2006 College World Series Capsules

(special thanks to Steve Jones for his assistance in compiling information for these capsules)


5. Cal State Fullerton Titans
Fullerton, Calif.

Automatic bid from the Big West Conference

Won Fullerton Regional (3-0) and won Fullerton Super Regional (2-0)

2006 record: 18-3, 48-13 (first in Big West)

Coach: George Horton (Cal State Fullerton, 1978)

Record at school: 450-185-1, 10 years

Overall record: same

Assistant coaches: Rick Vanderhook, Jason Gill, Ted Silva

Team offense: .311 BA, 404 R, 40 HR, .445 SLG, .382 OBA, 88/125 SB

Team pitching:  2.57 ERA, 550 IP, 445 H, 120 BB, 456 K

Top hitters: Blake Davis (.364/5/39/15 SB), Justin Turner (.355/4/42/20 SB), Danny Dorn (.338/4/41), Brett Pill (.328/5/39/11 SB), Brandon Tripp (.324/9/39), Evan McArthur (.305/6/33), Jared Clark (.281/4/27), David Cooper (.279/1/32)

Top pitchers: Vinnie Pestano (2-1, 0.97, 13 SV, 37 IP, 19 H, 14 BB, 43 K), Wes Roemer (13-1, 1.97, 141.2 IP, 107 H, 6 BB, 134 K), Lauren Gagnier (14-4, 2.42, 122.2 IP, 92 H, 23 BB, 101 K), Dustin Miller (12-1, 2.95, 91.2 IP, 78 H, 22 BB, 48 K)

Last time in tournament: 2005 (4-1 at Fullerton Regional, 1-2 at Fullerton Super Regional)

Notes: Fullerton finds itself in Omaha for the 14th time in its 32-year history in Division I. The Titans have won four national titles, the last coming in 2004 when Jason Windsor dominated the CWS field. The Titans have won 12 straight games and 21 of 25, and like 2004, have plenty of pitching. So much that they lead the nation with a 2.57 ERA. Amazingly, Fullerton allowed more than 10 runs in a three-game series only three times all year. Wes Roemer, Collegiate Baseball’s co-national player of the year, was hit around a little by Missouri but got stronger and stronger as the game wore on. His matchup against Andrew Miller of North Carolina is a must-see. But the Titans also boast Lauren Gagnier, who limits opponents to a .204 average (four points lower than Roemer!) and Dustin Miller, who has battled through numerous arm injuries to post a 12-1 record. Lights-out closer Vinnie Pestano is out for the year, and closing duties have fallen to Ryan Paul. The offense is steady but not flashy, due in part to playing in a big ballpark. Justin Turner and Blake Davis simply get it done, and Danny Dorn and Brett Pill have Omaha experience. Coach George Horton is one of 10 coaches (and three this year - UNC’s Mike Fox and Clemson’s Jack Leggett) to play and coach in the College World Series. The Titans have never played first-round opponent North Carolina.


1. Clemson Tigers

Clemson, S.C.

Automatic bid from the ACC

Won Clemson Regional (3-0) and won Clemson Super Regional (2-0)

2006 record: 24-6, 52-14 (first in ACC-Atlantic)

Coach: Jack Leggett (Maine, 1976)

Record at school: 607-257, 13 years

Overall record: 984-547, 27 years

Assistant coaches: Kevin O’Sullivan, Tom Riginos, Russell Triplett

Team offense: .306 BA, 471 R, 79 HR, .487 SLG, .382 OBA, 101/123 SB

Team pitching: 3.21 ERA, 589 IP, 528 H, 205 BB, 532 K

Top hitters: Tyler Colvin (.362/13/69/23 SB), Brad Chalk (.356/0/20/18 SB), Taylor Harbin (.331/9/47/13 SB), Travis Storrer (.321/9/45), Andy D’Alessio (.313/22/80), Stan Widmann (.304/1/3014 SB), Herman Demmink (.299/5/30/12 SB), Marquez Smith (.297/10/45), Adrian Casanova (.251/5/33)

