What’s With Wayne?

Wayne State1

Yesterday, Wayne State suffered a 6-1 loss to Wisconsin Parkside and 12-1 loss to Southern Indiana to move to 4-8 on the season.  The Wildcats were favored by many (including this writer) to continue their winning ways and challenge for their 7th straight Northern Sun Conference regular season title.

While the Conference games haven’t started yet, there have got to be a few nervous people in Nebraska.  So what has changed from last year?

Is it the pitching?

The 2010 Wildcats have a team ERA of 4.71 which is actually slightly down from 2009’s 4.86.  Their Batting Average Allowed is slightly worse (.289 vs. .284) and their WHIP (Walks + Hits divided by Innings Pitched) is almost identical.  I don’t think it’s the pitching.

Is it the fielding?

The 2009 version of Wayne State wasn’t exactly known as a top fielding team and the 2010 squad has continued that tradition.  The 2010 fielding % is slightly worse (.951 vs. .956) but more importantly the errors are costing them more.  Last year about 20% of the runs scored against them were unearned.  In 2010 that number is up to 25%.  So, fielding is a contributing factor but not the major one.

Is it the hitting?

The 2009 Wildcat team was amazing at the plate as they outhit their opponents by a wide margin and had all 11 of their primary hitters with batting averages over .300.  Nine of those guys had a slugging % above .494.  Here are the batting averages for the 10 primary batters so far in 2010 –


As you can see, only 2 guys are batting over .300.  Their team batting average is down .107 points and their slugging percentage is down a whopping .210 points.  Their team batting average is only .234 which is 55 points below their opponents.  The lack of hitting is clearly a major reason for the slow start this year.


The team had lofty expectations entering 2010 as they were ranked #14 in the country by the College Baseball News Preseason D2 Poll.  The explanation of this team being slow starters better get solved soon as the start of Conference games is just 12 days away.  One has to wonder if the loss of Coach Manganaro had more of an impact than most of us thought.

15 Responses to “What’s With Wayne?”

  1. 1 Anonymous March 8, 2010 at 9:09 am

    Some where in the blog a question was asked about composit bats. Did many of the Wayne players use those last year. I personally seen some balls hit last year that left the yard like a rocket that I couldn’t believe were hit that hard.
    I also believe Wayne will still be a force, but the conference in its second year is getting more competitive.

  2. 3 fishingmn March 8, 2010 at 9:22 am

    Interesting question about the composite bats. Here was the article I wrote with the link to the NCAA about the change – https://northernsunbaseball.wordpress.com/2009/08/26/stories-from-around-ncaa-college-baseball/

  3. 4 WSCDad March 8, 2010 at 11:28 am

    Some of the hitting has been bad luck. The boys have hit it hard on occasion but right at people. Eventually they have to start to fall. I still think the Cats are the team to beat and will pull it all together.

    I personally am beginning to give Manganaro more credit than I had previously. The lineups that appeared yesterday show some signs of panic. And he stuck with Voth for 9 earned through 3 innings – might have used the hook a little earlier. Snyder, the senior ace, hasn’t thrown yet this week – gets a start today, hopefully all the starters will play again today and give Snyder a little support.

    Disch has left the third base box and moved into the dugout. Might be easier to manage from there.

    Great news, they get a couple with Upper Iowa wednesday and thursday.

  4. 5 John Plasha Sr. March 8, 2010 at 1:02 pm

    Hey Mr. Anonymous,
    I got good news for you. Your eyes have not decieved you. The ball has been known to leave the yard like a “Rocket” and I happen to know for a fact that not a single composite bat was used by any of the kids on Wayne. To suggest or even raise the question without some hard fact is in my opinion Ludicrous.
    Also I attended 3 of WSC games over the weekend and one thing I might add to WSCDad’s post is that there were several very hard hit balls that were eaten up by the Wisc. center fielder that would have given Mr. Wendte a run for his money. # 3 and # 19 each had a shot that had the offical score keeper breaken out the white out. Not sure who the kid is but he spent a good part of each day running down well hit balls.
    And being that I like finishing up on a good note thanks for your vote of confidence with your last sentence and yes I do agree the NSIC is getting more competive every year.

