April 2, 1998
Roper’s Homer Lifts Tigers Over USC in Columbia Doug Roper hit a game-winning two-run homer down the right field line in the top of the ninth to propel Clemson to a 6-4 victory over eighth-ranked South Carolina at Sarge Frye Field on Apr. 1. The homer was only Roper’s second of his career and came off USC closer Jason Pomar, who entered the game allowing only one earned run in more than 24 innings pitched. The home run also came when he was 7 for his last 40 (.175) at the plate. Kurt Bultmann and Peter Nystrom also added homers for Clemson.
Starter Matt White had a strong outing, going 7.1 innings and allowing four runs. Closer Scott Clackum (4-0) picked up the win in relief by pitching the final 1.2 innings and getting Ryan Bordenick to groundout with the bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth to end the game. With the win, Clemson improves its record against SEC teams in 1998 to 3-0 (Auburn, Georgia, South Carolina).
Friday, April 3 Clemson at Virginia *3:00 PM
Saturday, April 4 Clemson at Virginia *2:00 PM
Sunday, April 5 Clemson at Virginia *1:00 PM * – to be broadcasted on Clemson radio network
Probable Position StartersPos # Player B-T Cl. G-GS Avg. HR RBIC 41 Brian Ellis L-R *So. 23-18 .431 1 18or 15 Derek Borgert R-R *Jr. 28-17 .257 1 81B 25 Jason Harris L-L Jr. 33-33 .413 7 382B 18 Kurt Bultmann R-R Jr. 32-32 .336 10 36SS 4 Doug Roper S-R *So. 32-32 .333 2 273B 11 Justin Singleton L-R Fr. 24-13 .364 3 16or 8 Brian Holstad R-R *So. 29-18 .240 1 8LF 9 Peter Nystrom R-R Fr. 32-29 .370 4 31CF 24 Patrick Boyd S-R Fr. 33-33 .359 7 36RF 22 Matt Padgett L-R Jr. 32-32 .429 8 31DH 1 Henri Stanley L-L So. 30-18 .323 2 11or 20 Paul Stryhas R-R Jr. 18-5 .360 0 9 Probable Starting Pitching Rotation # Player Cl. W-L G-S ERA IP BB SO 30 Mike Paradis, RHP So. 4-0 7-6 4.62 37.0 24 36 27 Ryan Mottl, RHP So. 7-0 8-8 3.51 51.1 13 55 29 Skip Browning, RHP So. 5-1 8-8 4.36 43.1 19 32
Tigers Rally To Down Dawgs In 10 Innings Clemson rallied from a 4-2 deficit to defeat Georgia 5-4 in 10 innings at Tiger Field on Mar. 31. Georgia took a 4-2 lead in the sixth inning on back-to-back homers by Andy Osbolt and Aaron Anthony, and a run-scoring triple by Kevin Hall, but would not manage another baserunner over the next four-plus innings. Matt Additon (1-0) relieved starter Brian Adams after Hall’s triple and retired all 13 batters he faced. The Tigers tied the game in the eighth inning on Matt Padgett’s two-run double just inside the left field line. Padgett continued his torrid hitting with his 17th hit in his last 28 at bats over the last seven games. Then Clemson won the game in the 10th inning. Jason Harris reached on a single. After two walks by Georgia reliever Josh Jerkins (1-1), one of which was intentional, sophomore Henri Stanley singled up the middle with no outs to bring in the winning run. Clemson won its sixth one-run game in seven tries.
Tigers Take Two Of Three Against Wake Forest Clemson took two of three games against Wake Forest on Mar. 27-29 at Tiger Field.
In game one, Clemson sophomore Ryan Mottl (7-0) pitched eight innings, allowing six hits and two runs while striking out eight, as the Tigers downed Wake Forest 10-2 on Mar. 27 at Tiger Field. Mottl also won his 11th consecutive decision dating back to last season. Matt Padgett led the Tiger hitters with two more hits in three at bats. The only out recorded against the junior came when centerfielder Scott Daeley reached over the fence to deny Padgett his second homer of the game. Jason Harris also added two hits in three at bats, and Kurt Bultmann and Brian Holstad had homers on the evening as well.
