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Topic:  Halfway Point

Topic:  Halfway Point
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Andrew Ruck
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  Message Not Read  Halfway Point
   Posted: 4/19/2021 9:25:00 AM 
Bobcats split the weekend at NIU and move to 11-9 on the MAC season. 5 series down and 5 to go. Bobcats are the "off" team this weekend created by the odd number of MAC teams so Purdue Fort Wayne comes to town. I would say the strength of the remaining schedule is average...Akron at the bottom, Ball State at the top, and Kent/Miami/Western in the middle. Ohio would really have to fall on their face to miss the top 8 at this point.

On the pitching side, Joe Rock continues to be an ace and you have to wonder as the strikeouts pile up and the ERA stays low if he will have a chance at being drafted. Anyone know how hard he throw? It has been hard to solidify the 3 other starters behind Rock...almost all options have had control issues. Whether or not a couple guys can step up will be the biggest factor in deciding if Ohio can climb the standings a bit.

Isaiah Peterson and Harry Witwer-Dukes are having huge years at the plate. Peterson has 19 extra base hits and Witwer-Dukes has a .454 OBP. The lineup in general has hit well lately against the MAC after getting off to a slow start in OOC play.


Andrew Ruck
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spongeBOB CATpants
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 4/19/2021 9:40:58 AM 
Andrew Ruck wrote:
Bobcats split the weekend at NIU and move to 11-9 on the MAC season. 5 series down and 5 to go. Bobcats are the "off" team this weekend created by the odd number of MAC teams so Purdue Fort Wayne comes to town. I would say the strength of the remaining schedule is average...Akron at the bottom, Ball State at the top, and Kent/Miami/Western in the middle. Ohio would really have to fall on their face to miss the top 8 at this point.

On the pitching side, Joe Rock continues to be an ace and you have to wonder as the strikeouts pile up and the ERA stays low if he will have a chance at being drafted. Anyone know how hard he throw? It has been hard to solidify the 3 other starters behind Rock...almost all options have had control issues. Whether or not a couple guys can step up will be the biggest factor in deciding if Ohio can climb the standings a bit.

Isaiah Peterson and Harry Witwer-Dukes are having huge years at the plate. Peterson has 19 extra base hits and Witwer-Dukes has a .454 OBP. The lineup in general has hit well lately against the MAC after getting off to a slow start in OOC play.


Unfortunately, the MAC cancelled the 2021 conference tournament. Personally I think they pulled the plug way too soon.

The regular season winner will be advancing to the NCAA tournament so the Bobcats would need to go on a serious streak to get there.

Regarding Joe Rock, sounds like getting drafted is a lock and at this point the question is how high.

Thought I saw Baseball America put him as a mid-way first team all-american which would put him as a high round draft pick.

Also just found this article on MLB.com that covers his no-hitter from earlier this year. They have him as the #56 prospect on their draft list.

https://www.mlb.com/news/joe-rock-throws-no-hitter-for-ohio

Safe to say he's gone after this year, hope he goes in the first round.
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Andrew Ruck
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 4/19/2021 10:14:10 AM 
I think I knew that about the MAC tournament and then promptly forgot it. Agree they pulled the plug too soon. I would say maybe they pull a "Big Ten Football" and reverse their too early decision but I seriously doubt the MAC would ever do anything like that. Even if winning the MAC seems far fetched, it would still be good to do well and finish top 3 or 4.

I had not heard Rock was being rated that high already. That is great news. I have to imagine he must be throwing quite hard if he is getting that kind of love.


Andrew Ruck
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spongeBOB CATpants
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 4/19/2021 2:17:18 PM 
Andrew Ruck wrote:
I think I knew that about the MAC tournament and then promptly forgot it. Agree they pulled the plug too soon. I would say maybe they pull a "Big Ten Football" and reverse their too early decision but I seriously doubt the MAC would ever do anything like that. Even if winning the MAC seems far fetched, it would still be good to do well and finish top 3 or 4.

I had not heard Rock was being rated that high already. That is great news. I have to imagine he must be throwing quite hard if he is getting that kind of love.


Rock is getting a lot of attention, 10+ scouts at his starts. As a 6'6" lefty, he has the body they want with room to fill out still.

Fastball sits 91-93 but can top out 95-96. I would imagine he projects as a starter so development of fastball command and the ability to throw 4 pitches will be key to his success at the pro level. In college he can get away with a 2 pitch combo (FB/SL) but will need to show hitters of higher skill the capability to throw off timing with other pitches.
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Jeff Hill
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 4/19/2021 7:11:04 PM 
FWIW, MLB.com has Rock as the 56th best draft eligible player, which would put him the second round.


https://www.mlb.com/prospects/draft /


Here is the scouting report that accompanies his ranking on MLB.com:


Rock cracked Ohio's rotation as a freshman in 2019 and made a Cape Cod League cameo at the end of that summer, then disappeared last spring because he was academically ineligible. He got back on the mound in the All American Collegiate League during the summer and had scouts flocking to see him during the fall. More than two dozen attended an outing in which he struck out six in two innings, and he has enough helium to possibly surpass former big leaguer Dave Tobik (third round, 1974) as the highest-drafted pitcher in Bobcats history.


