March 22, 1999
CLEMSON, S.C. – Clemson (12-8) plays host to Georgia (Tuesday at 7:15) and Wofford (Wednesday at 7:15) this week. Georgia enters the game 13-9, but just 1-7 in games played away from home. Georgia leads the all-time series 105-84-2 (.555) dating back to 1900. Jack Leggett holds a 33-13 record against SEC teams and 7-3 record against Georgia as the Tiger Head Coach. Righthander Steve Reba (1-1, 4.50 ERA) will start for Clemson, while one of two freshman righthanders, Brandon Moorhead (1-1, 5.01 ERA) or Rob Moravek (2-1, 3.12 ERA), will start for Georgia.
Wofford makes the trip down I-85 on Wednesday and will face the Tigers for the 90th time. Clemson holds a 65-23-1 (.736) advantage over the Terriers (3-15) in the series dating back to 1898.
Clemson Sweeps Maryland In Rain-Shortened Series Clemson won its first two ACC games of ’99 over Maryland at College Park, MD on Mar. 19-20. The third game was rained out and will not be made up due to ACC rules.
In the first game, the Tigers (11-8, 1-0) rallied with three runs in the eighth inning to down Maryland (4-8-1, 0-1) 8-6 in both teams’ ACC opener on Mar. 19. Henr Stanley’s two-run double highlighted the uprising. Maryland had scored five runs in the fifth off starter Ryan Mottl. Bradley LeCroy and Khalil Greene had three hits apiece. Brian Adams (2-2) pitched 4.2 scoreless innings, allowing just two hits and no walks, to earn the win in relief.
In game two, Mike Paradis pitched 8.0 strong innings to lead Clemson (12-8, 2-0) to a 9-2 win over Maryland (4-9-1, 0-2) on Mar. 20. Paradis (3-0) allowed just two runs, six hits, and two walks in 8.0 innings to pick up the win in the longest outing of his career.
Pitching Leads East Carolina To Two-Game Sweep Thanks to East Carolina’s #1 and #2 starters, the Pirates handed Clemson two defeats in two games at Greenville, NC on Mar. 16-17. East Carolina pitchers limited Clemson to just six runs and 12 hits (one extra base hit as well).
In game one, a dropped fly ball with the bases loaded and two outs enabled East Carolina (15-5) to win 5-4. The Tigers (10-7) had gone on top 3-0 in the first highlighted by Jason Harris’ two-run homer, but Pirate starter Brooks Jernigan (5-1) shut down the Tiger bats. Tiger starter Brian Adams (1-2) suffered the loss.
In game two, East Carolina (16-5) exploded with five home runs, including three by right fielder John Williamson, on its way to a 14-2 victory over the Tigers (10-8). It was Clemson’s worse loss since Apr. 26, 1997 when Georgia Tech downed the Tigers 19-4. Starter Thomas Boozer (2-3) suffered the loss. Williamson was 4-for-4 with six RBIs and Steve Salargo was 4-for-5 with two doubles and a homer for the Pirates.
Walking and Running Clemson has an outstanding team on base percentage of .447 and has stolen 48 bases through the first 20 games of 1999. The .447 on base percentage is aided by a team batting average of .311, but moreso by its 164 walks. That averages to be 8.2 walks per game. Add that to the Tigers 10.9 hits per game and 16 hit-by-pitches, the Tigers are averaging 19.9 baserunners per game. Henr Stanley leads the team with 27 walks and Brian Ellis is second with 24 walks. Ellis set the Tiger single-season record for walks per at bat in ’98 and both he and Stanley are on pace to break that mark again in ’99. Freshman outfielder Kyle Frank also has walked 18 times in just 37 at bats, well ahead of the record. Although he is hitting just .243, he has a .491 on base percentage. In three games against George Mason (Mar. 12-13), the Tigers walked 41 times and had a team on base percentage of .553.
Stealing bases has also been a success this year as the Tigers have stolen 48 bases in 59 attempts. Clemson has stole at least one base in each of the 20 games this season. Jason Harris leads the team with 11 steals and Stanley is second with nine.
