At the start of the season, the pitching and overall depth of the team looked to be promising. Tom Cosgrove caught the attention of D1Baseball.com’s Eric Sorenson and “The ‘ J’ Effect.” The return of Mike Scarinci from last season’s Tommy John surgery recovery and Scott McClennan from a blood clot (2013), micro-fracture left knee surgery (2014) are a few examples of that.
The Lamar Cardinals’ sweep of the Manhattan Jaspers two weekends ago showed off Manhattan’s expected slow start.
For starters, they haven’t practiced outside since October and are now facing live pitching for the first time. So their early rusty play is understandable. Plus, it’s simply too early in the season to nitpick.
“(The series) was certainly productive, but the numbers wouldn’t tell you that,” Jim Duffy, Jaspers head coach, said. “All in all the numbers they look disappointing, but I kind of I like some of the things that I saw and, in the same vein, we have a lot of work to do. That was totally anticipated.”
The most productive part of the weekend at Lamar for Duffy was that everybody played. Right now, he wants his team to focus more on the process of play, body language, effort and execution as opposed to results. Results to him are meaningful, but don’t become important until MAAC play.
The Manhattan Jaspers rebuild is over. Inexperience and injuries are replaced with experience, health, talent and depth.
Where the pitching is concerned they are impressive. It’s a staff comprised of young talent of the deepest and highest quality, and to no surprise. Jasper head coach, Jim Duffy, recruited heavily in pitching in the 2014 college baseball draft class. The top recruit, Tom Cosgrove, was projected to be a pitcher to watch in the MAAC by “The ‘J’ Effect” and D1Baseball.com last week.
It’s no secret that the Manhattan Jaspers have been in a rebuild mode over the past two seasons. The time has come once again for them to be a MAAC championship contender since their 2011 and 2012 back-to-back title wins.
Why now all of a sudden? Good, talented pitching…lots of it too.
The spring cannot come soon enough for the Manhattan Jaspers men’s soccer team. For those who did not follow the Jasper’s 2014 fall season, it was not one they would like to remember.
From Sept. 19 to Oct. 11, they were goalless in 587 straight minutes, a span of six games played. That was not their only problem. Their struggle to find the back of the net – no pun intended – also had them on a 13 game losing streak after starting the season 1-1.
As the season reaches its mid-point for the Manhattan Jaspers, the 10 freshmen Jaspers are no longer new to the team and fans.
Three of the freshmen who have been quite impressive early on are Joe Hulme, Jose Meza and Luke Greaves. Understandably so, Manhattan head coach Jorden Scott said all of the freshmen have been excellent.
“They’ve all came in and been really mature, which is really pleasing to me,” he said. “And for them you just hope they pick up enough that they can contribute. If they don’t pick up enough then it’s going to be a tough season for them.”
Before the Ivy League weekend at Yale and Harvard, the Manhattan Jaspers were on a 10-day “honeymoon period,” as Jaspers’ head coach Jorden Scott called it, from when they last played and lost to the Fordham Rams 3-1.
A couple of positives junior captain Alex Shackley took away from the long break was being able to work on an attacking style of play to try to help turn their many goal chances into goal scores. Scott said his team needs to be more clinical in front of the goal, which includes being more selfish and direct at times.
The Jaspers’ honeymoon ended fast, as they struggled to score in the last three games, all to non-conference opponents.