2020 Cowboy Baseball

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May 29, 2007
1,702
852
1,743
Edmond, OK
#81
Looked like it was gonna be Lee’s because of the timing. Marty is considered an elite infield coach and recruiter. Probably opens up some west coast recruiting. Probably an upgrade as a 3B coach.
Being a west coast guy, he is big on small ball. I hope that Josh is not planning to steer back in that direction. Sure, a team needs to be able to execute a bunt when the situation is right but it is usually not worth it to give away an out for a base. Would much rather see them try to steel some bags or just get on base and let big donkeys drive guys in.
 
Nov 14, 2010
2,911
1,540
743
#82
Here are the position players in Lee's last recruiting class at OSU

Kevin Bradley
Jacob Chappell
Caleb Eldridge
Michael Higgins
Mason O'Brien
Nick White
Jon Littell
Garrett McCain (100% completely and totally
recruited by Walton)
Mason O'Brien
David Petrino
Dillon White

The only 3 athletes in that class that significantly contributed were Littell and McCain and Kevin Bradley.

Littell's dad is the Women's basketball coach at OSU so he was coming here no matter who the coach was.

I know for a fact that Rob Walton did the recruiting on Garrett McCain and Kevin Bradley was a transfer from Clemson.

So...
Of the kids he recruited in his last class here, none of them made significant contributions at OSU.

In fact Petrino was the only player that didn't transfer that didn't make a contribution and he became a cancer towards the coaches.

Then, his next 4 recruiting classes at Washington State since then have been anywhere from terrible to completely out of the top 100.
 
Last edited:
Dec 21, 2008
797
422
1,613
#83
Are you related to a player? You sound very close to the program and opinionated about Coach V. I wonder if James didn’t like Josh walking all over him? James I’ve heard has the personality to be a great hitting coach but if the HC is limiting what you were brought in to do it might create controversy?

Gundy had issues with this for a decade until he finally stepped back and let coaches do what they are paid and have solid reputations to do
 
Nov 14, 2010
2,911
1,540
743
#85
Are you related to a player? You sound very close to the program and opinionated about Coach V. I wonder if James didn’t like Josh walking all over him? James I’ve heard has the personality to be a great hitting coach but if the HC is limiting what you were brought in to do it might create controversy?

Gundy had issues with this for a decade until he finally stepped back and let coaches do what they are paid and have solid reputations to do
Not related to anyone in the program.

Avid supporter of Josh

Not big on Marty

Extremely pissed about James and venting about it.

But....
It is what it is

OSU baseball is getting ready to become one of the elite programs regardless of who the 3rd coach is, but James deserved better than what he got here.
 
Apr 7, 2006
2,382
1,110
1,743
#86
I would really like to see more small ball (not exclusively) and smaller, more controlled swings. If I had it my way, you’d have 3-4 power guys who you loosen the reigns on and the rest of the line up are contact guys that put the ball in play and manufacture runs . I really see no way that we’re going to have success in Omaha with an offense that is power only. I also think hosting supers is huge if we’re going to become a fixture in Omaha again. To do that you’ve generally got to win ~40 in the regular season- which isn’t happening striking out in >30% of your ABs. You’ve got to play a style that works in all weather, in all ballparks, regardless of your opponent, from the season debut to the last out. We are going to have to improve in the nonconf portion of the schedule to give us a better chance of hosting.

Random note-
My curiosity has always been whether what we saw in 2013, 2014, and 2015 was the style Josh/Marty believed in or the result of BBCOR. I have no opinion- just curious if that pushed them to adapt and do things they wouldn’t have otherwise done.
 
Nov 14, 2010
2,911
1,540
743
#87
I would really like to see more small ball (not exclusively) and smaller, more controlled swings. If I had it my way, you’d have 3-4 power guys who you loosen the reigns on and the rest of the line up are contact guys that put the ball in play and manufacture runs . I really see no way that we’re going to have success in Omaha with an offense that is power only. I also think hosting supers is huge if we’re going to become a fixture in Omaha again. To do that you’ve generally got to win ~40 in the regular season- which isn’t happening striking out in >30% of your ABs. You’ve got to play a style that works in all weather, in all ballparks, regardless of your opponent, from the season debut to the last out. We are going to have to improve in the nonconf portion of the schedule to give us a better chance of hosting.

