Gopher Softball 2022

let'sbeclear

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MN was losing hopelessly to WI, too. (Strange a pitchers' duel at 1-0 could seem so one-sided.) MN also needed to make changes. I saw none. I would've done this:

A) In game 3 v. NW, MN started Pease; she gave up 3 runs immediately & the game was essentially over after only one half inning. In the NCAA, MN again started Pease v. WI; she gave up one run in inning one & that lone run was all WI needed. Like they say about a dance, you go home with the one that brung you there. In the DH v. Wi, Leavitt pitched 10 innings and won both games. So I would have started the pitcher that brung me to 2 wins over WI, i. e., Leavitt. Why in the world would Ritter not start Leavitt again v. WI? Too often this year Pease has needed a couple innings to get loosened up in a game. In crucial single elimination games, that's too late. The game will already be decided by the time the pitcher is loose.

B) Also, Cox got the deciding hit v. WI in a 1-0 game the week before. I would have started her hitting second rather than Jensen and before DenHartog and Evans. Jensen's BA has dropped steadily the second half of the season. Jensen in her old form? Yes! As she's hitting now? No way. And if I did start Jensen, I sure as heck would've used Cox to PH for Jensen in inning 7 of game 3 v. NW. I would've had Cox in the NCAA game v. WI from the beginning and let her see Schwartz 4 times.

C) In the NCAA, I'd have had MN hitters working the counts really hard v. Schwartz inning after inning. That's what MI did against her in the next game and they handled her ok. That game seemed a given for MI as it moved along.

D) I'd have had MN hitters shorten their swings v. Schwartz and hit more defensively and swing less for the fences (since I believe Schwartz is a drop ball pitcher), to keep balls in play and force WI infielders to make more difficult plays. After all, for most of the game, MN needed only one run to pull even. In the final, NEBR did to Storako what MI did to WI's Schwartz --- they kept the opposing pitchers working hard until their one hot hitter got her chances to swing for the fences and make it pay off. Maybe MI and NEBR have smarter hitters or better hitting coaches than MN? Well, you asked me. That's my answer, off the cuff. Correct me if I'm wrong. All I know for sure is that the MN team that showed up v. WI in the NCAA wasn't the same one as in the DH. What happened?
I'm assuming when you wrote in point C, "In the NCAA," you meant in the Big Ten tournament. If so, in that game against the Gophers, Schwartz threw 98 pitches to 25 batters, or 3.92 pitches per batter. In the Michigan game that followed the Gopher sweep of Wisconsin, Schwartz threw 112 pitches to 29 batters, or 3.86 pitches per batter. So your point confuses me.

Of course, maybe you're saying that Michigan batters worked the count against Schwartz in the early innings, and that led to being able to swing more freely in later innings, thereby taking the overall pitch per batter figure down. But if that's not what you're saying happened, the data simply doesn't back you up on this point.
 
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Hrothgar

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I'm assuming when you wrote in point C, "In the NCAA," you meant in the Big Ten tournament. If so, in that game against the Gophers, Schwartz threw 98 pitches to 25 batters, or 3.92 pitches per batter. In the Michigan game that followed the Gopher sweep of Wisconsin, Swartch threw 112 pitches to 29 batters, or 3.86 pitches per batter. So your point confuses me.

Of course, maybe you're saying that Michigan batters worked the count against Schwartz in the early innings, and that led to being able to swing more freely in later innings, thereby taking the overall pitch per batter figure down. But if that's not what you're saying happened, the data simply don't back you up on this point.
You're no doubt right about the data. I'm not a quantitative evaluator, more of a qualitative one. Pure data is fine, just that it doesn't hit home much with me. Stats is one course I hated in college. I see the battle between pitcher and hitter as more of a mind game. My subjective response was, yes, the Michigan batters worked Schwartz better than MN's did. I saw the psychology of key at bats working to the MI batters' favor as the game progressed. I didn't see the MN batters "winning" the ABs v. Schwartz. I thought enough MI batters did so to make a difference. I don't have any statistics to prove it, though.
 

