by John Furgele
The College World Series begins tonight at Rosenblatt Stadium in Omaha, Nebraska. College baseball certainly doesn’t get the exposure that college football and college basketball get, but the CWS is worth a look. And, the NCAA and the city of Omaha have just reached an agreement to keep the CWS in Omaha for 25 more years through 2035. Of course, the historic Rosenblatt Stadium will be torn down and replaced by a new 24,000 seat downtown stadium.
I like the fact that the current stadium is called Rosenblatt Stadium, not Rosenblatt Field or Rosenblatt Park. Nothing against calling your playpen a park, or field, but what’s wrong with calling it a stadium? There was concerns that the CWS was going to leave Omaha, but thankfully, the NCAA and the city of Omaha did the right thing by keeping “The Road to Omaha,” intact.
The biggest problem with college baseball is the use of the ping sounding aluminum bats. These bats should be taken out of both college baseball and high school baseball, but we know that there are economic and legal issues to deal with, so it’s not worth a protracted fight.
I love the double elimination format that college baseball uses. There are four first round games, and the four losers of the those games have to play a win-or-you’re-out format. There is a sense of urgency right away, but if you lose your first game, you can still come back and win the title.
The eight teams are Georgia, Miami, Fla, Florida State, Stanford, Rice, Fresno State, North Carolina, and Louisiana State. Georgia, Miami, Stanford, LSU and Rice have won championships; North Carolina was the runner up in 2006 and 2007, and Fresno State is making its first CWS appearance.
After six of the eight teams are eliminated, the remaining two play a best-of-3 championship series. Good stuff. Take a look.