For those who don’t know, collegiate baseball has six (6) different ranking systems that rank teams. If you thought college football was confusing with its multiple ranking systems, just keep that in mind with baseball.
The six ranking systems are: D1Baseball.com, Baseball America, National College Baseball Writers of America, Collegiate Baseball, RPI and USA Today Coaches Poll. Entering the season, D1Baseball was the highest on the Mountaineers, ranking them #14 to start the preseason, while the coaches poll has the Mountaineers #22 and Baseball America did not rank the Mountaineers. Baseball is such a tough sport to rank because you aren’t going undefeated and the wide variability of the team makeups.
After the first series of the season, the Mountaineers are 2-2. The Mountaineers used a Friday night extra inning affair to win the first the game of the year 5-3 following a 2-run blast by Vincent Ippoliti. Saturday was not kind to West Virginia as they dropped another extra inning game 7-6 in the early game of a double header, then saw the train come off the tracks in a 20-6 shellacking in the night cap. Sunday was much better as the Mountaineers rode a dominant bullpen to a 3-2 win and a series split.
D1Baseball, who were extremely high on the Mountaineers entering the season, dropped West Virginia to 23 in their rankings, in part because of the series split but also because Saturday starter Ryan Bergert was lost after their initial rankings were released. Bergert’s injury shakes up the entire starting rotation.
Other teams that took tumbles in the rankings included TCU (down four spots to No. 14), Texas (down 10 spots to No. 19), and West Virginia (down nine spots to No. 23). The Mountaineers went 2-2 against Georgia State, but their fall in the rankings also reflects a recalibration in light of the news that key weekend starter Ryan Bergert will miss the season due to injury — a development that was released after our preseason Top 25 was published.
Baseball America still does not have the Mountaineers ranked in their Top 25 and neither does Collegiate Baseball, who releases a Top 30.
USA Today Coaches Poll and NCBWA, both released rankings in early February and haven’t updated their rankings as of Tuesday at noon, still have the Mountaineers ranked 22nd and 21st respectively.
The Mountaineers are back in action on Friday as they begin a tournament in Myrtle Beach as part of the Coastal Carolina Baseball Tournament.