The Art of Mastering the Scoreboard

photo (4)Looking down on Marin Catholic’s perfectly manicured field, the view from the scoring box lends a unique perspective to watch the games.I understand what it’s like to be a player on the field, as well as a fan, but scoring while watching a game is something new to me. Constantly leaning my head one way or another to see the plays, the physical constraints of the window make it a sport in and of itself to watch the game. Aside from constantly moving around to see impeded plays, the view from the box is otherwise quite good. Unlike the grandstands the box seems to be an extension of the home dugout which allows for a participatory role; among other things you can see the dugout interactions between players and hear the fantastic echo of bull pen pitches.

While being a spectator is fun and leisurely, score keeping requires a certain amount of active participation. As the score keeper you have a duty to keep track of every pitch strike or ball, outs, the inning, runs, hits and errors. Doing this correctly takes a bit of attention, one moment of distraction can lead to an umpire stopping a game to check his clicker or a befuddled coach asking for a change to the scoreboard. In other words on every pitch there is a button to be pressed to keep the scoreboard current and accurate, and if not the whole stadium knows your mistake.

Participation as the scoreboard guy allows for greater recall of the game. Often times as a spectator I find that I watch a game and cannot remember much of went on, this is not the case with the games I score keep. Because of the frequency of participation it is easy to pay very close attention to the game and this adds a new element to the game. It transforms the experience from being a passive viewer to an active viewer, which is neither good nor bad, rather a preference.

Lastly it is really fun being a part of the game. The score keeper adds to the viewing experience of the fans at the game. For all of us who got kicked out of little league because of poor performance but still has a desire to participate, this is a fantastic job to do. While we are not spot lighted like the players and the coaches, subconsciously an active fan really appreciates an accurate scoreboard. It does not make or break anything but makes it easier to come and go as a fan and keep closer track of what is going on in the game. As the season goes on I look forward to many more games at the scorers table, doing my part behind the scenes to sustain the great game experience of the California Warriors!

Written by Julian Bloch. Julian is an intern in the 2013 Intern Summer Program. 

O’Koyea Dickson Hits It Out of the Park!

O_Koyea_Dickson_041413_0294_saqw3fvz_2auesef6Warriors Alumni O’Koyea Dickson played a great series with the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes against The San Jose Giants!

The San Jose Giants scored the final four runs of Monday’s game, rallying from a three-run deficit for a 6-5 win over the Quakes at Municipal Stadium.

A sac fly off the bat of Angel Villalona completed the come-back, as the Giants avoided a four-game sweep on their own home field, ending Rancho’s four-game winning streak and forcing the Quakes to settle for a 4-3 road trip up north.

Pedro Baez (1-1) suffered the loss, as he gave up a lead-off double to Ryan Caven to open the eighth and surrendered the sac fly to Villalona.

Rancho had a shot in the ninth, as Ryan Mount singled with two outs against Giants’ closer Hunter Strickland. The rally was short-lived though, as Strickland rebounded to retire Noel Cuevas, ending the game and recording his fourth save of the year.

The Quakes had leads of 2-0 and 5-2 on Monday night, but watched the Giants rally back to tie the game on both occasions.

O’Koyea Dickson’s fifth homer of the year in the first gave Rancho an early 2-0 lead for Jarrett Martin.

Martin was unable to hold the lead though, as San Jose tallied once in the first and again in the second.

The Quakes got three in the fourth, highlighted by run-scoring singles from Mount and Rob Garvey, as the Quakes took a 5-2 lead against Giants’ starter Clayton Blackburn.

Command got the best of Martin in the fourth, as he walked a pair of two-out hitters that came into score on Elliott Blair’s two-run double, pulling the Giants to within a run at 5-4.

Devin Harris’ solo homer to lead off the fifth tied the game, his league-leading tenth of the year.

Martin allowed a total of five runs on six hits over five innings in the no-decision.

Warriors Alum Spotlight – D3 & NAIA

D3 NAIAThe First Base Foundation has many student athletes playing baseball at the collegiate level this season. Here is an update on the ones playing DIII and NAIA (National Association of Intercollegiate Athletes) baseball.