ClassOf98Gopher

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You're no doubt right about the data. I'm not a quantitative evaluator, more of a qualitative one. Pure data is fine, just that it doesn't hit home much with me. Stats is one course I hated in college. I see the battle between pitcher and hitter as more of a mind game. My subjective response was, yes, the Michigan batters worked Schwartz better than MN's did. I saw the psychology of key at bats working to the MI batters' favor as the game progressed. I didn't see the MN batters "winning" the ABs v. Schwartz. I thought enough MI batters did so to make a difference. I don't have any statistics to prove it, though.
I think we need to consider the possibility that Schwartz was just a little sharper against Minnesota vis-a-vis Michigan… just even more in the groove of seeing her pitch and making it happen off her fingertips to hit her spots.

I think that happens to pitchers where some games they are really feeling good about what they are doing and other games where it is going fine… but just not as great.
 

Gopher68

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You're no doubt right about the data. I'm not a quantitative evaluator, more of a qualitative one. Pure data is fine, just that it doesn't hit home much with me. Stats is one course I hated in college. I see the battle between pitcher and hitter as more of a mind game. My subjective response was, yes, the Michigan batters worked Schwartz better than MN's did. I saw the psychology of key at bats working to the MI batters' favor as the game progressed. I didn't see the MN batters "winning" the ABs v. Schwartz. I thought enough MI batters did so to make a difference. I don't have any statistics to prove it, though.
Are you referring to the final regular season weekend? In the B1G Tournament, WI played NU, not MI.
 

skiumah1

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Any chance we make NCAAs tonight or no?
 




ClassOf98Gopher

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In with Oklahoma region
I seriously think this is great for us. Playing at UCLA last year was a great end of the 2021 season. Playing Oklahoma this year will be very memorable for our players - playing on the big time stages. Big time stages are great for recruiting as well.
 




rowdaboat

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Draft kings odds for champ

Oklahoma -160 (I got them at +300 preseason)
Florida state +600
UCLA +700
Alabama +900
Arkansas, Virginia Tech +1000
Florida +1200
Arixona state +1400
Oklahoma state +1600 (best value)
Duke, Washington +2000
Northwestern, Tennessee +2500
Kentucky +3000
Clemson, Texas, sdsu, Michigan, Georgia +4000
...
Gophers +10000
 



dlw4gophers

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What happened to Jordy. Saw they lost 4-3 to Oklahoma State in the Big 12 championship
 




Hrothgar

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Are you referring to the final regular season weekend? In the B1G Tournament, WI played NU, not MI.
Yeah, I guess I screwed up on that. I apologize. It was mainly due to me being POd at the Gophers not handling a team they're more talented than IMO.
 

ClassOf98Gopher

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A reasonable goal for this coming weekend is two wins for the Gophers. I think we can beat a vary talented Texas A&M team at least once in two games against them and I know Prairie View is terrible - the worst team in the tournament.
 
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rwlarson

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A reasonable goal for this coming weekend is two wins for the Gophers. I think we can beat a vary talented Texas A&M team at least once in two games against them and I know Prairie View is terrible - the worst team in the tournament.
I was just happy to get a bid and keep the 9-year streak going. Knowing you are going to a program that will be in the NCAAs every year (even in off years) attracts recruits that can will get this program back on the upward trajectory Allister had us on.

Speaking of Allister, I wonder how she feels about being dispatched back to the scene of the NCAAs most egregious crime — Tuscaloosa 2017. Alabama has hosted every year since 2005 and still hasn’t lost a single regional GAME since 2007 (thanks in part no doubt to excessively rowdy fans and intimidated umps).

While it sucks to get sent to the #2 and #1 overall seeds in successive years, hard to feel too sorry for the Gophers when Texas A&M has had to go to Norman two years in a row.

