2022 Baseball Reflection

A terrific and unexpected season, capping what was (at least in my memory) one of if not the best semester of collective sports in VT history. Sad to see that it is over, but very happy it happened and it has given me renewed excitement for athletics across the board. As for the next iteration of the Hokies baseball team, there probably should be some elevated expectations going into next season. On paper I dont think we are losing many key contributors due to graduation (e.g. Hartigan and Malinowski are the only two from yesterday's non-pitching lineup that I think are out of eligibility), so we should be returning a massive amount of starters that now have serious post-season experience.

A couple of other thoughts:
- What are the plans for developing beyond the outfield wall and anywhere else at the park? It look like a construction wasteland beyond the left field fence while watching the games, and that just feels like space that should have some bleachers.
- more importantly - we need several promotional nights next year sponsored by some hardware chain where they hand out complimentary hammers. If the NCAA is taking away the one on the field we need to improvise. And finally,
- There's a nice little concrete landing (I think) beyond the wall in left-center that has a proper paved pathway, which looks like a perfect place to park Skipper. Lets make it happen.

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Great season. The ballpark still has a lot more upside potential to be realized. Let's go get as many quality young arms as possible from HS and the Portal. Strike while the iron's hot.

I have a few thoughts coming out of this year.

1 - Excellent season for the team. They proved that last year's hot start wasn't a fluke and hopefully they are able to continue that growth going forward. They proved that baseball can have a lot of success in Blacksburg, and we should absolutely embrace it as a major sport going forward. With most of our big bats being underclassmen, we should have some bright seasons ahead.

2 - Need more pitching. Our starters let us down in the Super Regional. No pitcher lasted more than 9 outs. You cannot win if that is the pitching you get. With our lineup and defense in the state it is, we desperately need to improve there. If we can, there's serious potential for a deeper run next year with legitimate title possibilities.

3 - Embrace the Hammer. Trademark the Hokie Hammer, market it, and use it early and often next year. Dare the NCAA to penalize us for it. Dare them to eject a player and coach for it. Make them take that stance and sit back while the entire baseball community backlashes against them for it. There's already momentum out there thinking the NCAA overstepped their bounds when they banned it this weekend. if we force them to make good on their threats of ejections, it'll only get worse for them. And its a great way to have neutral fans come to our side in the bigger picture.

4 - I love what VT has done with English Field, but I think there's a little more that can still be done going forward. Mainly, I would absolutely love to see some outfield seating, either of the grassy General Admission seating we have or some kind of bleachers. With the way we hit dingers, I could see that being a location that little league players all over the region would love to camp out during a game to hopefully get a souvenir or 2.

This is my school
This is home

To reinforce a couple points and expand (without reading the whole thread - drink in hand preemptively)

Don't care how good your hitting is pitching wins hardware (really both win hardware, but only having hitting won't do it especially post season)

I really liked learning about the development from last year and the "picked last in the ACC" story line. And comparing the numbers, that pick was probably justified. Those boys grew and showed out. To the point I'm a little afraid of losing a lot of the production. But that's where the coaches come in making sure the roster doesn't have holes and proving it wasn't a flash in the pan.

Bottom line gotta improve on the bump.
Go Hokies!

I'm still figuring this out.

that's where the coaches come in making sure the roster doesn't have holes

Baseball strikes me as likely the most difficult college sport for roster management.

There are so many minor league spots, the MLB draft is so big, that anyone decent can legitimately consider jumping in any given year. So much more potential year-to-year turnover than football.

Basketball can have the same turnover, but a coach may only need to snag one golden recruit to paper over the rest of the roster deficiencies. That's not enough in baseball.

Not enough US pro rosters for soccer, and no such threat for wrestling, track, swimming, etc, so those sports don't have the same problem.

After getting over the initial disappointment, I'm eager to see how both diamond sports do next year. πŸ¦ƒ

Go Hokies!

Skipper for every home run! They need to stock up on powder!