DIII

Jake Dorfman (Fr) LHP, Pomona-Pitzer College: After recovering from an early injury, Dorfman has made 1 appearance this season. Against Ithaca College he pitched 1 inning giving up 1 run on 2 hits and striking out 2 while recording the win
for the game.

Kenny Rabin (So) IF, Pomona-Pitzer College: In three games and one start this season, Rabin is hitting 1-6 with a run scored and a walk for the 22-7 Sagehens.

Guy Stevens (Sr) RHP, Pomona-Pitzer College: The Sagehens Senior Closer has made 1 appearance in 2.1 innings pitched. Stevens has recorded 1 save giving up 0 runs on 2 hits.

Adam Medoff (Sr) RHP, Amherst College: The Senior has thrown 4 innings in 4 total appearances this season. Medoff impressively has 7 strikeouts with zero walks so far this season while giving up only 2 earned runs.

Dominic Schwartz (Jr) IF, Brandeis University: Dom has played in 15 of the teams 22 games helping the Judges to a 7-15 overall record. The Junior infielder has 8 hits in 34 total at bats with 3 RBI and 4 runs scored. In a recent game against Worcester St., Schwartz went 2-4 with a walk and a run scored.

Logan Mobley (So) RHP, Middlebury College: The young right hander has started all three games he has appeared in this season for the 4-10 Panthers, with 1 complete game. Mobley has 12 strikeouts and only 5 walks in 14.2 innings pitched.

Rhett Gibbs (Fr) RHP, University of Puget Sound: The Freshman pitcher has made 3 appearances and 1 game start this season for the 11-18 Loggers. Gibbs has given up 4 earned runs in 4.1 innings pitched and an 0-1 record.

NAIA

Daniel Comstock (Fr) C, Menlo College: The outstanding Freshman is third on the Oaks with a .326 batting average, having started 37 of the teams 39 games behind the plate. Comstock is second on the team in nearly every major offensive category on the team. In a recent four game series against Coban University (Oregon), Comstock went 10-for-18 with 9 RBI and 4 runs scored.

Ronnie Schivo (Fr) MIF, Menlo College: In 30 Game appearances with 15 starts, the Freshman Middle Infielder is hitting .291 in 55 plate appearances. Schivo leads the team in stolen bases (10), despite his limited role. In the series against Corban University (Oregon) Ronnie 3-for-7 with 3 RBI and 7 runs scored.

MLB hopes to invigorate African-American participation – USA TODAY

upton-brothers-4_3_r536_c534Major League Baseball, with a record low 7.7 % of African-Americans on opening-day rosters this season, announced the creation of a task force Wednesday in hopes of reversing the 20-year decline.

“As a social institution, Major League Baseball has an enormous social responsibility to provide equal opportunities for all people, both on and off the field,” Commissioner Bud Selig said in a prepared statement. “I am proud of the work we have done thus far with the RBI program and the MLB Urban Youth Academies, but there is more that we must accomplish.

“We have seen a number of successful efforts with existing MLB task forces, and I believe we have selected the right people to effectively address the many factors associated with diversity in baseball.”

The African-American percentage in baseball this season is the lowest since the Boston Red Sox became the final team to integrate its roster in 1959, according to a USA TODAY study, that includes major-league players on the opening-day disabled lists. It’s a drop from 8.05% last season, a dramatic decline from 1995 when 19% of the rosters were African-American, and far from the peak of 27% in 1975.

“Bud is right on the spot,” veteran agent Scott Boras told USA TODAY Sports. “We’ve got to get these athletes back into baseball. But I don’t think anything will change until Major League Baseball and the NCAA wakes up.

“Until we get this remedied, the Jackie Robinsons of the world aren’t going to come to college to play baseball.”

Boras, who founded the Boras Baseball Classic to help gain exposure to high school players, recommends that MLB subsidizes college baseball scholarships. There are only 11.7 scholarships for college baseball programs, compared to 85 in football and 13 in basketball.

