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Working Our Way Up The Rankings!

Greetings Baseball Fans!   A very good week is upon us in beautiful Pensacola, FL!!!  For the first time since the beginning of January, we can walk onto the baseball field without 3 layers on!  We’ve had weather in the high 60′s and I’m sure all of my followers from the North are cursing me because they’re still shoveling snow out of their driveways.  Your time will come… and if it doesn’t… move to Florida!  Here’s just a little taste of how I spent my off day on Monday.

Off day with Dustin Brenton, Justin Bennett, and Ryan Day (not pictured)

Jr. Ben Hawkins

Last week we started with a midweek game vs. NAIA opponent Spring Hill, from AL.  We took it to them pretty good, and Freshmen Kevin Peters picked up his second victory of the year, and has yet to give up a run.  Pretty impressive in my opinion!  After we beat Spring Hill we turned our focus onto a good Flagler College team.  We knew that Flager was going to be the best competition that we had faced yet, and it was true.  They took it to us in the first game handing us our first loss 7-2.  We bounced back and won the next 2 games, 15-1 and 8-1.  Ben Hawkins pitched awesome, going 6 innings without giving up an earned run.  On Sunday,  TINO MARTINEZ AWARD candidate Jason Postill got his 2nd victory of the year throwing 6 shutout innings.  He’s yet to give up a run this year in 13 innings.  Definitely at the top of my watch list for the Tino Award!

Offensively, we have continued to kill the ball!  Greg Pron has continued to see beach balls at the plate, hitting .519 with 7 doubles, and 11 RBIs.  Brandon Brewer has been seeing the ball great also, batting .455 with 5 doubles from the 9 hole.  Eric Kroll had a good weekend going 3-5, and had some good team at-bats with a SAC bunt and SAC fly. And highlighting the weekend was Brad Hammac, who has yet to hit a single, but is batting .417 with 3 doubles, a triple, and a home run.  Overall, the week proved to be enough to vault us up the college rankings.  We moved up to 13th in the College Baseball Lineup rankings, and 11th in the College Baseball Newspaper.  Our guys have really soaked this in because it’s the highest ranking UWF has received since 1998!  The next 8 games are really going to show us if we are a very competitive team, we face 3 ranked teams, Delta State this weekend, Florida Southern the next, and North Georgia in a midweek series.  This is the part of the season where we really need to take care of business and distinguish ourselves as the team to beat in the region!  Our goal from the start has been to host a regional, and if we win these next 3 series, it will put us in the drivers seat!

Sr. Brandon "Prime Time" Brewer

This year we’ve added inning stretches during the game!  We copied this from Vanderbilt’s baseball team.  I saw it on youtube last year, but this year I finally convinced the guys to take part in it.  Every even inning the reserves run out to the outfield, start with a clap, and start our active stretching.  Our fans have really taken it in, and seem to enjoy watching us go out to stretch.  The other team probably thinks we look stupid, but it keeps the team involved, and its fun. HERE IS THE VIDEO OF OUR 5th INNING YOGA STRETCH!!  CLICK THE LINK AND ENJOY!! UWF BASEBALL YOGA ROUTINE

Riding the pine can be very hard for some people, and I think adding the stretching this year has the guys looking forward to the even innings to move around.  We’ve also done things a little different this year with our pregame pump up.  Before every game we all get into a big circle in the outfield and much left to right chanting, and Ben Hawkins gets in the middle and goes nuts with his dance moves, then the team comes together in the middle and we get a break.  Last but not least, we’ve started doing the “Love is Gone” fist pump during the 5th inning.  Basically, we’re trying to keep the guys in the dugout ready to go if their names get called.

Not a lot to update on pitching for myself, I haven’t gotten to throw live to hitters in 3 weeks, but will get to throw an inning today.  I’ll try to get some live footage of me throwing in the game, and I’m EXTREMELY excited to get out on the mound and fill up the zone and get some outs!  I’ve changed a lot since the last time I threw to hitters, so I’m anxious to see how it works out in game situation.

RS Jr. Brad Hammac

I want to give a shout out to Kim Hastings for all of the great pictures you’ve emailed me this season!  Also want to give a shout out to one of my best friends,  Michael Johnson from Samford University, they start their season on the 18th against Western Illinois.  Also, thanks to Carol Vargas-Villa for the wonderful footage of our Yoga Stretching!  If any other parents have footage of our stretching, pump up, or “Love is Gone” feel free to email me the file so I can  add it to the blog!

As always, email me your questions at Philipebertuwf@yahoo.com

And you can follow me on twitter at www.twitter.com/phillybert36

Thanks,

Philip Ebert #36