Random note-
My curiosity has always been whether what we saw in 2013, 2014, and 2015 was the style Josh/Marty believed in or the result of BBCOR. I have no opinion- just curious if that pushed them to adapt and do things they wouldn’t have otherwise done.
We were 87th in scoring

We were 109th in on base percentage and 190th in Stolen bases.

We were 119th in sacrifices which is close to top 3rd.

We need to bunt a little more, but not much.

Bunting gives away outs so you have to be selective as when to do it.

There is a time and place for bunting and situational hitting, but it's less than 15% of at bats.

This year we bunted 5% of our our total at bats.

Add in our situational at bats and we we're little over 10%.

Anything more than 15% of your at bats being situational or a sacrifice and you're reducing your ability to manufacture runs because you're giving away outs.

Having plate discipline, drawing walks, stealing bases, being aggressive on the bases, and creating hard contact of any kind is what manufactures runs.

Cutting down on swings in an attempt to make contact will create more weak contact which, 98% of the time creates no difference between that and a strike out.

So, to gain that 2% you're giving up a much larger percentage of hard contact which reduces your ability to score runs.

Keep in mind, this is beyond the situational hitting discussed above

This is in reference to the at bats outside of the 15% of the bunting/situational hitting scenarios where youre just simply trying to move a runner.

We do need to cut down on our strike outs. I think everyone agrees on that.

But, in doing so, it needs to be done by having better plate discipline and swinging at better pitches not by cutting down on swings that will reduce hard contact.

We just simply have to learn how to swing at better pitches more consistently.

Strikeouts are only productive if they happen in an attempt at hard contact.

Swinging at pitches out of the zone reduces hard contact, so that has to change.

If you want to put pressure on the defense start by not swinging at pitches out of the zone.

That stresses a pitcher to no end and forces him to grind

Then, maximize your amount of hard contact.

If an offense never swings at bad pitches then hits everything in the zone hard, that makes a pitcher feel as if they have no margin for error which creates mistakes that the hitters then take advantage of

Hard contact is what creates hits and it's also what creates errors.

Soft contact of any kind doesn't force errors, nor does it create hits at a rate that makes it productive versus trying to create hard contact and it's associated trade offs.
 
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May 29, 2007
1,702
852
1,743
Edmond, OK
#88
The new age of baseball is all about hitting the ball hard and in the air thanks to Trackman data and analytics. Top teams like the Astros and Dodgers have embraced this but also figured how to cut down on the strike outs without sacrificing power.

Ironically Josh was one of the best at executing GW’s hitting philosophy and plate discipline. He is OSU’s all time leader in BB. Really been suprised his teams have not been better in this aspect of the game.

Also thanks to a analytics MLB teams have moved away from small ball. The numbers show that giving up an out to advance a runner do not usually increase the odds of scoring one or more runs. Not saying that I do think teams need to have the ability to bunt, that has been part of the problem. They need to be able to bunt when the shift leaves the left side of the infield open. And they need to get the bunt down when asked to move runners. It’s a double kick in the nuts when the coach calls for the sac but a guy can not execute and you give up the out without advancing runners. That has happened way to often.
 

orngblkzebra

"All this endless thinking, it's very overrated."
A/V Subscriber
Feb 9, 2015
951
456
113
Shawnee, OK
#89
Not saying that I do think teams need to have the ability to bunt, that has been part of the problem. They need to be able to bunt when the shift leaves the left side of the infield open. And they need to get the bunt down when asked to move runners. It’s a double kick in the nuts when the coach calls for the sac but a guy can not execute and you give up the out without advancing runners. That has happened way to often.
This is what I'm seeing. It's not about adjusting the offense for "more small ball" or the quantity of bunting; this is about coaching kids to see the ball and be able to execute a generated run when it's needed. The team made several attempts throughout the season and situationally, they were the right decision. But, execution was horrendous. Guys that can hit 450ft should be able to see the ball enough to hit it 10-20ft.
Also, if they can manage a bunt well enough, it helps with pitch selection when the reigns are off. js
 

Matt_bob123

SBC presents Mattbob
Oct 16, 2003
3,960
668
1,743
#90
Matt and Josh handle the offense, I doubt Marty has any roll there. Matt has been a great unofficial addition to the staff. He can communicate to the players in a way that’s easy for them to understand, and if he can’t, he’ll facetime a MLB player to help.

