I know next to nothing about college baseball. After attending and enjoying a couple of Maryland baseball games last year, I bought season tickets this year and filed away the intent to check out games when possible. With our kids otherwise engaged on Saturday, the first opportunity this season corresponded with a double header against Princeton.
Although bitterly cold (and snowing (?)), it was several hours well worth spent. The opening game was a rout, with K.J. Hockaday, Kyle Convissar, and Charlie White going a combined 10 for 13 to put more than enough runs on the board for Brady Kirkpatrick's second win of the year.
I had to leave early in the second game, but stayed long enough to see why freshman Kevin Mooney was Maryland's high school player of the year. It was also apparent, from both games, why Maryland's last coaching regime was so high on the pair of Brooklyn recruits out of Grand Street, Kevin Martir (C) and Jose Cuas (2B/SS). Cuas let a routine grounder that should have been a double play eat him up late in the first game, but otherwise looked solid in the field and at the plate. Martir's a solid backstop who looks like he can carry his own with the bat as well.
The lasting impression from the games, however, was the incredible bloodlines on display for Princeton. I should have recognized head coach Scott Bradley from his time with the Mariners (as Randy Johnson's personal catcher, no less), but when any American soccer fan sees him the first connection drawn is how much he looks like his older brother, Bob.
Scott has pulled together an impressive pedigree of catchers. The starting backstop for game one happens to look and play very much like his father, former Chicago Cub and current assistant General Manager of the Angels, Scott Servais. The starting backstop for game two looks quite a bit like his major league father and current Mets' bench coach, Bob Geren. Princeton has both Geren boys, with older brother Bobby spelling Brett late in the game. As famous as Tyler, Bobby, and Bret's respective fathers are, they pale in (current) comparison to the patriarch of another catcher on the roster, Andrew Christie.
I would hazard a guess that few of the several Princeton supporters that made it out to College Park for the series enjoyed the games much. It was cold, Princeton was overmatched, and it was a brutal way to start the season. Nevertheless, despite the rough conditions, they were great. They will, with luck, get much more pleasure out of the trip to Georgetown in two weeks.