Like every year and many teams across college baseball, University of Minnesota players take time to play in various summer ball action throughout the country. Gopher Baseball will have 10 current players competing in the Northwoods League this summer. Ben Meyer and Connor Schaefbauer will compete in the Cape Cod League with the Brewster Whitecaps, while some Gophers will play for legion or town ball teams. Along with the current Gophers, included is where some of the incoming freshmen will be competing this summer. Gopher Baseball In Summer League Action Jake Bergren-Alexandria Blue Anchors (Northwoods) David Bettenburg-St. Paul Capitals Joey Brettingen-St. Paul Capitals Alec Crawford-Eau Claire Express (Northwoods) Kyle Crocker-Brainerd Bees Matt Halloran-Rochester Honkers (Northwoods) Michael Handel-Madison Mallards (Northwoods) Alex LaShomb- Miesville Mudhens Bobby Juan-La Crosse Loggers (Northwoods) Ben Meyer-Brewster Whitecaps (Cape Cod League) Dan Olinger-Alaska Dalton Sawyer-St. Cloud Rox (Northwoods) Chris Schaaf-Long Beach Legends Connor Schaefbauer-Brewster Whitecaps (Cape Cod) Tony Skjefte-Minneapolis Lakers Jordan Smith-Chaska Cubs Matt Stemper-Burnsville Mark Tatera-Duluth Huskies (Northwoods) Lance Thonvold-Eau Claire Express (Northwoods) Troy Traxler-La Crosse Loggers (Northwoods) Alex Tukey-Battle Creek Bombers (Northwoods)
Incoming Gopher Freshmen Matt Fielder-Eagan Legion Austin Athmann-Cold Spring Legion Brian Glowicki-Longshots (Ill.) Cody Campbell-Longshots (Ill.) Tyler Hanson-Burnsville Legion Joe Martinson-Excelsior Legion Toby Anderson-Nampa Legion
The University of Minnesota will once again be well represented within Major League Baseball and its affiliates. With opening days running across the United States, it's also the opening weeks throughout their farm systems.
Golden Gopher Baseball has three that are in Major League this season. Jack Hannahan went from the American League and the Cleveland Indians, to the National League and the Cincinnati Reds as their third baseman. Glen Perkins continues to become one of the best relievers in the game. After competing with Team USA in the World Baseball Classic, Perkins is set to be the Minnesota Twins closer. Cole De Vries is also back with the Minnesota Twins after he made his MLB debut last summer.
Gopher alums are spreading through the minor leagues as well. Four former Gophers are in the Twins organization (Nate Hanson, Kyle Knudson, Mike Kvasnicka and AJ Petterson) all reported to their respective teams. After Seth Rosin was involved with the Hunter Pence trade from the San Francisco Giants, Rosin is with the Philadelphia Phillies organization. Justin Gominsky (Houston) and Nick O'Shea (Cincinnati) are both with their Class A teams, while TJ Oakes joined Ashville (Colorado) for his first full season.
Here's a list of all Gopher alums playing professionally:
Jack Hannahan, MLB, Cincinnati Reds Cole De Vries, MLB Minnesota Twins Glen Perkins, MLB Minnesota Twins Nate Hanson, Minnesota Twins-New Britian AA Seth Rosin, Philadelphia Phillies- Reading
Fightin Phils-AA Eastern Kyle Knudson, Minnesota Twins-Fort Myers Miracle Mike Kvasnicka, Minnesota Twins-Fort Myers Miracle A.J. Petterson, Minnesota Twins-Fort Myers Miracle Justin Gominsky, Houston Astros-Quad City River Bandits
Class A Nick O'Shea, Cincinnati Reds-Dayton Dragons Class A TJ Oakes, Colorado Rockies-Ashville Tourists Class A Dan Lyons-Independent, Long Island Ducks
Each Tuesday throughout the summer on the official Minnesota Gophers Facebook page (be sure to "like" us if you don't already!) we'll be highlighting a great moment in Gopher history to help populate our Facebook Timeline.
Have a suggestion for what we should feature next for Timeline Tuesday? Write a note on our Facebook Timeline! June 8, 1973: Dave Winfield fans 14 Oklahoma Sooners to lead the Gophers to a 1-0 win in the opening game of the '73 College World Series.
The 2012 College World Series is unique in that two "northern" teams (Stony Brook and Kent State) made the tournament, but baseball fans should remember that Minnesota was once a dominant force on the national scene in the sport.
In 1973, a senior named Dave Winfield turned in arguably the greatest individual performance in CWS history -- tossing 17 1/3 innings, allowing just nine hits, one earned run and striking out 29... In addition, he batted .467 in the Series!
Winfield tossed a series-opening shutout against the Sooners, and also tossed 8 scoreless innings in the Gophers' 8-7 dramatic loss to USC, which is widely recognized as one of the most memorable games in World Series history.
Despite the fact that the Gophers were eliminated by the Trojans in the semifinals, Winfield still earned Most Outstanding Player honors -- a feat accomplished by just 10 men in the history of the tournament.
