slot canyon

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  1. Flow Softball ( reviews some NCAA rule changes for 2018 season. One regards "catcher obstruction" at home plate. Some may recall Wallace was called for this in a game last year. They have also reinstated the defined runners lane line down first base. My wife and I noticed this at the last fall game. It had apparently been in effect 2014 and 2015. This is to help the umpire determine if the runner interferes with ability of defensive player to catch the throw. Also addresses some time limits during TV games and trips to mound. One I found interesting because I believe a batter form Enterprise was called out for a violation: No part of batters foot allowed to touch the ground outside the lines of batters box when contact is made. The article title is "Softball Panel Approves Changes to NCAA Obstruction Rule" by Brittany Conners. I had to scroll down the Articles section pretty far.
  2. Girls 1st & 2nd Fall Game info

    Thanks for that 4WDE. Not surprised about Greenwooe, Tannon Snow or Schiele. KK caught me off guard. I know Harris had issues with back problems in high school and at one point was out for a couple of weeks. There is an interesting story about her in the Chicago Tribune from 06/21/2017 titled "Pioneer Press Softball Player of the Year: PORFT's Chardonnay Harris". Sorry I cannot provide link but Google if interested. She was adopted by her Aunt and Uncle at very young age after moms death. Father was not part of her life. Inspirational story.
  3. Some of the salaries are a bit a bit fuzzy to decipher but as best I can determine as follows: Mickey Dean stated as total compensation of $250 K. I do not believe details have yet been provided as might be related to bonus $. Mike Smith at Ole Miss $190 K base salary. Torina at LSU $225 K Champer at UGA $ 180 K (2016) Rachael Lawson at Kentucky $220 K with $10 K yearly increase over next several years not including incentive bonus potential $. The Weekleys at UT make combined $ 467K. Walton at FLA $305 before any bonus $. I saved Patrick Murphy for last because of some interesting side bars. He is listed as $265 K base salary with $40 K “talent fee” so he makes over $300 K. In 2011 when he did the LSU/BAMA “flip flop” he was making $165 K but LSU offered $225 K which at the time would have been one of the top soft ball salaries in the country. When he left he did not take Vann Stuedeman with him nor was she retained when he “returned” to UA a couple of days later (showed some love and matched salary). Of course, Vann Stuedeman was then hired by Mississippi State. I could not get a read on her salary. On the national front we know the Oklahoma coach makes very close to $ 1 million per year. Mike Candrea at Arizona a base of $345 plus performance bonus and some other incentives. I was surprised that Carol Hutchins at Michigan, a good program, was listed at around $238 K. Thought she would be higher. With what appears to be a rapid increased interest in softball I believe we will see escalation in these salaries especially if a program wants to protect their coach from a suitor. If Coach Dean is successful then AU needs to be prepared to advance his financial package. War Eagle.
  4. Softball Recruiting Areas

    I have wondered what the Bama connection might be in Texas. Of course they have had a very good program for an extended period of time and could draw players from many states. In 2016 they had 6 TX players, 2014 3 TX and 2010 2 TX. based off random roster searches. In 2014, Auburn roster was dominated by players from Alabama and Florida. We did have Tiff from GA and Melero from California. I don't know if this means anything but it may not be a bad idea to have a recruiting presence in Texas and Glasco may enable us to do just that. WarTiger, regarding the power hitting, I am all for improvement in that regard but can't help but recall haw successful Ole Miss was playing a lot of small ball. I would like to see a combination of both. Some of those high bouncing hits really puts pressure on the infielders.
  5. I don’t know if it has any relevance but I was looking at the home states of SEC softball players from some of the top teams. Auburn has 25 players on roster; 11 from Alabama, 5 from California, 4 from Georgia and 3 from Florida as the main states. One thing that seems to stand out is the number of teams that have Texas players. For example…Bama 3, Georgia 2, LSU 3, Ole Miss 5, Mississippi State 3. Of course about 90% of the A&M roster is from Texas. I wonder if the presence of Coach Glasco on the staff will increase our recruiting presence in that area? Of course, many of the teams have a “California presence”…..Bama 2, Auburn 5, Florida 6, Tennessee 3, Ole Miss 4, Mississippi State 2. Auburn has had obvious good recruits from B’ham Thunderbolts (examples are Veach, Shea, Draper, Harris to name a few) but noticed Mississippi State got 4 players in the 2017 Bolts class who should be on the Bulldog team this year. The JMU class this year that is composed of Coach Dean recruits, has 22 roster players with 11 from Virginia. 2 are from Florida. I am no softball expert but I do not associate Virginia as a softball hot bed. Maybe speaks to player development?
  6. Girls 1st & 2nd Fall Game info