    • 6 fishingmn March 8, 2010 at 2:56 pm

      John – Suggesting that Wayne may have used Composite bats isn’t an indictment – they were perfectly legal last year. I actually found it an interesting question to ask to see if that might be some sort of explanation for their early hitting woes. No reason to take it personally.

      • 7 John Plasha Sr. March 8, 2010 at 3:44 pm

        Hey fish,
        For starters let me say that you did a great job on the “What’s with Wayne?” topic above. (As Usual) You’re right on with your assesment of their hitting wows. Hopefully for Wayne things will turn around soon. Funny thing is, Disch has been the hitting coach for several years so I don’t think the problem is in the coaching. I think the balls will start dropping soon. It’s only a matter of time. And although Mags may not being in charge any more he is still making his presence felt. I’ve been on 3 outs 4 road trips and I’ve seen his head pop out of the dough-out in the Metro Dome last weekend and at USI this Saturday.
        And as far as the composite bats go they were illegal in the summer colligate league my son played in last year so I guess that’s why I answered the way I did. That and the fact that some one named “Anonymous” in my opinion implied there was something up with balls leaving the yard like Rockets. Just didn’t sound right to me. Besides I’m not a big fan of people named “Anonymous” I always felt if you have something to say then be proud and stand up for what you believe in. That’s why I like you fish, you got your picture right there for everybody to see.

  5. 8 cu17dad March 8, 2010 at 1:05 pm

    Wayne has too much talent too struggle all spring. Motivation and better luck at the bat should improve their performances. The coaching change brings a different philosophy and maybe it has affected the players more than expected.

    I wonder about the teams seldom mentioned

    Upper Iowa split with Truman. Truman is in its third year with a new coach but the previous years they have been terrible. ( I am a Truman Alum, they did not respond to my request to look at CU 17 when he was in HS.)

    BSU seems to score runs against poor competition. How will they fare against quality opponents?

    Mary appears to have at least 2 quality pitchers.

    Augie starts to play more often this week. Maybe we will be able to tell how good they are. They open conference against CU.

  6. 9 HasBeen March 8, 2010 at 3:21 pm

    Wayne always does this everyear, not to the extent of this year, but they always have a knack to pull it together when it matters. I think Coach Manganero had a much bigger impact on and off the field that many people think. It will be interesting to see how the conference shakes up, the top 3 teams predicted to finish high are not playing like they were expected.

  7. 10 Observer March 8, 2010 at 7:48 pm

    I think folks are underestimating the influence of Manganaro. Having the guy as a Head Coach from the start vs. a “gameday consultant” is a world of difference.

    Also, if I remember right, they lost a few key bats (I’m sure non-composite) off the top of that order. Sometimes, that takes time to adjust to. I am sure they will come around. Otherwise, there may more Manganaro involvement.

    I think Anonymous is talking about the recent additions of strong teams like St. Cloud and MSU to the NSIC conference when he/she says “more competitive”. Not that the NSIC is in its 2nd year of existence.

  8. 11 cu17dad March 8, 2010 at 7:55 pm

    Truly the conference as it currently exists is 2 years old. The newcomers appear to have brought in some quality baseball programs.

  9. 12 John Plasha Sr. March 8, 2010 at 10:03 pm

    Well it seams like ground hog day all over again. The boys from Nebraska dropped another. Although it stings loseing 4-3 while giving up 3 runs in the 8th to USI it sounded to me like the boys played pretty well. Snyder pitched well into the 8th only to have it slip away at the end. Still jugleing the line-up around some but I think they can see the light. Looking for a big week comming up in Kansas.

    • 13 John Plasha Sr. March 9, 2010 at 4:30 pm

      So much for a big week in Kansas. Just got word the 4 games scheduled with Upper Iowa got canceled because the outfield is under water. Team bus made a right and is headen home to Nebraska. What a way to spend the spring break. Instead of a week in Flordia we get our heads handed to us over the weekend in Indiana then head home to shovel snow off our home field.

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