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Friday, August 11, 2006

Transfer this

College baseball has been known as the sport of the senior transfer, players who can transfer from school to school without having to sit out a year as they would in football or basketball.

This rule has made for some interesting decisions and has made leagues like the Cape Cod League centers for some borderline unethical recruiting during the summer. Now, Baseball America has published a list of players who have transferred this summer.

New LSU coach Paul Mainieri has taken advantage of this rule and landed a couple of pitchers. Tulane's Rick Jones, a coach who has done an incredible job with transfer players, picked up the aptly named Shooter Hunt from Virginia.

The rule needs to be changed but isn't without its benefits. Take the case of former Tulane catcher Max Kwan, who hails from Washington. Kwan came to New Orleans to play for the Wave before Hurricane Katrina hit.

His New Orleans "experience" consisted of spending one semester in Lubbock, Texas, and one playing a Triple-A ballpark in Metairie. Now he is transferring to the University of Washington. That makes for a better fit for Kwan.

But it is clear there is no fit for the free-transfer rule in college baseball.


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