that makes one of us
I know it was always rumored to be true, but this pretty much confirms they were an item at some point. Probably.
Tigers finishing up a series with the Royals today. Good guys jumped out to a quick lead, it's 1-0 after 1.
Other afternoon games today include O's vs. Angels, Reds vs. Cubs, and Braves vs. Padres a little later.
How has the season played out so far compared to your expectations?
Last Monday (June 3), the Michigan baseball program secured its second commit in the 2015 class, Nick Azar, a 6-3, 205-lb. shortstop out of Grosse Pointe Woods University Liggett High School. He joins Charlie Donovan (Hello post) in that class.
Info on Azar is limited. Prep Baseball Report, which doesn't currently have him in their top 10 for the state of Michigan in 2015, posted this brief bit in a recruiting rundown:
Nick Azar, SS, Univ. Liggett HS, 2015- Azar is an outstanding hockey player in addition to his baseball abilities. Azar becomes the fourth commitment in the state from the Class of 2015. He still has a ways to go in terms of polish but he stands at 6-foot-3, 205-pounds and has solid tools. Azar committed to Michigan on Monday.
Liggett is playing Concord tomorrow in an MHSAA Division 4 state tournament quarterfinal. The bracket for that division can found here.
In Division 1 (bracket here), four of the eight teams remaining feature Michigan signees or commits on their rosters. Bay City Western (Brett Adcock) faces Rockford, Temperance Bedford (Jackson Lamb) plays Howell, and U-D Jesuit (T.J. Shook and Harrison Wenson) is matched up against Sterling Heights Stevenson (Brandon Hughes).
2014 Michigan commit Drew Lugbauer helped lead Arlington to the New York state semifinals. MSG Varsity has a rundown and highlights of the team's loss in the semis, including an interview with Lugbauer.
Last month, a local Toledo-area newspaper called The Press published a nice feature article on another 2014 commit, Jayce Vancena—Michigan-bound Vancena: "Work hard, stay humble." Here's an excerpt:
“Michigan was always my No. 1 the whole time, and once they did that, I knew I didn’t want to wait, I knew I wanted to be a Michigan Wolverine,” continues Jayce. “I’ve been up to Ann Arbor a couple of times now to meet the coaches and players, and they’ve been awesome. The baseball field is just beautiful up there, the locker room is awesome, and they have an academic hall that has tutors in every subject…just for the athletes. That is what is so great about it. It’s all academics first, and baseball second.
“Out of all the players I’ve met, the one that stands out the most is fifth-year senior Ben Ballentine,” offers Vancena. “He’s just another one of those guys who loves the game of baseball and just plays it with so much heart and passion. That’s the way I try to be. I’m still the same guy who goes out to the mound every game, and plays with all of my heart and passion. I work hard to give my best effort every time I’m out there. I haven’t changed at all.
“I’ve been a Michigan fan my whole life, I’ve bled maize and blue since the day I was born, and that day Michigan offered me a scholarship…it showed me that all of my hard work over the years had really paid off to help me achieve my lifelong dream of playing college baseball,” he concludes.
Finally, I'm throwing this item in as well, even though it's not strictly about recruiting. Chris Webb of the B1G Baseball blog spoke to Erik Bakich earlier today and got some good insight into future Michigan baseball scheduling, specifically some big-name additions for 2014 and beyond.
The 2014 schedule is highlighted by a three-game set against the Houston Cougars during the second weekend of the season. After playing in the Lone Star State Michigan heads to the Irish Classic hosted by Notre Dame where such elite programs as UCLA and NC State, both participants in the 2013 College World Series, have committed to play. Michigan’s Big Ten bye week will flip in 2014, instead of occurring at the beginning of the conference schedule the Wolverines end the regular season with a bye which features a visit from Kansas.
2015 tentatively features a return visit to Kansas, a series against Oklahoma State in Ann Arbor, a season opener at Pepperdine, and a trip to Gainesville for a series versus Florida. Tentative plans for 2016 include a season-opening series at North Carolina and a return visit to Oklahoma State.
Indiana completes their Super Regional sweep over the # 7 national seed Florida State Seminoles. FSU was 35-3 at home entering this super regional matchup.
Indiana will play the winner of Lousville and # 2 Vanderbilt in the opening game (Lousville won game 1 of the best of 3).
IU is the first B1G team to make the College World Series since Michigan did it in 1984. This is a pretty big achievement for the conference.
BedfordNow.com reports that Michigan baseball signee Jackson Lamb turned down a third-round MLB draft offer and will likely become a Wolverine, rather than turning pro.
[Steve] Lamb [Jackson's father] said the family came up with a monetary figure that it would take for Jackson to turn down his Michigan scholarship.
"They didn't quite reach it," Mr. Lamb said.
Lamb may still be picked in a later round, but he'll be unlikely to sign. So far, through late in round 7, his name hasn't been called.
This is great news for the Michigan baseball program.
In the meantime, Michael O'Neill was picked late in the 3rd round by the Yankees with pick #103. A fitting development as he's the nephew of Paul O'Neill.
EDIT: Based on the tweet I posted in a reply, he's definitely coming to Michigan!
Gibbons - K
Norfleet - KR