“If you’re a high school athlete coming from a single-parent home that doesn’t have the money to go to college,” Boras said, “you’re going to go to the sport where you can get a full scholarship. This needs to change if we want to get the best athletes in baseball.”

The dearth of African-Americans can be seen even at the high-school level, Hall of Fame executive Pat Gillick says.

“At the high-school level,” Gillick told USA TODAY Sports, “the coaches get these kids in revenue-driven sports, and take them away from baseball. There’s so much pressure on these kids to even play spring football.

“We need to get the African American players back in the game, which I think would make it not only a better game, but more exciting and entertaining for everyone.”

Tampa Bay Rays owner Stuart Sternberg owners will head the committee, with Detroit Tigers vice president Dave Dombrowski as the vice president.

The other committee members include: Hall of Famer Frank Robinson; MLB vice presidents Tom Brauswell, Wendy Lewis, Jonathan Mariner, Kim Ng and Darrell Miller; Tony Clark of the players association; Chicago White Sox vice president Kenny Williams; Roger Cador, coach of Southern University; Dennis Gilbert, special assistant to Chicago White Sox chairman Jerry Reinsdorf; Larry Dolan of the Cleveland Indians; Derrick Hall, president of the Arizona Diamondbacks; former manager Jerry Manuel; Frank Marcos of the MLB scouting bureau; and Pat O’Conner, president of minor league baseball.

Hall of Fame second baseman Joe Morgan hopes the committee will help, but also believes that baseball needs to improve its representation in the front offices and the field. There are three African-American managers — Dusty Baker of Cincinnati, Ron Washington of Texas and Bo Porter of Houston — and Mike Hill of the Miami Marlins is the only African-American general manager.

“There has to be more involvement to attract athletes to come to baseball,” Morgan told USA TODAY Sports. “I thought the NFL was worse, with the way they handled all of their jobs, and that none were given to African-American coaches. Truthfully, we can’t go in that direction and hope this things turns around.”

Major League Baseball launched its RBI program (Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities) in 1989, and has built four urban academies with three others being developed. There have been more than 200 RBI participants drafted, including 14 in last year’s draft. There were also seven African-American athletes selected in the first round of last year’s June Draft, the most since 1992.

D2 Warriors Spotlight

The First Base Foundation has many student athletes playing baseball at the collegiate level this season. Here is an update on the ones playing DII ball.

Myles Babitt (So) OF/LHP, Academy of Art University: Myles has been a key contributor to the Urban Knights team. His .238 batting average is third on the team while he is second on the team in on base % (.351), runs scored (6), and total bases (19). Babitt has also made two appearances out of the bullpen for the Urban Knights, pitching 5 innings giving up 5 earned runs.

Tino Leite (So) SS/RHP, Academy of Art University: The transfer student from University of North Carolina at Greensboro has started 16 of the teams 23 games this season, and his .270 batting average is tops among the Urban Knights.

Jordan Wilder (Sr) OF, Cal State East Bay: The 2012 Cal State East Bay Offensive Player of the Year has started all 33 games for the Pioneers this season. Wilder is currently hitting .267 with 12 RBI and 23 runs scored.

Cody Slader (So) SS, Chico State: The San Diego State transfer has had an outstanding first season with the ‘Cats as he has started 25 of the teams 28 games. Cody is hitting an impressive .354 with 13 RBI and a great .881 OPS. In a 4 game series against Cal State Stanislaus Slader was 5-13 with 3 RBI, 5 runs, and 2 stolen bases, as the ‘Cats swept the CSUS Warriors.

Mike Bothelo (Sr) RHP, Chico State: The Chabot College transfer has pitched 25 innings for the 23-5 ‘Cats. Bothelo has posted a 3-1 record with a 2.88 ERA in 8 total appearances and 4 games starts with 1 complete game. In his last start, Bothelo threw 5 innings of 2 hit ball giving up only 1 run and striking out 3 while helping the ‘Cats to a 3-2 victory over SF State.

Max Eggleston (Fr) LHP, Holy Names University: In the first game of the inaugural season for the Holy Names University baseball team, Eggleston pitched 3.2 innings giving up only 2 earned runs helping the Hawks win their first ever game. Overall, Eggleston has thrown 17.2 innings with a 1-2 record while recording 9 strikeouts and only 5 walks.

