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UNCW Baseball in 2020
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Seahawk Nation 08 Offline
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UNCW Baseball in 2020
Well that was a tough way for the '19 season to end. We over-achieved down the stretch and won a Conference Title after scraping our way into the CAA Tournament, and gave UNC all they could handle in their own Regional. But then our frustrating play from the regular season came back to haunt us against Tennessee, and for the first time in program history, we went down 0-2 at a Regional.

Now we say so long to Coach Scalf, and hand the keys to Coach Hood to maintain our continuity as a program and build on the tremendous success Scalf had here. I have no doubt he will do a fantastic job. Remember, he was our primary recruiter and built many connections around the state and region over his years as the top assistant. He's as ready to go as a new Head Coach can be.

Here are some questions Coach Hood will need to answer as he begins the long preparation for 2020:

1. Who replaces Greg Jones at SS? Talk about tough shoes to fill. After Jones gets taken in the draft on Monday night, we're left with the knowledge that our starting shortstop for 2020 is currently not on campus. It's also unlikely that we'll find him in the JUCO ranks. So that means the starter will probably be a freshman.

Luckily we have a pair of talented kids coming in to compete for the SS job (provided they aren't drafted and signed out of High School), in Kohl Abrams and Riley Davis. Abrams' coach at Green Hope High School (NC) calls him an "elite level defender" due to his range, arm strength and hands, as well as a kid who can hit at the top of the lineup. The 6-0 Davis comes from West Grove, PA and is also listed as a RHP with 87 MPH fastball velocity according to Perfect Game.

2. How will Matt Suggs develop at C? The Catcher carousel went around and around in 2019, with Zachary Bridges, Doug Angeli and Lucas Oxendine all geting chances at regular catching duties, with none performing well enough defensively to hold on for long. But it was Wilmington product Matt Suggs who finally separated himself down the stretch, keeping himself in the lineup with his bat. The rookie went 1-4 with 2 RBI in an 8-3 victory over Elon at the CAA Tournament, and also had a pair of doubles in Harrisonburg; one against Northeastern and the other against W&M. His biggest hit, however, came in the Regional against UNC, when he slammed a 2-run double off the left field wall to drive in 2 and give UNCW a 4-3 lead in the 6th inning.

Given that UNCW has a strong history at the Catcher position historically (Chris Hatcher, Cody Stanley, Mark Carver, Nick Feight), its crucial that Suggs continues to develop in 2020, or that Coach Hood finds someone else who can play consistent defense. That could mean opportunities for a pair of freshmen Catchers, Kevin Pitarra and Matt Yip, who will be joining the 2020 Catcher group. Like Kohl Abrams, Pitarra also comes from Green Hope and had his coach signing his praises; he is being advertised as a strong defender who also hits with power. Yip comes from Herricks High School on Long Island, NY and also hit for power.

3. How do we reload the bullpen? The pen was the team's biggest strength in 2018, and the biggest reason we were able to knock off Ohio State and Regional host ECU at the Greenville Regional. But returning closer Henry Ryan took a huge step back between 2018 and '19. His ERA ballooned from 1.11 to 4.06 and his K/9 dropped from 8.6 to 6.4.

In addition, the team loses righties Blake Deatherage and Justin Crump and lefties Blake Morgan and Justin Walke to graduation. That leaves a returning relief corps of Ryan, redshirt senior righty Breydan Gorham (17 appearances, 4.58 ERA), redshirt junior righty Nick Bruno (22 appearances, 7.71 ERA) and sophomore righty Jason Hudak (12 appearances, 3.46 ERA). The only lefty of significance among the returning 2018 contributors is redshirt junior Rian Haire (7 appearances, 3.86 ERA). Coach Hood and Pitching Coach Matt Myers will need to find some gems among the new faces and develop the ones they have on the roster, because the most important factor in winning a Regional is having as many effective arms as possible.


Provided Luke Gesell doesn't get drafted and signed, we know the weekend rotation will likely be the same in '20 as it was in '19. And we also know the bullpen is basically up in the air. So how will the lineup shape up? This is my best guess with the information we have currently:

1. CF Noah Bridges (Jr., L)
2. 2B Jackson Meadows (Sr., R)
3. 3B Cole Weiss (Sr., L)
4. 1B Brooks Baldwin (So., S)
5. RF Riley Zayicek (Sr., L)
6. C Matt Suggs (So., R)
7. DH Chris Thorburn (So., L)
8. SS Kohl Abrams (Fr., R)
9. LF Noah Liles (Jr., L)

Other key hitters: 2B Doug Angeli (Jr., R); SS Riley Davis (Fr., R); C Kevin Pitatta (Fr., R); C Matt Yip (Fr., R); OF Aidan Smith (Fr., L)
(This post was last modified: 06-10-2019 08:58 AM by Seahawk Nation 08.)
06-02-2019 10:03 PM
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Seahawk Nation 08 Offline
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RE: UNCW Baseball in 2020
With Cole Weiss all but gone as well, that adds another question mark to Hood's plate.

