From the Field: Point Loma Sea Lions Baseball

Point Loma came through Hawaii last weekend, and would split the series 2-2. Offensively, they were one of the most impressive teams I have seem come through HPU, with (currently) nine players carrying a .381 OBP of higher.

They also have a trio of great starters in Kellen Sheppard, Kevin Lillicrop and Trevor Abshire. The mix of great bats and pitching made for a very competitive series.

Autograph wise I did well, and the only guys I was not able to get were Matt Jervis, Colby Kaneshiro and Kevin Lillicrop. Not sure how I missed them, which is a bummer. I may write to one or two c/o Point Loma–assuming the team accepts fan mail.

This was also the first time that I took pictures of a game and took the time to edit them. I always thought that my pictures turned out OK on their own, but with my wife’s Light Table program I feel like they improved a little.  Might be something I learn more about.

Overall it was a really fun weekend, and I really hope that Point Loma continues to have a great season.

AJ Derr.jpg

AJ Derr

OF AJ Derr is hitting .365/.405/.478.  That crazy OBP you see is the teams second highest. My favorite stat of his is all the walks: in 74 at bats he has 16, to 8 walks.

Derek Rustich.jpg

Derek Rustich

3B Derek Rustich was not on my initial list of players to get, but after snapping these pictures and seeing a couple at bats, I pulled the trigger.  His numbers were not great prior to  Hawaii, but since then he has been fantastic, with a slash of .302/.372/.412.  His plate disciple helps (6 walks, 7 K’s). He has some great games here (last two games of the series: 5 for 8, 1 RBI), and that momentum carried over to the big island.  He is a very good player, and I am happy that I snagged him.

Devin Carter.jpg

Devin Carter

OF Devin Carter is hitting .405/.676/.465 on the season. On top of the amazing OBP, he is showing plenty of pop, with 4 HR on the season (second on the team).  He leads the team in strikeouts, but with that kind of power and on base ability, it really does not matter.  He and Ryan Garcia make for a very formidable 1-2 punch.

Kellen Sheppard.jpg

P/IF Kellen Sheppard is a two way player.  As a hitter he is slashing .325/.450/.426 with 1 HR…which would be great numbers all by themselves.  But he is also the teams #1 starter, and on the season he is 4-1, 1.06 ERA with 20 K, 3 walks (!) and only 29 hits allowed over 34 IP. Coming to Hawaii, he was National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA)  West Region Pitcher of the Week. It was easy to see why he is so well regarded:  in the game I saw he would pitch 7 innings, allowing no runs on 2 hits, with 4 K and only 1 walk.

 

INF Matt Jervis is yet another Sea Lion having an impressive season: .400/.480/.455. He is also one of the guys that I was not able to get.  Bummer.

 

Mike Gardner.jpg

C Mike Gordner is the Point Loma starting catcher. If I was running a team I would be happy to have a defensive oriented catcher who could hold his own with the bat…so you have to think Point Loma coaching staff is thrilled to have a guy like Gordner who can handle himself behind the plate (no errors, only 1 passed ball so far this season), while also hitting .316/.474/.381.  He also has some pop, being third on the team with 3 HR.

ryan garcia.jpg

 

1B Ryan Garcia is the offensive heart of the team. He is hitting .338/.610/.430 with a team leading 6 HR. And he has already racked up his first NCBWA West Region Pitcher of the Week.

He was the #1 players I was shooting for…and got him about 10 minutes after I showed up. Unfortunately I called him the wrong name (I was excited, he did not have a number on and I confused him with a pitcher…always embarrassing…), and then the autograph got smudged.  Fun fact: lefties sometimes smudge autographs.  I guess is has to do with the way their hand moves across the card…and since so many college guys are not used to signing they don’t really notice. And man, nothing is worse than getting a smudge on an autograph of a guy who ends up getting drafted!  And with the way Garcia is hitting…someone is going to take him come June.

Trevor Abshire.jpg

SP Trevor Abshire pitched the second game I went to. Hawaii lost Game 1, so they came out swinging in Game 2, and Abshire would only go 4.2 IP, allowing 3 ER on 8 hits. He would strike out 5. Overall he is having a fantastic season, with a 1-1 record, and leads the team with 26 K’s.

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