2016 Season Ends; Ruffnecks Work Continues

2016 Season Ends; Ruffnecks Work Continues

Ruffnecks Enjoy Strong Summer

Ruffnecks Teams Stand out at PG WWBA

Ruffnecks Teams Stand out at PG WWBA

Four Teams Compile 23-4-1 Record on National Stage

14U Ruffnecks Champs Again in Tennessee

14U Ruffnecks Champs Again in Tennessee

14U Ruffnecks Capture 2nd Straight Title at CABA

2016 Season Ends; Ruffnecks Work Continues

2018 Anthony Redfern

The 2016 season officially ended on Wednesday, August 3rd at Diamond Nation in Flemington, New Jersey.  A combination roster of mostly 2018 and 2019 grads joined several uncommitted 2017s in the final game, a 10-6 victory.  The Blue Chips Prospects tournament at Diamond Nation is always a fitting end to a long season.  After all, New Jersey is where each season begins, usually on a cold weekend in March for the younger Ruffnecks teams of 13U and 14U.  And since many players begin their Ruffnecks career at that age, the finale, in the same place where it all begins, is meaningful. 2017 pitchers Henry Ennen, Dylan Presnal, Dario Tarquinio, Will Simeone, and Devin Gates, all pitched at Blue Chips. 2018 pitching prospects Riley Teevens, Anthony Redfern, Liam Rohan, and Jeff Price competed well, while 2019s Jake McOsker, Jaylen Bailey, and Jackson Emus threw with success at the final event.

In addition to numerous baseball games for all our teams, each season provides the opportunity for serious ball players to participate in a baseball experience that brings like-minded players and coaches together.  Ruffnecks baseball is not easy.  It is both challenging on the field, and challenging to individual player’s expectations.  For players on the older rosters of 15U to the Seniors teams, the condensed schedule, the rigors of travel, and the level of competition (internally and externally) are as much as players can handle at this stage of their careers.  The Ruffnecks summer schedule is comparable to any of the major college wood bat leagues: Cape Cod, Futures, and NECBL.

2019 Jake McOsker

The end of the season is not, however, the end of the work for players, coaches, and their families… particularly for players entering their sophomore and junior years in high school.  Indeed, many of the 2017 players have already earned commitments to colleges and universities where they can study and play baseball at the next level.  Yet for other 2017 grads the journey continues into their senior year at high school.  We like to tell the story of Will Toffey, currently a junior playing 3B for Vanderbilt University.  Will did not have any offers for college baseball well into his summer season with the Ruffnecks prior to his senior year in high school.  Vanderbilt saw Will play with the Ruffnecks as they were scouting another player on the team and watching a player on the opposing team in the Music City Classic in Nashville.  Will had a good game and the conversation began.  Other schools also began to show interest, including some Ivy League schools.  Will was a good student.  Yet he did not receive an offer from Vanderbilt until late September of his senior year in high school!  Yes, he walked back into the classroom in September without knowing where he might end up for college.  Will started at 3B in the College World Series for Vanderbilt in 2015.

The work continues beyond the game schedule.  Ruffnecks coaches do their best to manage player and family expectations while being advocates with college coaches.  Conferences, evaluations, and reaching out to schools on behalf of Ruffnecks players never ceases.  Of course, the player has an integral role in the journey.  But the Ruffnecks staff are partners in that journey.  Each year, the following of college coaches at Ruffnecks games grows.  College coaches consistently comment that they enjoy watching the Ruffnecks, the way we play, and the way our players and coaches conduct themselves. The work continues.

Ruffnecks Teams Stand out at PG WWBA

JP Olson '19

The Ruffnecks program has long been committed to participation in top events during the summer baseball season.  The road for all Ruffnecks (except the 13U ‘Necks) runs through Georgia and the Perfect Game WWBA at LakePoint in Emerson, GA.  The PG WWBA events are regarded as demanding and competitive events.  Hundreds of teams enter and compete from all parts of the United States. Teams play 7 games in pool play, with only pool winners advancing to the playoff rounds.  This means there is little room for error, and teams must remain “in the hunt” over the week-long grind.

Ruffnecks Teams 23-4-1 in 2016

The 2016 summer has been one of the most successful in the program’s history.  Four Ruffnecks teams entered in the 14U, 15U, 16U, and 17U WWBA Championships.  Together the Ruffnecks amassed an impressive record of 23 wins 4 losses and a tie.  The 1-1 tie came in the final game of pool play for the 17U Ruffnecks against the East Cobb Astros.  No Ruffnecks team lost more than one game in pool play this summer, and yet none advanced to the playoff round!  The ‘Necks took four second place finishes.

15U Ruffnecks Impressive

In addition to the close call for the 17U Ruffnecks, the 15U squad found themselves in a matchup against the Dallas Tigers, both with 5-0 records, that would decide the pool.  Unfortunately, the opponents earned a 3-1 victory.  Despite the second place pool finish, the Ruffnecks earned tremendous respect with a team ERA of 0.78 while allowing only 8 runs throughout pool play.  Of 272 teams in the event only 6 teams allowed 8 runs or fewer.  The pitching staff was led by Jackson Emus, Teddy Goss, Ben Mlavsky, Jeff Price, Josh Gruenberg, Ben Reyes, and Seamus Barrett.  The offense was sparked by the bats of Evan Sleight, James Dillon, and Jaylen Bailey.  Sleight hit .500; Dillon .450; Bailey .364.  Defensively, the Ruffnecks were anchored by a solid catching tandem of J.P. Olson and Mitchell Schroeder.  The infield of Dillon (3B), and middle infielders Dante Taylor, Andrew Hass, and Jack Flynn were rock solid. Jeff Price and Jaylen Bailey played a good 1B, with Bailey also contributing in the outfield with Colin Blasco, Ben Rounds, Emus, Sleight, and Gruenberg.  The 15U Ruffnecks have played an arduous schedule that will grow close to 55 games in just 7 weeks.

With the intensive travel portion of the summer behind, the 15U, 16U, and Senior (17U) Ruffnecks teams will play in the New England region until the first week in August.  A combined roster will travel to Diamond Nation August 1-4 to compete in the Blue Chips Prospects tournament.

Important Notices

(Updated Tuesday, August 16 at 1:00pm)

Ruffnecks Fall Baseball Registrations are Closed.

Ruffnecks Fall Baseball is at Capacity.

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