While Texas A&M is technically the 2-seed in this region, I would argue that objectively we had the better resume if you look at A&M’s road/neutral vs home performance against top teams. Their record away from Davis Diamond is uninspiring to say the least. Don’t get me wrong, they have some excellent hitters and good pitchers, but they don’t have a lot of depth and their fielding can be pretty atrocious. Their pitchers don’t have great control so we need to be aggressive but discerning in the box, draw some walks, and make their defense work.
 

rwlarson

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A reasonable goal for this coming weekend is two wins for the Gophers. I think we can beat a vary talented Texas A&M team at least once in two games against them and I know Prairie View is terrible - the worst team in the tournament.
I can’t recall ever being in a regional where you knew that even if you lost the first game, you weren’t going 0-2. I believe Prairie View’s RPI is in the 280s, which is in the bottom 10% of all teams.

So, while going 2-0 to start any regional is always the goal, Minnesota and Texas A&M will almost certainly be playing twice, so to get to the regional final you either have to go 2-0 against them if you beat them in the first game, or 1-1 if you lose in the first game.

But maybe, just maybe, coming off a loss, which they will avenge against Prairie View, and possibly without Bahl this weekend (although Trautwein and May are also great pitchers) and with their fans lamenting the fact that their hitting numbers have been steadily declining the second half of the year, maybe the upset of the century is possible. Tough-minded players always think they have a chance to win no matter the odds, right down to the last out. That’s the mentality we take to Oklahoma.
 

ClassOf98Gopher

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I can’t recall ever being in a regional where you knew that even if you lost the first game, you weren’t going 0-2. I believe Prairie View’s RPI is in the 280s, which is in the bottom 10% of all teams.

So, while going 2-0 to start any regional is always the goal, Minnesota and Texas A&M will almost certainly be playing twice, so to get to the regional final you either have to go 2-0 against them if you beat them in the first game, or 1-1 if you lose in the first game.

But maybe, just maybe, coming off a loss, which they will avenge against Prairie View, and possibly without Bahl this weekend (although Trautwein and May are also great pitchers) and with their fans lamenting the fact that their hitting numbers have been steadily declining the second half of the year, maybe the upset of the century is possible. Tough-minded players always think they have a chance to win no matter the odds, right down to the last out. That’s the mentality we take to Oklahoma.
If we win game 1 against A&M, I would seriously consider starting Hollifield in our second game against Oklahoma (baptism by fire!). Just let her go as long as she can. We have to assume we are playing 4-5 games this weekend regardless. Use her the smartest way possible. The goal is to somehow get to those last two games of the bracket with A&M and Prairie View eliminated.
 

Hrothgar

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Prairie View may be
I was just happy to get a bid and keep the 9-year streak going. Knowing you are going to a program that will be in the NCAAs every year (even in off years) attracts recruits that can will get this program back on the upward trajectory Allister had us on.

Speaking of Allister, I wonder how she feels about being dispatched back to the scene of the NCAAs most egregious crime — Tuscaloosa 2017. Alabama has hosted every year since 2005 and still hasn’t lost a single regional GAME since 2007 (thanks in part no doubt to excessively rowdy fans and intimidated umps).

While it sucks to get sent to the #2 and #1 overall seeds in successive years, hard to feel too sorry for the Gophers when Texas A&M has had to go to Norman two years in a row.

While Texas A&M is technically the 2-seed in this region, I would argue that objectively we had the better resume if you look at A&M’s road/neutral vs home performance against top teams. Their record away from Davis Diamond is uninspiring to say the least. Don’t get me wrong, they have some excellent hitters and good pitchers, but they don’t have a lot of depth and their fielding can be pretty atrocious. Their pitchers don’t have great control so we need to be aggressive but discerning in the box, draw some walks, and make their defense work
Speaking of Alabama, didn't Okla State or some team like that sneak into Tuscaloosa a few years ago and beat ALA? Or was that a super regional? I think Allister & Groenewegen were let down not so much by ALA's 'fixing,' as some called it, and the lousy umpiring, but most of all by Gophers hitters, who failed to produce a single run in 2 games v. ALA. Speaking of Prairie View being "the worst team in the tournament," I hold my breath with the Gophers; they've proven they can beat almost anybody and also lose to anybody. They beat top teams in the BIG (NW, MI, IL), but also lost to lowly Iowa, the worst team in the BIG, incredibly blowing an 8-2 lead in the space of 4 innings.
 

