Michigan Baseball

Submitted by Wolverine Devotee on May 15th, 2012 at 7:52 PM

Today Michigan dropped a 13-6 game at western. Michigan's record is now 21-32 overall, and they are 7-14 in the B1G. Michigan will face nebraska this weekend for the first time ever not at a neutral site. Be sure to come and watch the boys if you're in the A2 area, as it will be their last games of the season.

They will not qualify for the B1G Tournament for the second straight year (top 6 teams get in).

Coach Rich Maloney most certainly is on the hot seat. His contract expires after this season. What would your decision be if you were Dave Brandon?


  • 339-238 record at Michigan. Began coaching in 2003.
  • 3 Big Ten Championships (2006, 2007, 2008)
  • 2 Big Ten Tournament Championships (2006, 2008)
  • 4th all-time in wins at Michigan
  • 4 NCAA Tournament Appearances
  • 1 NCAA Regional Championship (2008)

Here are the cons

  • 69 losses in two seasons
  • Last place finish in the B1G in 2011 and currently at 10th place in the conference
  • Missing the B1G Tournament for two straight years
  • Last NCAA Tournament appearance was 2008
  • Swept by eastern this season in blowout games





Happy Gilmore

May 15th, 2012 at 8:02 PM ^

His past speaks to his ability as a coach, although the last few years are troubling. However, this year the team has dealt with 6 major injuries which led in a large part to this season's results.


But Maloney and the Wolverines didn't stand much chance this year after they lost six key players for extended periods due to injury.

"I don’t think there’s any question about it," Maloney said. "Think about it, six guys? What are the chances of that? Just think, if coach (John) Beilein lost (Tim) Hardaway (Jr.) and (Trey) Burke, how good would the basketball team have been? That's what this was like, with the caliber of guys we lost.

"Do I think it would have been different without the injuries? Absolutely. But it is what it is. You just keep battling, move forward."



May 15th, 2012 at 8:02 PM ^

I would say one or two more years as a gut reaction maybe even tack on one more. If the trend shows improvement keep retaining and showing support. If in three years we are not fielding a competitive team then I would really think about replacement.

Would have to see how the baseball fans are doing though and if enough are voting with their pocketbooks.

I'm pretty biased and misinformed because I don't follow it as passionately as football or basketball.


May 15th, 2012 at 8:17 PM ^

the coaches fault.  Normally I would say 1 more year then a jump start change is needed.  However, you cannot hold a poor season against a coach due to injuries.


May 15th, 2012 at 8:24 PM ^

If we do let him go, I would like to see the athletic department go big for a coach that could really turn Ann Arbor into a baseball powerhouse like Carol Hutchins has turned softball into a powerhouse.


May 15th, 2012 at 8:32 PM ^

I GM 2 travel baseball teams while coaching one of them.  My younger team of 12 kids has had 4 broken bones including my starting SS and we are 1 game over .500.  My older team played in a tournament and the day before it started I received a call from a parent stating that his child has suffered a concussion playing hockey and could not play.

When you lose your starters it is tough to compete.  Should we fire ourselves for injuires?  Now if it because of poor recruiting classes and poor managing then that is a different story.

I think they will be fine for a midwest program.  Bigger reality is talented baseball players don't want to play in the Midwest because the season starts in February.



May 15th, 2012 at 8:50 PM ^

Either cut ties or offer a multi-year contract. Can't go with one-year contracts with coaches because of recruiting. Only works when you have a legend at the helm (i.e. Red). I am torn. We have not been competitive for the past couple of seasons. But we had a great run for 3-4 years. I can't really complain about a decision either way. I can understand both sides of the argument. The losses to MAC teams don't really bother me. They're almost all mid-week games during conference season. You're not going to throw your best guys.


May 16th, 2012 at 10:33 AM ^

And there's also not a huge gap in talent between the B1G and the MAC in baseball as there is in other sports. Most of the top players in the Midwest leave for top conferences (Big 12, SEC, ACC). And the MAC teams probably care more about beating a big name like Michigan (even though we're not a powerhouse or anything in baseball). I don't really consider his record against MAC one of the criterion for or against him.


May 15th, 2012 at 8:55 PM ^

With baseball starting in winter, unless we get an indoor stadium, no coach in his right mind will want to come here.

