And then there was none…
Two weeks ago today, only three teams in Oregon remained unbeaten for 2022.
They were St. Paul (12-0) and Neah-Kah-Nie (10-0), from 2A/1A Special District 1; and Weston-McEwen (8-0) from 2A/1A Special District 7.
All three have since tasted defeat. St. Paul, now 16-3, was swept last week by Knappa.
“We could not get base hits against Knappa,” said Buckaroo head coach Dwayne Nowlin. “Their defense is really good.”
NKN, now 13-2, lost the second game of a double header two Fridays ago to Portland Christian; 9-8, then fell to St. Paul, 5-2, on Tuesday. The teams play a double header tomorrow.
Weston-McEwen, now 12-1, remains unbeaten against Oregon opponents. The TigerScots lost last Friday at College Place, a 12-1 team whose only loss has come at the hands of Oregon 4A power La Grande, which is 21-1. Weston-McEwen responded to the loss by blanking Union / Cove, 13-0, on Tuesday.
“We have had really good pitching,” said head coach Shawn Pierce.
Indeed, aside from the College Place game, the TigerScots have yielded only nine runs total in 12 games. Only one has been earned. Seven of Weston-McEwen’s wins have been by shutout.
“The boys play solid defense and we hit the ball pretty well,” Pierce said. “We have room to improve for sure and we are.”
Loggers lay the lumber
Knappa made noise last week by defeating previously-unbeaten St. Paul, 9-0, 11-0 and 6-0.
“Our mindset going in was really not much different than it always is: “Let's find a way to get better and be great teammates each time that we are on the field,” noted Logger head coach Jeff Miller. “Our pitching across the board was dominant in the series and made the difference. Drew Miller, Nick Rusinovich, and Jaxon Dietrichs combined to give up four singles with 32 Ks and 3 BBs in three shutout victories. We had contributions from the entire hitting lineup against two of the better pitchers we have faced this season and did a nice job of finding ways on base and making the most of our few opportunities.”
Portland Christian makes one count
Portland Christian is 1-11 on the season, but its lone win was a big one: it dropped Neah-Kah-Nie from the unbeaten ranks. The Royals have faced a brutal 2A/1A schedule, with nine of its 12 games against teams ranked among the top 10 in the most recent OSAAtoday coaches polls.
“It’s been a rough start to the season,” head coach Mark Hills acknowledged. “We knew this was coming because we lost five seniors and replaced them with four freshmen, three of whom haven't played baseball since they were 10 years old. Two of the seniors who graduated were First Team All-League and are now playing in college.
“Our season began kind of how we thought it would. We started with two of the toughest teams in the state. We knew it would be a tough start playing Knappa and St. Paul, but our kids didn't get discouraged. They kept playing and working hard to get better and improve every day. After we got a few games under our belt we started gaining a little confidence. We started making more contact at the plate and our fielding errors started going down. It's amazing what a little confidence and positive energy will do. The guys never gave up and last week we played a tough Neah-Kah-Nie and played much better. We were competitive all week and finally pulled out a W in the last game of the series.
“Getting that first win was really something for the guys. We tensed up a bit in the late innings but they pulled together and finished the game strong. Neah-Kah-Nie started undefeated and to give them their first loss was a real adrenaline boost for the team. They are a well-coached team and play the game the right way so getting a W against them was really awesome.”
A lesson in perseverance…
Nolan McCarthy is the Friday starter for Georgetown University. McCarthy was cut from the Jesuit freshman team, then went on to start for the Crusaders in their first-ever state championship game win back in 2016. McCarthy started his collegiate career in Division III at Occidental College before joining the Georgetown staff in 2021 after graduating from Oxy. McCarthy’s complete-game shutout versus Seton Hall last Friday was the 25th win of the season for the Hoyas.
If you could do anything to improve the game…
We asked coaches this week to share, without attribution, what they would do if given carte blanche to change Oregon high school baseball for the better. Below are a sampling of the responses we received:
Every game should NOT count. Turf teams have an advantage early on. Teams that have a lot of winter athletes have a disadvantage. The first 2-3 games should not count in colley/RPI. More than enough room for this in a 27 game schedule.”
Construct the playoff format more like Washington (College World Series style), where teams need to win a regional and super regional, to move forward. Make the final eight double elimination style. Single game elimination in baseball doesn’t show who the best team is in the end.
