College Baseball Poll - Collegiate Baseball Newspaper
For Immediate Release: Tuesday (March 15, 2005)
PACE H.S. NO. 1 IN EASTON SPORTS COLLEGIATE BASEBALL NEWSPAPER (www.baseballnews.com) POLL
TUCSON, Ariz. — Msgr. Edward Pace High School (Miami, Fla.) has been ranked No. 1 in the first regular-season Easton Sports National High School poll after racing to an 8-0 record.
While Pace has outscored opponents, 66-17 over eight games, an airtight defense that has made only two errors over that span has been the key to an impressive start along with quality pitching.
"Although we could be hitting better, our defense and pitching have been outstanding," said Pace Head Coach Tom Duffin. "Our two big pitchers in RHP Thomas Mendoza and RHP Anthony Perez who have both signed with the University of Miami (Fla.) have not had more than two runs scored on them. They have been superb. As far as offense, C Jose Jimenez has hit three homers while 3B Chris Marrero has belted two home runs." Last year Pace H.S. rolled to a 24-1 record. So the team has won 32 of its last 33 games stretching over the last two seasons.
Foy H. Moody High School (Corpus Christi, Tex.), ranked No. 1 in the pre-season poll, dropped to No. 2 in the nation after starting the season with a 10-1 record. Moody’s only loss has been to W.B. Ray by one run. The No. 3 spot in the nation is held by Russell County High School (Seale, Ala.) which started off with a 15-0 record.
Russell County has recorded four shutouts so far this season against Central Phenix City, 3-0, Hartselle, 3-0, Baldwin County, 10-0 and Gardendale, 7-0. The team has six undefeated pitchers led by Cory Rasmus (4-0, 0.00 ERA, 26 K, 8 BB), Kasey Kiker (4-0, 0.58 ERA, 37 K, 9 BB) and Justin Dutton (3-0, 0.82 ERA, 20 K, 6 BB). On offense, Russell County is being led by Cory Rasmus (.660, 10 HR, 7 2B, 28 RBI and 10 SB in only 15 games). Rasmus was a Louisville Slugger pre-season All-American.
Colby Rasmus was hitting .551 with 8 homers, 9 doubles and 7 stolen bases. No. 4 is James Monroe H.S. (Bronx, N.Y.) which has yet to play a game this season. No. 5 Chatsworth, Calif. (4-1) saw its state-record win streak of 54 games ended by Newhall Hart in a 4-3 loss during the Moorpark/Southern California Showdown Gold Division title game. Newhall Hart had two-run rallies in the third and fifth innings to secure the win. Matt Valaika and Shane Carlson had consecutive triples in the third inning.
Sitting at No. 6 in the Easton Sports National poll is Deering, Maine which has yet to play. Deering, which posted a 24-0 record last season and is vying for a third consecutive state championship, claimed the national title in the American Legion World Series last summer. Owasso, Okla., High School, ranked seventh, ran its record to 7-0 by defeating Stillwater, 9-8 and sweeping Ponca City, 22-0 and 11-0 in a doubleheader. Chris Armstrong and Matthew Sparks are both 2-0 on the season while seniors Chase Nelson (.667, 8-for-11, 2 HR) and Arin Fowble (.563, 5-for-8, 3 HR) led the offense during its most recent week of action.
Eighth ranked La Cueva H.S. (Albuquerque, N.M.) won the Easton Sports National High School championship last year with a 28-0 record. So far in 2005, the Bears are 4-0. Over the last three seasons, La Cueva has now won 62 consecutive games — only six short of tying the national mark of 68 straight wins set by Archbishop Malloy (Briarwood, N.Y.) from 1963-66..
Elk Grove, Calif. H.S. is 4-1 to start the season. But they should be much stronger with the return of three key players who have just finished with their wrestling season. Starting centerfielder Michael Drake and the team’s cleanup hitter won the state title in wrestling. His twin brother John Drake is the team’s starting shortstop and placed third in state. John Daly, a reserve outfielder, also placed third.
Poll Notes…Dropping from the pre-season poll are Destrehan, La. (9-3) and Hamilton H.S., Chandler, AZ (6-2-2) and Bryant, Ark. (7-4). Entering this week’s poll are The Woodlands, Tex. (11-1) at No. 27 and Catalina Foothills (Tucson, AZ) at No. 29. Catalina Foothills started their season undefeated, posting a 9-0 record with many games being blowouts. The pitching staff is six deep led by Louisville Slugger Pre-Season All American John James.