Game two featured many lead changes as Clemson enventually downed Wake Forest 6-5 on Mar. 28. Down two runs entering the bottom of the eighth, Clemson scored two runs. Justin Singleton and Doug Roper had RBI singles to give Clemson the lead. Senior Scott Clackum (3-0) pitched two perfect innings to earn the victory. Demon Deacon pitcher Mike MacDougal (4-2) suffered the loss. Matt Padgett had two hits on the day, giving him four straight games with at least two hits. Patrick Boyd also added three hits on the evening. Wake Forest had taken the lead in the top of the eighth when Scott Clackum’s balked a run home.
In game three, Demon Deacon lefthander John Hendricks (6-2) pitched a complete game to lead Wake Forest over Clemson 8-2 on Mar. 29. Hendricks allowed only six hits and two unearned runs as he was able to strand 14 Tiger baserunners on the day. Wake Forest only left two men on base. A pair of four-run innings keyed the Demon Deacon win. Skip Browning (5-1) suffered the loss as he pitched six innings, allowing six hits and four earned runs.
Tigers Triumph Over The Citadel Behind Brian Adams Sophomore lefthander Brian Adams (4-0) won in his third consecutive start as Clemson blanked The Citadel 5-0 Mar. 25 at Tiger Field. Adams pitched 7.2 shutout innings, allowing only five hits and two walks while striking out six. Adams lowered his team best ERA to 1.62. Senior closer Scott Clackum wrapped up the game by finishing the eighth and ninth innings.
Right-fielder Matt Padgett added three hits and an RBI to lead the Tiger hitters. Over the Sunday game and The Citadel game, Padgett had a streak of seven straight at bats with a base-hit. Peter Nystrom added an RBI triple.
Leggett Reaches 600-Win Mark Head Coach Jack Leggett is only in his 19th season as a head coach and has already reached the 600-win mark in his coaching career when Clemson defeated his alma mater Maine in the second game of a doubleheader on Mar. 14. He has a career record of 609-363 (.627) in five seasons at Vermont, nine at Western Carolina, and more than four seasons at Clemson.
Leggett has also amassed a 232-76 (.753) record while at Clemson, including each of the first three seasons that saw him win 50 or more games.
Odds And Ends
Freshman Justin Singleton has 16 RBIs, 15 runs scored, threehomers, and two triples in only 44 at bats this season. 13different Tigers have homered this season. Of Justin Hyde’s 13hits, he has six doubles, a triple, and a homer. First basemanJason Harris has not committed error in 308 chances. Only threetimes this season has a Tiger had four or more hits in a game,despite the team .347 batting average. Scott Clackum has given upone or more runs only once in his 14 appearances this season.Clemson has outscored its opponents 60-10 in third innings of gamesthis season. Sophomore pitcher Ryan Mottl has won 11 consecutivedecisions over the past two seasons. Clemson has already stolenmore bases (57) through 33 games in 1998 than it did in all of 1997(51) in 64 games. Brian Ellis has thrown out seven of 13 potentialbase stealers this season. The Tigers are 7-0 in night games thisseason. The Clemson defense has only committed three errors in thelast seven games.
Newcomers Provide Strong Offensive Effort The one question mark entering the 1998 season for Clemson was its ability to put runs on the board. That question has been answered emphatically thanks to many Tiger newcomers who have replaced the five graduating position starters from 1997. Clemson’s 10 newcomers in the field have combined to hit .367 (187-for-510). Those players have also stolen 23 bases in 25 attempts, and scored 156 of the 325 runs (48.0%).
Consistency A Key To Tigers’ Success Clemson is averaging 9.8 runs per game in 1998 and doing so without great individual game performances, but rather a group effort. Ten of the 12 Tigers with at least 30 at bats are batting .317 or better. Also, only three times this season has a player had four or more hits in a game.
On the mound, all 12 pitchers have under a 7.00 ERA and have at least four appearances.
Finding A Way To Get On Base Clemson has an amazing team on base percentage of .459 this season. The key to this stat is that Clemson has walked 230 times and hit by pitch 23 times. That means that 7.7 times per game a batter reaches base via a walk in addition to Clemson’s 12 hits per game. Matt Pagdett, Peter Nystrom, Brian Ellis, Justin Singleton, and Paul Stryhas all have on base percentages of .500 or better.
