With the republican and democratic primaries dominating the news as of late, the updated edition of the Perfect Game small school rankings have a presidential spin placed on them. On top of that, since the measured teams all hail from educational institutions, the reporting of the new rankings also have an added element of education in the presentation.
With the latest and greatest D-II, NAIA and D-III baseball ranking updates you’ll get a small dose of social studies factoids, which, if you play your hands right, can earn you a couple of bucks in bar bets, or at the very least, spark some mildly interesting small talk around the water cooler.
NCAA Division II
Elected as the 14th President of the United States, Franklin Pierce is generally considered to be one of the worst presidents in the history of the country and he was not against adding slave states to the union. However as bad of a president he may have been, his name adorns the campus of one of D-II’s most consistent upper echelon baseball clubs. The Ravens are routinely listed as one of the best teams in the nation and regularly have one of the most dominating pitching staffs at any level.
This season Ravens’ pitching staff has been as advertised as 10 of the 13 FPU hurlers who have toed the rubber this season have an individual ERA under 2.00. Even All American Jay Jabs, one of the best hitters in the division, has gotten in on the action earning a save after tossing two shutout innings. Meanwhile FPU has been scoring nearly eight runs a game leading to a cockeyed outcome in all but one game so far this season.
With an upcoming schedule light on quality opposition it’s likely the lopsided results will continue. This will make critiquing the Ravens a arduous task throughout the season. They’ll be sure to pile up a plethora of wins, but if the perennial NE-10 power is going to continue to be positioned among the best-of-the-best they’ll need to win big, really big, or teams with lessor records will leap frog them in the rankings table with their tested results.
Holding steady at the fifth spot in the rankings are the Quincy Hawks. While the school’s name has nothing to do whatsoever with John Quincy Adams, the sixth president of the United States, both the program and the man, are known for decades of success at their respective endeavors. In addition to being President, Adams was an accomplished Senator, Secretary of State and diplomat in a political career which spanned five decades. The Quincy baseball team, established in the late 1950’s, has had a number of successful seasons, which includes five NCAA Tournament appearances, including last season when they were the GLVC Tournament champs. While Adams’ place in history is already written it will be up to the Hawks baseball team to carry the banner of the Quincy name.
The Hawks have started the season winning six of seven games thanks in big part to a thunderous offense which has been absolutely mashing the ball. After a DH sweep of Lincoln yesterday, the Hawks have a team slugging percentage near .600 with six regular hitters batting over .400. Additionally, Jake Peterson has been dominating on the mound, tossing 16 scoreless innings with 15 strikeouts and only a pair of walks. The Hawks’ schedule also gives them a good mix of competition as the GLVC slate will be competitive will more than a handful of teams capable of capturing the conference crown.
Other notable D-II presidential notes from last week include:
Truman State won their home opener after making the D-II CWS last season with a shutout of Bemidji State, Lincoln Memorial swept a series from a good Newberry team to reach the double-digit win mark, and while they were Senators and not President, Davis & Elkins’ Travis Phelps was named the Great Midwest Athletic Conference Player of the Week.
|1||1||St. Cloud St. Huskies||MN||5-0||0-0|
|2||2||Franklin Pierce Ravens||NH||9-0||4-0|
|6||6||Columbus St. Cougars||GA||16-4||4-1|
|7||7||Colorado Mesa Mavericks||CO||12-3||4-0|
|8||8||Missouri Southern St. Lions||MO||11-3||1-2|
|9||12||St. Edward’s Hilltoppers||TX||16-5||4-0|
|10||10||West Florida Argos||FL||11-7||3-1|
|11||11||Florida Tech Panthers||FL||13-6||4-0|
|12||16||Cal Baptist Lancers||CA||13-5||3-1|
|13||13||UC San Diego Tritons||CA||16-4||2-2|
|14||9||Minnesota State Mavericks||MN||5-3||2-3|
|16||18||West Alabama Tigers||AL||15-4||4-0|
|17||19||East Stroudsburg Warriors||PA||10-0||3-0|
|18||14||Cal Poly Pomona Broncos||CA||11-6||1-2|
|19||20||Southern New Hampshire Penmen||NH||9-0||4-0|
|20||17||Dixie State Red Storm||UT||13-5||1-3|
|21||22||Southern Indiana Screaming Eagles||IN||7-3||3-0|
|22||21||Southern Arkansas Muleriders||AR||12-7||1-2|
|25||25||USC Aiken Pacers||SC||14-4||3-1|
Dropped out: None.
Thomas Jefferson is unequivocally one of the most famous and influential Presidents in our country’s history. Not only was he the third President of the United States, he was the primary author of the Declaration of Independence, doubled the size of the nation with the Louisiana Purchase, was a renaissance man who promoted science and education, and perhaps most importantly, was the creator of the swivel chair.
Another one of Jefferson’s most notable contributions to our nation’s history was when he sought to find the most direct and practicable path across the country. He commissioned Meriwether Lewis and William Clark to make their way west to the Pacific coast. Like the famous exploring tandem they’re named after, the Lewis-Clark State Warriors are once again leading the way in the NAIA.
