Friday, March 27, 2009


Our word of the weekend is irony. It is at least ironic that for the season when the best Blair Field scoreboard ever is up and flashing, the home team dare not look at it. Forget the out of town scores, the 2009 Niners have to focus on what’s on the other side of the diamond, not across town, across county or across country. Translated: un-ranked UNLV (13-10) continues its road swing after losing two mid-weekers to Oklahoma State 8-2 and 15-1. Throw in a home loss to Air Force and you have two proud but struggling ball clubs. Both the Rebels and LBSU are on three game slides with the Beach on the same down swing, losing Saturday and Sunday at Wichita State and Tuesday at San Diego.

So let’s map out some islands of identity in a sea of anonymity. Translated find your own silver linings. Although only 7-12, LBSU is hitting .288 as a team, paced by Steve Tinoco, who is hitting .385 (20-52) with four home runs and 10 RBI followed by TJ Mittelstaedt (.291) who has played four positions, hit in eight spots in the lineup, and is a guy that the media relations folks an on-base machine, reaching at a .458 rate and leading the team in RBI, walks and triples. Next up on the contribution list is sophomore shortstop Devin Lohman, who has played in, started all 18 of the team's games, and had a nine-game hitting streak. The pitching has been up and down, sort of like that wicked splitter that closer Charlie Ruiz throws in the direction of home plate. Normally at this part of the Dust we would report that Coach Mike Weathers, is 270-164 in his seventh year with the Dirtbags, 549-444-2 overall in his 18th season as a collegiate head coach, but as you should know he ain’t in the dugout tonight, wasn’t there on Tuesday and will miss tomorrow finishing a three game suspension for violating the new NCAA spewing rule.

Maybe Mike will be text messaging his old rival Curious George Horton who has been suspended for three games himself following his ejection from Sunday’s loss to Washington for arguing a call at first base on a double play. His umpire’s report indicated that Horton’s hat touched the umpire during the incident. Physical contact with umpires carries an automatic three-game suspension.
NAME DROP DUST--Now since we are in our new once a weekend Dusting, here are the expected starting pitchers beginning with tonight’s talented lefties, Jeff Urlaub (3-1, 4.34 ERA) and Adam Wilk (2-1, 3.34 ERA). Saturday, Tanner Peters (3-1, 2.90 ERA) goes for the Hustling Rebels against Jake Thompson (0-4, 7.39 ERA) who has fallen off the bike recently but gets back up and tries again…On Sunday UNLV starts Andrew Beresford (1-1, 5.05 ERA) against Andrew Gagnon (1-2, 5.92 ERA)…The Rebels have fattened their resume with four game series against lightweights Butler and Maine. .. Drew Buerlein leads the offense, hitting .442, one of four Rebs that are hitting over .400 to start the year…The all-time series between Long Beach State and UNLV is dead even, both teams have won 28 games…Now to my version of the spewing heard round the college baseball world. I was in the right field box seats. Lohman was taken out on a wide, hard, and somewhat spike high slide to second base. My pal Craig Kimber, (who once held the record for most base hits in a LBSU game-5 vs. Pepperdine on 2/27/73) had wandered over to the LF picnic area. When Weathers sprinted over there to visit with the third base umpire Joe Maiden, Craig listened in. “Mike never said one of the magic words; he just kept asking the ump if he would take a look at second base.” Apparently though, Mike neither fully swallowed that call, nor his St. Patrick’s Day Green Beer/Gatorade and the moisture may or may not have escaped the skippers lips…insiders say that the next controversial play Mike will send out new special assistant Amy Winehouse…conspiracy theorist say that this is a season on the jinx…on Tuesday Tre Dennis, leading off as the DH, was hit by a curveball on the first pitch, turned to trot but was instructed to stay in the batter’s box for “failing to make an attempt to evade the pitch”…now the final word from our Southern Gentleman pal Gordie Verrell reporting from his plantation in Newport News, VA, “I'm not too sure but I think down here in good ol' Dixie we have a drink called Mountain Spew…and how does a guy called Weatherman get docked for "spewing"?—DR. DAN


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