Gopher68

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Prairie View may be

Speaking of Alabama, didn't Okla State or some team like that sneak into Tuscaloosa a few years ago and beat ALA? Or was that a super regional? I think Allister & Groenewegen were let down not so much by ALA's 'fixing,' as some called it, and the lousy umpiring, but most of all by Gophers hitters, who failed to produce a single run in 2 games v. ALA. Speaking of Prairie View being "the worst team in the tournament," I hold my breath with the Gophers; they've proven they can beat almost anybody and also lose to anybody. They beat top teams in the BIG (NW, MI, IL), but also lost to lowly Iowa, the worst team in the BIG, incredibly blowing an 8-2 lead in the space of 4 innings.
If I remember correctly, I think OK State beat FSU to get the WCWS the same year as the Gophers.
 

rwlarson

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Prairie View may be

Speaking of Alabama, didn't Okla State or some team like that sneak into Tuscaloosa a few years ago and beat ALA? Or was that a super regional? I think Allister & Groenewegen were let down not so much by ALA's 'fixing,' as some called it, and the lousy umpiring, but most of all by Gophers hitters, who failed to produce a single run in 2 games v. ALA. Speaking of Prairie View being "the worst team in the tournament," I hold my breath with the Gophers; they've proven they can beat almost anybody and also lose to anybody. They beat top teams in the BIG (NW, MI, IL), but also lost to lowly Iowa, the worst team in the BIG, incredibly blowing an 8-2 lead in the space of 4 innings.
That was the double whammy of being sent to Alabama that year. They had two great pitchers but not a lot of hitting, which is why their hosting streak of 12 years (now 16 tournaments) remained intact. There were maybe two other teams in the entire field with the level of pitching Alabama had that year. We would have beat 13 of the 16 seeds on the road, and probably all of them at home. Alabama just happened to be one of the three with two such high quality pitchers that it took a team that had not faced that level of pitching all year maybe six at bats to start selecting the right pitches and squaring up some balls. But because they had two aces, we never got comfortable enough to do so.

If you recall, we did have bases loaded with Houlihan up and she just got out of the way of a high inside pitch that if it had brushed her probably would have won the game for us the way Groenewegen was dealing.
 


Hrothgar

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That was the double whammy of being sent to Alabama that year. They had two great pitchers but not a lot of hitting, which is why their hosting streak of 12 years (now 16 tournaments) remained intact. There were maybe two other teams in the entire field with the level of pitching Alabama had that year. We would have beat 13 of the 16 seeds on the road, and probably all of them at home. Alabama just happened to be one of the three with two such high quality pitchers that it took a team that had not faced that level of pitching all year maybe six at bats to start selecting the right pitches and squaring up some balls. But because they had two aces, we never got comfortable enough to do so.

If you recall, we did have bases loaded with Houlihan up and she just got out of the way of a high inside pitch that if it had brushed her probably would have won the game for us the way Groenewegen was dealing.
Thanks for the impressive reminder. I must admit that my memory of those games is mostly purely impressonistic. I don't enjoy being made aware of the facts I didn't know, but facts help me understand it better.
 

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Thanks for the impressive reminder. I must admit that my memory of those games is mostly purely impressonistic. I don't enjoy being made aware of the facts I didn't know, but facts help me understand it better.
It pains me to talk about that, too. A team of that quality and balance doesn’t come around very often. Which is why denying them an opportunity to see how they would have stacked up in the WCWS due to the incompetence of that years’ Committee is such a crying shame. Softball fans from around the country still talk about the great snub of 2017, and very few have ever tried to justify the Committee’s decision.

Those that have used the unwritten rule of at least 1 Top 10 win for a 1-8 seed and 4 Top 25 wins for 9-16. That unwritten rule (which clearly favored the SEC and PAC-12) was apparently gone soon afterward though. In 2019 Michigan, Northwestern, or both, failed to meet that criteria but still hosted.

Since then, the Committee has dropped teams a couple placements and chastised them for a weak non-conference schedule, but nothing like being dropped (at least) six spots from our 11 RPI and seeing #22 Mississippi get to host just because they got behind a hot pitcher for a weekend and won the SEC tournament.
 
