears version
Pepperdine gets the West Team of the Week honors.
Sorry about getting this Team of the Week honors posted so late. I got busy on some other stuff on this President's Day and am just now finishing this up.
None-the-less, although it wasn't the most exciting weekend of the season, there was a lot of action worth paying attention to, particularly in the Sunshine State and the goings-on of the west coast teams.
But first, allow me to digress for just a minute to the biggest off-the-field news. Britney Spears has now gone with the shaved head look. Welcome to the club, chicky. And yes, we take all types, even unstable freaks like you.
Okay, back to the Teams of the Week, although the pickings were pretty slim because of all the sacrificial lambs that were sent to Big Money U's stadiums, here are the best performances for the past week in college baseball. Starting from East to West, here we go:
Team of the Week: Florida Atlantic (3-0)
W8-3 vs. Ball State
W9-6 vs. Oklahoma State
W16-8 vs. LaSalle
The Owls (not the Blue Wave anymore, by the way) have raced out to a 9-0 start and have the win over the Cowboys as their marquee W so far. The comeback featured solid hitting up and down the lineup as they lit up four OSU pitchers for 15 hits. Mickey Storey was a little hit-and-miss, striking out 12 Cowboy batters, but also giving up 11 hits in 7.2 innings. But Storey is now 3-0 so far.
Honorable Mention: Charlotte (2-0)
W11-0 vs. Virginia Tech
W24-0 vs. Radford
Not Earthshaking wins by any stretch, but you've got to love 18 shutout innings and just eight hits allowed. Adam Mills struck out 14 and gave up just one hit in seven innings against the Highlanders. Catcher Kris Rochelle, who hits eighth in the lineup, went 5-for-7 with seven RBI. Tell the coach it's time to move him up.
Team of the Week: Florida (3-1)
W15-1 vs. Florida A&M
W7-2, W7-5, L10-7 vs. Miami
Nothing else makes people forget a horrible opening weekend like a series win over the rival Hurricanes. It was the third series win over Miami in a row. Bryan Augenstein was stellar, going seven innings and giving up just three hits and no runs in Friday's win. Matt LaPorta's struggles from '06 are way in the rear-view mirror now as he is hitting .481 so far.
Honorable Mention: Stetson (3-1)
W13-6 at Bethune-Cookman
W8-1, W14-1, L8-4 vs. LSU
The pitching performance was unreal in games one and two vs. the Tigers, as LSU went 7-for-65 before finally waking up on Sunday. Corey Kluber, the Friday night starter, was named the A-Sun player of the week for giving up just three hits in 6.2 innings. A player I'm going to keep an eye on the rest of this season is leadoff hitter Shane Jordan, who went crazy at the dish this week, going 10-for-15, while also stealing three bases. Good crowds at Melching Field too, one of the best mid-major stadiums I've been in.
Team of the week: Texas (3-1)
W19-0 vs. UT-Pan American
W5-3, W5-2, L10-8 vs. Stanford
Exacting some amount of revenge for last year's regional loss to the Cardinal. With the series win, UT moves its record up above the .500 mark for the first time this season. Adrian Alaniz flashed that old-style dominance by pitching into the 8th inning of Saturday's win, giving up only four hits to the potent Cardinal bats. And there's nothing Suttle about Bradley's batting (Pause to groan. Bad pun, I know.) as he went 7-for-17 in the four games and is hitting .442 for the season.
Honorable Mention: Central Michigan (2-1)
L5-4 (11inns), W5-4, W5-3 at Alabama-Birmingham
Hey man, fear the directional Michigan schools! First Eastern knocks off Tennessee and now Central wins a pair at a Conference USA school. It could very well have been a sweep but CMU allowed a pair of runs in the bottom of the 9th on Friday's game, which pushed it to extra innings. Then again, the Chippewas had the rabbit's foot in their pockets on Saturday, scoring all five runs in the top of the 9th. RF Eric Cannon was named the MAC player of the week after getting the game-winning hit on Saturday and the game-tying hit on Sunday.
Team of the Week: Pepperdine (3-1)
W8-3 vs. USC
W2-0, W10-2, L3-2 vs. Wichita State
You have to figure at the end of the season, these three wins could become great RPI boosters. Both USC, with all their youth, and WSU, who will get better once they play and practice outside more, should become pretty good teams. The Waves laced a first L on a trio of good pitchers in SC's Tommy Milone (now 3-1), and WSU's Aaron Shaffer (a projected high-round draftee) and Travis Banwart.
Honorable Mention: UC Irvine (3-0)
W9-7, W15-6, W11-5 at Houston
After the 6th inning on Friday, the Anteaters never really sweated the series in H-town. I saw the Cougars play last weekend in Minute Maid Park and they had some capable bats and decent arms, and for UCI to win this series going away is pretty impressive. Despite being known for his pitchers, 'eaters coach Dave Serrano has to be happy with the performance of Matthew Morris, who was named the Big West player of the week after mashing at a 9-for-13 clip in the series. Irvine is now 6-2-1 on the season.