Make winning the league actually worth something!
Unlimited substitutions would be a great way to increase participation. There are ways to do this while maintaining the integrity of the game. In high school we focus on participation and sell athletics as a means for student/athletes to be involved in an activity, but when a baseball game starts substitutes might be limited to a single at bat or a half inning of defense. With unlimited re-entry all players would be locked into one place in the batting order, but could move in and out freely. It would be akin to all other team sports. More kids could take part in our game in a much more meaningful way, without really changing the game itself.
Nine inning games. Reward teams for actually developing pitching depth.
Change the 10-run mercy rule so that a game must go at least six innings. When we 10 run someone or we get 10 runned, it takes away opportunities to play the game. With the season only being 26 regular season games, a 10 run rule eliminates innings. It also takes away opportunities to teach about life. If you are down 10, How are you going to respond? Teaching kids never to quit. If you are up 10, can you win with class and humility?
I’d love to see wood bats only at the high school level. It creates more purity in the game and shortens the length of contests considerably. This would also force hitters to learn to hit correctly, as the margin for error on a swing would drop.
I’d love to see the jewelry rule go away. I understand why it’s a rule in contact sports such as football and basketball, but I’ve never seen a good reason for it in baseball.
Odds and ends…
When Douglas defeated Brookings-Harbor, 10-6, last Friday, it snapped a 38-game league winning streak dating back to 2018…After an 0-8 start, Gaston has won three of its last four games…West Linn junior Drake Gabel fanned all six batters he faced yesterday to preserve a 3-2 Lion win over Oregon City. Gabel also doubled to drive in the go-ahead run…The trio of Drew Talavs (Oregon State), Gabe Howard (Oregon) and Gabel could make up the most formidable rotation in the state next spring…
Brookings-Harbor senior righthander Jason Deshon has tossed three no-hitters and a perfect game this season. All were five-inning efforts…Hidden Valley RHP Nate Vidlak has allowed just two earned runs over his last two seasons. His career record is 20-2…Teammate Isaac Hill’s career record is 22-2…Southridge trailed Aloha, 6-5, on Monday when Kaden Bertram led off with a homer to tie the score. A couple of batters later, Cooper Weygandt walked it off with a single through a drawn in infield….
Amity defeated Dayton, 2-1, on Friday behind the complete-game, three-hit, one-run and five-strikeout effort by Hunter Barber. Carter Northrop and Mitchell Melton each had RBIs and Jeff Tompkin collected two hits and a run to lead the Warriors offensively…Bend beat South Salem on Saturday on a two-out, three-run home run in the top of the seventh by Kaden Isola that was estimated to travel 450 feet. “Farthest high school home run I have ever seen hit,” noted Lava Bear head coach Quinn Clair.
Grant beat Ida B. Wells in a critical PIL league matchup on Wednesday, April 27, that went nine innings. Both teams entered the two-game series undefeated in league play. Kellen Segel had 11 Ks over 7 innings to lead Grant on the mound, Freshman Brady McCarthy had a clutch two-out double to bring in two runs in the top of the ninth for the Generals. Chris Moore held off Wells in the bottom of the ninth to earn the save…
Clackamas improved to 10-1 in Mt. Hood Conference play with a 12-3 win yesterday over Nelson. Jackson Jaha hit a two-run homerun in the third to break a 1-1 tie. Nick Holm added a grand slam in the fourth. Trevor Wilson was 2-for-2 and scored three runs…Hidden Valley dominated North Valley, 19-0, on Wednesday. Nate Vidlak got the win on the mound and also collected three hits. Isaac Hill hit a three-run HR and Noah Stone added three hits of his own…
Monroe (15-5) won a double header versus Lowell yesterday. Trent Bateman threw a complete-game, one-hitter in the opener, a 3-0 shutout. He struck out seven. Ethan Doyle was 2-for-3. Jamar Thurman had Lowell's lone hit. Three Dragon pitchers, led by Brock Horning, combined on a 1-hitter with 10 strike outs in the second game, which Monroe won, 13-1, in five innings. Brody Ballard led Monroe’s offense, going 3-for-3 with a double, a triple, and three RBIs. Luke Warden was 2-for-3 with a double. Jamar Thurman again had Lowell's lone hit and scored the team’s run.
