Central Michigan Sending Experience to Webster

Paul McGuillicuddyAnalyst IMay 22, 2009

Dave Brust knows well the purpose of the New York Collegiate Baseball League.

As a returning head coach, Brust understands that some of his players lack experience, and growing pains can result.

On the other hand, some players come with plenty of innings played and will seek to
fine-tune their games.

The latter is the truth with the Central Michigan Chippewas coming to play in Webster this summer.

When Rhett Goodmiller and Ricky Clark don pinstripes this summer, they will bring significant experience with them.

The Central Michigan pair will fortify Webster’s up-the-middle defense. Goodmiller and Clark have made over 60 starts this season for the Chippewas.

When speaking on Goodmiller Central Michigan Head Coach, Steve Jaksa commented: “He’s caught quite a bit.”

The freshman from Ossian, IN is hitting .261 with two home runs and 23 RBI along with 24 walks for an on-base percentage of .404.

“We’re trying to put him in a position where we can use his bat everyday in the lineup,” added Jaksa. Clark has made 20 starts this Spring, most of them at second base.

“He’s a quality kid,” said Jaksa. “Ricky always gives you his best.”

Clark has seven stolen bases in eight attempts to go with a batting average of .286. The Mason, Michigan native has a fielding percentage of .941 with 70 assists
and 60 put-outs.

Right-handed pitcher, Chris Burgess, will follow his teammates to Webster.

The freshman from St. Charles, Illinois has spent the season as a red shirt.

“We like Chris’s potential,” said Jaksa. “He’s got a good arm. He just needs to play. We’ve clocked him throwing 85-87. He knows he needs to perform.”

Webster opens the 2009 NYCBL season on Tuesday, June 9th when the Elmira Pioneers come to town.

The New York Collegiate Baseball League, founded in 1978, is a summer wood bat development league for professional baseball. Major League Baseball funds a small portion of the league’s annual budget.

The league gives college players who have not yet signed a professional contract the opportunity to develop their skills at a higher level of play, gain experience with
wood bats, and be evaluated by scouts. Current major leaguers Brad Lidge, Tim Hudson, John McDonald, and Dallas Braden all spent time in the NYCBL.

Former Webster Yankees, Bryan Gardner and Pat Urckfitz, currently play in the minor leagues. Gardner pitches in the Cincinnati Reds system while Urckfitz comes out of the bullpen in the Houston Astros system.

Pickin' Splinters