At least in baseball, break away from the NCAA, go to wooden bats, full scholarships, and a 90 game schedule if they won't change the start dates.


May 15th, 2012 at 9:11 PM ^

I'm not an engineer, so just out of curiosity... what would the pricetag be for a bottom-basement indoor "stadium".  Hell, I'm not even thinking a "stadium" but just a roof and four walls that will maintain an indoor temp. of 60 and above.  I think it would be a cool gimmick which could potentially lead to M being a northern power.  I mean, if I'm a baseball player, a sport which has the lowest chances of "making it" in the big leagues, I might as well go to a great academic school... which would set Michigan apart from many of the traditional baseball powers.  I'm not even a college baseball fan, but I just stumbled upon the thread and though I'd give it a go. 


May 15th, 2012 at 9:53 PM ^

The roster is littered with in-state kids... like it should be...

But I think maybe coach maybe fooled himself by believing the Ann Arbor area is always filled with top notch recruits.

When he came to Michigan Zach Putnam was a local legend and the rest of that roster was filthy.  I really believe that was a once-in-a-generation group... That Ann Arbor Braves team was stacked from about a decade ago with Putnam, Avila, and a few other top ballplayers.

Just a thought. 

Michigan Arrogance

May 15th, 2012 at 10:03 PM ^

The bottom line is, he's not shown an ability to develope pitching the last 3-4 years. The 02-08 teams were more talented than any 2 other teams they played until the NCAA tourney. In the B10, that's not sustainable. What M needs is someone who can ID pitching talent and/or develop into a great staff.

he's not gonna get putnam level guys every year.


May 16th, 2012 at 6:41 AM ^

I think some of the expectations in the thread here are pretty unrealistic, unfortunately.  We're not going to make the CWS or become a powerhouse like in softball.  The thing about softball is all you need to find is one really good pitcher, because that's literally all you use for the most part.   That's what's happened there.  95% of the innings have been thrown by two girls.

Baseball is different.  For one, the south is a more fertile recruiting ground for a very tangible reason - year-round baseball - and those kids aren't coming north.  For two, spending the first part of the year on the road hurts as well.

We could and should be at the top of the Big Ten.  But the Big Ten will never be more than a mid-major in baseball.


May 16th, 2012 at 8:04 AM ^

I suppose the question Dave Brandon will be asking is how much improvement would there have been if the six players who suffered serious injuries this year would have been available throughout the full season.  He can't ignore the success that Rich Maloney has enjoyed at Michigan before these past two seasons.

Unless Michigan will be looking for a younger man to replace Rich Maloney, or they'd be committed to finding a Michigan Man for the job, they might consider Frank Eufemia, a one-time major league pitcher with previous ties to the New York Mets (Wilpons) organization who has been coaching high school baseball teams in northern New Jersey for several years with some success. He was pitching coach for an undefeated Don Bosco Prep (yes, Yuri Wright, that Don Bosco) in 2008. He knows something about having teams play in bad northern weather during the spring. http://www.northjersey.com/sports/151486215_Passion_was_contagious.html 

Not to say that Frank Eufemia would be able to rebuild the Michigan baseball program to the point where it would be as strong as the program that Rich Maloney had during the years before 2011, but he could be a reaonably priced option for Michigan baseball.


May 16th, 2012 at 1:05 PM ^

IIRC, you have a set amount of scholarship money for the team and you have to split it up amongst everybody (not counting walk ons). The elite players get offered a full ride, most get a partial scholarship. Which is still pretty darn good, especially for instate kids.


May 16th, 2012 at 4:43 PM ^

in Baton Rouge on March 10 when they played ND and LSU.  They dropped both games and didn't look good against ND but didn't get blown out by LSU like I thought they would.  Pitching was the biggest weakness and seemed too timid at the plate.  On a side note, former UM player Ryan LaMarre is the starting CF for my hometown's new AA team, the Pensacola Blue Wahoos (Reds).  My first game seeing them play of their opening weekend he was walking the warning track, my brother and I were in M gear and gave a healthy "Go Blue" as he approached.  With a big smile he said thanks and fist bumped us both and hung out for a few minutes talking UM.