2017 OUA Baseball Playoff Preview

Brock Badgers 

  • Record: 13-3
  • Seed: 1st
  • Last 10 Games: 8-2
  • Streak: Won 4
  • Runs For: 102
  • Runs Against: 65
Projected Playoff Lineup
  1. Noah Koffman, SS
  2. Matt Legg, 2B
  3. Justin Gideon, CF
  4. Nick Spillman, DH
  5. Jaiden Hill, 3B
  6. Blake Stepien, 1B
  7. Tyler Nakamura, RF
  8. Matt Casburn, C
  9. Nathan Laird, LF

Projected Starter: Derek Zwolinski

Standout Stats

  • Koffman (.400 AVG, 12 RBIs)
  • Gideon (3 HR)
  • Porter (3.12 ERA, 11.94 K/9)

Key Reserves: Matt Pigat, Dawson Veeneman, Josh Wray

Key Pitchers: Chase Porter, Alex Nolan, Jake Near, Andrew Raponi, Ryan Bench, Nick Subramanium, Jacob Ebbs, Derek Zwolinksi

Playoff X Factor: Tyler Nakamura, OF

Q/A with P, Jake Near

Guru: What was a specific in-game moment where Brock really started clicking as a team?

JN: Definitely the sweep of Laurier. Jaiden Hill hit a walk-off double to cap off an impressive day at the ball park. I’ve never been in a locker room as loud as that one post-game.

Laurier Golden Hawks 

  • Record: 12-4
  • Seed: #2
  • Last 10 Games: 7-3
  • Streak: Won 1
  • Runs For: 104
  • Runs Against: 44
Projected Playoff Lineup
  1. Dan Apostoli, CF
  2. Kai Harris, LF
  3. Jeff Hunt, 1B
  4. Ryley Davenport, C
  5. Robbie Cant, SS
  6. Nick Cook, DH
  7. Dallas Taylor, RF
  8. Will Bibbings, 3B
  9. Taka Ryan, 2B

Projected Starter: Kyle Symington

Standout Stats

  • Davenport (.473 AVG, 21 RBI)
  • Apostoli (.421 AVG)
  • Symington (1.93 ERA, 1 BB)
  • Hassani (1.00 ERA)

Key Reserves: Connor Patterson, Brett Medland, Chad Meyer

Key Pitchers: AJ Padmore, Austin Hassani, Christian Hauck, Kyle Symington, Nick Murray, Shawn Miller

Playoff X Factor: Robbie Cant, SS

Q/A with SP, Kyle Symington

Guru: What part of the team has improved the most from last year’s early playoff exit?

KS: Definitely our depth. We’ve been solid both on the mound and at the plate this year, much like we were a year ago. Though right now I feel like we have no shortage of capable players on both sides of the ball, whereas last year we may have depended too heavily on a couple of guys to get the job done for us. So when it comes to playoffs this weekend, I think having the kind of well-rounded roster that we do could pay off in a big way.

Western Mustangs

  • Record: 9-7
  • Seed: #3
  • Last 10 Games: 4-6
  • Streak: Won 2
  • Runs For: 84
  • Runs Against: 93
Projected Playoff Lineup
  1. Christopher Nolfi, LF
  2. Rhett Roney, RF
  3. Andrew Warner, CF
  4. Jeff Martin, 1B
  5. Josh Szeto, DH
  6. Eric Beauchesne, SS
  7. Jordan Camara, 3B
  8. Brennan Healy, C
  9. Matt Bowden, 2B

Projected Starter: Dustin Godden

Standout Stats

  • Martin (.327, 12 RBI)
  • Nolfi (10 runs, .392 OBP)
  • Gooden (3.68 ERA, 19 K)
  • Paish (3.95 ERA, 27.1 IP)

Key Reserves: Ryan Lim, Jalyn Trinidad, Brock Morgan, Damon Crumplen

Key Pitchers: Adam Paish, Dylan Jacober, Ben Smith, Alex Lamont, Reece Huntley

Playoff X Factor: Alex Lamont, SP

Q/A with Pitcher, Alex Lamont

Guru: What part of this 2017 team has improved from the 2016 championship one?

AL: The young talent is definitely what has improved the most from last year.  A year ago we had a team full of veterans.  This year we have plenty of young talent contributing throughout our lineup and on the mound.