After sitting around 90 mph with his fastball as a freshman, Rock dealt at 93-96 with riding life on his four-seamer in abbreviated starts in the fall. He still has room to add plenty of weight to his 6-foot-6 frame, so he should continue to gain velocity. He also has picked up power with his breaking ball, which combines slider velocity (82-85 mph) with curveball depth.


Rock can miss bats with two pitches and also shows feel for a third with an effective changeup. He has a lower arm slot and some funk in his delivery, which led to 37 walks in 59 innings in 2019. But he's doing a better job of throwing strikes now, enough that scouts believe he'll remain a starter, and his mechanics provide deception.

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UpSan Bobcat
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 4/20/2021 3:56:41 PM 
The MAC baseball tournament for baseball and several other sports actually was canceled indefinitely last May for financial reasons. The MAC has not said when it will return but we can hope next year.
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spongeBOB CATpants
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 4/21/2021 2:14:08 PM 
UpSan Bobcat wrote:
The MAC baseball tournament for baseball and several other sports actually was canceled indefinitely last May for financial reasons. The MAC has not said when it will return but we can hope next year.


The MAC tournament really is a great event. I hope they can get it figured out. Maybe have a school host the whole thing and rotate each year? If its the venue that is causing the financial strain, I at least hope they will explore alternatives.

What else factors into the financials? Aren't individual schools required to pay for their own travel? Or does the conference pay for hotels?

Also, did softball cancel their tournament as well?
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Bobcat1996
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 4/22/2021 11:48:47 AM 
I think the MAC softball tourney is also off for 2021. Hopefully the baseball and softball tournaments will return in 2022. Currently Ball St. and Miami are running away in the softball standings with both teams having one loss. The Bobcats are in a battle for 3rd/4th in softball and in 5th place in baseball. If financially the league is struggling to host these events, then possibly they could have the first place team host the top four schools at the end of the regular season. Imagine the uproar if the mens and womens conference basketball tournament got called off.
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UpSan Bobcat
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 4/23/2021 10:42:38 AM 
Tournaments were eliminated in all team sports except men's and women's basketball and volleyball, and those all were reduced in size. I'm not sure the financials of it, but barely having football this year didn't help budgets. If you go to the MAC website and pull up the "Championships" menu, all of the team sports except those three do not show up. I'm afraid it might be a few years before tournaments return.
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Andrew Ruck
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 4/30/2021 12:10:49 PM 
An asskicking of Purdue Ft Wayne last weekend, 3-0 combined score 26-5. Joe Rock gave up a couple runs but threw complete game with 14 strikeouts. I feel so cheated to not be able to see what our elite ace could do in the MAC tourney.

Kutt threw 5 innings in relief and I am starting to wonder why we don't just have him be our game 2 starter for our MAC series. He has thrown as many or more innings as the other starters anyway and been very effective.

Big series at Kent starts today.


Andrew Ruck
B.B.A. 2003

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Andrew Ruck
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 5/3/2021 8:56:31 AM 
A split vs Kent. Let game 1 slip away after the pen couldn't hold the lead. Kind of sucks to end the weekend +10 in runs and come away with a split.

Also, probably because a random guy asked the question on the internet...they did finally give Kutt a start and 8 IP, 1 R, 0 BB, 10 K. Have to imagine he is a starter now.


Andrew Ruck
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UpSan Bobcat
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 5/3/2021 9:01:18 AM 
Andrew Ruck wrote:
Kutt threw 5 innings in relief and I am starting to wonder why we don't just have him be our game 2 starter for our MAC series. He has thrown as many or more innings as the other starters anyway and been very effective.

Big series at Kent starts today.


Kutt threw an inning of relief in the opener at Kent State and actually gave a couple runs and took the loss. He then came back to start and throw 8 innings of 1-run ball with 10 strikeouts Sunday in the finale. Ohio splits the series, losing 3-2 and 10-4 and then winning big 12-6 and 12-1. Aaron Levy hit 2 home runs in the final game and 3 in the series.
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spongeBOB CATpants
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 5/3/2021 4:07:56 PM 
UpSan Bobcat wrote:
Andrew Ruck wrote:
Kutt threw 5 innings in relief and I am starting to wonder why we don't just have him be our game 2 starter for our MAC series. He has thrown as many or more innings as the other starters anyway and been very effective.

Big series at Kent starts today.


Kutt threw an inning of relief in the opener at Kent State and actually gave a couple runs and took the loss. He then came back to start and throw 8 innings of 1-run ball with 10 strikeouts Sunday in the finale. Ohio splits the series, losing 3-2 and 10-4 and then winning big 12-6 and 12-1. Aaron Levy hit 2 home runs in the final game and 3 in the series.


That's pretty awesome that Kutt came back and threw a gem after taking an L.