Vilade got blamed for a lot of things that were actually Josh in that regard.

As far as Vilade vs Marty recruiting. I’m a little worried that this will have an effect on our Texas recruiting which has been fruitful for years. Vilade had a ton of connections as the second all time winningest coach in Texas. Part of the best classes under Marty were helped in large part by Trey Cobb recruiting the best in the area to join him.

I agree with the sentiment that Vilade probably deserved better. He might be one of the best people to ever be associated with coaching OSU baseball. He was a much better coach than he got credit for as well. I legitimately thank him for his time here.

The comment that Vilade held that last 3 locker rooms together is 200% accurate. Josh isn’t always a player’s coach, but Vilade is, and he had the team’s respect. They trusted him wholly, it was part of the reason they committed to come here. His impact on the program is immeasurable.

The thing that I come back to with the decision is this tho, I don’t think Josh trusted Vilade as much as he did with Marty. I think Marty’s success at Oregon State led to a respect on the staff that made him an equal part of the coaching staff.

Josh runs the offense, with Matt’s help, Rob runs the pitching, Marty runs the defense, except Romero handling the catchers. (Which he did an amazing job last year, every one of our catchers improved defensively). It’s an elite coaching staff at the end of the day.

We will see if Marty can continue to recruit as well as Vilade did and who takes over the role of holding the locker room together.
 

Matt_bob123

SBC presents Mattbob
Oct 16, 2003
3,960
668
1,743
#91
I would really like to see more small ball (not exclusively) and smaller, more controlled swings. If I had it my way, you’d have 3-4 power guys who you loosen the reigns on and the rest of the line up are contact guys that put the ball in play and manufacture runs .
I think you will see that develop next year by necessity. We’ve designed O’Brate to be more like Omaha. It’s why we are recruiting more speed guys. It will have deep power alleys that kill a home run focused offense. It will be a much more pitcher friendly park than Allie P was.
 
Apr 7, 2006
2,382
1,110
1,743
#92
I agree that overall the key is seeing the ball and picking your pitch. However I also don’t believe in universally looking at bunts as wasted outs or trading hard swings for strikeouts. I think you’ve got guys on the team where this is true and guys that need to get on base or put the ball in play- depending on where they’re at in the lineup or their strengths. When you universally choose to look at bunts as wasted outs or sell out to hard contact, you have numbers like what we had this year. MLB analytics don’t apply perfectly to college- there are differences.
 
Apr 7, 2006
2,382
1,110
1,743
#93
I think you will see that develop next year by necessity. We’ve designed O’Brate to be more like Omaha. It’s why we are recruiting more speed guys. It will have deep power alleys that kill a home run focused offense. It will be a much more pitcher friendly park than Allie P was.
Interesting to hear- have you heard measurements on the playing surface?
 
Aug 19, 2015
596
353
113
57
ataballfield
#94
I think you will see that develop next year by necessity. We’ve designed O’Brate to be more like Omaha. It’s why we are recruiting more speed guys. It will have deep power alleys that kill a home run focused offense. It will be a much more pitcher friendly park than Allie P was.
Agreed but only in the sense of fence dimensions. It will still be pitcher unfriendly when it comes to foul territory. For a team that has emphasized pitching recently, that was disappointing when they revealed the new layout.
 