#Let's Go - Hokies

My biggest takeaway from baseball and softball this year is that Whit has done a great job of developing the athletic department to the point where Hokies who previously didn't care about programs other than football and maybe basketball really do care and are invested in the programs

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

This!! In 2016 when I took my then 5 year old daughter to a tournament at Coastal Carolina a parent asked me which player was my other daughter because they so rarely got fans at away games. Now we have gone to away games in 2017, 2019 and 2022 and to see the stands of local Hokies and even some fans that travel an hour or so to see a softball game is amazing.

Wet stuff on the red stuff.

Join us in the Key Players Club

Baseball, softball, basketball, wrestling, a tough FB crowd, T&F kicking ass and taking names, facility improvements everywhere, getting the Hokie Club into high gear... just to name a few things. Whit has done a ton in his tenure and he absolutely needs recognition (and probably a raise).

I think Hokies needed something to be excited about when football let us down. Several sports have given us hope. And the Pry arrival has certainly livened things back up. We are a supportive fan base; we just needed something to be excited about. We've been given more than we could have ever hoped from unexpected sources. And that's a good thing.

I want to Leg this, but you're already at 25, so accept these legs instead:

Come on, ME, you're up.

If you're not sure if my comment warrants a "/s", it probably does.

Warning: this post occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors)..

Also (and I don't think I have ever asked or asked myself this question) - when do the baseball and softball schedules get released for next year???

I am not a baseball fan, it's not a sport for me, but I have followed the post season scores, often checking up during the games for both baseball and softball teams because having a well rounded athletic programs is part of having a well rounded university. These teams represent VT, and they did so well. They were part of an incredible year for VT athletics, multiple regular season and tournament ACC championships. I hope that Whit and the rest of VT continues to make sports a big thing and raise our profile across the board.

I haven't been this excited about baseball since McGwire and Sosa.

TKPhi Damn Proud
BSME 2009

Bring back the 'roids! -- Nowadays, the 'roids aren't needed when they can juice the ball.

πŸ¦ƒ πŸ¦ƒ πŸ¦ƒ

Lots of guys will be gone to the draft that are draft eligible. Cross is a top 10 pick. Would have to think Hunter, and Biddison, atleast get lots of looks. Their return just depends on how signable of a round they get snagged in I would think.

But I would expect big things out of Demartini in the next two years, as well as Hackenberg.

The LF construction area is for the relocated home bullpen, not sure what the plan is for the area the existing bullpen is at today.

For the first time I can ever remember, our incoming recruiting class is littered with VA kids. Those kids previously were headed to UVA, UNC, and Clemson. The future appears to be bright.

The future appears to be bright.

Guess we'll all need to get some Frank shades

Warning: this post occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors)..

That's an instant classic. Top 10 gif possibly.

I love how he legit doesn't move a muscle the whole time lol. It looks like a cardboard cutout of Frank sitting there.

Weekend at Beamer's?

This is my school
This is home

That's a man who knows the camera is on him and knows all he has to do is sit tight and people will love it.

Warning: this post occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors)..

Recruiting just like football, 20s-30s. On the plus side of baseball is a lot of those top guys will end up accepting their slot in the draft while our recruits will 100% be playing for us. Solid foundation being built.

WRT the construction area beyond the left field wall, I was told that was going to be the new pitching lab, not a relocated VT bullpen. That came from my buddy who's son plays on the team. But I suppose he could be misinformed.

"Badges? We don't need no stinking badges!"

WRT the Super Regional, a pitching lab sounds like it's just in time.

I am not sure what to do with my hands now

...we need several promotional nights next year sponsored by some hardware chain where they hand out complimentary hammers...

If we don't have maroon and orange foam hammers being passed out next year, somebody in marketing should lose their job. It's such a no-brainer.

