Eight teams left. Three from Texas. One goal. Win in Omaha. The old Rosenblatt Stadium is the only mound where dog-piling is allowed according to Texas-Ex and national champion Huston Street. Here’s a closer look.
“We’re not here to create traditions; we’re here to live up to traditions. We’re here to support the traditions that separate the University of Texas from a lot of the other baseball programs.” – Augie Garrido2014 COLLEGE WORLD SERIES PREVIEWUniversity of TexasNickname- LonghornsHead Coach- Augie Garrido Conference- Big 12Record- 43-19 (Overall) College World Series Appearances- (35)How did they get to Omaha- Won the Houston Regional defeating Rice and Texas A&M twice. Won the Austin Super Regional taking out Houston in two straight games to advance to their 35th CWS.
Best pitcher = RHP Nathan ThornhillBest hitter = OF Mark PaytonPlayer most likely on MLB roster = Tres Barrera
About Texas- UT is entering its 8th CWS since 2000, most in the nation in that span. The Horns also have a NCAA-leading 96 sacrifice bunts. The Longhorns are batting .268 with 21 HRs on the season as a team. Leading the way for the Longhorns are CF Mark Payton .326 2 HRs with 36 RBIs; DH Madison Carter .347, 1 HR 11 RBIs; SS C.J. Hinojosa .300 1 HR 33 RBIs. The team ERA is 2.32 and led by righties Nathan Thornhill (8-2, 1.57) and Parker French (6-5 2.45). The bullpen consists of RHP Morgan Cooper (4-2 2.98) and RHP John Curtiss (2-2 2.06 9 Saves).
Texas Christian UniversityNickname- Horned FrogsHead Coach- Jim SchlossnagleConference- Big 12Record- 47-16 (Overall)College World Series Appearances- (2)How did they get to Omaha- Won the Fort Worth Regional finishing off Siena and Sam Houston State. Won the Fort Worth Super Regional beating Pepperdine in 2 of 3.
Best pitcher- LHP Brandon FinneganBest hitter- OF Boomer WhitePlayer most likely on MLB roster- LHP Brandon Finnegan
About TCU- TCU has won 32 of its last 36. They have a Big 12 record 14 shutouts. The Horned Frogs are batting .283 with 13 HRs in 2014. OF Garrett Crain .335 1 HR with 19 RBIs; OF Boomer White .318, 2 HRs 46 RBIs; OF Dylan Fitzgerald .318 2 HRs 33 RBIs. The team ERA of 2.19 is almost unfair. The pitching staff is led by LHP Brandon Finnegan 9-3, 2.12; LHP Tyler Alexander 10-3 2.16; RHP Preston Morrison 9-4 1.32; RHP Riley Ferrell 2-1 0.68 15 saves.
University of California-IrvineNickname- AnteatersHead Coach- Mike Gillespie Conference- Big WestRecord- 40-23 (Overall)College World Series Appearances- (2)How did they get to Omaha- Won the Corvallis Regional taking out No.1 national seed Oregon State, then went into the Super Regional in Stillwater and won two straight over Oklahoma State.
