Interesting comments!Might be time to pay attention to the small stuff in the Gopher program to be able to attract and retain great players. I know it seems strange to most male fan's but when you are recruiting new players (ACE's) you need to appeal as a well run program. Awesome locker rooms, uniforms , great support staff (nutritionist), nice stadium and a supportive fan base. The Gopher's are starting to check off some of those boxes, but don't underestimate appearance and how it plays to recruits. I understand that pulling from the local states and the even colder Canada is no problem, but in the end you need the warm weather state recruits if you want to be a ELITE program. Even Amber decided to head south after for a GA position and the last few coaches bailed to warmer homes. So understand if you really want to be ELITE then you have to do it every thing better!
would be great for their confidence to go on a tear from here and knock off some big wins.That was a fun win to watch as a fan. But what I particular think is fun at this crucial time of the season is… it looked like the team really enjoyed that win. They looked good out there after the last out; like they really were happy about this one.
I don’t know if the members of the team have had a whole lot of fun this year. Maybe they have but it hasn’t well penetrated through the video screen to the viewer. But tonight, at the end of the game, the team seemed different and truly happy. Now I just hope they can carry that attitude over through the next 7 or so games as we close out the year leading into the best weekend of the year: the Big Ten Softball tournament.
So we still think pitching is the problem?
I beg to differ. The argument all year was our pitchers were giving up too many runs. Well, they have pitched lights out the past two games against #23 Michigan but zero run production from names not Denhartog or Espalin. So which is it? The pitching or the hitting?Frankly… yes.
Michigan is a great pitching team with a very underpowered lineup, especially with Lexie Blair hobbled. Today’s result should be in no way surprising to anybody.
You're right. By now we all know what, but not why. The team did great yesterday and had a chance to come out on fire today and make a real statement, but no fire was apparent. Only Espalin showed any that I saw. More than one inning when a simple good solid base hit to the outfield would've put MN in the lead. Why was there not a player in the lineup capable of that? MI's pitchers are very good but not invincible. Or are we seeing what a really weak hitting squad MN is?The first inning for the Gophers was a repeat of what has happened way too often throughout this season. This team, for whatever reason, has shown us way too often that they are unable to score runs and/or move the runners, when the opportunity is there.
So… we disagree. We both have our views publicly stated.I beg to differ. The argument all year was our pitchers were giving up too many runs. Well, they have pitched lights out the past two games against #23 Michigan but zero run production from names not Denhartog or Espalin. So which is it? The pitching or the hitting?
Let’s look at the hitting stats for the past two games
Game 1 vs Mich https://gophersports.com/sports/softball/stats/2022/michigan/boxscore/19381
Game 2 vs Mich https://gophersports.com/sports/softball/stats/2022/michigan/boxscore/19382
Here are the overall stats with todays game included. As you will see, after Jensen there is a Grand Canyon drop off of 200 something “hitters”. Let’s build for next year.
Why do you think they don't have any apparent fire? Could it be that Michigan just made some plays at opportune times? There are two teams playing the game.You're right. By now we all know what, but not why. The team did great yesterday and had a chance to come out on fire today and make a real statement, but no fire was apparent. Only Espalin showed any that I saw. More than one inning when a simple good solid base hit to the outfield would've put MN in the lead. Why was there not a player in the lineup capable of that? MI's pitchers are very good but not invincible. Or are we seeing what a really weak hitting squad MN is?
I do feel this team is built on a "swing for the fence" mentality. So what is the problem....hitting, pitching or maybe coaching?
Oh how I loved watching Partain at bat. She always made it look so so easy. To me no matter the pitcher, she had some of the best ball/bat contact. Too bad others have not learned from her.
Another 3 stranded so far. This is the second time in as many days that the broadcasters mention our lack of strategy and hitting philosophy. They said that some players are really good in practice but can’t take that same mentality to games.Whether we want to admit it or not, Istening to the telecast and watching these games, the announcers are pretty much spot on about the MN game both hitting and pitching.
Don’t forget about Kinch 8 at bats and 7 strikeouts.A few things -
Did Jensen use to be more of a hitter like Partain who would go with the pitch? Something is so different this seaosn with Jensen in the batter's box. Can someone help me out with this?
Chavez, Chavez, Chavez..Freshman making crucial Basic mental errors. Our coaching staff needs to reel her in and remind her of the present situation. If they have to do it after every out, so be it.
Strelow has been playing some of her best defense this series, but her bat just isn't coming to life as much as it is needed. But I am impressed with her defensive plays.
That Michigan runner was home and DenHartog should not have thrown the ball there. The pressure that inning was all on Pease and she did not handle it.
The key word is apparent. Espalin was the only Gophers player I saw showing any visibly. Otherwise a lot of errors not corrected: Leaving too many ROB, leaving the bases loaded twice, base-running mistakes, swinging at eye-high rise balls but laying off strikes down the middle of the plate, passively taking called third strikes, bunting at rise balls above the letters, swinging at ball four w/ bases loaded twice, the bottom half of the batting order not driving in a run, leaving 10 ROB in a 1-0 game, and others. The BTN color commentater mentioned more than once about both teams, in fact, having a season-long shortage of hitters producing vital hits with ROB, which has kept them in the middle of the BIG pack, not at the top of it.Why do you think they don't have any apparent fire? Could it be that Michigan just made some plays at opportune times? There are two teams playing the game.
I know people are frustrated with the losses. But here are a few facts:This team, as much as we want to see it, just isn't prepared physically and mentally for the Post Season. My comment has nothing to do with being a pessimist or an optimist but a realist.
Win or lose these coaches need to be taking in depth looks at what is working and what isn't. Then address what isn't and try to improve on it. How much time is being spent on a struggling individual's slkills during practice, if any? If the issues are being addressed, I just don't see it.
Now, on the flip side of that, if these coaches have and just keeping seeing the same thing over and over and over like we do each game, then it all falls on the player's shoulders.
Are our softball players being developed in this sport like they should be?
Interesting. The softball team MI fields & sends to bat in 2022 is equally as questionable as MN's (MI's weaker IMO on defense). But MI has 2 quality veteran pitchers whose ERAs are around 2.00; MN's pitchers hover around 4+ ERA, if not higher at times. In offense MN all season has stereotypically sent Espalin, Evans, and DenHartog up to load the bases, where they've stood stranded for the next 3 outs. Run production below those 3 batters has been minimal, sometimesIt it not about parity or the wins or losses, it is the quality of the sport and how they lose. It is not just softball it is across the board in all sports.
I have stated it in other posts, today's student athlete looks at things so much different than we did years ago and even a decade ago. They apparently have so much more on their plate that they have to worry about in their personal lives.....so I have read.
I feel what I find the most interesting is the thing they live by day and night, technology/social media, is probably the main thing that has the most negative impact on their everyday lives.
Also, I don't feel Michigan looked that much better than Minnesota in this series. They just made less errors and captilized at the plate much better than we did.
I am a volleyball season ticket holder and one thing I can say for sure is, no matter the athlete that is recruited we have a Head Coach who has "DEVELOPED" many of those athletes that have played in the Minnesota program. Yes, there is more parity in this sport too, but I for one am grateful for Coach Hugh McCutcheons. You can ask many volleyball fans and they would agree with me on Hugh. HE PUTS OUT QUALITY TEAMS EVERY SEASON and all his players succeed on the court.