Entries Tagged as 'UI baseball photos'

Photos of Game 3 of Illini Orange and Blue Series

With the playoff game going on tonight, I had lot going on already but that didn’t stop me from dropping by Illinois Field after work and catching a few innings of today’s game of Orange and Blue Game World Series.  The intra squad series of the University of Illinois baseball team has been going on all week.

I took some photos and posted them.

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Illini take the field for some fall practice

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Today, the University of Illinois baseball team took the field at Illinois Field for the first time this semester for practice.  So I took off work early and got some photos.

It was a sunny, hot 92-93 degrees and just standing around was enough to work up a sweat.

I saw a lot of players I recognized from last year and quite a few new kids on the block.  When i was there, it was mostly warmups, drills and a little batting practice.

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Joe Bonadonna Casey McMurray and Nick Stockwell

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Coach Eric Snider teaching the finer points of laying down the bunt.

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Some of the pitchers were practicing their faux deliveries on a wooden beam in front of full length mirror.

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Snider feeding the pitching machine under the scoreboard in left field.  ugh… 93 degrees.

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Dom Altobelli (right) came over to shake my hand before practice.  It sounds like the torn labrum which he injured last season is still nagging him.  Hopefully, he’ll be good as new by spring.

More photos at the Photo Gallery.

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Some sights at the 2008 Big Ten tournament

The Big Ten Network began broadcasting the games by the third round.  This camera operator didn’t care for me taking her picture even though she was poking her camera into Illinois’ dugout a good part of the game.

This is a mid-game interview of Coach Hartleb of Illinois.  This goes for MLB too but my feeling is let the manager do his job.  There’s nothing he can say then that can’t wait till after the game.  This is just a failed gimmick on TV sports media’s part.

On the left Steve Putnam and on the Brian DeCaussin from Big Ten Hardball.  The three of us chatted Thursday.

Zach Putnam is Steve’s son and considering what Zach did to our Illini, I’d say some mean things but he’s a really nice guy and actually a Illinois alum so I won’t.

No team in the tourney gets in the game more than the Purdue Boilermakers.  Whether it’s yelling encouragements to the pitcher or batter or riding the opposition, they’re doing it.  There’s constant chatter. They’re always up on the railing making themselves the tenth player.

Something I noticed… when the Boilermaker pitcher makes the third out, four or five of them run out to meet him with high fives and ‘atta boy’s.  In my opinion, that’s got to make a difference.

Quote of the Week:

“Ok, you’ve told the world you’re going to sacrifice.  Now get the job done!”

-Indiana Coach Tracy Smith to an Indiana batter who fouled off a pitch while attempting a bunt.

my photos of the 2008 Big Ten Tournament this week (I’m closing in on 400 taken so far)

Zealot coverage of the 2008 Big Ten Tournament

Schedule, Boxscores and other info hosted by UM

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Illini comeback attempt not enough in Big Ten tourney elimination round

Ryan Hastings: 3 for 4, 2 doubles

It was a valiant effort to be sure. But Illinois will not be playing any more games in the Big Ten Tournament and will be heading home. Indiana defeated them 14-7 earlier today in Day 3 of the Big Ten Tournament.

Despite the score, Illinois made it interesting. Down by 9-1, they rallied. Scoring three runs in the 7th and 8th innings, they came within two runs 9-7. But that was all they could muster and to add insult to injury, Indiana added five more in the bottom of the 8th.

Indiana hit the ball and and hit it hard. The tandem of Chris Hervey and Josh Phegley were a two-man wrecking crew. Between the two of them, they were a combined 7 for 8 with 8 rbis and 8 runs.

Altobelli coming home to score

Ryan Hastings and Dom Altobelli came through with 3 hits for the Illini. Casey McMurray, who was 2 for 3 with 2 rbis, keyed the 7th innng rally with a 2-run double. Hastings, Altobelli, and McMurray all got base hits in the 8th inning spurt of runs.

Credit John Schlichter for taking one for the team. He took two. Schlichter was hit by the pitch twice in the game and scored both times.

Indiana’s Tyler Tufts got the complete game win.

More photos from the game

Tournament info

More Zealot coverage of the Tournament

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Heartbreak in Ann Arbor

Scott Shaw

Let’s make one thing clear.  Despite what those of you looking the boxscore might be thinking, Scott Shaw pitched the game of his career.  I don’t know if we could have asked any more of him.  Shaw held the potent Wolverine lineup to one run three hits for six innings.