Best pitcher = RHP Andrew MoralesBest hitter = 1B Connor SpencerPlayer most likely on MLB roster = RHP Andrew Morales
About UC Irvine- The Anteaters have won 5 of 6 and 8 of the last 9 entering the CWS. They’re batting .272 with 12 HRs for 2014. Leading the way are Connor Spencer .370, 1 HR with 44 RBIs; Taylor Sparks, .307 5 HRs 34 RBIs; Jerry McClanahan .320 1 HR 36 RBIs. The pitching staff team ERA is 2.76. RHP Andrew Morales leads the nation with 136 Ks and is 11-2 with 1.53 ERA; LHP Elliot Surrey, 8-4 1.99. RHP Sam Moore 0-3 1.88, 23 Saves. Texas Tech University
Nickname- Red RaidersHead Coach- Tim TadlockConference- Big 12Record- 45-19 (Overall) College World Series Appearances- (1)How did they get to Omaha- Won the Coral Gables Regional where the Red Raiders took out the host team, Miami Hurricanes. Won the Lubbock Super Regional shutting out College of Charleston twice, 1-0 both times. Best pitcher- LHP Dylan Dusek
Best hitter- Eric Gutierrez
Player most likely on MLB roster- LHP Dylan Dusek
About Texas Tech- Texas Tech has four shutouts in their last five NCAA games. Tech’s 45 wins are the most since 1997 (46). The Red Raiders enter the CWS as the power source. As a team, they’re batting .287 with 30 HRs on the season. Leading the way for the Red Raiders are Eric Gutterriez .312 12 HR 58 RBIs; OF Adam Kirsch .300 10 HRs 51 RBIs; OF Tyler Neslony .388 4 HR 32 RBIs. The pitching staff has thrown 36 consecutive innings, posting a 3.17 team ERA and is led by Frosh LHP Dylan Dusek 8-0 1.94; LHP Jonny Drozd 7-0 2.00 5 saves; LHP Cameron Smith 8-2 2.81. Ole Miss university Nickname- RebelsHead Coach- Mike BiancoConference- SECRecord- 46-19 (overall)College World Series Appearances: (2)How did they get to Omaha- Won the Oxford Regional defeating Jacksonville State and Washington twice. Won the Lafayette Super Regional over Louisiana-Lafayette after losing the first game to the Ragin’ Cajuns. Best pitcher- RHP Chris EllisBest Hitter- C Will AllenPlayer most likely on MLB roster- RHP Chris Ellis
About Ole Miss- The Rebels were picked sixth in the SEC West, finished 1st. Ace hurler Chris Ellis was the first of nine Ole Miss players selected in the 2014 MLB Draft. Ole Miss leads all the CWS teams with a .303 batting avg. 1B Sikes Orvis leads all CWS hitters with 14 homers. Vanderbilt UniversityNickname- CommodoresHead Coach- Tim Corbin Conference- SECRecord- 46-19 (overall)College World Series Appearances- (2)How did they get to Omaha- Won Nashville Regional beating Xavier and Oregon twice. Won the Nashville Super Regional beating Stanford 2 out of 3 games.
Best pitcher- RHP Tyler Beede
Best Hitter- 2B Dansby Swanson Player most likely on MLB roster- RHP Tyler BeedeAbout Vanderbilt- Vandy has won it’s last 5 of 6. Starting pitcher Tyler Beede is the highest drafted player in CWS, 14th overall to San Francisco. Reynolds was 8-for-12 in the Supers vs Standford. Current MLB all-stars David Price (Tampa Bay) and Pedro Alvarez (Pittsburgh) played for Vanderbilt. University of Louisville Nickname- CardinalsHead Coach- Dan McConnellConference- American Athletic Record- 50-15 (overall)College World Series Appearances- (3)How did they get to Omaha- Won Louisville Regional beating three basketball schools; Kent State, Kentucky, and Kansas. Won Louisville Super Regional sweeping Kennesaw State. Best pitcher- RHP Kyle FunkhouserBest Hitter- OF Jerff GardnerPlayer most likely on MLB roster- 2B Grant KayAbout Louisville- The Cardinals are the only school to make a return trip to Omaha, UL made the CWS in 2013. Nick Burdi has four saves in five UL NCAA wins; his 18 are a school record. Louisville is 10-0 in its last two years of Regionals and Supers. UL has 132 stolen bases, 2nd in the nation to Wofford’s 152. University of Virginia Nickname- CavaliersHead Coach- Bryan O’ConnorConference- ACCRecord- 49-14 (overall)College World Series Appearances- (3)How did they get to Omaha- Won Charlottesville Regional beating Bucknell and Arkansas twice. Won the Charlottesville Super Regional taking 2 of 3 from Maryland. Best pitcher- LHP Brandon WaddellBest Hitter- 1B Mike PapiPlayer most likely on MLB roster- OF Joe McCarthy
About Virginia- Virginia is the highest remaining seed in the CWS, No.3 overall. UV’s staff allows a nation’s best 6.5 hits per game. Their .982% fielding percentage leads all CWS teams.