Tigers Off To Fast Starts In First Innings The Tigers have not had a problem in ’99 getting early leads, as they hold a 37-7 advantage in scoring in first innings of games. Clemson has scored in the first inning in 15 of the 20 games this year, including 12 of the last 14 games. The Tigers have scored 204 runs in the first 20 games of ’99, an average of 10.2 runs per game. Below is a list of inning-by-inning scoring:
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Ex Total CLEMSON 37 24 17 17 46 27 20 11 3 2 204 Opponents 7 16 19 11 35 11 12 16 13 3 143
Clemson’s Poll Streak Ends At 146 Weeks The streak is over. Clemson was ranked in at least one of the major College Baseball polls for 146 straight polls until March 8, 1999. Clemson, who lost six of next eight games after starting the season 4-0, was also ranked in the top 10 by one of the polls in 82 of the 146 polls (56.2%). The last time the Tigers were unranked was in the final poll of the 1990 season. Over the 146-game stretch that lasted over eight seasons, the Tigers had a record of 407-138 (.747).
Clemson-Miami (FL) Time Changes The Clemson vs. Miami (FL) game times on Saturday, Apr. 3 and Sunday, Apr. 4 have been changed. Both games will start at 3:00 PM. The two teams will matchup at the home of the AAA Charlotte Knights (Knights Stadium) in Fort Mill, SC on Apr. 2-4. It will be the first meeting between the two schools since 1996, when Miami (FL) defeated the Tigers twice in the College World Series.
Stanley Finding A Way To Get On Base Junior outfielder Henr Stanley has been on a tear lately, going 24-for-49 (.490) with 24 runs scored, 21 RBIs, and eight stolen bases in the last 14 games. But more importantly, he has an on base percentage of .632 over that stretch thanks to 19 walks. He took over the centerfield position when Patrick Boyd went down with an injury. The Columbia, SC native is hitting a team-best .418 with three homers, 29 runs scored, 26 RBIs, and 9-10 on stolen bases in 20 games this season. He has walked 27 times, giving him an on base percentage of ..594. The lefthanded hitter also is hitting .423 against lefthanders, ..516 with runners in scoring position, and is 4-for-5 with the bases loaded.
Stanley had one of his best games in the UNLV/Coors Desert Classic finale when he was 4-for-4 with a homer, double, three runs scored, four RBIs, and two stolen bases to lead the Tigers to a 13-10 come-from-behind win over Creighton (Feb. 28). He also had three hits (including a home run), four runs scored, and three RBIs in the second game of a doubleheader against George Mason on Mar. 13.
Paradis Found Junior righthander Mike Paradis has been one of the bright spots on the Tiger pitching staff so far this season. Control problems plagued the fireballer in his first two seasons, but he has found his nich in ’99. The Auburn, MA native is 3-0 with a team-best 2.23 ERA and opponent batting average of .226 in five starts. He also has struck out 35 batters compared to just 10 walks. In all five of his starts he has gone at least 5.0 innings and in four of the five he has allowed either zero, one, two earned runs. Baseball America rated Paradis as the #7 prospect in the ACC and #42 college prospect for the 1999 Major League Draft. Paradis was a seventh-round draft pick by the Oakland Athletics out of high school.
LeCroy Solid At The Plate And In The Field Junior shortstop Bradley LeCroy (Walhalla, SC) has emerged as one of the Tigers clutch hitters. LeCroy (no relation to former Tiger great Matthew LeCroy) is hitting .395 in 38 at bats with a homer in 13 RBIs. He is also 10 for his last 20 with 10 RBIs. He is hitting 10-for-20 against righthanders and is hitting .643 with runners in scoring position. LeCroy, a righthanded hitter, has been platooning with switch-hitter Doug Roper at shortstop. His defense has also been outstanding, as he has committed just two errors in ’99 and has a .966 fielding percentage. He has not committed an error in his last 29 chances as well.
Borgert Has Career Game With Nine RBIs Entering the second game of a doubleheader against George Mason on Mar. 13, fifth-year senior catcher Derek Borgert (Greenwood, SC) had four hits and four RBIs in 21 at bats in ’99. But that all changed when Borgert exploded with four hits and nine RBIs in one game. The nine RBIs, which all came after two outs, is the most by a Tiger since Jerry Brooks’ 10 against UNC Charlotte in 1988. Borgert doubled to right field in the first inning to bring home two runs. In the second inning, he hit an opposite-field grand slam off the right field foul pole. The only time he was retired came in the fourth inning when he laced a line-drive that was caught by the right fielder. In the fifth inining, Borgert singled with the bases loaded bringing home two more runs. He drove in his ninth run of the game with a run-scoring single in the sixth inning. He also walked in his final plate appearance in the eighth inning.