Unfortunately, it was seventh that got away from us. A double, an intentional walk to Big Ten Player of the Year Nate Recknagel, another walk… well it just got ugly.  Credit Michigan 3B Adam Abraham for coming through with the two-run single.

Three runs scored in the seventh and the Illini never recovered.

Michigan won 5-2.

Zach Putnam

Michigan starter (and DH) Zach Putnam was pitching just as effectively but we didn’t have the big inning on him as they did on us.  He struck out nine in seven innings and allowed 2 earned runs.

I also give some credit to the fans.  They came out in droves.  Michigan or no, it’s good to see fans supporting their college baseball team.

More photos from the game here.

I’m keeping this short because it’s time to go to the ballpark.  Illinois is playing Indiana in an elimination game.

They’ll be more later.

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Long day ahead at the Big Ten Baseball Tournament

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Joe Bonadonna made his one hit count Wednesday

A quick post before I head out for the second day of the Big Ten Tournament.

What’s on for today?

First up at 12:05 is Loser’s round game where we find out who gets to go on in the tournament and who gets to get on the bus.  #5 seed Ohio State faces #6 seed Indiana.

At 3:35, Penn State who defeated Indiana yesterday afternoon, will take on #2 seed Purdue.  Purdue is a tough team who have a formidable offense as Illinois found out last weekend.

Finally, at 7:05, host Michigan will take on Illinois who are fresh off their first round win.

A busy day for the Big Ten tournament for sure.

Which announcer will we get?

I’m not a picky guy but I have to say the PA announcer for the Illinois-Ohio State left something to be desired.  Between announcing the wrong defense at the beginning of the game and announcing players out of order it got a little nuts.

But when he referred to our team as the ‘Fighting Irish’, that was it.  I think the crowd cheered a little extra louder when it was time for the stadium’s “Junior Announcer” promo when a lucky 10-year-old announced the players.  He got the players right.

It didn’t go unnoticed when Penn State-Indiana played, they got a new announcer.

Congrats and Encouragement from an Alum

I just got an email from former Illinois SS Shawn Roof this morning.  Roof is currently playing for the Lakeland Flying Tigers in the Gulf Coast League.  He’s enjoying the updates and photos.  He passes on congrats and greetings to everyone.

Apparently his roommate at Lakeland is a Michigan grad so there’s some trash talking going on between the two.

All for now, I stepped outside and though it is a bit overcast, it did stop raining and forecast for the day looks good.

Go Illini!

Link to photos of Big Ten Baseball Tournament

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Some assorted Big Ten Tournament photos

The newly renovated home of the Michigan Wolverine baseball team with the complicated name of “The Wilpon Baseball Complex home of Ray Fisher Stadium”.  Too much like Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.  Anyway, it IS nice.

Joe Blackburn has once again gotten a mohawk like last year.

Speaking of hair and ballplayers, it looks like the Purdue team is making their own statement with their locks.

For my money, the Penn State fans are the loudest, most raucous fans in Big Ten baseball.  Not in a drunk obnoxious way but in a sort of soccer mom way.

And it’s these women who lead the pack.

Big Ten Tournament photos

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Manson, Bonadonna key win in tourney

That is a smile of a proud father.  Russell Bonadonna (above) is holding the homerun ball hit by his son, Joe during Wednesday’s action at the Big Ten Tournament.  Bonadonna’s homer proved to be the game-winner in the win against Ohio State in the first round of the tournament.  Illinois won 3-2.

Tied 2-2, Bonadonna hit a solo homer to left in the seventh inning off of Buckeye reliever Dean Wolosiansky.  The score stood and Illinois won.

Kevin Manson: CG, 0 ER

But I can’t write any more without talking about Kevin Manson.  Why?  He simply dominated the Buckeyes today.  He began the game by striking out the first two Buckeyes.  Then he got better.  No earned runs, only 4 hits, no walks.  Manson rose to the occasion.

In some ways, it was a typical Illinois game.  We outhit them 11 to 4 but won 3-2.

Steal #40

Kyle Hudson walked in the first inning and you knew what was coming next.  Steal #40.  That steal tied Shawn Roof for the single season team record.  Hud later scored on a sac fly.