While the Warriors aren’t currently ranked at the top of the table, they could find themselves there sooner than later. Already 14-1, the Warriors look every bit the fordable foe that they have been in the past. The only reason they’re not ranked higher (currently eighth) is because their roster had quite a bit of turnover after last season and their level of competition hasn’t been quite top shelf. This past weekend LCSC won three of four over the College of Idaho. The Warriors upcoming games against British Columbia look like a decent measure of ability on paper as the Thunderbirds are 19-7, but most of those BC wins, including six against Thompson Rivers, are against second tier competition as well.
The state of Ohio will soon take center stage in the race for the next US President and the Racers from the northwestern part of the Buckeye State hope to be big movers in the NAIA rankings shortly as well. After starting the season in the middle of the Top 25, UNOH had been slowly sliding in the rankings after they were bested in three of four, however they may have righted the stumbling ship last week as they bounced back to win four games over Brescia as they outscored the overmatched Bearcats 38-3.
The Racers top three starting pitchers have dominated competition, striking out 59 batters in 47 innings. Junior transfer Damon Proctor has been the most magnificent on the mound, only allowing a single earned run in three appearances for a teeny, tiny 0.57 ERA. If he can continues his torrid pace, and is backed by breakout seasons by fellow transfer Kelvin Flores and Carlos Baerga Jr., the son of three-stime All Star Carlos Baerga, the Racers will gain ground and votes as one of the top teams in the country.
|4||5||Oklahoma City Stars||OK||14-7||3-0|
|5||7||Georgia Gwinnett Grizzlies||GA||21-0||4-0|
|6||3||Oklahoma Wesleyan Eagles||OK||13-5||2-2|
|7||11||Auburn Montgomery Warhawks||AL||15-5||4-0|
|8||6||Lewis-Clark State Warriors||ID||14-1||3-1|
|9||4||Lindsey Wilson Blue Raiders||KY||15-6||3-2|
|12||14||LSU Shreveport Pilots||LA||13-6||4-1|
|13||13||St. Thomas Bobcats||FL||13-10||3-1|
|16||19||South Carolina Beaufort||SC||19-2||5-0|
|17||15||Missouri Baptist Spartans||MO||12-6||2-1|
|18||17||The Master’s Mustangs||CA||14-7||1-1|
|21||NR||MidAmerica Nazarene Pioneers||KS||14-1||4-0|
|22||22||Northwestern Ohio Racers||OH||8-4||4-0|
|24||24||Mt. Vernon Nazarene Cougars||OH||7-2||3-2|
Dropped out: Tennessee Wesleyan (23), Madonna (25).
NCAA Division III
The school named after the 10th President, John Tyler, the first Vice President to be elevated to POTUS by the death of his predecessor, made another big jump in the rankings after finishing their week with two blowout wins. The Texas Tyler Patriots romped over Louisiana College wining the road contests 12-2 and 11-3.
The Patriots deep pitching staff has seen a dozen pitchers take to the mound this season, most of them performing admirably in each outing. The offense was a bit of a concern headed into the season following a number of graduations. Freshman Graham Welch has thrown shade on those concerns after hitting .339 his first 15 games with three doubles and four triples. Transfer Trenton Buchhorn has also elevated the offensive anxiety as he is leading the team with a .350 batting average and nine extra-base hits of his own.
The University of Mary Washington is named after the mother of George Washington. Despite her son’s place in national history, there is a legend that Mrs. Washington was a loyalist and openly opposed the revolution – a claim which seems rather doubtful considering George was the commander of the army and navy and her other three sons served in the Virginia Militia as well. What can’t be argued is that the baseball team from the university bearing her name are one of the hottest and most exciting teams this season.
The Eagles have started the season 13-1 and have scored double-digit runs in seven of their first 14 games. The team is outhitting opposition .354 to .208 and senior shortstop James Keller is putting up the most prolific numbers, hitting .424 with 13 extra-base hits in the first 14 games of the season. UMW has an upcoming games against top-ranked Cortland State and sixth positioned Shenandoah that will give an indication if the Eagles have the moxie to move up the rankings sooner after starting the year in the “others considered” category.
|1||1||Cortland State Red Dragons||NY||8-0||2-0|
|5||5||UW LaCrosse Eagles||WI||0-0||0-0|
|7||7||Southern Maine Huskies||MA||0-0||0-0|
|9||15||Tyler Texas Patriots||TX||11-4||2-1|
|10||12||Baldwin Wallace Yellow Jackets||OH||4-3||2-0|
|11||11||St. Thomas Tommies||MN||0-0||0-0|
|14||14||Cal Lutheran Kingsmen||CA||7-4||2-1|
|15||22||Mary Washington Eagles||VA||13-1||6-1|
|16||16||Wooster Fighting Scots||OH||0-0||0-0|
|20||20||Concordia University Chicago||IL||4-0||2-0|
|21||21||UW-Stevens Point Pointers||WI||0-0||0-0|
|22||NR||Randolph-Macon Yellow Jackets||VA||11-1||2-1|
Dropped out: Concordia (18), St. John Fisher (23), Ohio Northern (24).
Originally appeared on Perfect Game website: https://www.perfectgame.org/Articles/View.aspx?article=12206