Brian Adams Providing Strong Outings As Starter Entering the 1998 season, lefthanded sophomore pitcher Brian Adams had not started a game on the mound as a Tiger. But if his last four starts are any indication, Adams will see a lot more time opening games for Clemson. In his last four starts, Adams has pitched 27.2 innings, allowing only 20 hits, six runs, and seven walks while picking up three wins. He has lowered his ERA to a team best 2.31 figure given a minimum of 30 innings pitched. Opponents are only hitting .215 against him, including lefthanded batters only hitting only .121. Adams has a twin brother on the Tiger pitching staff. Unlike Brian, Darren throws from the right side and red-shirted the 1997 season. Darren has pitched 4.0 innings in ’98 in four relief appearances.
Eleven In A Row For Mottl Sophomore pitcher Ryan Mottl earned Clemson’s first ACC Player-of-the-Week award in 1998 when he pitched seven innings and picked up his third win against UNC Wilmington on Feb. 27. In the game against the Seahawks, he allowed just six hits and one walk, while striking out six.
For the season, Mottl is 7-0 with a 3.51 ERA in eight starts. He won his last four decisions of ’97, therefore he has won 11 decisions in a row. Mottl also has 55 strikeouts against only 13 walks for a 4.2 strikeout-to-walk ratio. Mottl was a First-Team All-ACC starting pitcher as a freshman, and was the first freshman Tiger pitcher to ever accomplish that feat.
Clackum Closing Senior submariner Scott Clackum has been closing games for Clemson since the 1997 season. This season, he has topped his ’97 ERA of 1.93 with an 0.98 ERA in 14 relief appearances. He has six saves and a 4-0 record in 18.1 innings pitched. He also has 16 strikeouts against only four walks, and has only allowed two runs, both coming on a Tony Gsell (Old Dominion) home run. That homer is also the only extra base hit he has allowed in 18.1 innings. Opposing batters are also only hitting .161, including righthanded hitters batting only .111 against the righthander.
Clackum has 10 career saves, which puts him in fifth place in the Clemson record chart. He needs five more saves to move into third place in the record book.
Boyd Garners ACC Honor March 9 Freshman Patrick Boyd was tabbed as the ACC Player-of-the-Week on March 9. He led Clemson to a 4-1 record for the week and hit .474 (9-for-19). The Palm Harbor native also was responsible for 14 runs in the five games, scoring nine runs and batting in five.
Boyd Shining As True Freshman After starting the season 3-for-25 (.120), freshman Patrick Boyd has risen his batting average to .359. He is also hitting 43-for-103 (.417) over the last 26 games. As the everyday centerfielder, Boyd has started all 33 games, while scoring 43 runs. He has hit seven home runs, a triple, and five doubles as well. Boyd has also hit safely in 15 of the last 16 games and now has 36 RBIs on the season.
Baseball America tabbed Boyd in the preseason as the ACC’s Newcomer-of-the-Year and as one of the top-10 prospects overall in the ACC regardless of class.
Padgett Providing Punch Junior Matt Padgett has steadily raised his batting average from his freshman season as he is hitting a team best .429 in 1998. The Lexington, SC native has 51 hits in 119 at bats, and has eight homers and 31 RBIs in 32 games. Padgett has also hit safely in 15 of the last 17 games. During the 17 game stretch, he is hitting .484 (31-for-64), including 25 runs scored and 24 RBIs.
He also had a streak against Maryland (3/22) and The Citadel (3/25) where he had a hit in seven consecutive at bats, just two short of the Clemson record. In the Maryland game on Mar. 22, he had a five hits in six at bats. The five hits was a team-high for the season. And in the last eight games Padgett is 18-for-31 (.581) with 12 runs scored and 11 RBIs. Included in the seven games was one game where he went hitless in four at bats. Padgett has also been strong against lefthanders, batting .393 against southpaws.
Starting Four Is 20-1 Clemson’s four-man rotation of Ryan Mottl, Mike Paradis, Skip Browning, and Brian Adams has been on a roll this season. All four starters are also in their sophomore seasons and throw from the right side. Mottl is 7-0, Paradis is 4-0, Browning is 5-1, and Adams is 4-0. The four have combined for a 20-1 record in 27 starts. The four have also pitched 170.2 of the team’s 296.0 innings and have a combined 3.69 ERA.