Devon Zenn (Sr) IF, Sonoma State University: The College Of Marin transfer has started 28 of the Seawolves’ first 30 games of the 2013 season. In 104 at bats, the 2012 First Team All-CCAA First Baseman is hitting .279 with 7 doubles, 1 homerun, and 35 total bases and a .736 OPS.

Matt Manfre (So) RHP, Sonoma State University: The Sophomore pitcher has 2 starts in 4 total appearances he has posted a 6.97 ERA in 10.1 innings pitched.

Corbin Wirta (RFr) OF, UC San Diego: The Redshirt Freshman has played in 28 of the teams 32 games, starting in 25 of them. Wirta is 15-71 at the plate with a .383 ob%, 15 walks, and a perfect 4-4 in stolen bases. The Redwood graduate is the only starting Triton with a perfect 1.000 fielding %.

FIAT LUX: Evans Diamond’s Historic Night

On Thursday March 28th, Cal Baseball played its first home game under the lights in its 121-year history. Cal-baseball-under-the-lights-720x480

Head Coach David Esquer said that “Never could have envisioned such progress for his team two springs ago, when supporters came through with the money to save a sport that had been set for elimination by the Cal administration in a cost-cutting move,” writes Janie McCauley of the Associated Press. “It’s a game-changer for our program,” Esquer said. “I think we’ve plugged up a little bit of a competitive disadvantage to our program. Figuratively, it’s a big statement. Out there, you show that Cal baseball is not just in survival mode, but we’re in thrive mode. We’re trying to thrive as a program and move forward and advance ourselves. We’re not just trying to hang on by a thread.”

Lance Knobel of Berkeleyside writes, “The renewed support for baseball was demonstrated in the lights and a snazzy new scoreboard: the University and the baseball supporters’ foundation jointly took out $1 million in loans for the lights and scoreboard, counting on increased ticket sales and advertising for the revenue to pay back the loan. The support came from alumni like Dan McInerny, who played right field for the Bears, 1978-80. McInerny was watching from ‘cheapskate wall’ at Evans Diamond. ‘This is my favorite spot.’”

Warriors alumni Devin Pearson was the first Golden Bear to get a hit under the lights of Evans Diamond, when he led off the bottom half of the first inning with a single. Although the Bears lost to USC, 4-3, the night was still an undeniable success.

Campolindo Seeks Fourth Straight Division II Title

Campolindo Max Luckhurst

Campolindo Head Coach Max Luckhurst (Coach of the Warriors Blue Team) and California Warrior Robbie Tenerowitz

Campolindo High’s three-year run of baseball dominance could be looked upon as one continuous wave of success, and they’re looking to keep that streak going for a long time. Last season, Campolindo, coached by California Warriors summer coach Max Luckhurst, became the first East Bay baseball team in the NCS’s modern era to win three straight section championships.

“The opportunity to four-peat, it’s pretty clear to all of us that it’s never been done before,” said senior second baseman Robbie Tenerowicz, a four-year starter and summer California Warrior player. “It’s kind of like setting an unbreakable mark, which is pretty cool to think about.”

The First Base Foundation is so proud of all the successes of Max and the summer California Warriors players on the Campolindo High baseball team (Robbie Tenerowitz, Scott Singh, and Ryan Hooper), and we look forward to your season!

To read more about Campolindo’s quest to achieve a Fourth Straight Division II Title, click HERE.

Warriors In the News!