Top pitchers: Stephen Faris (9-2, 2.37, 95 IP, 70 H, 19 BB, 81 K), Jason Berken (9-3, 2.90, 80.2 IP, 79 H, 34 BB, 75 K), Josh Cribb (9-0, 3.09, 87.1 IP, 70 H, 26 BB, 83 K), Daniel Moskos (5-5, 2.63, 10 SV, 51.1 IP, 42 H, 21 BB, 51 K)

Last time in tournament: 2005 (3-0 at Clemson Regional, 1-2 at Waco Super Regional)

Notes: The Tigers have reached Omaha for the 11th time, and they advanced for the third time in three tries when hosting a Super Regional. It wasn’t easy, as Clemson had to scramble to beat Oral Roberts in two tight games. The Tigers have been to the NCAA Tournament 20 straight times, tied for the third-longest streak in the country. The Tigers’ 24 ACC wins set a league record. The Tigers put together winning streaks of 11 and 15 games this season against ACC opponents and head into the CWS as winners of 25 of their past 27 games. Coach Jack Leggett has guided Clemson to the CWS five times in 13 years, the last coming in 2002. He is one of 10 coaches (and three this year - Fullerton’s George Horton and UNC’s Mike Fox) who have played and coached in the College World Series. He holds the University of Maine record for longest field goal (52 yards). This edition of the Tigers holds plenty of balance. The offense is kickstarted by Tyler Colvin, who was a .285 hitter with seven homers and 72 RBI before this year’s breakout season. His 40 extra-base hits lead the team, and his game-winning grand slam gave Clemson a 1-0 lead in the Super Regionals. Andy D’Alessio leads the squad with a .646 slugging percentage, and is the Tigers’ top home run threat. Taylor Harbin drove in four in the second win over Oral Roberts, with Stan Widmann delivering the game-winning, two-run hit. Stephen Faris (.208 BAA), Josh Cribb and Jason Berken are a combined 27-5 and give Clemson three steady starters.


7. Georgia Bulldogs
Atlanta, Ga.

At-large bid from the SEC

Won Athens Regional (4-1) and won Athens Super Regional (2-1)

2006 record: 18-12, 47-21 (second in SEC-East)

Coach: David Perno (Georgia, 1991)

Record at school: 183-124, 5 years

Overall record: Same

Assistant coaches: Doug Sisson, Roger Williams, Jason Eller

Team offense: .312 BA, 489 R, 77 HR, .481 SLG, .384 OBA, 64/80 SB

Team pitching: 4.76 ERA, 610.1 IP, 663 H, 206 BB, 461 K

Top hitters: Jonathan Wyatt (.362/3/38/10 SB), Joey Side (.359/13/53), Jason Jacobs (.339/7/48), Josh Morris (.317/23/68), Ryan Peisel (.308/2/44), Matt Robbins (.303/2/24), Bobby Felmy (.293/9/51/10 SB), Gordon Beckham (.284/12/54), Kyle Keen (.281/4/26), Matthew Dunn (.260/1/25)

Top pitchers: Joshua Fields (3-2, 1.88, 15 SV, 48 IP, 34 H, 11 BB, 53 K), Rip Warren (8-2, 2.78, 71.1 IP, 57 H, 21 BB, 73 K), Brooks Brown (8-4, 4.10, 105.1 IP, 96 H, 41 BB, 117 K), Mickey Westphal (7-2, 5.08, 88.2 IP, 114 H, 19 BB, 41 K), Nathan Moreau (8-1, 5.50, 68.2 IP, 80 H, 20 BB, 40 K)

Last time in tournament: 2004 (3-1 at Athens Regional, 2-0 at Atlanta Super Regional, 2-2 CWS)