Toronto Varsity Blues

  • Record: 9-7
  • Seed: #4
  • Last 10 Games: 6-4
  • Streak: Lost 1
  • Runs For: 109
  • Runs Against: 86
Projected Playoff Lineup
  1. Gabriel Nakonechny, 3B
  2. Michael Deluca, LF
  3. Tanner Young-Schultz, C
  4. Bradley Bedford, CF
  5. Sebastian Lech, RF
  6. Roy Suzuki, SS
  7. Mateos Kekatos, DH
  8. Vijay Ramnarace, 3B
  9. Marco Bandiera, 2B

Projected Starter: Graham Tebbit

Standout Stats

  • Tebbit (0.55 ERA, 11.73 K/9)
  • Bedford (.370, 14 RBI)
  • Young-Schultz (2 HR, 14 RBI)
  • Nakonechny (21 Runs, 16 SB)
  • Lech (.372, 13 RBI)

Key Reserves: Cameron Martin, Adam Odd, Junya Oshima

Key Pitchers: Mateos Kekatos, Grant Shantz, Andrew Greig, Adam Odd, Colin Edwards, Dean Christidis, David Pham, Graham Tebbit

Playoff X Factor: Mateos Kekatos, P

Q/A with Head Coach, Mike Didier

GuruWhat has been the difference between the 2016 Varsity Blues and the 2017 team?

MD The key has been the health of our players, in particular the return of Graham Tebbit full time to the roster.

Guelph Gryphons

  • Record: 8-8
  • Seed: #5
  • Last 10 Games: 6-4
  • Streak: Lost 2
  • Runs For: 88
  • Runs Against: 71
Projected Playoff Lineup
  1. Robert Wolfer, 2B
  2. Matt Allen, CF
  3. Ryan Freemantle, LF
  4. Nick Interisano, 3B
  5. Matthew Carscadden, 1B
  6. Kyle Kinsey, RF
  7. Troy LaCoste, C
  8. Evan Britt, DH
  9. Mason Copeland, SS

Projected Starter: Sam Salemi

Key Reserves: Tyler Randa, Joe Ciccia, Luke Whitehouse,

Key Pitchers: Sam Salemi, Mitch Over, Peter Zytner, Nate Kramer, Jordan Inkol

Playoff X Factor: Kyle Kinsey, RF

Q/A with SP, Sam Salemi

GuruGuelph finished 3rd in the playoffs a year ago, where have some improvements came from with the 2017 team?

SS The solid defence and core veteran roster provides a strong lineup making Guelph a true competitor against any team in the OUA in these 2017 playoffs. Our rotation has locked in four great starters, with lefty Mitch Over returning, as well as new starter Peter Zytner, and veterans Nate Kramer to go along with myself

Queen’s Gaels

  • Record: 7-9
  • Seed: #6
  • Last 10 Games: 5-5
  • Streak: Won 1
  • Runs For: 74
  • Runs Against: 78
Projected Playoff Lineup
  1. Kail Beloglowka, LF
  2. Matt Plut, CF
  3. Austin O’Boyle, 3B
  4. Jake Zeldin, 1B
  5. Curtis Smith, RF
  6. Adam Bernicky, DH
  7. Zach Johnson, C
  8. Demetri Zoumbalakis, 2B
  9. Joey Stipec, SS

Projected Starter: Will Langford

Standout Stats

  • Langford (3.82 ERA, 45 K)
  • Herbison (2.08 ERA)
  • O’Boyle (.320 AVG, 10 RBI)

Key Reserves: Tyler Doyle, Boston Elliot, Jacob Van Boekel

Key Pitchers: Will Langford, Jordan Herbison, Devin Burns, Austin O’Boyle, Gavin Ronan

Playoff X Factor: Jake Zeldin, C/1B

Q/A with SP, Will Langford

GuruWhat is the biggest difference between the 2016 Gaels and 2017 Gaels?

WL: Depth and confidence. Our lineup is deeper; guys at the bottom can stick it. We know we can beat anyone and we were the only team in the league this year to beat each of the top 4 teams.

McMaster Marauders

  • Record: 5-11
  • Seed: #7
  • Last 10 Games: 3-7
  • Streak: Lost 1
  • Runs For: 91
  • Runs Against: 109
Projected Playoff Lineup
  1. Brandon Chong, 2B
  2. Lucas DaSilva, SS
  3. Michael Campagnolo, RF
  4. Michael Ong, DH
  5. Jackson McIntosh, CF
  6. Cameron Walsh, 3B
  7. Giovanni Martino, C
  8. Willie Hotta, LF
  9. Ryan McAree, 1B

Projected Starter: Julian Tymochko

Standout Stats

  • Tymochko (18.1 IP, .313)
  • McIntosh (.362, .868 OPS)
  • Campagnolo (.304, .360 OBP)
  • Quinn Finch (6 APP, 1.26 ERA)

Key Reserves: Ryan McAree, Carter Johnson, Philip Hache

Key Pitchers: Nikolas Motruk, Nate Hamel, Quinn Finch, Kenny Noguchi, Julian Tymochko

Playoff X Factor: Lucas DaSilva

Q/A with OF, Michael Campagnolo

GuruAs a vet on the team, what continued growth have you seen from 2016 to 2017?