Takeout Slide

Hardcore Troubadour
Nov 10, 2009
2,757
4,376
1,743
Rounding third and heading for Omaha
#95
I would really like to see more small ball (not exclusively) and smaller, more controlled swings. If I had it my way, you’d have 3-4 power guys who you loosen the reigns on and the rest of the line up are contact guys that put the ball in play and manufacture runs . I really see no way that we’re going to have success in Omaha with an offense that is power only. I also think hosting supers is huge if we’re going to become a fixture in Omaha again. To do that you’ve generally got to win ~40 in the regular season- which isn’t happening striking out in >30% of your ABs. You’ve got to play a style that works in all weather, in all ballparks, regardless of your opponent, from the season debut to the last out. We are going to have to improve in the nonconf portion of the schedule to give us a better chance of hosting.

Random note-
My curiosity has always been whether what we saw in 2013, 2014, and 2015 was the style Josh/Marty believed in or the result of BBCOR. I have no opinion- just curious if that pushed them to adapt and do things they wouldn’t have otherwise done.
I have heard Josh say that his ideal offense would build toward the big inning. What I take that to mean is that his lineup would be sprinkled with speedy bat handlers (who still have the pop to run into a home run if it's there) and a couple big mashers. Not unlike those earlier teams that had Zach Fish sitting behind Saxon, Arakawa, Hassel, Walton, etc, and then having guys like Costello to add another cleanup type bat. I think you can live with one or two guys who strike out 2 or 3 times a game, but when the whole line up is doing it, it's going to be tough to keep pace with teams like Texas Tech that put pressure on your defense every single inning.

I have not been a fan of the boom or bust baseball (and have wondered how that would translate to O'Brate, which I thought was to be designed to mimic the bigger outfield of TD Ameritrade), but my understanding and observation is that Josh controls the offense and works with the hitters, so I lay zero blame on Vilade for any of that. Whatever the case, my hope is that this change will yield more consistent contact and less quick, empty at bats than we've seen the last few years. I guess time will tell.
 

Takeout Slide

Hardcore Troubadour
Nov 10, 2009
2,757
4,376
1,743
Rounding third and heading for Omaha
#96
I agree that overall the key is seeing the ball and picking your pitch. However I also don’t believe in universally looking at bunts as wasted outs or trading hard swings for strikeouts. I think you’ve got guys on the team where this is true and guys that need to get on base or put the ball in play- depending on where they’re at in the lineup or their strengths. When you universally choose to look at bunts as wasted outs or sell out to hard contact, you have numbers like what we had this year. MLB analytics don’t apply perfectly to college- there are differences.
Amen and Amen!
 
Apr 7, 2006
2,382
1,110
1,743
#97
I have heard Josh say that his ideal offense would build toward the big inning. What I take that to mean is that his lineup would be sprinkled with speedy bat handlers (who still have the pop to run into a home run if it's there) and a couple big mashers. Not unlike those earlier teams that had Zach Fish sitting behind Saxon, Arakawa, Hassel, Walton, etc, and then having guys like Costello to add another cleanup type bat. I think you can live with one or two guys who strike out 2 or 3 times a game, but when the whole line up is doing it, it's going to be tough to keep pace with teams like Texas Tech that put pressure on your defense every single inning.

I have not been a fan of the boom or bust baseball (and have wondered how that would translate to O'Brate, which I thought was to be designed to mimic the bigger outfield of TD Ameritrade), but my understanding and observation is that Josh controls the offense and works with the hitters, so I lay zero blame on Vilade for any of that. Whatever the case, my hope is that this change will yield more consistent contact and less quick, empty at bats than we've seen the last few years. I guess time will tell.
Could not agree more
 
Apr 7, 2006
2,382
1,110
1,743
#98
We were 87th in scoring

We were 109th in on base percentage and 190th in Stolen bases.

We were 119th in sacrifices which is close to top 3rd.

We need to bunt a little more, but not much.

Bunting gives away outs so you have to be selective as when to do it.

There is a time and place for bunting and situational hitting, but it's less than 15% of at bats.

This year we bunted 5% of our our total at bats.

Add in our situational at bats and we we're little over 10%.