Ironically, Brian Ellis, who caught in the first game of the doubleheader, had a double, homer, two hits, and four RBIs meaning Tiger catchers totaled six hits, two homers, two doubles, and 13 RBIs in one day. Not a bad days work for an unheralded position.
Bultmann Moving Up In Tiger Charts Senior second baseman Kurt Bultmann gets the most out of his 5′-8″ frame. He showed he belonged when he hit .471 in the College World Series as a freshman after hitting just .243 in the first 41 games of his career. Then he hit a school record 31 doubles and 48 extra base hits as a sophomore. Now he is rising to the top of the Tiger career doubles and home run lists. The Seminole, FL native has 71 career doubles, good for second place, and 35 career home runs, tied for fifth best. The 71 doubles is also approching the ACC record of 82 held by Yellow Jacket Jason Varitek (1991-94). He had one of his best games against #24 Washington on Feb. 25 when he was 3-for-5 with two homers (grand slam and three-run) and eight RBIs. He also has shown why Baseball America listed him as the best defensive second baseman in the ACC. Bultmann went 29 consecutive games (dating back to last season) without committing an error (127 chances) before his streak ended on Feb. 26 at UNLV. He has started a new streak and has not committed an error in his last 43 chances over eight games. Bultmann has seen his fielding percentage rise to .958 in ’99. He is a career .393 hitter (22-for-56) in NCAA Tournament play as well. All this for a player who was all but resigned to attending junior college out of high school. Below is a list where Bultmann ranks in the all-time Tiger and ACC doubles list:
Clemson Career DOUBLE Leaders
Rk. Name (Years) Doubles 1. Gary Burnham (1994-97) 77 2. Kurt Bultmann (1996-present) 71 3. Bert Heffernan (1985-88) 63 4. Chuck Baldwin (1984-87) 62 5. Shane Monahan (1993-95) 60
Bultmann has returned to his form of ’97 as he is hitting .353 with 12 homers, a triple, four homers, 27 RBIs, and three stolen bases in 20 games. Ironically, the righthanded hitter is hitting twice as good against righthanders as he is lefthanders (.451 vs. .206) this season.
Khalil Greene Shining As Freshman This fall, Jack Leggett said that freshman Khalil Greene (Key West, FL) was the Tigers’ most consistent hitter. He has down nothing to disprove Leggett, as he is hitting .415 with four homers and 21 RBIs in 20 games as the everyday third baseman. Greene shined in the UNLV/Coors Desert Classic from Feb. 25-28, hitting .458 with two homers (one of which was an inside-the-park homer) and five RBIs in five games. He also hit two homers in the first game of a doubleheader against George Mason on Mar. 13. Greene is vying to become the top freshman hitter in Tiger history in terms of batting average. The record is .391 by Billy McMillon (1991). Greene has also hit safely in each of the last nine games and in 18 of 20 games in ’99
Tigers Pound George Mason In Three-Game Sweep Clemson, much in need of solid pitching performances, got exactly that as it outscored George Mason 48-6 in a three-game sweep at Tiger Field from Mar. 12-13. The Tigers, who won by scores of 14-4, 13-2, and 21-0, scored at least one run in 20 of the 24 innings, hit 11 home runs, and walked 41 times, including seven by freshman outfielder Kyle Frank in one day (doubleheader on Mar. 13). Tiger position fielders also committed just one error in the series and Tiger starting pitchers allowed just one earned run in 19.2 innings pitched. Derek Borgert drove in nine runs in the series finale, the most by a Tiger since 1988.
Nine-Run Inning Powers Clemson Over Coastal Carolina Clemson broke the game open in the fifth inning with nine runs en route to a 14-6 win over Coastal Carolina on Mar. 10 at Tiger Field. Patrick Boyd led the Tigers with three hits in three at bats, including a homer, three RBIs, and a stolen base. Junior lefty Brian Adams (1-1) allowed just one run and one walk in 7.0 innings pitched to earn his first victory of ’99. The Tigers took advantage of 10 walks allowed by Chanticleer pitchers. Coastal Carolina (13-5) did out-hit Clemson 16-14 in the game.
Scrappy Liberty Takes Two Of Three Against Clemson Liberty continued the Tigers recent woes as the Flames handed Clemson two defeats in three games on Mar. 5-6. Pitching problems plagued the Tigers, who fell to 6-6 after the three games. Liberty won the first two games by scores of 10-9 and 11-8 while the Tigers defeated the Flames 11-6 in game three.