Illinois also scored when Brandon Wikoff doubled in the 3rd inning and Daniel Webb singled to drive him home.

Tomorrow, Illinois face #1 seed Michigan in a night game.

I’ve created a separate album in the photo gallery for the Big Ten Tournament.  You can access it here. I will have separate sub-albums for each game.

Penn State defeated Indiana 6-1 in the second game of the day.  If anyone is interested, I took photos of that game, too.

Finally, this week I’ll be doing daily updates on the Tournament on Brian Foley’s The College Baseball Blog.  Thanks to Brian for the opportunity.

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Illini Haig dazzles in Game 1 of split with Purdue

Phil Haig was lights out on Saturday

On Saturday, Phil Haig was all business as he threw a two-hit shutout against the Purdue Boilermakers as Illinois won 2-0.

The day before, Purdue scored 27 runs in the doubleheader.  That same team was stymied by the freshman Haig who struck out three and walked two in the seven inning affair.

Haig’s efforts were rewarded with a Big Ten Co-pitcher of the Week honor.  Congrats, Phil!

Brandon Wikoff drove in both of the Illini runs.  Ironically, he did it without a hit, driving in one with a sacrifice fly and the other with a ground ball.

In game two, the Illini’s last regular season game, it was back to business for Purdue as they won 11-2.

Next up:  With the loss, Illinois drops to the fourth seed in the Big Ten Tournament.  They face Ohio State on Wednesday.

A fan convert to college baseball?

One more note… thanks to my friend Chuck who was in town and accompanied me to the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader.  Chuck always makes light of college baseball but I convinced him to come with me.  I honestly think he had a lot of fun.  I know I did.  Now Chuck will look at college baseball a little differently.

PS I’m glad we decided to go to the first game.

More photos here.

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Illinois Twice-Boiled by Purdue but at least they’re Ann Arbor-bound

There’s good news and bad news.  Well, the good news is the Illini are going to the Big Ten tournament and we have Indiana to thank for that.  The Hoosiers swept the Michigan State Spartans in Friday’s doubleheader and thereby eliminating them from tournament qualification.

So on to Ann Arbor we go next week!

The Big Ten Network was on hand to broadcast the games.

The bad news is that Illinois isn’t playing like a tournament team at the moment.  They were bowled over by the Purdue Boilermakers in both games of Friday’s doubleheader losing by the scores of 14-4 and 13-8.  Adding insult to injury, we did this in front of the Big Ten Network audience.

Game Two’s battery, Aaron Johnson and Scott Shaw in happier times.  Shaw would give up 11 runs before he was done.

The outcomes of both games seemed not to be question as Purdue scored early and often.  Illinois did make a valiant effort in Game 2 to come back.  Down 12-1 in the fifth inning, Illinois scored five runs in the bottom of the inning but Purdue’s lead proved to be too great.

The man in blue is all over this play and Kyle Hudson was called out stealing.  Hud was 5 for 10 for the day with a stolen base.

Kyle Hudson garnered 5 hits in 10 at-bats for the two games as well as stealing base #38.  He needs 3 more to break the team record.  Ryan Hastings went 4 for 7 for the day with double and two rbis in Game 2.

One other positive note that you won’t see reflected in the box score is the defensive play by John Schlichter.  He flashed some good leather several times during the day including a 5-2 play getting the runner out at the plate.

Ryan Hastings went 4 for 7 with a double for the day.

I always enjoy talking to and meeting the player’s parents in the stands.  Brian Hastings, father of Ryan, and I chatted for a while, discussing our current pitching woes and the upcoming draft.  He later introduced me to Casey McMurray’s father Kevin, talking up my website.  Thanks for the plug, Brian.

I even met up with the opposition.  In between games, I spoke with Bob Wolgamot whose son, Ben, is the secondbaseman for Purdue.   Ben is from nearby Danville.  Bob says several of the Purdue players play for the Danville Dans over the summer.  I’m sure I’ll see Bob again as he plans to be up in Ann Arbor next week for the Tournament.

Saturday, the Illini have a chance to get back at Purdue and end the regular season in winning style.  Game time for the doubleheader is 4pm at Illinois Field.  The Big Ten Network will be broadcasting both games.  Go Illini!  Let’s show everyone what kind of team we really have!!

More photos here

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