Anything more than 15% of your at bats being situational or a sacrifice and you're reducing your ability to manufacture runs because you're giving away outs.

Having plate discipline, drawing walks, stealing bases, being aggressive on the bases, and creating hard contact of any kind is what manufactures runs.

Cutting down on swings in an attempt to make contact will create more weak contact which, 98% of the time creates no difference between that and a strike out.

So, to gain that 2% you're giving up a much larger percentage of hard contact which reduces your ability to score runs.

Keep in mind, this is beyond the situational hitting discussed above

This is in reference to the at bats outside of the 15% of the bunting/situational hitting scenarios where youre just simply trying to move a runner.

We do need to cut down on our strike outs. I think everyone agrees on that.

But, in doing so, it needs to be done by having better plate discipline and swinging at better pitches not by cutting down on swings that will reduce hard contact.

We just simply have to learn how to swing at better pitches more consistently.

Strikeouts are only productive if they happen in an attempt at hard contact.

Swinging at pitches out of the zone reduces hard contact, so that has to change.

If you want to put pressure on the defense start by not swinging at pitches out of the zone.

That stresses a pitcher to no end and forces him to grind

Then, maximize your amount of hard contact.

If an offense never swings at bad pitches then hits everything in the zone hard, that makes a pitcher feel as if they have no margin for error which creates mistakes that the hitters then take advantage of

Hard contact is what creates hits and it's also what creates errors.

Soft contact of any kind doesn't force errors, nor does it create hits at a rate that makes it productive versus trying to create hard contact and it's associated trade offs.
None of those statistics you referenced are encouraging to me if we’re trying to get to Omaha regularly. We had 28 total sacrifice bunts in 2040 at bats- so we executed less than 2% of our total at bats (obviously some were attempted and not executed- but still less than 5% by a sizable margin) throughout the course of the year. So to say we need to a little more small ball is not too big of a deal- no way would we bunt >10% of our total at bats (>200 per year). If you execute 3 bunts per game you’re going to end up below 10% since we averaged 33 AB per game with a team that averaged >10 SO per game. And 3 per game for a team with good power might be a little high.

Personally- I’m not a huge advocate of bunting to 2nd unless you’re in a real nail biter. From 3rd though you have so many more opportunities to score with 1 out than you do at second.

Strikeouts aren’t productive in any way unless you’re looking at pitch count, get a runner advanced in the process, etc. It’s simply a risk-reward proposition that makes it worth accepting with some players. This is a reasonable strategy for very few players at the college level.

I would also add that I’m not saying you sell out for contact universally - it’s all situational based on who is at the plate, the pitcher and the game. +1 and +2 counts are your opportunity to take a hack at one. With 2 strikes there should be a more disciplined approach for most guys.
 
May 29, 2007
1,702
852
1,743
Edmond, OK
#99
I think you will see that develop next year by necessity. We’ve designed O’Brate to be more like Omaha. It’s why we are recruiting more speed guys. It will have deep power alleys that kill a home run focused offense. It will be a much more pitcher friendly park than Allie P was.
Besides being designed by an architect who was apparently a butt hurt pitcher with a desk full of circle templates, one of the biggest problems with Omaha is the built the dang thing facing the wrong direction.
Glad Josh did not make that mistake. Gotta think Obrate won’t play any bigger than Bricktown. He has made comments about wanting to reward a lefty with power so I would expect a short porch in right.
Great to hear about Matt’s involvement. Priceless resources right there.
 

OstatePokes

Territorial Marshal
Aug 24, 2007
7,078
2,292
1,743
Knoxville, Tennessee
Besides being designed by an architect who was apparently a butt hurt pitcher with a desk full of circle templates, one of the biggest problems with Omaha is the built the dang thing facing the wrong direction.
Glad Josh did not make that mistake. Gotta think Obrate won’t play any bigger than Bricktown. He has made comments about wanting to reward a lefty with power so I would expect a short porch in right.
Great to hear about Matt’s involvement. Priceless resources right there.
Agreed, for many reasons I think TD Ameritrade is flawed, but tailgating aside that park changes the game being played.