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Shipley Among Top 100 Players Selected By College Baseball Daily

Nevada junior right-handed pitcher Bradey Shipley ranks 89th as selected by College Baseball Daily in their countdown of the top 100 players in collegiate baseball for 2013.  Shipley the 2012 Western Athletic Conference Pitcher of the Year went 9-4 with a 2.20 ERA his sophomore year.

This past summer playing for the Anchorage Bucs in the Alaska League he was named the league's top prospect.

Link to College Baseball Daily story on Shipley.



Wolf Pack Volunteers for Renown Holiday Party

Wolf Pack student-athletes, coaches and staff regularly head over to the Renown Children's Hospital to visit patients, and last week, a group of Nevada baseball, volleyball and soccer student-athletes took it upon themselves to help the hospital get ready for its holiday party.

Wolf Pack student-athletes wrapped presents to be given out at the party and then later went back to volunteer at the holiday party. Here are some great photos of the Wolf Pack student-athletes to get you in the holiday mood:

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Prieto To Manage In Mariners Farm System

Former Nevada baseball player Chris Prieto will manage Pulaski Mariners located in Pulaski, Va.  Prieto is in his first season managing in the Mainers farm system.  Pulaski is a Rookie League team that competes in the Appalachian League.

Prieto earned second-team All-Big West Conference honors playing for the Wolf Pack in 1993.  He led the team with a .353 average and nine home runs in his only season at Nevada.  Originally drafted by San Diego he reached the major leagues in 2005 with the Anaheim Angels.


Remembering Keith Loper

Former Wolf Pack coach Keith Loper passed away at his home in Reno on Tuesday. Loper coached baseball, football and wrestling while at the University of Nevada, including a stint as Nevada's head baseball coach from 1972-73. In fact, he gave current head baseball coach Gary Powers his first job as his assistant coach.

Jim Krajewski from the Reno Gazette-Journal wrote a nice tribute to the well-liked Loper.

Powers added this about his mentor: "Keith was one of the most wonderful, loyal, caring people I have had the pleasure to have been associated with. He was a great mentor and and I am so thankful to him for all of the support and guidance he provided to me." 

We will pass along any memorial service information we receive. 

 

Former Pack Stars Get The Call

Congrats to four former Nevada baseball players who go the call on Sept. 1 to join their Major League clubs.  Konrad Schmidt, Chris Gimenez, Chris Dickerson and Lyle Overbay all made the jump to the big leagues.

Schmidt got the call from the Arizona Diamondbacks.  In fact the catcher was not in Reno when the Aces passed out 2,000 of his bobbleheads on Saturday night.

A catcher, Gimenez joined the Tampa Bay Rays for the stretch run.  Monday he collected two hits and drove in two including the game winner in the eighth inning in a 4-3 victory over the New York Yankees.

Dickerson played center field over the weekend for the Yankees and hit a home run and stole one reaching over the outfield fence.

Overbay,  the veteran of the group signed with Atlanta Braves after being released by the Diamondbacks earlier this season.  The Braves signed the first baseman as they chase a playoff birth.

Powers To Throw Out First Pitch

University of Nevada head baseball coach Gary Powers will throw out the first pitch at the Reno Aces game on Saturday night.  Powers, the longest tenured coach in Wolf Pack history, recorded his 900th victory last season, his 30th at Nevada.  The Pack went on to claim its first Western Athletic Conference title.

Powers will throw out the first pitch on a night when the Aces honor former Pack star Konrad Schmidt with a bobblehead give away.  Schmidt hit .349 with a team leading eight home runs his senior season at Nevada in 2007.

Schmidt Bobblehead Night Saturday At Aces Ballpark

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If you are unable to travel to Berkeley, Calif. to watch the Wolf Pack football team play at California on Saturday, head down to the Reno Aces baseball game and get a Konrad Schmidt bobblehead.    The uniquely designed bobblehead of the former Nevada star has him in both his Pack and Aces uniforms.   In his only season at Nevada he batted .349 with 42 runs scored, 15 doubles, two triples, eight home runs and drove in 47 to help the Pack to a 35-26 record.  On Sept. 13, 2010 he received his first promotion to the major leagues by the Arizona Diamondbacks and returned again in 2012.  Currently he is in his second season as the fulltime catcher for the Aces.  For more information click on this link.

Pfatenhauer Named Head Coach At Dixie State

Former University of Nevada assistant baseball coach Chris Pfatenhauer has been named the head coach at Dixie State College in St. George, Utah.  Pfatenhauer leaves Nevada after three seasons and helped guide the Wolf Pack to a share of the 2012 Western Athletic Conference title and two seasons of more than 30 victories.  The 2012 WAC title was the first for a Pack baseball team.  Here is the link to the Dixie State release on his hiring.

Pfatenhauer becomes the fourth assistant for veteran Pack head coach Gary Powers that is currently a collegiate head coach.  John Savage (UCLA), Jedd Soto (St. Mary's) and Jason Gill (Loyola Marymount) were Powers assistants.