This seems like a great year for Ohio to make another run during the MAC tournament. Really disappointed we won't get to see it.
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UpSan Bobcat
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 5/7/2021 11:32:47 AM 
UpSan Bobcat wrote:
Tournaments were eliminated in all team sports except men's and women's basketball and volleyball, and those all were reduced in size. I'm not sure the financials of it, but barely having football this year didn't help budgets. If you go to the MAC website and pull up the "Championships" menu, all of the team sports except those three do not show up. I'm afraid it might be a few years before tournaments return.


https://getsomemaction.com/news/2021/5/7/general-mac-anno...

Tournaments will return next year in an abbreviated form. Most of them, including baseball, are four-team tournaments with the highest seed hosting. Volleyball and women's soccer will be six teams. The exact format of the tournaments is not mentioned.
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Ted Thompson
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 5/7/2021 8:19:08 PM 

This is always a good thing.


Follow Ohio Football recruiting on the BobcatAttack.com football recruiting database.

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OhioCatFan
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 5/7/2021 11:00:52 PM 
Where's the "like" button? ;-)


"It is better to be an optimist and be proven a fool than to be a pessimist and be proven right."

Note: My avatar is the national colors of the 78th Ohio Veteran Volunteer Infantry, which are now preserved in a climate controlled vault at the Ohio History Connection. Learn more about the old 78th at: http://www.78ohio.org

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UpSan Bobcat
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 5/9/2021 8:49:45 AM 
Unfortunately, as so many series have been for Ohio, it turned into a split. After winning 3-1 and 1-0, Ohio lost 11-5 and 6-1. Miami is a good pitching team and shut down Ohio all weekend. Kutt started again in the second game and was great. He and Rock make a good 1-2 punch, but Ohio doesn't have a steady 3 and 4. The Bobcats get Akron next weekend. That is a series they should be able to win. Zips are 5-26 in MAC play.
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UpSan Bobcat
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 5/17/2021 10:41:43 AM 
A very disappointing weekend. Akron won a series for the first time this year. They did what few teams have done and beat Joe Rock in the opener 4-2. Then they beat Kutt in the first game Saturday 3-1. Harris was great in the second game Saturday, combining with Manis for a two-hit shutout in Ohio's 4-0 win. Sunday, Ohio dropped a 9-8 decision. Levy homered twice, but Akron scored the winning run in the bottom of the 8th when Harbert slipped and fell in right field. Braxton Kelly and Manis both struggled pitching, but Colin Sells took the loss even though he pitched well and gave up just the unearned run in 3 innings.

Ball State, which is tied with Central Michigan for first place, is up this weekend in Athens.
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SBH
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 5/17/2021 2:20:00 PM 
Akron is non-scholarship program, no?

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UpSan Bobcat
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 5/17/2021 9:41:53 PM 
SBH wrote:
Akron is non-scholarship program, no?



That was true last year in their first year back as a program. They were seeking donors to fund a few scholarships. Not sure if that happened, but either way, they are playing at a major disadvantage.
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Andrew Ruck
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 5/18/2021 12:11:23 PM 
Yeah, what a disaster. If Vegas had odds on that opener with Rock against Akron it would've been about -400!

With no tourney, the team's goal now should be to finish above .500 and in the top half.


Andrew Ruck
B.B.A. 2003

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UpSan Bobcat
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 5/23/2021 8:14:05 PM 
Ohio managed another series split and may have prevented Ball State from winning the MAC in the process. The Bobcats lost 4-3 and 9-2 and then won 5-1 and 9-7. Rock got beat for the second straight weekend, though he didn't pitch poorly. Kutt was awesome again in the second game of Saturday's doubleheader. He also got the final out in the game Sunday. Witwer-Dukes had a couple of home runs on the weekend. Bobcats close out the season at Western Michigan.
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UpSan Bobcat
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 5/31/2021 11:37:10 AM 
Season complete at 28-25 overall and 19-21 in the MAC following a 3-1 series loss to Western Michigan. The Bobcats won the opener 8-5 in 10 innings but dropped the final three games 4-3, 4-2 and 6-3.

Ohio was a pretty average team as the record indicates, but that's probably a little better than I expected. Rock (2.33 ERA) and Kutt (2.92 ERA) were great, Harris (3.25 ERA) and Manis (4.36 ERA) were generally good, and the rest of the pitching was below average. I felt the lineup was generally solid top to bottom but lacked a truly exceptional hitter or two. Harry Witwer-Dukes led in average (.305, 5 HRs). Spencer Harbert (.295, 10 HRs) and Isaiah Peterson (.283, 9 HRs) were the best power bats. The lineup was pretty full of seniors, and it'll be interesting to see which ones take the chance to come back.
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Andrew Ruck
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  Message Not Read  RE: Halfway Point
   Posted: 5/31/2021 6:24:27 PM 
Bobcats have a ton of Seniors/Graduates. If not for the extra year ripple, I would say the roster will be gutted. But now we just wait and see what it looks like...other than Rock being certainly gone.


Andrew Ruck
B.B.A. 2003

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