Sunday, May 3, 2015

HarbourCats player updates - NWAC edition

There is only one week remaining in the Northwest Athletic Conference (NWAC) regular season and our 2015 HarbourCats are in the thick of the action.  Edmonds Community College, the defending NWAC champions, are in first place in the North Region standings with a 17-3 record, while Everett Community College is right behind them with a 14-6 mark. Thanks to some fine work by the NWAC schedule makers, the two clubs are set to face off in a four-game showdown next weekend to close out the regular season. Now let’s get you caught up on what our future ‘Cats have been up to over the last couple of weeks.

Sophomore Jamie Umbinetti continues to be the offensive leader for Edmonds CC, although the slugger has been hitting like a mere mortal over the last couple of weeks. His 11-game hitting streak was snapped on April 26th and he has “only” gone 10-for-36 at the plate with five walks and four RBI since April 19th, but Umbinetti has still posted an incredible .340 / .519 / .468 slash line (BA / OBP / SLG) in 99 at-bats this season.

Zander Clouse made his first appearance for Bellevue College today since his 7-inning no-hitter on April 25th. Clouse proved that he is human after all by giving up four earned runs on seven hits in seven innings of work against those pesky Canadian hitters from Douglas College. He struck out five and walked one on the afternoon to keep his strikeout-to-walk ratio in excess of 3:1 and he still boasts a splendid 2.26 ERA and 0.96 WHIP in 63 ⅔ innings pitched this season.
Curtis Bafus

Curtis Bafus has made one start and one relief appearance for Everett CC over the last two weeks. The 6-7, 230 lb. right hander gave up a combined three earned runs on nine hits in six innings on the hill while striking out six and not walking a single batter. Bafus has put up a 3.20 ERA and 1.30 WHIP in 39 ⅓ innings pitched this season -- a solid performance in his freshman year. He looks like he could put up some excellent numbers for the HarbourCats this summer.

Everett CC’s John Naff has cooled off with the bat of late. The sophomore has gone 4-for-21 at the plate over the last couple of weeks to lower his batting average to .248. Although that average is below expectations for Naff, he has still managed to reach base at a .359 clip and walk more often than he has struck out (19 BB’s versus 11 K’s).

Freshman pitcher/outfielder Kyle Francis has made a trio of relief appearances for Everett CC over the last couple of weeks after a three-week absence from the pitching mound. Francis, who has battled control issues all season, gave up one earned run on three hits in 3 ⅓ innings pitched while striking out three and walking two batters in those three games. For the season, the right-hander has a flattering 3.00 ERA to go along with a nasty 1.59 WHIP in 27 innings pitched. Francis has gone 3-for-14 at the plate over the last two weeks and he’s hitting .236 with no homers and five RBI in 55 at-bats for the season.

  • The HarbourCats have hired Mira Laurence, a former Senior Sports Anchor with CTV Vancouver Island, to work in a community relations and marketing capacity. Laurence will perform similar duties for the Victoria Grizzlies, one of the three local sports teams that includes John Wilson in its ownership group (the HarbourCats and the Peninsula Panthers are the others). It’s safe to say that we will likely see more sharing of resources between Wilson’s sporting enterprises in the future.
  • According to the latest projections from D1BASEBALL.COM, only three teams with 2015 HarbourCats on it are expected to qualify for the NCAA Division I Baseball Tournament that begins on May 29th and concludes with the College World Series finale on June 24th. UCLA (Scott Jarvis), Oregon State (Gabe Clark, Michael Gretler) and UC Irvine (A.J. Alcantara) are projected qualifiers for the field of 64, but there are usually a few surprises each year. We’ll have more tournament updates on the blog as we get closer to the end of the NCAA Division I regular season on May 23rd.
  • Freshman infielder PJ Floyd has continued to struggle in his freshman season with the Sacramento State Hornets. Over the last four weeks, Floyd has split his time between third base and left field, but he has only gone 2-for-25 with one RBI at the plate. He has put up an anemic .207 / .281 / .253 slash line (BA / OBP / SLG) in 87 at-bats this season. On the positive side, his defensive work has finally settled down, but he still sports a troublesome .867 fielding percentage.  
  • Junior Dane Fujinaka has seen more playing time behind the plate for Sacramento State over the last month, but unfortunately his bat has gone ice cold. Fujinaka is 6-for-41 with a pair of RBI in that time. For the season, he’s hitting .253 with no homers and 13 RBI in 83 at-bats.

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