Notes: Georgia is in Omaha for the third time in the past six seasons and fifth time overall. The Bulldogs won the 1990 national title, behind the arms of Dave Fleming and most outstanding player Mike Rebhan. The Dawgs, who have won 20 of 23 games, have reached Omaha each of the three times they have played in the Super Regionals since 2001. Georgia has pop up and down the lineup, led by Josh Morris’ 23 bombs and 68 RBI. Jonathan Wyatt leads the team in batting, and Joey Side has 42 extra-base hits among his 110 on the year. One weakness is that the Bulldogs strike out nearly seven times a game, led by Morris’ 62. The Dawgs rely on Rip Warren (8-2) and closer Joshua Fields (15 saves) late in games. The tandem has combined for 126 strikeouts in 119 innings. Starters Brooks Brown, Mickey Westphal and Nathan Moreau are hittable, with ERAs ranging from 4.10 to 5.50. Brown is the only strikeout pitcher among them. Reliever Stephen Dodson was suspended for the CWS after breaking a team rule after UGA’s Super Regional victory. Coach David Perno was CollegeBaseballInsider.com’s coach of the year in 2004.


8. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets

Atlanta, Ga.

At-large bid from the ACC

Won Atlanta Regional (3-0) and won Atlanta Super Regional (2-0)

2006 record: 19-11, 50-16 (third in ACC-Coastal)

Coach: Danny Hall (Miami (Ohio), 1977)

Record at school: 579-241, 13 years

Overall record: 787-358, 19 years

Assistant coaches: Bobby Moranda, Josh Holliday, Brian Prince

Team offense: .320 BA, 585 R, 88 HR, .501 SLG, .420 OBA, 51/67 SB

Team pitching: 4.33 ERA, 587.2 IP, 636 H, 223 BB, 485 K

Top hitters: Whit Robbins (.363/13/66), Danny Payne (.356/11/44/20 SB), Matt Wieters (.355/14/69), Wes Hodges (.335/11/67), Jeff Kindel (.335/13/52), Luke Murton (.329/6/44), Wally Crancer (.320/6/30), Mike Trapani (.312/5/43), Steven Blackwood (.279/7/52)

Top pitchers: Brad Rulon (5-0, 2.28, 2 SV, 47.1 IP, 34 H, 27 BB, 48 K), Matt Wieters (1-2, 2.67, 7 SV, 30.1 IP, 31H, 6 BB, 34 K), Lee Hyde (6-0, 3.06, 1 SV, 79.1 IP, 72 H, 37BB, 66 K), Blake Wood (11-4, 4.71, 109 IP, 128 H, 41 BB, 90 K), David Duncan (7-2, 5.50, 72 IP, 88 H, 25 BB, 51 K)

Last time in tournament: 2005 (3-1 at Atlanta Regional, 0-2 at Atlanta Super Regional)

Notes: The Yellow Jackets are making their third trip to Omaha. Tech lost in the national championship game to Oklahoma in 1994 and finished fifth in 2002. The Jackets hosted a NCAA Regional for the fifth consecutive season and a Super Regional for the third straight year, going 5-0 to improve to 17-4 over their past 21 games. GT will face Clemson for the seventh time this season in Friday’s opening game of the College World Series. The season series is tied at 3. In the past 22 years, Georgia Tech has appeared in 21 NCAA tourneys, trailing only Miami and Florida State. The Yellow Jackets are two wins shy of the school record. Tech’s hitting is the key, and the offense is potent throughout. Five players total more than 50 RBI, and the team slugging percentage is .501, second-highest in Omaha. The Jackets also have five players in double digits in homers. The pitching has been solid in the NCAA Tournament, as the arms have limited opponents to a 2.40 ERA and .263 average in 45 innings. Matt Wieters belted three homers and drove in six and reached base in 14 of 15 plate appearances in the Regionals. He can come on and close out games as a pitcher. Mike Trapani wrote a journal for CollegeBaseballInsider.com in 2005. Luke Murton ripped three homers in an ACC tourney game against Clemson. Blake Wood is 21-5 the past two years, although he has been more hittable this season. Steven Blackwood is a Microbial Physiology major, and plans to pursue a career as a doctor when his baseball career ends. Opponents hit only .204 off top reliever Brad Rulon.