Freshman Ronald Evans II, or perhaps a JUCO, will need to fill that gap at 3B. Perfect Game has quite a bit of good information available on Evans, here: https://www.perfectgame.org/Players/Play...?ID=426252

* Exit Velocity: 90 MPH (93.84 percentile)
* Shuttle Time: 4.60 seconds (81.88 percentile)
* Max Barrel Speed, Impact Momentum, Max Acceleration (All 70+ percentile)

So he's a very good athlete with power. Apparently he can also play any position on the infield.

Overall PG gives him an 8.5:

9: Potential top 10 round pick and/or highest level college prospect
8: Potential draft pick and/or excellent college prospect

He might just see his name called this week in the draft, and fairly early at that.
(This post was last modified: 06-03-2019 03:14 PM by Seahawk Nation 08.)
06-03-2019 03:12 PM
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Seahawk Nation 08 Offline
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RE: UNCW Baseball in 2020
We already knew Jones was gone. But now we likely lose Zarion and Weiss as juniors after being taken in the draft this week.

So now we need to find replacements at SS and 3B, and the Sunday starter spot will be up for grabs after Gesell and Roupp.
06-05-2019 08:40 PM
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Seahawkhoops Online
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UNCW Baseball in 2020
Yikes..... that’s a lot


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06-05-2019 10:10 PM
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jumpinmullet Offline
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RE: UNCW Baseball in 2020
NOt sure Weiss will leave after being drafted so late.
06-06-2019 05:13 PM
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billthebighawksfan Offline
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RE: UNCW Baseball in 2020
It's good to get a degree all else sort of equal because it's hard to go back and finish. It's up to them.
06-06-2019 09:55 PM
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Seahawk Nation 08 Offline
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RE: UNCW Baseball in 2020
(06-06-2019 05:13 PM)jumpinmullet Wrote:  NOt sure Weiss will leave after being drafted so late.

What round he was taken was not going to factor into the decision. I’m confident he’s gone.
06-06-2019 11:01 PM
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Seahawk Nation 08 Offline
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RE: UNCW Baseball in 2020
The CAA Tournament is coming back to Wilmington for 2020: https://uncwsports.com/news/2019/6/7/bas...ament.aspx

I believe Elon will host in 2021.
06-07-2019 10:40 AM
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tke75hawk Online
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UNCW Baseball in 2020
Wect reported Cole Weiss will return for senior year.

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06-07-2019 10:34 PM
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SEA33HAWK Offline
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RE: UNCW Baseball in 2020
(06-07-2019 10:34 PM)tke75hawk Wrote:  Wect reported Cole Weiss will return for senior year.

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I think it was the right call for Cole. He ended up too late in the draft for it to hurt him to stay. And, in his case, I think he can still improve his stock. To me, he was the most comfortable looking at his position, and at the plate.
06-08-2019 07:38 AM
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Seahawkhoops Online
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RE: UNCW Baseball in 2020
(06-08-2019 07:38 AM)SEA33HAWK Wrote:  
(06-07-2019 10:34 PM)tke75hawk Wrote:  Wect reported Cole Weiss will return for senior year.

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I think it was the right call for Cole. He ended up too late in the draft for it to hurt him to stay. And, in his case, I think he can still improve his stock. To me, he was the most comfortable looking at his position, and at the plate.
!
That's great! He'll be a key piece next year for sure!
06-08-2019 07:55 AM
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Seahawk Nation 08 Offline
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RE: UNCW Baseball in 2020
Glad to hear that regarding Cole. I had been informed that Cole's parents had taken all of his stuff back home from Wilmington. Guess they're bringing it all back! :)
(This post was last modified: 06-10-2019 08:57 AM by Seahawk Nation 08.)
06-10-2019 08:57 AM
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tke75hawk Online
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UNCW Baseball in 2020
08 I would think so and meadows was looking for place to live since Cole was leaving.

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06-10-2019 09:02 AM
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Seahawk Nation 08 Offline
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RE: UNCW Baseball in 2020
Not sure how I never noticed/discussed this previously, but freshman RHP Mike Picollo was a 33rd round pick by the Mets last year who didn't sign:


https://www.amazinavenue.com/2018/6/28/1...ke-picollo


2018 Mets draft profile: Mike Picollo

With their thirty-third selection in the 2018 draft, the Mets selected Michael Picollo, a right-handed pitcher from Kansas.

[Image: AA_Draft_2018.0.jpg]



Name: Michael Picollo

Born: Leawood, Kansas

Age: 18 (9/22/99)

Height/Weight: 6’2”/170 lbs.