    #4 was Bilodeau, previously listed as # 22. Game one with Northwest Fla. State CC Carlson got the start and threw well. She did give up a double but otherwise overpowered the opposition. Harris pitched in 5th I believe and she continues to impress me. I would say she is our # 3 pitcher at this point and a very good one at that. She is a LHP. Throws a very nice inside breaking ball to RH batters. I was a bit surprised to see Veach start at catcher since she had rarely been at catcher at 2 practices I attended. (Yes I have heard the rumors) In the first game, Northwest at times seemed unsure about several of their infield throws and it resulted in AU runs or base runners advancing. They changed out at least 3 pitchers in the first inning. I believe they were trying to “save” their better pitcher for later in the game. In the 2nd game with Enterprise, their pitcher seemed to put a lot of spin on the ball and AU hit a lot of pop ups and feeble ground balls. She threw in the mid 50’s as I recall but had good placement and spin. NOTES; Tannon Snow was used as DP and did not play defense. Her sister, Taylon continues to impress both at the plate and in the field. Casey McCrackin played a lot at 3rd and made a sensational horizontal diving catch on a line drive hit to her left. She later played at SS for about 2 or 3 innings but Taylon got the vast amount of work there. Makayla Martin looked a tad more trim/fit. Throwing her fast ball at 64-67 mph. The change up is killer. Also a couple of at bats. Get the impression she is having fun. Swindle also appeared more fit. Throwing at 63 mph with also good change up. Bilodeau can throw at 64 mph. A few pitches get away from her but control was better than what I saw at practice last week. My wife and I both get the impressing she is “pressing”at times. Greenwood appeared to have reinjured her right shoulder during a foul ball she hit against Enterprise. She had been wearing some sort of strap support at practice. Appeared to want to stay in the game but trainer and coach immediately pulled her. KK Crocker did not dress for game. She was in shorts and no apparent injury or limp. Schiele still in leg brace. Makenna Dowell continues to look good a 2nd base. She ran down one of those blooper fly balls down first base line that I would have bet my box of pop corn was going to fall in for a hit. Very good play. She also has good skills with the bat. Poor outfielders tend to get left out of the conversation. Of course Rivera had a HR and a double off center field fence. Draper still impressive with bunt and speed on base path. I also notice that Rivera also has a lot of speed running bases. Bree Fornis is progressing nicely. The rest is a blur after the 2 1/2 hour drive home. War Eagle.
  7. Softball Has First Fall Scrimmage

    Article in today mainly about Courtney Shea and the catcher position. Apparently at the scrimmage on Saturday all the catchers took a turn including Veach. I sure would like to get the "pecking order" settled at that position. AU64, regarding steals, keep in mind that Schiele has not participated (knee) and was a good hitter and quick on base path. I believe she had a lot of steals in HS; over 100 during HS career.
  8. Softball Has First Fall Scrimmage

    There was actually a fairly detailed article in AL.Com by James Crepea (making amends for that last poor effort regarding Coach Myers). You can get to it via the drop down menu on the sports page under More Auburn Sports. From what I saw in the practice last Thursday, I agree with comments about Chardonnay Harris. At this point I would suggest she is in tha top 3 rotation. Also as he indicated there is a lot of stolen base attempts. Glad to hear Tannon Snow participated since she was not active last Thursday.
  9. 2017 Fall Softball. schedule released