Miami Hurricanes

Coral Gables, Fla.

At-large bid from the ACC

Won Lincoln Regional (3-0) and won Oxford Super Regional (2-1)

2006 record: 17-13, 41-22 (fourth in ACC-Coastal)

Coach: Jim Morris (Elon, 1973)

Record at school: 604-219-3, 13 years

Overall record: 1239-504-4, 29 years

Assistant coaches: J.D. Arteaga, Gino DiMare, Joe Mercadante

Team offense: .313 BA, 451 R, 65 HR, .477 SLG, .393 OBA, 89/123 SB

Team pitching: 4.38 ERA, 561 IP, 502 H, 250 BB, 442 K

Top hitters: Jon Jay (.369/6/42/31 SB), Jemile Weeks (.354/6/40/12 SB), Tommy Giles (.339/9/42/11 SB), Danny Valencia (.329/9/59), Eddy Rodriguez (.319/9/34), Roger Tomas (.301/0/16), Yonder Alonso (.296/10/69), Dennis Raben (.286/6/27)

Top pitchers: Chris Perez (4-1, 1.88, 12 SV, 52.2 IP, 33 H, 28 BB, 62 K), Danny Gil (4-2, 2.80, 61 IP, 44 H, 33 BB, 53 K), Carlos Gutierrez (9-6, 4.08, 86 IP, 77 H, 32 BB, 59 K), Manny Miguelez (8-4, 4.31, 104.1 IP, 89 H, 37 BB, 78 K), Scott Maine (11-3, 4.89, 99.1, 93 H, 37 BB, 73 K).

Last time in tournament: 2005 (3-0 at Coral Gables Regional, 0-2 at Lincoln Super Regional)

Notes: Miami is making its 22nd trip to Omaha and 10th in 13 years after surprising many by winning the Lincoln Regional and taking two of three at Ole Miss in the Super Regional round. It has won four national titles - none of which have come while Miami has been in the ACC. The Hurricanes reached the Super Regional round for the eighth straight year - a NCAA record - and have made the NCAA tournament each of the past 22 years (a mark shared by Florida State). Jim Morris spent 12 seasons as coach at Georgia Tech before arriving at Miami. Danny Valencia was a hero in the Super Regional, belting a grand slam that extended the Hurricanes’ Game 3 lead against Ole Miss. Jon Jay has been steady and an animal for Miami for three years. He led the ACC in on-base percentage and is now at .500 for the year. He also has stolen 31 bases. Jemile Weeks, the brother of Brewers star Rickie Weeks, is a fantasy player’s dream with 31 extra-base hits and a .564 slugging percentage - as a freshman. He’s a keeper in any league. Fellow frosh Yonder Alonso leads the team with 10 homers and 69 RBI. On the mound, relievers Danny Gil and Chris Perez were huge in the Super Regional, with Gil getting his fourth start of the year. Opponents hit only .176 off Perez and .199 off Gil. Starters Manny Miguelez, Scott Maine and Carlos Gutierrez all have ERAs over 4, so it wouldn’t be surprising to see Gil and Perez often.


North Carolina Tar Heels

Chapel Hill, N.C.

At-large bid from the ACC

Won Chapel Hill Regional (3-0) and won Tuscaloosa Super Regional (2-0)

2006 record: 22-8, 50-13 (first in ACC-Coastal)

Coach: Mike Fox (North Carolina, 1978)

Record at school: 337-158-1, 8 years

Overall record: 877-299-5, 23 years

Assistant coaches: Chad Holbrook, Scott Forbes, Jason Howell

Team offense: .324 BA, 485 R, 77 HR, .495 SLG, .406 OBA, 90/124 SB

Team pitching: 3.30 ERA, 568 IP, 494 H, 208 BB, 505 K

Top hitters: Josh Horton (.404/7/55/12 SB), Jay Cox (.388/13/59), Chad Flack (.384/13/67/15 SB), Mike Cavasinni (.324/0/17/16 SB), Tim Federowicz (.320/10/55), Reid Fronk (.289/8/41), Seth Williams (.286/3/21), Benji Johnson (.285/13/42)