Warrior alum & College of Marin star, Ben Herrick, and current Gold Team Warrior & San Rafael Bulldog, John Robertson have been featured in the Marin IJ – take a look at the stories below!

nmij0226combase01
“In three starts, Herrick has not been perfect, but he’s been pretty darn close. After Saturday’s seven-inning stint against visiting Cañada — he allowed no earned runs and upped his record to 3-0 in a 2-1 Mariners’ victory — Herrick’s earned run average dipped to 0.69. That’s the kind of pitching thathas propelled COM to the top of the Bay Valley Conference pack with a 9-3 non-conference record.”
CLICK HERE for the full story.

 
nmij0223basenotes

“After spending last summer with the Bay Area Warriors club team, Robertson said that he is confident that he is a better player. ‘It was definitely good for me. I played in almost 50 games over the summer, including a tournament in San Diego. I needed to get a lot more at-bats and a lot more experience.’ He ranked first on the team in hits, runs, doubles and stolen bases and was second in batting average, on-base percentage and slugging percentage. He also led San Rafael in innings pitched.”
CLICK HERE for the full story.

The Greatest Time of the Year

Aaron SBy Aaron M. Smith

With the biggest game of the NFL season swiftly approaching this Sunday, one could make a solid guess at where most of America’s sports focus is aimed. However, I have found my football focus wavering, due to the reality that the baseball season is among us. My San Francisco 49ers will be playing in the Super Bowl this weekend, yet I have been watching baseball movies like “A League of Their Own,” “Bad News Bears,” and “Trouble with the Curve” over the past week. Baseball is here, and I couldn’t be any more excited.

MLB pitchers and catchers report to spring training in two short weeks. Many high school baseball teams are holding tryouts this week, and college teams will be having some of their first games in the following weeks. It’s the time of year for students’ focus to start shifting from their other sports like football, soccer, and basketball, back to the greatest sport in America: baseball.

Many student athletes have been grooming their baseball skills throughout the off-season to ensure that they are in top shape for the upcoming season. The First Base Foundation has had the pleasure of helping many dedicated athletes by providing dedicated coaches and a safe place for students to continue to hone their baseball aptitude. Besides our popular signature summer baseball program, the First Base Foundation has been delighted by the large numbers of dedicated ball players to show up each weekend for our Fall and Winter ball programs. They have been getting extra at-bats both in live games and in the cages. Infielders and outfielders have had an abundance of reps at many different positions, and the pitchers have had many innings against live batters.

Having watched these talented student athletes throughout the Fall and Winter off-season, my advice to them would be: As the butterflies swirl while you lace up your cleats and you grab your gloves to run onto the baseball field for tryouts and first games, trust the skills that you honed throughout the off-season, and have fun playing the game you love. Treat the game with the same amount of respect that the legends who came before you did, and remember that no one player is bigger than the team.

Good Luck Team!

Gold Blooded

 

Since birth I have been a 49er baby. It was the end of January 1982 and my parents were expecting their first child. At the same time, the San Francisco 49ers were making their way through the playoffs in what was a miraculous resurgence from being regarded as one of the worst teams in the NFL for a long time. When it was clear that the Niners would play for their first Super Bowl Victory on January 24th, my parents quietly hoped that I would wait to make my first appearance until after Super Bowl XVI. My parents were able to watch the 49ers win their first Super Bowl and I came a few weeks later.

I was born at the beginning of what would prove to be one of the greatest sports dynasties of all time.  My parents have had season tickets for the majority of my life, so I have had the luxury of growing up watching in person the likes of Bill Walsh, Jerry Rice, Joe Montana, Ronnie Lott, “Hacksaw” Reynolds, Steve Young, Ricky Watters, Richard Dent, and many other greats. Each year it was a major disappointment for the Niners to miss the Super Bowl much less the playoffs. Unfortunately I have had to watch the team go through a disappointing stretch for nearly a decade where they have not even been a shadow of their former selves missing the playoffs 7 of the past 10 years. With their second trip to the playoffs in as many years, this recent resurgence with new coach Jim Harbaugh is eerily reminiscent to the one they made during the 1981 season.

My parents were gracious enough to give their two tickets to tomorrow’s playoff game to my brother and I. I couldn’t be a bigger mix of emotions. Joy for the chance to spend time with my brother watching one of our beloved local teams. Excitement for the possibility of watching first hand the beginning of a new San Francisco dynasty. Anxiety behind the fact the 49ers are playing against a formidable foe in the Green Bay packers, and Aaron Rogers, one of the best quarterbacks in the National Football League.

Aaron M. Smith