    Practice Thursday 10/5/2017 First off, there were a few news articles people might find interesting., Auburn Undercover and Opelika-Auburn News all had softball articles yesterday/today. Some of the main aspects were mention of getting stronger, change in hitting philosophy and cancelled game next season with James Madison (mutual agreement). Also, players adapting to new coaching style. Wife and I drove down to practice yesterday, and to our surprise they had a scrimmage. All pitchers pitched 2 innings. At the start, one team consisted of Chardonnay Harris pitching, Shea (C), Perry (1st) Dowell (2nd), Snow (SS), Veach (3rd), Rivera (RF), Draper (CF), Olszewski) (LF). The other team consisted of Bilodeau, Tissier, Morrow, Crocker, McCrackin, Nutt, Greenwood, Fornis, Podany. Remaining players were exchanged in/out at different times as practice progressed. Tannon Snow did not practice from what I saw. I did see her in the dougout and on the field when coach called players over for team conference. Schiele has a smaller brace on her leg/knee and was walking around with slight limp. I attempted to get some info on her status but all any one would say was “she’s rehabbing” . Medical privacy I presume. Maressette did practice. Did not see Coach Smith at practice. Regarding pitchers: We know the two top dogs, Carlson and Martin. I thought Martin looked a bit stronger in 2 innings of work. I was impressed with Chardonnay Harris. Thought she had good control and threw a couple of good curves that broke inside on RHB’s. Swindle looked stronger throwing. Bilodeau had a couple of balls “get away” from her but has good power. I would say that none of these gals are “chopped liver”. Continue to be impressed with Talon Snow both in the field and at the plate. McCrackin also good at the SS position and has had good at bats. Snow just looks so natural out there and seems to have good instincts. Hard to believe she is a true freshman. I believe all our middle infielders are going to be just fine. A couple of plays I saw that impressed me: Jenna Olszewski made good diving catch in LF. Nutt at 3rd made good play on grounder by Perry and made good throw to 1st to get Perry out. Rivera hit a laser line drive off Carlson to CF for a double. The last 45 minutes of practice was devoted to hitting with 3 cages set up and players alternating after 3 at bats each cage. Managers were pitching. Veach hit a couple of long balls over. There were others who hit home runs but hers were really long. McCrackin is improved. Bree Fronis looks to have advanced. I do recall Olszwski hit a couple over the wall. The real surprise to me was the appearance of Makayla Martin and Ashlee Swindle taking batting practice. Interestingly, Martin bats left. I would say both did fairly well. I know Swindle was a good hitter in high school. Another injury update. Last week I retrieved a couple of foul balls that went into the stands down 1st base side. I had to throw them over the fence. My shoulder has been a tad sore since that time and my wife held me out for this practice. I suppose you could say I am “day to day”. If you missed it the first fall game is Friday, Oct 13. Previously had been scheduled for Sat. War Eagle
  10. 2017 Fall Softball. schedule released

    I know what you mean. Lombardi at OU was one of my top choices. And like Coach Dean, she had strong ties to the area where she lived. I never thought we would get Mickey Dean to leave his home stomping grounds but essentially doubling a salary has a way of doing that. In the Auburn pod cast I referenced in another post, Annie Smith reiterated what I presume is common knowledge. Everyone who makes it into the world series has great pitching. After that you need good defense and timely hitting. In the world series a couple of years ago we had the pitching but had the unexpected misfortune to have a couple of defensive blips and could not overcome it with timely hitting. I feel we are in good hands with good pitching, hitting and defensive coaches and talented players at all positions.
  11. Good individual podcast with both new assistants linked via the Auburn Athletics Softball twitter page. Glasco talks about his hitting philosophy which had some interesting aspects. Listing to Annie Smith, it seems that they are all currently involved in recruiting. Both are worth a listen IMO.
  12. 2017 Fall Softball. schedule released