Big Innings Clemson has scored at least 11 runs in an inning an amazing five times in 1998. The Tigers scored 12 runs in the third inning against UNC Wilmington on Feb. 28 in the 19-6 win. Clemson scored 11 runs in the fifth inning against Stetson on Mar. 6 in the 22-4 victory. Clemson then had double-digit scoring innings twice in the same day. In game one of a doubleheader against Maine on Mar. 14, Clemson scored 12 in the fifth inning en route to the 18-2 win. Then in game two, Clemson scored 14 runs in the sixth inning to overcome a 11-4 deficit to win 19-11. Clemson topped the 14-run inning with a Clemson record 19-run third inning against Maryland on Mar. 21. The run total was also the most runs in a third inning in NCAA history.
In the fifth and sixth innings, Clemson has outscored its opponents 107-24 (49-10 in fifth and 58-14 in sixth). Also, in the third inning, Clemson has outscored the opponents by a 60-10 count.
The offense has also been scoring runs at a record pace. The Tigers have scored 325 runs in 33 games, or 9.8 runs per game. The team record for runs in a season is 698 by the 1991 team. That team averaged 9.97 runs per game.
Freshman Nystrom An Instant Hit Peter Nystrom has made an instant impact on the Tiger offense as the starting left-fielder. The freshman from Dunedin, FL is hitting .370 with seven doubles, two triples, four home runs, and 31 RBIs in only 92 at bats. He has also walked 23 times and has an on base percentage of .508, which means he is reaching base over half the time he makes a trip to the plate. During his current eight game hitting streak, Nystrom is 10-for-25 (.400) with eight runs scored and eight RBIs. Nystrom has played in 32 of the Tigers’ 33 games, starting 29 in left-field.
Calitri Homers In First Career At Bat Red-shirt freshman Mike Calitri waited a whole year to do what few have ever done. The Canton, MA native hit an opposite field two-run homer in his first career at bat in the Tigers 16-4 win over East Carolina on Feb. 14. Calitri is 9-for-28 (.321) on the season, including two doubles, a triple, and nine RBIs at first and third base. Calitri had an outstanding game in the second game of a doubleheader against Maine on Mar. 14 when he had a double, triple, and four RBIs.
Roper Comes Back Strong After missing all but one game of the 1997 season, redshirt sophomore shortstop Doug Roper has started 1998 in fine fashion. The Vidalia, GA native has 33 hits in 99 at bats for a .333 batting average. Ironically, the slick-fielding shortstop bats in the ninth-spot in the lineup. He also has 10 stolen bases, which is tied for second best on the team. Roper was a career 5-for-47 (.106) entering the ’98 season.
Roper had one of his best moments as a Tiger when he homered down the right field line in the top of the ninth inning to defeat South Carolina 6-4 in Columbia on Apr. 1, 1998. He also hit the homer off star closer Jason Pomar, who had only given up one earned run in over 20 innings pitched up to that point. The homer was only the second of his career.
Harris Impressive As Tigers’ First Baseman Junior Jason Harris is hitting .413 as the Tigers’ everyday first baseman. He has seven homers in his first season wearing the orange and white. He also leads the squad with 38 RBIs and has a team best 43 runs scored. The Brevard College transfer also has nine stolen bases in 10 attempts. And he has not committed an error in 308 chances.
Harris’ production is magnified by the fact that the left-handed hitter is hitting .362 against lefties. Harris has also hit safely in 18 of the last 20 games. He also has a team-best 17 multi-hit games, and has a team-best 12 multi-RBI games. Harris’ 18 two-out RBIs is also best on the team.
Bultmann Picks Up Where He Left Off Kurt Bultmann is coming of the 1997 season that saw him set the Clemson single-season record for doubles with 31. The junior from Seminole, FL hit two doubles in the three-game Olive Garden Classic. He also had six hits in 14 at bats and was named the tournament MVP. The second baseman has moved over from the shortstop position now that Doug Roper is back from a season-ending injury in 1997.
Bultmann is currently hitting .336 with 10 doubles, a triple, 10 home runs, and 36 RBIs in starting 32 of the 33 games at second base. His fielding percentage has also been a bright spot this season. He has committed only four errors in 129 chances for a .969 fielding percentage. Bultmann had one of his best games in his career against Stetson on Mar. 6, where he was 2-for-2 with two home runs, a two-run shot and a grand slam.
