Two well played games on day one of the 2009 College World Series. Arkansas downed Cal State Fullerton 10-6 in the opener, while LSU downed Virginia 9-5. A few thoughts/facts on the action from Rosenblatt Stadium.
- The four teams that were playing today’s games (Arkansas, Fullerton, LSU, & Virginia) had a combined 20-1 record in the NCAA Tournament coming into today’s action. Virginia’s game one Super Regional loss to Ole Miss was the lone blemish.
- As I speak, LSU head coach Paul Mainieri is getting post-game hugs on the field from his daughters Sam and Alex.
- The result of Arkansas’ win over Fullerton isn’t necessarily shocking, but the way they did it is. The Razorbacks put ten runs on the board against a Titans team that had given-up a total of just 11 runs in their five previous NCAA Tourney games this year.
- Arkansas head coach Dave Van Horn finally has his first CWS win. He was 0-4 in 2001-02 trips with Nebraska, and 0-2 in 2004 with the Razorbacks.
- LSU’s win gives the Tigers their first victory in a CWS opener since 2000.
- LSU used all three weekend starters in tonight’s game. Anthony Ranaudo pitched just 3.1 innings in his 17th start of the year, Austin Ross had 2 IP in relief, and SEC pitcher of the Year Louis Coleman pitched the 8th inning.
- Coleman pitched in relief on Friday in SEC play vs. Georgia and Kentucky during the regular season and then made Sunday starts to end those series.
- Virginia plays Cal State Fullerton Monday at 1pm Central. The Cavs are the home team.
- LSU plays Arkansas Monday at 6pm Central. The Razorbacks will be the home team.
- Virginia freshman Steven Proscia hit his 10th HR of the year. It’s the most for a Cavs freshman since 2005 when Sean Doolittle hit 15.
- Chicago Cubs GM Jim Hendry was in the press box and in the stands for a while tonight. Hendry was head coach of the 1991 Creighton CWS team. He also gave Paul Mainieri his first coaching job at Miami’s Christopher Columbus High School.
- I sat in the press box between two really nice guys tonight. Marc Davis, the Sports Director at WCDV Channel 19 from Charlottesville, VA and Jason Cole from Burntorangebeat.com. Had a lot of good baseball conversation.
- I know it’s been overstated all week, but Mainieri and O’Connor are two of the best class acts in the game. They are both great guys, and their staffs and teams embody how the game should be: play hard with no excuses.
- My dad, son, daughter, and wife were all in the stands tonight. My son was with a few of his Scrappers baseball teammates. It was their first CWS experience. I hope they had a good time.
- Sat for part of the game with my great friend, Randy Rosetta, from the Baton Rouge Advocate….he’s still Randy.
We’ll have more tomorrow.