The Citadel Rallies From 15-4 Deficit To Defeat Tigers Utility player Jay Morgan went 3-for-5 with four RBIs and pitched 5.0 scoreless innings of relief to lead The Citadel to a 18-15 come-from-behind win over #19 Clemson on a chilly and windy afternoon at Tiger Field on Mar. 3. Clemson led 15-4 after four innings, but could only manage three hits from there on. Meanwhile, The Citadel (4-5) scored seven runs in the fifth and five runs in the seventh inning to hand Clemson (5-4) its fourth loss in five games. Every Bulldog starter had at least one hit. Kurt Bultmann had two doubles, giving him 65 in his career. That moved him into second place in career doubles in the Tiger recordbooks.
UNLV/Coors Desert Classic Review Clemson lost three of five games in the 19th annual UNLV/Coors Desert Classic. The three losses (Creighton 4-3, UNLV 12-11 in 10 innings, and Nevada 7-5) were by a combined four runs and all came in the span of 24 hours. The Tigers defeated #24 Washington 13-12 and Creighton 13-10. Several players had outstanding tournament stats though. Khalil Greene hit a team-best .458 with two homers and five RBIs, while Henr Stanley hit .444 with a homer and five RBIs. Jason Harris hit ..421 with a towering homer and eight RBIs, and Kurt Bultmann had two home runs and 10 RBIs. Ryan Mottl also made his first career relief appearance in the tourney finale against Creighton and picked up his first win of 1999 in 7.1 innings of work.
Tigers Sweep Kansas State To Open ’99 Season Clemson opened its 1999 schedule against Big XII opponent Kansas State with a three-game sweep at a chilly Tiger Field from Feb. 12-14. Clemson stole 10 bases and Kansas State committed 16 errors as the Tigers outscored the Wildcats 31-14 in the three games. Clemson, who won by scores of 10-7, 10-4, and 11-3, only committed two errors, both by pitchers, in the series.
1999 Preseason Honors
#21 recruiting class by Collegiate Baseball
#24 Patrick Boyd
#1 college prospect for 2000 Major League Draft by BaseballAmerica First-Team All-American by Baseball America ACCPlayer-of-the-Year by Baseball America Best defensive outfielder inthe ACC by Baseball America First-Team All-ACC by Baseball America
#18 Kurt Bultmann
Best defensive second baseman in the ACC by Baseball AmericaFirst-Team All-ACC by Baseball America
#27 Ryan Mottl
#29 college prospect for ’99 Major League Draft by BaseballAmerica #3 prospect in ACC for ’99 Major League Draft by BaseballAmerica
#30 Mike Paradis
#42 college prospect for ’99 Major League Draft by BaseballAmerica #7 prospect in ACC for ’99 Major League Draft by BaseballAmerica
Clemson’s 246 Wins Since ’94 Fifth In The Nation The barometer of a great season in college baseball is getting to Omaha and winning 50 games. Since Jack Leggett took over as Clemson’s head coach in 1994, the Tigers have won 246 games (excluding ’99) for an average of over 49 per season. Leggett has led Clemson to three 50-win seasons and two appearances in the College World Series in five seasons. Included in that total is 61 wins over top 25 team and a 33-13 record against the SEC.
Renovations To Tiger Field Planned Early in the next century, Tiger Field will undergo a face-lift at the entrance of the stadium. A brick facade with a wrought iron fence will be constructed behind the north entrance to create a fan-friendly pavilion and a more asthetically-pleasing look. There are also plans to refurbish the press box and to build a visitors’ lockerroom. These plans are still in the conceptual design phase and have not been finalized.
Clemson also has plans to renovate Littlejohn Coliseum (basketball) and Memorial Stadium (football), and plans to build a new indoor track and field facility along with a practice golf range. The improvements to Littlejohn include a new sound system, restrooms, concessions area, and reformatted seating along with a new practice facility located where the driveway to the tunnel currently lays. Memorial Stadium will add a year-round restaurant along with cosmetic improvements to include new lockerrooms, concession areas, and restrooms. The new indoor track will also house an indoor practice field for football, soccer, and baseball. Tiger Pride is the capital campaign established to raise money for the cost of all renovations, which is an estimated $30-million, and is expected to take five years to complete.
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