Bultmann now has 51 career doubles, which puts ties him for 12th place all time in the Clemson record books. Below is a look at the Clemson career doubles leaders:
Rk. Name (Years) Doubles1. Gary Burnham (1994-97) 772. Bert Heffernan (1985-88) 633. Chuck Baldwin (1984-87) 624. Shane Monahan (1993-95) 605. Jim Crowley (1988-91) 576. Jim McCollom (1982-85) 567. Kevin Northrup (1989-92) 55 Billy McMillon (1991-93) 559. Brian Kowitz (1988-90) 5310. Kurt Bultmann (1996-present)51 Mike Milchin (1987-89) 51 Robert Bonnette (1976-79) 5113. Steve Baucom (1984-87) 49 Jeff Miller (1990-93) 4915. Matthew LeCroy (1995-97) 48
Leggett Has 41-7 Record in Februarys Under Head Coach Jack Leggett, Clemson has gotten off to some fast starts, mainly in the month of February. In his five February’s at Clemson, Leggett has amassed a 41-7 (.854) record in the month of February. Leggett was 8-2 in 1994, 6-1 in 1995, 7-2 in 1996, 9-1 in 1997, and 11-1 in 1998.
ACC Coaches Pick Clemson To Finish Second1. Florida State (3) 732. Clemson (2) 70 Georgia Tech (3) 704. N.C. State 455. Wake Forest (1) 446. Duke 387. North Carolina 318. Virginia 239. Maryland 11
1998 Preseason HonorsClemson
#3 recruiting class by Baseball America
#24 Patrick Boyd, OF
Top newcomer in the ACC by Baseball America #5 overall prospectin the ACC
#18 Kurt Bultmann, 2B
Third-Team All-American by Collegiate Baseball
#27 Ryan Mottl, RHP
#10 prospect in the ACC by Baseball America Second-TeamAll-American by The Sporting News Third-Team All-American byCollegiate Baseball
Mottl, Boyd Among Nine USA Baseball Team Training Camp Invitees Clemson sophomore pitcher Ryan Mottl (Florissant, MO) and freshman outfielder Patrick Boyd (Palm Harbor, FL) were among the first nine players invited to the USA Baseball National Team summer camp.
Boyd, rated as the top newcomer in the ACC by Baseball America, is the only freshman amongst the nine invitees. Mottl, a First-Team All-ACC pitcher in 1997 as a freshman, was a member of the 1997 USA Baseball National Team. Both players attended the 1998 USA Baseball National Team Trials at Hi Corbett Field in November, 1997.
Camp is tentatively scheduled to open June 1 at Hi Corbett Field in Tucson, AZ, home of USA Baseball and Cactus League spring training home of the Colorado Rockies. The USA Baseball National Team will begin its competition in mid-June and play approximately 30 games in preparation for the International Baseball Association’s XXXIII World Championship in Italy on July 21 – August 2.
Seven Current Tigers Picked In Major League Draft The following is a list of current Clemson players selected in the Major League draft:
Player Year Team RoundPatrick Boyd 1997 Seattle Mariners 2ndMike Paradis 1996 Oakland Athletics 7thJustin Singleton 1997 Arizona Diamondbacks 9thSkip Browning 1996 Florida Marlins 11thPeter Nystrom 1997 Arizona Diamondbacks 13thPaul Stryhas 1997 San Francisco Giants 21stRyan Mottl 1996 Tampa Bay Devil Rays 39th
Clemson’s 203 Wins Since ’94 Second 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 203 games (excluding 1998) for an average of almost 51 per season. Included in that total is 53 wins against top 25 teams. Included among the 53 wins is 24 victories over top 10 teams.
Tiger Field Rated Among Best In The Country Beautiful Tiger Field has helped Clemson gain one of the best home-field advantages in the country. The Tigers have won over 84 percent of its home ACC games and 82 percent of its overall home games, dating back to 1970.
Baseball America recently published its rankings of the top baseball stadiums in the country based on aesthetics, playing conditions, and amenities. Tiger Field was ranked #8 in the country in Baseball America’s preseason issue, which is also tops in the ACC.
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