Our weekly 10 Things to Know is back after a one-week hiatus. A spring break, if you will. But we're back in a big way and for the rest of the season, we will be sure to bring you the weekly scoop on our guys and how their college teams are doing.
Ladies and gentlemen, citizens and expats of Sweets Country, the Sweets present another weekly installment of 10 Things to Know:
1.He’s just a freshman but Cal Baptist 1B John Glenn has already established himself as one of the finest hitters in all of Division II. Glenn continued to smoke the ball last week, batting 7-for-16 in four games against some stiff competition in No. 3 Azusa Pacific. Glenn drove home four runs in the series and scored three himself. He also socked his fourth homer in the second game, a 10-3 win on the road in Azusa. What’s more, the Lancers snatched three-of-four in the series. Glenn’s performance is a major reason Cal Baptist is 27-15 overall. He’s batting .317 with eight doubles and 27 RBI for one of the most productive offenses in the nation. Cal Baptist sports a .293 team batting average.
2.It takes more than brute offense to sustain a winning season. Glenn’s teammate, freshman right-hander Matt Amrhein delivered the best outing of his college career on Saturday. Amrhein entered the game with one away in the third inning of game two of Saturday’s doubleheader. At the time, the Lancers were trailing Azusa Pacific 1-0. Once Amrhein made his appearance, two things happened: he pitched the rest of the game and the Lancers rallied to win 6-1. Amrhein lasted 4.2 innings and surrendered just two hits, both singles. The Upland, CA native bumped his record to 2-0.
3.Cameron Deere of Brown University blasted his first collegiate home run on Sunday, a three-run jack in the first inning of the second game of a doubleheader at Dartmouth. Brown went on to win 9-8 in 10 innings, snapping a six-game losing streak. Deere finished 3-for-5 with 3 RBI and a run scored. He had six hits across four games last weekend.
4.Our pitchers at the University of San Francisco had some solid showings last week. Righty Benji Post hurled 3.2 scoreless frames. He started by recording four outs in relief during Tuesday’s 7-6 win over Fresno State, entering with two outs in the fourth and carrying the contest through the fifth before handing the game off to future Sweets teammate Scott Parker. Then Post blanked Portland for 2.1 innings during Saturday’s 4-1 loss.
5.The aforementioned Scott Parker, also shined for the Dons. The southpaw picked up his third win of the season on Tuesday. Parker kept the Bulldogs off the scoreboard in the sixth. Then, in the seventh, USF exploded for four runs, grabbing a lead they would not relinquish and leaving Parker as the pitcher of record. Another sterling outing on Thursday (1.1 scoreless in a 4-0 win over Portland) lowered Parker’s ERA to 1.96 on the season. Working exclusively in short relief, Parker has allowed just 14 hits in 18.1 innings across 21 appearances. He’s stuck out 15 and walked nine. On the season, San Francisco’s record sits at 18-19, meaning Parker has appeared in over half his team’s games.
6.UC-Irvine RHP/OF Ryan Johnston also appeared in more than half his team’s games last week. But there’s a twist: not only did Johnston throw a total of 3.0 scoreless innings (1.1 on Tuesday against San Diego State and 1.2 on Saturday against UC-Santa Barbara), he also made his first start of the year in right field and batted 2-for-4 in Friday’s 8-7 win over UCSB. So far, Johnston has made 15 appearances as a pitcher, but he’s pinch run numerous times and he’s accrued eight at-bats. A start in the field against a conference opponent might be an indication that the Anteaters are open to using Johnston as a true two-way player. If that’s true, his versatility should add some excitement to the Sweets this summer. There aren’t too many guys who can play both sides of the baseball at the collegiate level.
7.Richmond LHP Jacob Weis made his first collegiate start on Tuesday, throwing two innings against James Madison. Weis, who was making just his seventh career appearance for the Spiders, allowed one unearned run on one hit while striking out three. Even though Richmond lost the game 9-7, Weis pitched well enough to earn another look. The freshman from Ashland, VA has struck out seven in six total innings thus far.
8.Each of our Washington State guys had a standout game over the weekend. The Cougars were swept in three games by Arizona State but 3B Shane Matheny went 2-for-3 with two RBI and two walks on Thursday; INF Danny Sinatro went 2-for-3 with a walk and a run scored on Friday; and OF J.J. Hancock was 2-for-4 with an RBI on Saturday.
9.Whitman College’s season has come to a close. The Blues finished with an overall record of 17-20 (11-13 in the NWC). Though Whitman failed to qualify for the playoffs, we can still appreciate the individual performances put forth by our two Sweets, 1B/OF Joseph Zimmer and RHP Patrick Stanton. Zimmer set numerous team highs with a .397 batting average, .489 on-base percentage, .596 slugging, 58 hits, seven doubles, two triples, six home runs, 28 RBI and 87 total bases. Stanton, meanwhile, pitched in 18 games and allowed fewer hits (16) than innings pitched (18.0). He walked 11, struck out 14, and pitched to an even 4.00 ERA.
10.As the 2017 Major and Minor League seasons get fully underway, it’s a nice time to step back and look at the professional talent that has come through the Walla Walla Sweets program over the years. Although the Sweets have never had anyone make it to The Show (although that might change this year!), we can proudly boast 11 Sweets alumni currently playing affiliated Minor League Baseball. A breakdown:
Player Pos Year Current Team (Level)
Jay Flaa RHP 2014 Frederick (A+)
Matt Hall LHP 2013 Lakeland (A+)
Jonathan Harris RHP 2013 New Hampshire (AA)
Bret Helton RHP 2013 Bradenton (A+)
Taylor Jones 1B 2013 Quad Cities (A)
Parker Morin C 2012 Omaha (AAA)
Luke Persico OF/3B 2013 Beloit (A)
Cody Poteet RHP 2013 Juptier (A+)
Arturo Reyes RHP 2012 Memphis (AAA)
Joey Wagman RHP 2010 Stockton (A+)
Eric Yardley RHP 2011 San Antonio (AA)
That’s two guys in A ball, five in Class-A Advanced, two in Double-A and two more right on the Major League doorstep in Triple-A. If you’ve been keeping up with 10 Things to Know all spring, you’re probably aware that Arturo Reyes is hardly more than an injury or two away from a call-up to St. Louis. The way he’s pitching this year (six hits, one walk, five strikeouts in 6.2 innings so far) could get any Sweets fan fired up!