UConn Baseball 2019

Joined
Aug 26, 2011
Messages
47,508
Likes
68,343
#1
Vincentian's Christian and Kyler Fedko reunite with UConn baseball

>>When Connecticut began fall practices last week, Christian, a sophomore, was No. 7 and Kyler, a freshman, was No. 3, the same jersey numbers they wore in high school. They were a double-play duo at Vincentian, with Christian — named American Athletic Conference rookie position player of the year this spring after batting .255 in 52 starts with a team-leading 15 doubles — at shortstop and Kyler at second base, but those roles likely will be reversed in college.<<

>>Neither brother was drafted out of high school. At 5 feet 10 and 181 pounds, Christian is seen as undersized. Kyler, 6 feet 2 and 215 pounds, has the body and skill set of a prototypical pro prospect, but his father believes teams knew he was bent on playing with his brother in college. Kyler batted .661 as a senior, leading Vincentian to PIAA and WPIAL Class 1A baseball titles — plus a WPIAL basketball championship. He was named USA Today’s state player of the year.<<
 
Joined
Mar 24, 2012
Messages
7,219
Likes
4,988
#6
According to his twitter and Linkedin accounts, Jordan Tabakman is now the pitching coach at UAlbany. I could not find any official announcement of him getting this job or of leaving UConn.

https://www.linkedin.com/in/jordan-tabakman-6637a744

Login on Twitter

Stephen Leonetti is the new Director of Player Development and Baseball Operations at UConn. While I don't recall any announcement of him getting the job, he is listed on the UConn baseball staff. Among other things, he is a former assistant coach of the Mystic Schooners.

Stephen Leonetti - Director of Player Development and Baseball Operations - UConn Huskies | University of Connecticut Athletics
 
Joined
Mar 24, 2012
Messages
7,219
Likes
4,988
#10
I was checking out the Mystic Schooners website, and found that they already had a few players listed on their obviously incomplete roster for next season. Nothing unusual there, a few teams in their league list a few players as well. Among those listed for Mystic is UConn freshman Will Lucas. Mystic is in a very good league, so this suggest to me that while Lucas may not necessarily see a lot of playing time this coming UConn season, a lot is expected of Lucas in the future.
 
Joined
Aug 26, 2011
Messages
47,508
Likes
68,343
#15

It's a premium ($) article and cuts off before the position by position review... but highly complementary.

Here's the last paragraph: “So there are some nice pieces,” Penders said. “We’re more position player-centric than pitcher-centric this year, which is kind of a change of pace for us. There are some good athletes to pick from. I think we’re a little bit deeper positionally, at least as far as the talent goes. The experience hasn’t really caught up yet. I’m excited to see how it plays out, but there’s some deep athleticism on this ballclub.”
 
Joined
Mar 24, 2012
Messages
7,219
Likes
4,988
#16

It's a premium ($) article and cuts off before the position by position review... but highly complementary.

Here's the last paragraph: “So there are some nice pieces,” Penders said. “We’re more position player-centric than pitcher-centric this year, which is kind of a change of pace for us. There are some good athletes to pick from. I think we’re a little bit deeper positionally, at least as far as the talent goes. The experience hasn’t really caught up yet. I’m excited to see how it plays out, but there’s some deep athleticism on this ballclub.”
Lots of good info in this article. Some of what is said here is confirmation of some of the things that were reported upon in fall ball, such as the rise of Mike Chiovitti. However, the most interesting piece of information here is that it looks like the plan right now is to move Chase Gardner to the bullpen, as the coaches like his stuff in shorter stints. When one thinks about it, last season Gardner would be great for two or three innings, then he would start to lose his effectiveness. Generally, Gardner did not go deep into games with his starts. On that basis I understand the move, and together with Wallace and Dandeneau it could prove to be a very nice end of the bullpen As for the weekend starters, the current plan is Feole on Fridays, Kersten on Saturdays, and Dunlop on Sundays.
 
Joined
Mar 24, 2012
Messages
7,219
Likes
4,988
#18
If Dunlop's velocity increase is for real, that is a nice rotation.
I've mentioned this before, I like Kersten in middle relief more than I do as a weekend starter. Still, I can definitely understand the reasoning for the move of Gardner to the back of the bullpen. With that move, Kersten and Dunlop are the most obvious candidates for weekend starters. Penders mentions in the article that Dunlop has a lot of upside to his potential. I like the idea of Kersten in the middle between Feole and Dunlop, as it presents a big contrast in pitching styles for the opposition. I'm also guessing the Kersten may be holding down the weekend starting spot until one of the other young pitchers show some development. One thing Kersten showed last season was his versatility, so I think this could be an unmentioned possibility.

As for the Gardner move, that would really load up the back end of the bullpen, with Gardner being a lefty arm to go with the right-handed Wallace and Dandeneau.

Also, the article confirms the current plan to move Woodworth to center field. No surprise there, as Woodworth played there in the fall ball games.
 
Joined
Mar 24, 2012
Messages
7,219
Likes
4,988
#22
Also, very positive stuff on newcomers Patrick Winkel, Kyler Fedko, and Will Lucas. The article suggests that Kyler Fedko, Lucas, and Conor Moriarty are all in the mix for the 3B job. It would seem that Christian Fedko is the leader for the 2B job. Also mentions that pitcher Joe Simeone had hip surgery over the summer, and could also get into the mix as a starting pitcher candidate.
 
Joined
Mar 24, 2012
Messages
7,219
Likes
4,988
#23
If Dunlop's velocity increase is for real, that is a nice rotation.
Colby Dunlop in some ways sounds like the new Wills Montgomerie. There is a great quote about Dunlop in this article, saying his stuff is electric, but it's weird because you can't get him through the 5th inning. Montgomerie had struggles with control and composure, but was able to work through it and eventually become a very effective pitcher for the Huskies. Hopefully Dunlop can show the same development that Montgomerie did. I loved how Montgomerie became quite adept at getting out of problems he created, hopefully Dunlop can develop the same knack.
 
Joined
Mar 24, 2012
Messages
7,219
Likes
4,988
#24
One final note (I think) on the D1Baseball article on UConn. According to Coach Penders, John Toppa was one of UConn's best power hitters during fall ball. After not getting drafted, Toppa spent the summer reworking his swing. The result now is that he is hitting more balls into the gap. Toppa's lack of power was his biggest weakness in his offensive game, and probably a big factor that kept him from getting drafted. But if Toppa has indeed improved on his ability to garner extra base hits, he pretty much becomes the most likely candidate to hit in the number three spot in the UConn batting order.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Aug 26, 2011
Messages
1,010
Likes
1,112
#25
CF Woodworth
SS Prato
LF Toppa
1b Winkel
Dan Hurley langer or Phillips
C p winkel
2b c fedko
RF chiovitii
3b TBD

That is certainly a lineup I could see to start the season—assuming everyone is healthy. There is a lot of speed and athleticism on team. Pitching will be more trial and error as it sounds like there will be opportunities for the newbies to step in and contribute right away. I do think they have seen enough from Dunlop that a weekend role will be his to lose. Like the Gardner move since stamina was clearly an issue last year and the loss of Poulin is gonna hurt. Penders would have a lefty option with Gardner and righty option with Dandeneau to bridge to Wallace.
 

Top