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Holy Man

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It pains me to talk about that, too. A team of that quality and balance doesn’t come around very often. Which is why denying them an opportunity to see how they would have stacked up in the WCWS due to the incompetence of that years’ Committee is such a crying shame. Softball fans from around the country still talk about the great snub of 2017, and very few have ever tried to justify the Committee’s decision.

Those that have used the unwritten rule of at least 1 Top 10 win for a 1-8 seed and 4 Top 25 wins for 9-16. That unwritten rule (which clearly favored the SEC and PAC-12) was apparently gone soon afterward though. In 2019 Michigan, Northwestern, or both, failed to meet that criteria but still hosted.

Since then, the Committee has dropped teams a couple placements and chastised them for a weak non-conference schedule, but nothing like being dropped (at least) six spots from our 11 RPI and seeing #22 Mississippi get to host just because they got behind a hot pitcher for a weekend and won the SEC tournament.
That snub ranks right up there with the 72 Olympic basketball in great administrative scandals in sports history. Committee was corrupt, and embarrassed the sport. People who know a lot more than I do were hammering the committee so much they had to respond publicly, in an inadequate way, of course. I'm still pissed off by that.
 

rwlarson

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I would imagine we were one of the last teams in the field
From an interview Justin McLeod of Extra Inning Softball did with NCAA Softball Committee chair Sandy Atkins:

Extra Inning Softball: Last four in?
Sandy Atkins: In alphabetical order, Oregon State; South Florida; Wichita State; and Wisconsin.

Extra Inning Softball: First four out?
Sandy Atkins: Again, in alphabetical order, Louisville; Texas State; Utah; and Western Kentucky.


So, the Gophers were fairly comfortably in the field, and probably were one of the top 3-seeds, as most certainly Texas A&M has to be one of the weakest 2-seeds. In a traditional fully-seeded snaking bracket, Oklahoma would get the worst 2-seed and best 3-seed. Minnesota and Texas A&M were probably ranked right next to each other in the Committee’s rankings. I guess being in the SEC tipped the scales in favor of the Aggies, which means unfortunately they will have last at bat in both games, assuming neither of us beats Oklahoma in the 1-0 game and sends them to the loser’s bracket.
 

rowdaboat

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Throwing out bold prediction - Jordy ends up needing Tommy John or rotator cuff surgery out til mid conference season and Oklahoma gets Storako transfer for final eligibility year from Michigan
 

Ski U Mah Gopher

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From an interview Justin McLeod of Extra Inning Softball did with NCAA Softball Committee chair Sandy Atkins:

Extra Inning Softball: Last four in?
Sandy Atkins: In alphabetical order, Oregon State; South Florida; Wichita State; and Wisconsin.

Extra Inning Softball: First four out?
Sandy Atkins: Again, in alphabetical order, Louisville; Texas State; Utah; and Western Kentucky.


So, the Gophers were fairly comfortably in the field, and probably were one of the top 3-seeds, as most certainly Texas A&M has to be one of the weakest 2-seeds. In a traditional fully-seeded snaking bracket, Oklahoma would get the worst 2-seed and best 3-seed. Minnesota and Texas A&M were probably ranked right next to each other in the Committee’s rankings. I guess being in the SEC tipped the scales in favor of the Aggies, which means unfortunately they will have last at bat in both games, assuming neither of us beats Oklahoma in the 1-0 game and sends them to the loser’s bracket.
The rule is when a team plays a team for a second time in the 1-1 elimination game, the home team in the opening round is the road team in the elimination game. So, it A & M is the 2nd seed, and we meet in the 1-1 elimination game, we will be the home team in the elimination game.
 

rwlarson

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The rule is when a team plays a team for a second time in the 1-1 elimination game, the home team in the opening round is the road team in the elimination game. So, it A & M is the 2nd seed, and we meet in the 1-1 elimination game, we will be the home team in the elimination game.
Thank you for the correction. I forgot about the part of the rule that applies to two teams which have already played one another.
 




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