Former Pack Player Lyle Overbay on a Tear

Former Wolf Pack star and current Arizona Diamondbacks first baseman Lyle Overbay has been on a tear at the plate recently.

He has gone 15 for 31 in his last 16 appearances (15-31), including a 4-for-4 outing with a home run and three runs scored in last night's loss to the Dodgers. He has increased his batting average to .370 from .217 earlier in the year.

Overbay has spent the better part of the last decade playing in the Major Leagues after being drafted by the Diamondbacks in 1999. He was an All-American during his time at the University of Nevada, helping the Wolf Pack to an NCAA Regional appearance in 1999 and Big West titles in 1997 and 1998. He was inducted into the Nevada Athletics Hall of Fame in 2010.

The 2012 WAC champion Wolf Pack baseball team had a chance to catch Overbay's game on Monday night since Nevada is in Mesa, Ariz., for the WAC Baseball Tournament. Hopefully the Wolf Pack bats can be as productive as Overbay has been lately when the team opens postseason play tonight against Louisiana Tech. Listen live at 7 p.m. Pacific Time on ESPN Radio 1450 AM with Don Marchand calling the action. 

The following was compiled by Mike Samuels, with help from Jack Kuestermeyer and the Western Athletic Conference:

Nevada baseball (30-21, 10-5 WAC) seeks its first-ever WAC Championship in Hawai`i (28-22, 8-7 WAC) this week. You can follow all the action here. With that in mind, here are a few important points to ponder:

-    The Wolf Pack is 10-5 in WAC action and one-half game in front on second place Sacramento State, which is 11-7 and has completed WAC regular season play.
-    In the event of a tie, the WAC will award a co-championship for the regular season title but will use a tie-breaker to determine who gets the top seed in the WAC Tournament.
-    The winner of the WAC Tournament receives an auto-bid to the NCAA Regionals.
-    Both New Mexico State and Hawai`i are in reach of first place, each standing at 8-7 with three WAC games to play.

How can Nevada secure the WAC Title?
-    Win two of three games in Hawai`i.  Doing so would put Nevada at 12-6, one game ahead of Sac State in the final standings. This would put Hawai`i at 9-9.  New Mexico State could at best finish 11-7 if it won all three games against San Jose State this weekend.  In this scenario, Nevada would also secure the No. 1 seed for the WAC Tournament.

What if Nevada only wins one game against Hawai`i?
-    If Nevada only wins one game, it will end tied for first place with Sacramento State and also possibly New Mexico State (if the Aggies sweep all three from San Jose State).
-    In the event of a tie, the WAC will award a co-championship.  So, it is possible that Nevada, Sacramento State and New Mexico State will all be crowned 2012 WAC Champions.
-    The closest call to a tri-championship for WAC baseball occurred in 1968.  That season Arizona, Arizona State and New Mexico all finished 6-6 in WAC play placing them in a three-way tie for the Southern Division title.  Arizona was awarded the title on a run-differential tie-breaker ruling.  However, this was not for the WAC Championship as they most likely still had to play the Northern Division champ, BYU, to determine the outright WAC Champion.
-    A tie-breaker will be used to determine the WAC Tournament seedings in the event of a tie in regular season play. 
-    In the event of a two-way tie, Sacramento State would take the No. 1 seed and Nevada the No.2 seed, due to the Hornets winning two games in the regular season series meeting between the two schools.
-    In the event of a three-way tie, Sacramento State would take the No. 1 seed (having defeated both Nevada and New Mexico State in the respective regular season three-game series).  New Mexico State would take the No. 2 seed (having defeated Nevada in the regular season head-to-head three-game series).

What if Nevada loses all three games against Hawai`i?
-    Best-case scenario - The Pack would finish at 10-8.  This would guarantee them to finish in third behind both Hawai`i (sitting at 11-7 after beating Nevada three straight games) and Sacramento State (11-7).  Nevada gets a No. 3 seed in the WAC Tournament.
-    Middle-case Scenario - New Mexico State takes two games from San Jose State this weekend to finish tied with Nevada at 10-8.  Nevada finishes in a tie for third place but gets a No.4 seed in the conference tournament due to the tie-breaker.   
-    Worst-case Scenario - New Mexico State sweeps San Jose State this weekend to finish at 11-7.  Nevada finishes in fourth place and gets a No. 4 seed in the WAC Tournament.

What is the importance of being a top seed in the WAC Tournament?
-    The No.1 and No. 2 seeds in the WAC Tournament receive a first-round bye.  Not only does this mean the top two seeds have one less game to play and get more rest, but it also allows them (theoretically) to throw their top pitcher in the second round of the tournament.

With all this in mind, here are some quick facts on the Nevada/Hawai`i matchup:
-    Hawai`i is currently tied for third place with New Mexico State at 8-7. 
-    Hawai`i won three of the four games from Nevada last season in Reno.
-    Hawai`i is 24-11 at home and 5-1 in WAC play in Honolulu.
-    Nevada leads the series with UH (30-23) in WAC play. 
-    UH holds a 15-11 advantage in WAC games played at Les Murakami Stadium.