Monday, November 22, 2004


Glad to have you inside our chock full of great ideas Gazette, shopping season is upon us again and we aren’t just talking about pet rocks and perfumes.

Coaches you see are spending their precious scholarship bucks these days and when in doubt you often hear that they have selected, ta da, “the best athlete.” That is code for an incoming kid so versatile that they defy any one position and, as Martha Stewart would say (even from the Grey Bar Hotel), that is a good thing.

To prove our point we offer as evidence a Fab Four of 49er athletes who perform outside the confines of a particular position. Our nominees are Dyanne Lawlor from women’s volleyball, Cody Pearson from men’s hoops, Fernanda Santos from women’s hoops, and Troy Tulowitzki from baseball.

What these notable Niners have in common is that they have both verve and versatility. Last Saturday night Lawlor led Long Beach with 13 kills for LBSU and not a single assist. Unusual, yes since Lawlor was recruited as a setter, but as athletes know, you do what you need to do. Next year, after a summer in the Debbie Green College of Setting Knowledge, this athlete will succeed Jillian Mazzarella and be a triple threat--setter, hitter, and of course, athlete.

Mr. Pearson, as 49er followers know well, got his scholarship after winning the most popular walk-on award at the end of thee Wayne Morgan era. Keep him around for defense, oh yea and hustle some rebounds. So far all of the above plus he had ten points against powerful Charlotte, snagged four rebounds and defensively did what athletes do.

Now for Ms. Santos you will have to take my word but at 6-2, this Brazilian import has a deadly outside shot, boards with the best of them and runs like the wind. The toughest competition she has had to date has been with the NCAA clearinghouse but it looks like a positive result is in and Fernanda is finally a legal 49er.

Mr. Tulowitzki is well known for covering ground and fly balls all over the Dirtbag diamond north-south-east-west from home plate to shallow center. He hit .317 last year and led the Bags in stolen bases. I wish his folks had about eight more sons.

CATCH UP DUST- We promised to give you a mound round-up for the 2005 Dirtbags so here goes the guesses while searching for stuffing deep in that festive bird. First we should note that although two pitchers are gone, the hard-to-sign Jered Weaver and the signed and playing Jason Vargas, there are nine returners back from a team that was oh-so-close to the CWS.
The new ace is Cesar Ramos, a junior out of Pico Rivera who toured with Team USA and had a 2004 line of 12-4, 2.29 ERA, 133.2 IP, 108 H, 35 BB, 97 Ks. Behind him in no particular order are two righties Cody Evans out of Golden West JC (9-2, 84.2 IP, 2.98 ERA, 74 Ks, 18 BB) and Jared Hughes, transferring south from Santa Clara with a ton of potential.

The relief is led by pre-season All American Neil Jamison, a closer last year with 12 saves, 4.35 ERA, drafted in 8th round by Mets but coming back for more-money and better results. The other reliever was perhaps stronger at the end of the year, RHP Brian Anderson, Sr., a setup man with a 2.98 ERA in 28 appearances. The rest of Troy Buckley’s options include RHP Romeo Newman and LHP Brandon Vilalobos, who was a Tuesday starter last year, 1-2, 5.70 ERA in 10 App, 5 starts. And now you know the rest of the story.

Our closing quote is from Bobby Crosby who will keynote the Dirtbag Leadoff Dinner on January 20. Cros told us that if the Astros, who feature his old teammate Mike Gallo in the pen, had beaten St. Louis they would have beaten Boston. “They simply matched up better.”—DR. DAN


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