McMinnville improved to 20-1, the best record in 6A, with a 2-0 shutout win over Forest Grove yesterday. Junior Parker Guinn went the distance, allowing just two hits while fanning eight. Sophomore Eli Rolfe was 2-3 with a triple, 1 RBI, a run scored and a stolen base…
Going going gone goodbye!
In this space, and the ones below, we have recurring categories that will appear in every baseball notebook for the rest of the season. Varsity coaches may add to these categories by email to [email protected].
Everyone digs the long ball.
Here, we will recognize those Oregonians who have gone yard four or more times so far this season. We will add to it in subsequent Baseball Notebooks as coaches tell us about the players who are dinger ringers.
7 -- Vinny Salvione, senior SS, Rex Putnam
7 – Devin Bell, senior SS, La Grande
7 -- Ryan Cooney, junior SS, Jesuit
6 -- Triston Wallace, junior C, Cascade Christian
5 -- Alex Nisbet, senior 1B, Cleveland
5 -- Isaac Hill, senior SS, Hidden Valley
5 -- Levi Jones, junior 3B, Jesuit
5 -- Hayden Smith, senior 1B/DH, Jesuit
4 -- Noble Meyer, junior 1B, Jesuit
4 – Noah Stone, senior OH, Hidden Valley
4 -- Ryan VandenBrink, sophomore C, West Linn
4 – Griffen Bushnell, senior C, Willamette
4 -- Brody Ballard, senior IF, Monroe
4 – Elijah Arnold, senior OF, Westview
4 – Canon Reeder, senior OF, Summit
4 – Cole Weiland, junior SS, South Salem
4 – Zachary Justice, junior C, Summit
It’s a blur
Throwing hard in high school is the easiest way to get outs.
Here, we recognize those Oregon hurlers who hit 85 mph or higher when they get on the bump.
Fischer Barber, freshman RHP, Bend
Easton Corey, junior RHP, Pendleton
Jason Deshon, senior RHP, Brookings-Harbor
Parker Guinn, junior RHP, McMinnville
Isaac Hill, senior RHP, Hidden Valley
Ky Hoskinson, senior RHP, McMinnville
Kaden Isola, junior RHP, Bend
Jackson Jaha, senior RHP, Clackamas
Nelson Keljo, senior LHP, Jesuit
Steve Kovac, senior RHP, Reynolds
Payton Lambert, junior RHP, Pendleton
Maddux Molony, junior RHP, Thurston
Canon Reeder, senior RHP, Summit
Mason Spellecy, senior RHP, Hood River Valley
Austin Stalwick, senior RHP, Gresham
Sy Sullivan, senior RHP, Tualatin
Drew Talavs, junior RHP, West Linn
Ian Umlandt, senior LHP, Sherwood
Nolan Umlandt, sophomore RHP, Sherwood
Nate Vidlak, senior RHP, Hidden Valley
Jake Von Lubken, junior RHP, Hood River Valley
Paul Wilson, junior LHP, Lakeridge
In this space, we recognize Oregon baseball players who have 20 or more stolen bases at this point in the season, based on the information we have received.
35-- Cole Hubka, senior SS, Wilsonville
33 -- Tony Florez, senior SS, Coquille
27 -- Brady Windham, sophomore 3B, Centennial
22 -- Kollin Schumacher, sophomore CF, Regis
22 -- Dean Tucker, junior 2B, Coquille
22 -- Cody Reece, senior SS, Cascade Christian
21 -- Tanner Jackson, senior SS, Knappa
21 – Nick Gribble, senior OF, Sherwood
21 -- George Pohlschneider, sophomore OF, St. Paul
20 -- Tanner Manning, senior C, Regis
Get a whiff of this!
Missing bats is an art.
This list recognizes those pitchers who have fanned 50 or more batters this season.
