Sunday, February 23, 2014

HarbourCanucks Corner - February 23rd edition

This is our second installment of HarbourCanucks Corner, a weekly update on the Canadians who will play on the 2014 Victoria HarbourCats.

A young Nick Rutckyj (#3) representing Canada in the 2007 Little League World Series
Nick Rutckyj went 3-for-13 with two doubles and a run scored for the Cuesta College Cougars this week. Although Rutckyj started the first 12 games of the season for the Cougars, his 0-for-4 with three strikeouts on Friday was probably the reason why he spent most of Saturday's game on the bench. The right-handed power hitter is batting .159 with two homers and seven RBI in 44 at-bats this season. The Cougars (4-9) have had their share of difficulties at the plate this year, as shown by their .193 team batting average. In spite of his tepid start, Rutckyj still leads Cuesta in homers and slugging percentage and he is tied for the team lead in RBI. The Cougars have a light week ahead, with just one game scheduled against West Valley College.

The University of Illinois Fighting Illini dropped two of their three games at the Caravelle Resort’s Baseball at the Beach Tournament this weekend. Kelly Norris-Jones got his second start of the season behind the plate on Sunday and he picked up a pair of walks in three plate appearances. He’s one-for-six on the season with a .444 on-base percentage. The Fighting Illini (2-4) are in Gainesville, Florida next weekend to play a pair of games against both the Florida Gators and Florida Gulf Coast University. The Gators are the 23rd-ranked Division I baseball team according to Baseball America.

This was a weekend to forget for Nanaimo’s Griffin Andreychuk. The freshman shortstop with the University of Seattle Redhawks went 0-for-3 with three errors in the team's first couple of games against Cal State Northridge and he spent the remainder of the four-game series riding the pine. Andreychuk has five errors on the young season to give him an .800 fielding percentage. Combine that with a 1-for-12 at the plate for the year and it’s not surprising that he has at least temporarily lost his starting shortstop job. On the plus side, the Redhawks (5-3) are unbeaten in the four games that Andreychuk has started. Seattle U is off to St. George, Utah this week to play a three-game series against Brigham Young University.

We don't have a lot to report on Brandon Feldman's week. We do know that he didn't play in Otero Junior College’s win over Western Nebraska Community College on Monday. Unfortunately, the box scores from the four games played against Trinidad State Junior College this weekend aren't yet available online.

  • Will Dennis continued his dominant sophomore season with the University of Seattle. In two appearances this weekend, the southpaw picked up a save and did not allow a hit in 2 ⅔ innings pitched. Dennis has a 1.59 ERA and a 0.71 WHIP in four appearances this season.
  • Bret Helton got his first start of the season for the University of Utah Utes on Monday, picking up the win in a 5-4 victory over Sacramento State. Helton limited the Hornets to a pair of earned runs on three hits and a walk in his six innings on the mound. He also pitched four scoreless innings of relief to pick up the save against the University of Nebraska this afternoon. Helton sports a nifty 1.80 ERA and 0.90 WHIP in his two outings.
  • Freshman Aaron Barnett continued his hot hitting this week, going 5-for-18 with five RBI and two runs scored. He also registered his first extra-base hit of the season, a double against Long Beach State on Tuesday. Barnett, who has started all seven Pepperdine games at catcher this season, leads the Waves with a .467 batting average.
  • Gabe Clark got a start at first base and another at DH in the four games played by the second-ranked Oregon State Beavers this week. Clark went one-for-three with three walks to give him a .429 batting average and a .667 on-base percentage for the year. Clark, with three walks and no strikeouts on the season, has shown great plate discipline so far, but the slugger is still in search of his first extra-base hit of 2014. 
  • Pepperdine sophomore Devin Carter got a couple of starts at DH this week and went 3-for-8 with a stolen base and a run scored. Carter is 3-for-10 at the dish this season.
  • Bob Miller and his Cuesta College Cougars beat Riverside City College 4-3 on Thursday to salvage one of their three games against Dennis Rogers’ team this season.

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