Top pitchers: Jonathan Hovis (7-2, 1.28, 2 SV, 63.1 IP, 41 H, 19 BB, 57 K), Andrew Miller (13-2, 2.11, 110.2 IP, 87 H, 36 BB, 119 K), Robert Woodard (6-1, 3.48, 95.2 IP, 98 H, 19 BB, 47 K), Andrew Carignan (2-3, 3.52, 13 SV, 30.2 IP, 16 H, 15 BB, 39 K), Daniel Bard (8-3, 3.59, 87.2 IP, 74 H, 35 BB, 90 K),.

Last time in tournament: 2005 (1-2 at Gainesville Regional)

Notes: North Carolina is making its first trip to Omaha since 1989 and fifth overall. This will be coach Mike Fox’s first trip to the CWS as a coach (he was a player on the 1978 squad that reached Omaha). Fox is just the 10th person to play and coach in the College World Series. Amazingly, three are in Omaha this year, as Clemson’s Jack Leggett and Cal State Fullerton’s George Horton have pulled the feat. He brings a tremendously balanced team to the College World Series, as the Tar Heels hit .324 (15th in the country) and opponents hit .234 against them. The pitching has dominated the headlines - ace Andrew Miller was named player of the year by Baseball America - but the hitting has been steady all year and very hot of late. Chad Flack was the hitting hero of the Super Regional, blasting two homers, including the game-winner in a stirring win over Alabama in the first game. He, Josh Horton and Jay Cox finished in the top five in the ACC in batting. Did we mention pitching? How about a team ERA of 3.30 (eighth in the country)? Miller holds the school record for strikeouts (311) and has turned in an absolutely dominant season. Daniel Bard, as mentioned in our Super Regional notes, can be very, very good at times, and a bit erratic at others. And Robert Woodard gives the Tar Heels as good of a starting trio (along with Rice and Fullerton) as any of the remaining squads. North Carolina also boasts one of the nation’s best relief pitchers in Jonathan Hovis. Hovis led the ACC in ERA at 1.37 and finished the regular season ranked fourth in the nation. UNC and Cal State Fullerton will meet for the first time Friday.


Oregon State Beavers
Corvallis, Oregon
Automatic bid from Pac-10 for winning regular-season crown

Won Corvallis Regional (3-0) and won Corvallis Super Regional (2-0)
2006 record - 16-7, 44-14 (first in Pac-10)
Coach: Pat Casey (George Fox, 1990)
Record at school: 385-251-4, 12 years
Overall record: 556-364-5, 19 years
Assistant coaches: Dan Spencer, Marty Lees, David Wong
Team offense: .305 BA, 425 R, 32 HR, .435 SLG, .403 OBA, 71/93 SB
Team pitching: 3.43 ERA, 514.1 IP, 448 H, 214 BB, 416 K
Top hitters: Cole Gillespie (.386/12/53/15 SB), Darwin Barney (.333/0/33/14 SB), Bill Rowe (.332/5/48), Chris Kunda (.294/2/37), Mitch Canham (.294/7/50), Shea McFeely (.292/2/46), Scott Santachi (.289/2/29)
Top pitchers: Kevin Gunderson (2-2, 2.34, 17 SV, 42.1 IP, 31 H, 16 BB, 39 K), Jonah Nickerson (11-4, 2.50, 115.2 IP, 102 H, 34 BB, 112 K), Mike Stutes (7-2, 2.88, 72 IP, 63 H, 35 BB, 71 K), Dallas Buck (12-2, 3.03, 115.2 IP, 84 H, 53 BB, 88 K)
Last NCAA appearance: 2005 (won Corvallis Regional, won Corvallis Super Regional, 0-2 at College World Series)