    Definitely Olszewski was a participant. From my vantage point behind home plate it is just easier for me to keep track of the closer infield players while a lot of the more distant outfield groupings are not as definable; especially the new players.
  13. New AU Softball Head Coach announced

    You may want to take a look at my post today under the Fall Softball Schedule topic.
  14. 2017 Fall Softball. schedule released

    My wife and I attended practice yesterday. The following is a small sampling through the eyes of a non-expert. I estimate about 20 fans in attendance. Two players were “sidelined” and did not participate. Livy Schiele, the highly touted outfielder had a brace on her right leg. I doubt we will see her in fall ball. Brittany Marsette was also sitting out practice. Also, Greenwood had some sort of strap support for her right shoulder but participated in all drills as far as I could determine. Batting practice was underway with 3 stations going at once. One thing that appeared interesting was that one station was using a pitching machine that was apparently set on very fast speed such that most of the batters could rarely make contact. The next station was a manager throwing at a “reasonable” speed then another machine also at reasonable speed. You took 5 cuts in each station. I presume that the fast station made the subsequent stations seem really slow. Although not a golfer, it might be like practicing putting at a very small hole then when you see the standard hole it looks easier. Justus Perry crushed several balls thrown by the manager. Also, Talon Snow was able to make several good contacts with the fast machine. During batting practice, the 3 “underclassman” pitchers (Swindle, Bilodeau, and Harris) were in the outfield shagging the hit balls. Coach Dean was with Carlson and Martin in the right field pitching cage. There was no live game type pitching by our pitchers during this practice. This is what I recall about infield positions. First base Tannon Snow, Perry and Dakota Morrow. 2nd Crocker and Dowell, SS McCrackin and Taylon Snow, 3rd Veach and Nutt. I am sure there were other combinations but those I remember. All 3 catchers got equal practice time. Draper was her usual self in CF and I thought Bree Fornis looked improved. She had a some good throws and hits. What impressed me….how much velocity Veach has on the throw from 3rd to 1st and how comfortable Snow looks at SS . Last year at one of the fall practices I attended a couple of players looked a bit lost……not so this year even at this early stage, everyone appears to have a grasp on what they are doing. One of our favorite parts of the practice was the live action “run down” drill with a runner on 1st and a batter (manager pitcher). Coach Dean supervised this and it was fun to watch. Good throws in when a ball was hit into the outfield and good infield plays and numerous run downs. Coach Dean appears a bit more interactive with his players and several times during the session he would stop the action and huddle the players to make some brief remarks. The pace and tension may be dialed down a notch. To be fair, Coach is getting his first look at his team in action. I would love to know what he thinks about the skill level he has inherited. Emily Carosone was at practice and assisted in some of the infield drills. Random thoughts….we may have some effective slappers this year. Taylon Snow, Draper and Crocker can do it. I like how smooth Crocker can be with the bat. Hope a year of experience will allow more consistency. Also, the injured Livy Schiele I believe fits in that catagroy. (correction; after checking it appears Livy clearly "hits away" .....very impressively I might add in high school)
  15. New AU Softball Head Coach announced

    Same might be said of Chardonnay Harris, the left handed freshman pitcher. Not only did she have a 19 - 0 record and 0.29 ERA, she had a batting average of .524 with 51 RBI's. Very good article about her in Chicago Tribune (6/21/17) titled " Pioneer Press softball player of the year: OPRF's Chardonnay Harris. You can find it via google. Her mother died when she was 5 and her biological father is incarcerated. She was adopted and raised by her aunt (mother's sister) and uncle and considers them her parents. Very good read and will likely make you an instant Chardonnay fan. Also, since mentioned here...the practice schedule is up on the Auburn Softball twitter page 9/27 3:30 - 6:30 9/28 4 - 7 9/29 3 - 6 9/30 9 - 12 10/1 no practice