98 -- Paul Wilson, junior LHP, Lakeridge
97 -- Noble Meyer, junior RHP, Jesuit
91 -- Jason Deshon, senior RHP, Brookings-Harbor
91 -- Quin Dufort, sophomore LHP, Ida B. Wells
89 -- Gabe Brabec, junior RHP, Ashland
86 -- Isaac Hill, senior RHP, Hidden Valley
85 -- Ky Hoskinson, senior RHP, McMinnville
81 -- Warren Rose, junior LHP, St. Paul
77 -- Dom Montiel, senior RHP, Marshfield
75 -- Nate Vidlak, senior RHP, Hidden Valley
72 -- Ian Umlandt, senior LHP, Sherwood
69 – Drew Talavs, junior RHP, West Linn
67 -- Steve Kovac, senior RHP, Reynolds
67 -- Nelson Keljo, senior LHP, Jesuit
62 -- Hunter Barber, senior RHP, Amity
57 -- Tanner Manning, senior RHP, Regis
57 -- Garrett Holpuch, senior RHP, Corvallis
57 -- Evan Rhoden, freshman RHP, Ashland
56-- Maddux Malony, junior RHP, Thurston
56 -- Owen Thompson, junior RHP, Cascade Christian
55 – Kellen Segel, junior RHP, Grant
54 -- Max Gregg, junior RHP, Corvallis
54 -- Blake Stavros, senior RHP, Willamette
52 -- Nolan Umlandt, sophomore RHP, Sherwood
52 -- Drew Miller, senior RHP, Knappa
51 -- Cameron Ordway, senior RHP, Philomath
51 -- Clay Smith, freshman RHP, St. Paul
50 -- Jake Dodge, senior LHP, Southridge
In this space, we recognize hitters who have put up outrageous stat lines in a single game.
Kaden Isola, junior OF, Bend – 4-6 with two triples, a home run, stolen base and seven RBIs in April 16 game v. West Salem
Braxton Dill, senior C, Glide – 3-3 with a walk, two HRs, six RBIs, four runs scored and a steal on April 14 v. Elkton
Cole Katayama-Stall, sophomore INF, Westview – 4-4 with a walk, two triples, three runs scored and five RBIs in April 29 win v. Sunset
Leo Renzema, junior OH, Rex Putnam – 2-4 with a double, home run and six RBIs on April 15 v. Scappoose. Also was the winning pitcher!
Jackson Miller, senior OF, Ida B. Wells – 4-5 with a double, HR, four RBIs and three runs scored in March 21 win over Mead of Colorado.
Jackson Fera, sophomore 1B, Rex Putnam – 3-4 with two HRs, two runs and four RBIS in April 5 win over St. Helens.
Ashton MacClanathan, senior 2B, Clackamas – 2-3, with a double, HR, run scored and six RBIs in April 26 win over Gresham.
Below, we recognize pitchers who have thrown seven-inning no-hitters this year.
Skylar Brolin, senior RHP, Philomath – April 28 v. Sisters (struck out 8 in 6-0 win)
Ky Hoskinson, senior RHP, McMinnville – April 11 v Newberg (perfect game; struck out 16 in 3-0 win)
Garrett Holpuch, senior RHP, Corvallis – April 18 v Central (struck out 13 in 4-0 win)
Gage Martinez, freshman RHP, Coquille, April 28 v. Waldport (Strick out 14 in 10-0 win)
Bryson Nygren, freshman RHP, Regis – April 23 v. Lowell (struck out 17 in 9-1 win)
Ryan Prescott, junior LHP, Willamette – April 23 v. Eagle Point (struck out 11 in 10-2 win)
In this space, we list those players, in the current senior class and younger, who have signed National Letters of Intent in baseball or have made a commitment to attend a college or university of their choice. Congrats! It can be so demanding but at the same time is so rewarding.
Here’s whom we have so far. The list is over 60 strong!! It is a golden age for Oregon prep baseball! We will add to this list in subsequent notebooks as we receive notifications.
