Monday, November 28, 2005Danville Alums Named to Wallace Award Preseason Watch List
|2004 Danville Dans' third baseman Chris Coghlan (Ole Miss) and left-hander Paul Coleman (Pepperdine), have been named to the 2006 Wallace Award preseason watch list.
The award, which is presented by the College Baseball Foundation, honors the nationís college baseball player of the year.
The Wallace Watch list will be trimmed from 120 nominees to 12 semi-finalists in late May. The list will then be narrowed by the selection committee to three, following NCAA Super Regional play. The three finalists will be named at a press conference in Omaha (College World Series). The finalists, head coach, and parents will be invited to an award banquet in Lubbock, TX to be televised nationally by Fox Sports Network.
Coghlan was rated statistically as one of the 100 toughest players to strike
out in the nation last season with only 22 strikeouts in 272 at bats. While with the Dans, he also led the team with a .313 batting average while stealing 13 bases in 14 attempts.
On the mound for the Dans, Coleman struck out 54 batters in 47 innings. He was drafted in the 9th round in the June 2005 draft by the Detroit Tigers but chose to finish his senior year at Pepperdine.
Thursday, November 10, 2005Ryan Howard Named National League Rookie of the Year
|CICL and Decatur Blues alumni Ryan Howard has been named the National League Rookie of the Year for the 2005 season.
Click here to read the ESPN.com article about Ryan Howard
Howard played first base for the Decatur Blues in 1999 after his freshman year at Southwest Missouri State (now known as Missouri State) University in Springfield, Missouri. In that season, Howard led the league with 11 homers and in slugging percentage at .600. He finished 8th in batting average at .319, tied for second in total bases with 96, was 8th in RBI with 30 and had an on-base percentage of .408, 7th in the league.
Click here to view 1999 CICL statistics
Ryan is a graduate of Lafayette High School in Wildwood, Missouri.
Thursday, November 10, 2005Bombers Name New Field Manager for 2006
|The Dubois County Bombers of the Central Illinois Collegiate League (CICL) have named John Fitzgerald as their Manager for the 2006 season.. Fitzgerald, 29, is the current Head Baseball Coach at the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago. He replaces Chris Erwin, who guided the Bombers to the Championship round of the CICL playoffs in their first year in Dubois County and to the League Championship in 2004 when they were based in Alton, IL.
Fitzgerald has impressive credentials as a baseball player, coach, sports administrator and broadcaster. A 1998 graduate of the University of Chicago, he was a four year starting pitcher compiling a 12-8 career record while helping the Maroons to three straight 20 win seasons. He was the Pitching Coach for the Twin City Stars of the CICL in 2003 and the Danbury (CT) Westerners in the New England Collegiate Baseball League in 2004. This past summer he was the Manager of the Saratoga (NY) Phillies of the New York Collegiate Baseball League. Fitzgerald also has plenty of experience as a Baseball camp instructor with stints at the University of Notre Dame, Illinois State and the Chicago White Sox training center.
Entering his third season as the Head Coach at Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT), Fitzgerald competed in the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC) where his teams have won 48 games over the past two seasons - the most in school history. With an overall 26-21 record this past season, the Scarlet Hawks led the CCAC in pitching with a 3.10 Earned Run Average (ERA) and set a school record with a league leading 88 stolen bases.
Fitzgerald earned his Masters Degree in Business Administration (MBA) from the Loyola University Graduate School of Business in 2001 where he also served as Director of Athletic Marketing and Broadcasting. In 2002, he was named the Sports Director for WJBC radio and did play-by-play broadcasting for Illinois State University's football and basketball programs over a statewide network of 7 stations.
Said Bomber owner Chris Barney, "Having known John personally and watched him professionally for the past seven years, I am excited to have a person of his character and baseball experience joining us. John is a manager who communicates well with his players and motivates them to hustle. He has a great personality and especially enjoys establishing a rapport with fans and the community. I look forward to working with John and making the 2006 season a success."
Added Bomber owner John Bigness, "We are excited to have John Fitzgerald as our manager. He'll be here in mid to late May to help with our early baseball camps. Chris Barney gave John a very high recommendation and after talking with him and learning his background, I felt this was a good move for the franchise. We feel very fortunate to have a manager of John's caliber join us."
Erwin informed the Bombers that he would not be able to return due to job commitments next summer. While Bomber coach Rick Parr won't be available to the team on a full time basis next season, he has indicated that he would like to join the Bombers as a special instructor as his schedule permits. Parr's new business venture RPBaseball is a resource for college bound baseball players and their families (www.RPBaseball.com).
Bigness went on to say, "Both Chris Barney and I are especially grateful for the contribution that Chris Erwin made to the Bombers in his two years as manager. His record is a tough act to follow. We also hope to continue working with Rick Parr in whatever capacity his schedule will permit and wish him well in his new business venture."
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