Position: RHP

Bats/Throws: R/R

School: Blue Valley North High School (Overland Park, Kansas)

Mike Picollo is the son of Kansas City Royals Vice President/Assistant Manager of Player Personnel JJ Picollo. “It was neat,” Picollo said of his son being drafted. “You sit here and you listen to 1,200 names a year. To hear your son, you can’t help but be proud. Pretty cool. He’s worked hard. It’s always been a dream of his to play professional baseball, but it’s just a step along the way. He’s kind of a long-term projection type kid, so he’s got a ways to go.”

Picollo throws from a high-three-quarters arm slot. He utilizes a simple, repeatable delivery, incorporating a high leg lift. His fastball sits in the low-to-mid-80s, currently topping out currently at 86 MPH. He complements it with a loopy mid-60s curveball and a low-70s changeup.

Picollo has a commitment to UNC Wilmington.
(This post was last modified: 06-12-2019 02:11 PM by Seahawk Nation 08.)
06-12-2019 02:08 PM
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Seahawk Nation 08 Offline
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RE: UNCW Baseball in 2020
Summer Baseball is off and running across the country. Here's where some of our players are located, and how they're doing so far (where applicable). If you know of any other UNCW players who are on Summer leagues, let me know!

Cape Cod League

* OF Noah Bridges (Bourne Braves): 1 AB so far (0-1) on Monday, June 10
* LHP Zarion Sharpe (Chatham Anglers)
* RHP Landen Roupp (Wareham Gatemen)

Coastal Plain League

* LHP Kevin Mintz (Wilmington Sharks): 0-2, 1 start, 2 appearances, 3.86 ERA, 2.1 IP, 4 K, 5 BB
* C Lucas Oxendine (Wilmington Sharks): .500 (4-8), 2 RBI, 2 BB, 1 R
* C Zach Bridges (Wilmington Sharks): .250 (3-12), 1 HR, 1 RBI, 1 SB, 2 R, 3 PB's
* OF Kip Brandenburg (High Point-Thomasville HiToms): .050 (1-20), 1 BB

Hamptons League

* RHP Ty Wilson (Westhampton Aviators): 4 appearances, 1.58 ERA, 5.2 IP, 8 K, 5 BB
* C Josh Harvey (Westhampton Aviators): .300 (6/20), 4 RBI, 1 2B, 5 R, 2 BB

NECBL

* RHP Jason Hudak (Upper Valley Nighthawks): 1 start, 0-1, 22.50 ERA, 2.0 IP, 1 K, 3 BB
* SS/RHP Adam Smith (Upper Valley Nighthawks): 1 appearance, 4 R (0 ER), 1.0 IP, 1 K, 1 BB

Carolina-Virginia League

* RHP Indiana Hall (Roanoke Railes)
(This post was last modified: 06-12-2019 02:13 PM by Seahawk Nation 08.)
06-12-2019 02:13 PM
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Seahawk Nation 08 Offline
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RE: UNCW Baseball in 2020
I suppose its good news that Zarion is listed on a Summer roster. Does this mean he didn't sign with the Cardinals?
06-12-2019 02:15 PM
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billthebighawksfan Offline
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RE: UNCW Baseball in 2020
It would be great to have the whole weekend rotation back and to get some arms back that were hurt. Any info guys?
06-12-2019 07:51 PM
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Seahawk Nation 08 Offline
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RE: UNCW Baseball in 2020
In Cape Cod action, Sharpe pitched well for Chatham on Wednesday night out of the pen (3.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 R, 4 K, 0 BB) but took a hard-luck L: http://www.chathamanglers.com/index.cfm?...cleID=1570

He wouldn't be playing Summer ball if he'd signed with an MLB team. Looks like our weekend rotation is intact!
(This post was last modified: 06-14-2019 11:59 AM by Seahawk Nation 08.)
06-14-2019 11:54 AM
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billthebighawksfan Offline
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RE: UNCW Baseball in 2020
If that includes Gessell, that's awesome. Hawks ought to be good next year. Rouppe was very good at the end as was Sharpe.
(This post was last modified: 06-14-2019 04:34 PM by billthebighawksfan.)
06-14-2019 04:33 PM
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jumpinmullet Offline
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RE: UNCW Baseball in 2020
(06-14-2019 11:54 AM)Seahawk Nation 08 Wrote:  In Cape Cod action, Sharpe pitched well for Chatham on Wednesday night out of the pen (3.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 R, 4 K, 0 BB) but took a hard-luck L: http://www.chathamanglers.com/index.cfm?...cleID=1570

He wouldn't be playing Summer ball if he'd signed with an MLB team. Looks like our weekend rotation is intact!

Drafted players will go to the Cape to run the price tag up on the signing bonus. If he does well it might mean he gets more money and signs.
06-16-2019 06:27 PM
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