And if we decide not to push the NCAA and use the hammer again, why couldn't somebody throw the hitter a bat and have it stand in the place of a hammer? That wouldn't be a prop, per se. ;^)

If you're not sure if my comment warrants a "/s", it probably does.

Make them inflatable like the old Thundersticks so they would make noise on impact. Can you imagine a sellout crowd all striking inflatable hammers at the same time? Would look and potentially sound great on TV - assuming the ACC network airs our baseball games.

Also, start a new tradition that is an variation/hybrid of the hammer + skipper: Have one of our engineers design a pressure plate that the player can hit with the hammer that triggers Skipper (or maybe a new, dedicated canon?). How awesome would that be to have the hammer strike trigger a canon?

We could definitely drive the hype level way up.

How bout some pyrotechnics?

Maybe not the Skipper, but the pressure plate triggers fireworks

Never Forget #1 Overall Seed UVA 54, #64 UMBC 74

Great season all in all. Disappointing game 3 the way we went out, but looking at the big picture the trajectory is very positive. The investment we have put into English Field is great. I definitely plan on making it for a couple of games next spring - looks like a very nice ballpark with some room to continue growing. We keep up the momentum in baseball and sooner or later we are going to break through and bring home some hardware. This whole athletics season really made me believe VT can be a year-round sports school. It was awesome having a vested interest from fall all the way until now in college sports due to our athletics as a whole.

So, this spring was awesome.

Apologies as someone who hasn't been following with both eyes, but what's our staying power in these sports? How likely are we to make it this far into postseason play next year?

21st century QBs Undefeated vs UVA:
MV7, MV5, LT3, Braxton Burmeister, Ryan Willis, Josh Jackson, Jerod Evans, Michael Brewer, Tyrod Taylor, Sean Glennon, and Grant Noel. That's right, UVA. You couldn't beat Grant Noel.

One thing I would love to just throw out there.

I just don't like the pinstripe uniform, and think it needs a serious redesign.

I don't mind that its a vest, but I don't like the fact that the pinstripes don't go all the way up and stop at the shoulders. If you're going to have pinstripes. either have them go all the way up, or give a shoulder stripe like the Mets and Phils had in the 80s.

Along with this.... The VT logo on this jersey is comically small. I think the Nike swoosh might actually be longer than it, and I really don't like how its a maroon VT outlined in a maroon border. Just dumb. I know we are holding onto it because its the style we wore against the Yankees after the shooting...

but it needs to be updated. Badly. Either significantly enlarge the VT to at least have the same relative size as the NY on the Yankees jersey, or do what we should have been doing all along and put the old school VT on it like the throwback styling is begging for. (and I know we technically retired that logo, but we are still wearing it as a baseball cap, so.....)

Oh, and either raise up the front number so its not on their bellies, or just remove it altogether. Its placement looks lazy and sad on the current jersey.

All in all, I like the rest of the jerseys. I could go without the color blocking arm pits and sides on the orange and maroon jerseys, but they're good otherwise. I just think the pinstripe one in particular is a bit of a mess.

This is my school
This is home

I just think we need to be technical about color placement, transitions, #s, etc. relative to the strike zone. Im not sure about the details, but the staff knows that part. Make the uniform help us strategically.

Pain is Temporary, Chicks Dig Scars
Glory is Forever, Let's Go Hokies!!

YES THANK YOU. Our jerseys were hideous this year. Nike really phoned it in.

The pinstripe jersey is the worst offender. Being some sort of trash pullover makes it look like an updside down diaper, especially with the give up white area on the shoulders along with the tiny logo issue you mentioned.

Just realized something else about that jersey I don't like....

The VT is a different shade of maroon than literally everything else about the jersey.

This is my school
This is home

The closer you look, the worse it gets

Oklahoma downed Texas A&M to begin the MCWS.

Go Hokies!

Id love to see a NIT for baseball with CMU, Texas State, VT, and I dunno some at large bid - the point being of all the teams I watched play those were the most entertaining.

Let's keep playing.

I'm still figuring this out.