Notes: After not reaching the College World Series since 1952, the Beavers have made it to Omaha the past two seasons. Oregon State is the only team from last year’s CWS to make it back this season. The Beavers are 0-4 all-time in the CWS, losing two close games to Tulane and Baylor a year ago after losses to Duke and Texas in 1952. OSU has never played five of the teams in Omaha: Miami, Rice, Georgia, Georgia Tech or North Carolina. Coach Pat Casey was CollegeBaseballInsider.com’s coach of the year in 2005. Second baseman Chris Kunda was the Pac-10’s defensive player of the year and the Corvallis Regional’s most outstanding player. Cole Gillespie has a 16-game hitting streak. Once again, OSU has a bevy of arms, with Dallas Buck leading the way. Buck, who played as a defensive back on the Beavers’ football team as a freshman, is 24-3 over the past two seasons. Opponents hit only .204 off of him. Jonah Nickerson has 112 strikeouts in 115.1 innings, and tossed three of OSU’s four complete games. Closer Kevin Gunderson limits hitters to a .205 average and has posted 17 saves.


2. Rice Owls
Houston, Texas

Automatic bid from Conference USA

Won Houston Regional (3-0) and won Houston Super Regional (2-1)

2006 record: 22-2, 55-11 (first in C-USA)

Coach: Wayne Graham (Texas, 1970)

Record at school: 682-268, 15 years

Overall record: same

Assistant coaches: David Pierce, Mike Taylor, Patrick Hallmark

Team offense: .321 BA, 514 R, 79 HR, .517 SLG, .414 OBA, 72/103 SB

Team pitching: 3.16 ERA, 583.2 IP, 495 H, 234 BB, 616 K

Top hitters: Brian Friday (.365/9/56/17 SB), Greg Buchanan (.355/5/42/12 SB), Josh Rodriguez (.346/11/64/10 SB), Tyler Henley (.341/7/53), Joe Savery (.335/9/63), Aaron Luna (.321/16/50), Jordan Dodson (.298/6/39)

Top pitchers: Eddie Degerman (13-1, 1.81, 119.2 IP, 74 H, 47 BB, 158 K), Cole St. Clair (6-2, 1.82, 11 SV, 69.1 IP, 34 H, 24 BB, 94 K), Joe Savery (5-1, 2.76, 62 IP, 55 H, 24 BB, 62 K), Will McDaniel (7-1, 3.41, 58 IP, 52 H, 22 BB, 39 K), Craig Crow (8-1, 3.28, 79.2 IP, 81 H, 32 BB, 85 K), Bobby Bell (8-0, 4.12, 3 SV, 72 IP, 73 H, 21 BB, 59 K)

Last time in tournament: 2005 (3-0 at Baton Rouge Regional, 1-2 at New Orleans Super Regional)

Notes: Rice has reached the College World Series for the fifth time and first since 2003, when aces Wade Townsend, Jeff Niemann and Philip Humber led the Owls to the national title. The Owls have won 37 of 40 games, and with 55 wins, leads the country in victories. This was Rice’s first year in Conference USA. The Owls, like 2003, have some arms. Ace righty Eddie Degerman limits opponents to a .174 average with an over-the-top arm action that has proven deceptive. He’s a transfer from UC Irvine and has 158 strikeouts and 47 walks in 119.2 innings. Reliever Cole St. Clair is just as filthy, handcuffing opponents to the tune of a .144 average. In addition to 11 saves, he’s struck out 94 in 69.1 innings. Rice isn’t as deep in terms of nasty pitchers as 2003, but Bobby Bell, Craig Crow and Will McDaniel are steady. Joe Savery has been in the “nasty” category, but he’s been slowly returning from injury and hasn’t been sharp down the stretch. Savery, however, is one of many potent bats in the Owls’ lineup. Five batters - Josh Rodriguez, Savery, Brian Friday, Tyler Henley and Aaron Luna - total more than 50 RBI. Owls’ pitchers strike out 9.33 batters per game.