MC: Well having over 10 rookies last season, I think the biggest difference was having more guys step up in their second year, especially on the mound. We have also had a lot of team chemistry growth this season.

Ryerson Rams

  • Record: 5-11
  • Seed: #9
  • Last 10 Games: 3-7
  • Streak: Lost 6
  • Runs For: 54
  • Runs Against: 108
Projected Playoff Lineup
  1. Jesse Fishbaum, DH
  2. Jared Armstong, CF
  3. Andrew Ciuffreda, LF
  4. Aidan Dolan, 1B
  5. RJ Mienkowski, 3B
  6. Matt Papania, RF
  7. Phil Seguin, SS
  8. Kyle Conquer, 3B
  9. Chris Aubin, C

Projected Starter: Quinn Cumming

Standout Stats

  • Fishbaum (.316, 5 SB)
  • Papania (.379)
  • Caleb King (27.1 IP, 1 BB, 3.29 ERA)
  • Cumming (24 IP, 21 K)

Key Reserves: Jason Te, Mrugen Mehta, Anthony Fera, Pete Apostolopoulos

Key Pitchers: Caleb King, Kevin MacDonald, Jeremias Sucre, Matt MacDowell, Anthony Fera, Quinn Cumming

Playoff X Factor: Jeremias Sucre

Q/A with Head Coach, Ben Rich

GuruThe team record — 5-11 — may be somewhat deceptive. Explain how the team has actually challenged the top teams in the OUA.

BR I think we’ve definitely played above our record. We’ve blown leads late three times this season, including once against each of Brock and Laurier, the #1 and #2 teams in the league respectively. A lot of that is owed to our outstanding starting pitching, as well as guys seizing offensive opportunities.

Waterloo Warriors

  • Record: 4-12
  • Seed: #9
  • Last 10 Games: 2-8
  • Streak: Lost 6
  • Runs For: 47
  • Runs Against: 99
Projected Playoff Lineup
  1. Jordan Carthy, CF
  2. Erik Werner, SS
  3. Stephen Whalen, 3B
  4. Chris Bombino, RF
  5. Patrick Whalen, 1B
  6. Phil Guilmette, DH
  7. Josh Sabino, 2B
  8. Dan Inglis, C
  9. Michael Kritz, LF

Projected Starter: Stephen Gade

Standout Stats

  • Goindi (2.61 ERA)
  • Gade (4.57 ERA)
  • S. Whalen (250 AVG, 2 HR)

Key Reserves: Paul Boyadjian, Josh Clark

Key Pitchers: Sam Goindi, Stephen Gade, Jasper Henry, Austin Coles

Playoff X Factor: Jordan Carthy

Q/A with SP Stephen Gade:

GuruWhat has been the biggest growth of you team from game 1 to 14?

SG: Our defence has definitely gotten better. We’ve had a lot of rookies starting the season in new positions and they’ve been able to transition pretty well.

Windsor Lancers

  • Record: 7-3 (Non Conference)
  • Seed: #10
  • Last 10 Games: 7-3
  • Streak: Won 1
  • Runs For: 66
  • Runs Against: 33
Projected Playoff Lineup
  1. Jeremy Orton, CF
  2. Adam Pickle, SS
  3. Chris Rinaldi Ross, RF
  4. Kyle Renaud, 3B
  5. Andrew Wasyluk, DH
  6. Sully Robson, 1B
  7. Richard Chan, 2B
  8. DeSean Lawrence, LF
  9. Taylor Lehn, C

Projected Starter: Josh Neposlan

Standout Stats

  • Zimmerman (0.33 ERA, 30 K)
  • Pickel (.321 AVG, 2 HR)
  • Neposlan (0.91 ERA)

Key Reserves: Josh Baird, Cole Hillier, Ty Porter

Key Pitchers: Jack Zimmerman, Josh Neposlan, Cole Hillier, Rob Csapo

Playoff X-Factor: Jeremy Orton, CF

Q/A with SP, Jack Zimmerman

Guru: What is the Windsor Lancers team identity?

JZ: Our team is deep on pitching and defence, and our lineup excels at finding ways to score runs late and in tight games. We like to play complimentary baseball and win any way the game dictates.