UGA Baseball

Batter Up: Georgia pitcher Health Holder shining in final season

Story Information: This story is a profile of a UGA baseball pitcher during the beginning of the 2016 season. He was preparing for his first game as a starting pitcher in his final season. I was the reporter for this piece and got the interviews and set the story up. 

 

Batter Up: Georgia pitcher Health Holder shining in final season

By Jaylon Thompson

It’s 10:30 pm on a Friday night.

While most people are out enjoying the start of their weekend, a light burns from Foley Field. It’s been hours since the Georgia Bulldogs defeated Georgia Southern 4-1 earlier in the day.

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Trend Story

 

Rules are Rules: Georgia dealing with recruiting limitations 9 years in the making

By Jaylon Thompson

 

Georgia pitcher Robert Tyler had to make a decision.

Tyler had two choices. His first option was the Baltimore Orioles. They selected him in the 50th round and had hopes of signing him. His second choice was the college baseball. As a top pitching prospect, he had several offers including one from the University of Georgia.

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Straight to the Ground: Foley Field grounds crew thriving behind the scenes

Story Information: This story was done in my multiplatform class at the University of Georgia. I was the reporter in this story. I spent a day with the UGA baseball team’s grounds crew. This story serves as a day in the life with the group. I hope that you enjoy it. 

 

Straight to the Ground: Foley Field grounds crew thriving behind the scenes  

By Jaylon Thompson

 

Georgia had two strikes in the bottom of the 9th inning and Foley Field ground foreman Nick Paserchia couldn’t be happier.

It was 10:30 pm and Paserchia was ready to go. He was tired after spending 14 hours at the stadium. Only the post-game cleanup stood in his way. The cleanup consisted of raking dirt,  scooping up baselines, and watering the entire infield.

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Multimedia Package 2: Photos

The night crew: Foley Field’s secret team

By Jaylon Thompson

 

Foley Field is marveled by many people. However, it takes a lot to get the field ready for gameday’s. The outfield has to be cut, the infield has to be manicured, and the entire field has to be watered. Not many people can handle such tasks. However, it is the job of Grounds Foreman Nick Paserchia and his student staff.

Here is a photo gallery displaying just what it takes to get Foley Field ready. The images are before a UGA baseball game against South Carolina on Friday April 15th, 2016. It captures how the field set up before the game, during the game and after the game.

Please click on the photos to surf through the photo gallery and see the captions.

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Mitchell Boggs Audio Profile Interview

By Jaylon Thompson

Mitchell Boggs returned home. After pitching in Major League Baseball with three teams, Boggs returned to the University of Georgia to continue his education. When he arrived, he started another profession, coaching. As a volunteer coach at UGA, Boggs is starting to find his niche. Hear how he is helping younger Georgia players reach their potential and get to the next level.

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Beat Blog Post 3: Trend Story Ideas

1.) Trend of pitchers getting drafted into the MLB Draft

Analysis: The Georgia baseball team has had 43 consecutive seasons with a player being drafted into the MLB draft. In the last 10 seasons, the Bulldogs have had 34 pitchers be selected to one of 30 MLB teams. This pitchers include current pitchers Alex Wood (LAD), Josh Fields (HOU) and Brooks Brown (LAD). The list also includes 5 pitchers that were selected in the draft last season. I want to do a trend story on the development of pitchers at Georgia. With junior pitcher Robert Tyler likely to be a top draft choice, my plan is to talk with him about how his coaches helped him develop.

My goal is to focus with Tyler and his development under head coach Scott Stricklin. Then, I would get in touch with the Georgia pitching coach Fred Corral to fully understand the how he recruits and develops them into worthy MLB prospects. After those two, I would speak with volunteer coach Mitchell Boggs as he went through the process and got drafted in the fifth round by St. Louis. Finally, I would speak with a local scout on the pitcher’s development and how Georgia compares to other schools.

I find that this is a good trend story as it really shows the strength of Georgia’s program. The coaches have really focused on pitching and I think there is a story to be had here.

2.) Trend: Players named to SEC Academic Honor Roll

Analysis: Georgia has dominated on the field and in the classroom. They have had 99 players be named to the SEC Academic Honor Roll since it’s creation in 1984. Recently, they have had 20 players be honored in the three seasons under head coach Scott Stricklin. These players include current players like Stephen Wrenn and former players like Ryan Lawlor, Conner Jones, Sean McLaughlin and Brandon Stephens among others.

This is a trend as it continues to show the importance that Stricklin and staff put on education. If I were to do a story like this, I would try to find an angle that shows how Georgia is able to pull off this feat. For example, do they have a special session just for players to study? Is there anything that they do differently than other schools? Another thing I would look at is just how much does the athletic department play into making students go to class.

3.) Trend: Recruiting in State

Analysis: Georgia has kept it in state. All but three players have been recruited from outside the state of Georgia. This seems like a trend to me because of how difficult it is to get players to play close to home. In the MLB, there is a lure to go professional and start making “real” money. However, for head coach Scott Stricklin to recruit some of the best players in the state is impressive.

I think the trend to this story is how does he convince so many players to come to the university. I know that academics like Hope Scholarship plays a role, but just how much. I also know that there is a trend of recruiting from the Gwinnett and north Atlanta areas. In fact, the team has three players that were teammates at Walton High School. This isn’t a anomaly. There are a lot of players that have been on the same team before Georgia. So, I would also want to know why this is the case. I would try to contact high school/travel coaches to find out why this is happening. I would also look into the players deciding to all come to Georgia. I would want to exactly why they chose this institution. Maybe it had something to do with the coaches. This is something I would explore in this trend story.

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Beat Post 2: Sarah Hudek Makes History

It’s not often that a we see history in college sports.

Bossier Parish Community College pitcher Sarah Hudek begs to differ on this statement. She made history after earning her first win in college baseball. Hudek, the daughter of former MLB All-Star John Hudek, pitched a scoreless frame to preserve a 5-4 win over Hinds Community College. This isn’t the first time that Hudek has been victorious. She helped Team USA in the Pan American Games to a gold medal. In that series, she was 1-1 with a dominant 0.54 ERA. Overall, the success of Hudek has sparked a discussion on the success of women in baseball.

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Infographics featuring Will Ferrell

As the calendar turns to February, all eyes turn towards to the impending baseball season. The first stop on baseball’s epic journey is Spring Training. Most teams will be requiring their pitchers and catchers to report this week in preparation for the season. I chose to explore this important time in the year. It just so happens that I found an infographic featuring actor Will Ferrell playing with multiple teams last Spring Training. He did this Spring Training tour to raise awareness for cancer.

So, without further ado, here is what I thought of an infographic dubbed “Ferrell Takes the Field.”

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Interview with UGA Baseball SID (Transcript)

The season is around the corner for the Georgia baseball team. The Bulldogs start the 2016 season against Georgia Southern on February 19th. Georgia is coming off a 26-28 record last year and are needing to replace several key players. The Bulldogs are depending on players like Robert Tyler and Stephen Wrenn to provide leadership to a roster filled with young players.

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UGA Baseball Beat Report 1

UGA Baseball

Spring Record: UGA’s baseball season hasn’t started yet. The season starts on February 19th, 2016 against Georgia Southern.

Last Season’s Record: The Bulldogs went 26-28 last season under head coach Scott Stricklin. In Southeastern Conference play, Georgia went 10-19 and performed well below expectations. At Foley Field, the Bulldogs were .500 (16-16) however, on the road, Georgia was 8-10.

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