Although the University of Minnesota baseball program has completed the season, a number of Gopher Baseball players will continue action throughout the summer months. In fact, some loaded up immediately after the annual end-of-the-year banquet and have already started their season. Four Gophers, Andy Henkemeyer, Ben Meyer, Tony Skjefte and Billy Soule will play for the St. Cloud Rox (Northwoods League), while DJ Snelten and Matt Halloran play for the Rochester Honkers. In all, 10 members will play within the NWL. Jordan Jess already collected a win for the Wisconsin Woodchucks on opening day (5/30/12).
Dan Olinger and Tom Windle will head to the Cape Cod League and the Brewster Whitecaps, while Kurt Schlangen will play with the Goldpanners in Alaska. Over 20 players will compete this summer. Here's a link to all the websites of the Gopher connections and their summer teams.
Minnesota baseball players are picking up publicity throughout hometown papers recently. The La Crosse, Wis., connection of Drew Ghelfi, Bobby Juan, Austin
Lubinsky, as well as assistant head coach Rob Fornasiere were featured
in the La Crosse Tribune this past weekend.
Kurt Schlangen chatted with his hometown paper, Albany Enterprise, talking Gopher baseball since playing with Albany back in 2008 (Subscription access is required to read the full article).
Gopher signed recruits continue to get in the news as they compete for their high school teams. Earlier this year, Connor Schaefbauer was named the
South Dakota's AA Basketball Player of the Year as well as well as a
first-team All-State selection.He was recently featured in an extensive interview through his hometown paper of the Sioux Falls Argus Leader as he is in his final season with O'Gorman.
Alec Crawford was recently named the Iowa Community College Athletic Conference Athlete of the Week on April 26th. So far this season, Crawford is 8-1 with a 2.49 ERA in 65 innings pitched. Allowing just 18 earned runs, he has scattered 52 hits so far this season.
Burnsville's Dan Motl was recently named a finalist for the Lions Male Amateur Athlete of the Year, which is determined by the St. Paul Pioneer Press. Motl, along with Burnsville teammate Matt Stemper, and Gopher recruits Dalton Sawyer and Troy Traxler were named to Minnesota Baseball Hub's Players to Watch coming into the season.
After 41 years, 766 games (including 585 wins) and countless memories, Gopher Baseball said one final goodbye to historic Siebert Field Tuesday, May 1. Siebert Field's "Final Pitch" was a resounding success, with a capacity crowd of nearly 1,500 spectators braving potential thunderstorms to bid farewell to one of college baseball's true historic landmarks.
GopherSports.com was there to capture Siebert Field's final contest, fittingly, a 9-2 Gopher victory. Enjoy this music video "One Final Goodbye."
With the Final Pitch at Siebert Field, the Gophers were in the news last week in a few locations. Holding previews in the Star Tribune, Pioneer Press and Minnesota Daily, the Gophers were also covered on the day of the event. With a live shot from WCCO to a MinnPost writeup on the field's history, the Gopher facility (please excuse the mispronunciation) made it on the Diamond Report through the Big Ten Network. Here's links to some of the action we found throughout the week:
The University of Minnesota baseball program will hold its Final Pitch at Siebert Field, one week from today as the Golden Gophers host St. Thomas, May 1st at 6:35 p.m. The game, originally scheduled for the H.H.H. Metrodome, was moved to honor the legendary field over the past 41 years.
In preparation for the event, the athletic department will have a series of videos as well as launching a Siebert Field history site leading up the event. With a beautiful 70 degree, sunny today, Gopher coaches sat down with gophersports.com, while the current team practiced on the field in preparation for the North Dakota State University game (in Fargo, N.D.) tomorrow.
Fans can purchase tickets online, by phone (612-624-8080),
at the Mariucci Ticket Office (during business hours), at the Metrodome
(before the 5th inning of Gopher Baseball games), or at Siebert Field
on game-day (starting at 2:30 p.m.). All tickets will be issued as
general admission and seating is available on a first-come, first serve
Gopher head coach John Anderson invited University of Minnesota President, Dr. Eric Kaler, to throw out the ceremonial first pitch at last Saturday's game against Stony Brook. With ties to both Minnesota and Stony Brook (Dr. Kaler was the provost and senior vice president for academic affairs and vice president for Brookhaven affairs prior to his arrival at Minnesota.)
Along with throwing out the first pitch, Dr. Kaler visited the radio booth and sat in on the Gophers/Seawolves' third inning. Gophersports.com's Matt Nelson also had him call Andy Henkemeyer's walk. In the radio booth, he talks about his love for the sport of baseball, the Gophers' need for a new stadium, the search for a new athletics director and of course Gopher Baseball.
Calling all Golden Gopher baseball alums. Gophersports.com and the Gopher baseball program has designed a new website to keep in contact with its alums. Gopher baseball prides itself on keeping a connection with members of its family. If you are an alum, please take the time and make sure Golden Gopher baseball has the appropriate information.
Please check out our website and fill out the appropriate information here.