Rochne Beecham, senior OF, Wilsonville – Pacific Lutheran
Kaden Bertram, senior 1B, Southridge – Pierce CC
Max Bledy, senior C, Wilsonville – University of the Pacific
Joe Brauckmiller, senior RHP/OF, Canby -- George Fox
Jackson Bui, senior OF, Jesuit -- Linfield University
Cam Christenson, senior IF, Sherwood – Linn-Benton CC
Peter Coakley, senior RHP,, Sunset – Loras College
Ryan Cooney, junior SS, Jesuit – University of Oregon
Easton Corey, junior RHP, Pendleton – Oregon State
Jacob Dodge, senior 1B, Southridge – University of Oregon
Thomas Ferroggiaro, senior IF, Central Catholic – Santa Clara
Nolan Friese, senior SS, Southridge – Linfield University
Aiden Gebhard, Senior OF, Redmond – Lane CC
Carson Gerding, senior OH, Philomath -- Eastern Oregon
Ryan Hart, senior OH, Jesuit – Whitworth University
Blaise Heher, senior RHP/OF, Lake Oswego – Claremont Mudd Scripps
Alex Hendrickson, senior INF/RHP, Reynolds - Mt. Hood CC
Isaac Hill, senior RHP, Hidden Valley -- Oregon State
Nick Holm, senior IF, Clackamas – Linfield University
Evan Holman, senior C, North Marion – Bellevue CC
Ky Hoskinson, senior IF, McMinnville – Cal State Bakersfield
Gabe Howard, sophomore, West Linn – University of Oregon
James Hubbard, senior RHP, Centennial – Blue Mountain CC
Cole Hubka, senior SS, Wilsonville – University of Utah
Jackson Jaha, senior IF, Clackamas – University of Oregon
Silas Jolicoeur, senior 1B, Westview – Los Medanos College
Hayden Kaiser, senior 1B, McNary -- Pacific Lutheran
Nelson Keljo, senior LHP, Jesuit – Oregon State
Ely Kennel, senior IF, Santiam Christian – Oregon State
JC Klee, senior 2B, Southridge – Corban University
Ever Lamm, senior RHP, South Umpqua – Linn-Benton CC
Casey Langdale, senior INF, Canby – Chemeketa CC
Clayton Langdale, senior INF, Canby – Chemeketa CC
Cooper Johnson, senior 1B/LHP, Mountainside - Linn-Benton CC
Levi Jones, junior 3B, Jesuit – Oregon State
Cole Jorgensen, senior C, La Grande – Western Oregon
Zachary Justice, junior C, Summit – University of Oregon
Gage Lee, senior IF, Sunset -- Allan Hancock CC
Brody McMullen, senior RHP, West Salem – Linn-Benton CC
Noble Meyer, junior RHP, Jesuit – University of Oregon
Andy Miller, senior SS, Mountainside - Seattle University
Michael Miller, senior C, Tualatin -- Catholic University of America
Maddox Molony, junior SS/RHP, Thurston – University of Oregon
Kace Naone, senior SS, West Linn – Linn-Benton CC
Cooper Newman, senior RHP, Newberg – Walsh University
Jason Noffsinger, senior RHP, Canby – Chemeketa CC
Wyatt Norris, senior P, West Linn – Pacific Lutheran
Kellan Oakes, senior RHP, Canby – Linn-Benton CC
Bryce Oliver, senior C, Canby – Chemeketa CC
Logan Plunkett, senior RHP, Westview – University of Puget Sound
Canon Reeder, senior RHP, Summit – Oregon State
Logan Ready, senior RHP, McNary -- Pacific Lutheran
Joe Reitz, senior C, Hood River Valley – Colorado School of Mines
Caleb Richter, senior OF, Hidden Valley -- Bushnell University
Chris Rogers, senior IF, Sprague – Edmonds College
Dawson Santana, junior 2B, Lakeridge – University of Oregon
Vinny Salvione, senior IF, Rex Putnam - University of Portland
Kayden Sandow, senior Utility, Willamette – Walla Walla CC
Mason Spellecy, senior IF/RHP, Hood River Valley – Mesa CC
Spencer Sullivan, senior OF, West Linn – Linn-Benton CC
Sy Sullivan, senior RHP, Tualatin -- Fitchburg State University
Drew Talavs, junior P, West Linn – Oregon State
Ian Umlandt, senior LHP/OF, Sherwood – University of Oregon
Mason Utech, senior C/SS, Lakeridge -- Utah
Nate Vidlak, senior RHP/3B, Hidden Valley – College of Idaho
Ryan VandenBrink, sophomore C, West Linn – Oregon State
Paul Wilson, junior LHP, Lakeridge – Oregon State
Braden Woods, senior OF, McMinnville – Linfield University
If you are a HS coach and want to add someone to the list, by all means email me, [email protected], put “baseball commitment” in the subject line and provide the info in the manner shown above.