Welcome to the second annual College Baseball Twitter Twenty.
The decision for number one came down to the guys that hold the top two spots and I went back and forth a few times. Last year featured Mark Appel, Eric Jagielo, and Brandon Thomas, all of whom were drafted in 2013. So there's a ton of new guys, sharing their journey (possibly) to the pros.
'Honorable Mentions' is expanded and, just to clarify again, a lot of these guys don't follow me and I don't follow them. It's based on lists I make and keep all year long.
And here you go:
1. Austin Weekley, @AustinWeekley18, CSU- He talks about EVERYTHING. Whether it's college football, the Dallas Cowboys, or music (he's a big Kenny Chesney fan...), he's a big Twitter presence, keeping his followers up to date and doing it with style and humor. Arguing with his teammates is a Twitter pastime as well. Bottom line, he got this for being so damn likeable. "12 weeks til Opening Day Eve in college baseball. #Hurry" As for the arguing, he called CSU teammate Dennis Buckley "a chapped Mets fan." Like this reference too: "Stephen Glandsburging it right now. #Loner" Gabby would totally dig this guy.
2. Brian Pruett, @Brian_Pruett, FCCU - He was hard to beat. Just looking at his follower count, you know he's connecting with a lot of people everywhere. His tone is super friendly and positive, and faith-based. Consistently checks in with thoughts for his devoted legion. Always enjoyable and genuine to read."Do you tell a girl she has her shirt inside out or just let it ride?" ; "#JesusIsHope"; And his snapchat thoughts resonated: "Most of us couldn't care less about your snapchat stories everyday."
3. Christian Colletti, @CFC4953, UConn - He doesn't tweet a lot, but he's funny and offbeat when he does. "Missing the days when homework assignments was just coloring." I don't actually remember coloring being a homework assignment...so you get the idea. There was also, a 'Hey girl,', but not the good kind. Just really funny. "Hey girl with 40,000 tweets and nine followers. I'm guessing you should probably shut up." And this: "I decided not to buy a pet snake for my dorm if anyone cares." Someone might.
4. TJ Lashock, @TJLashock27, Lackawanna College - The main reason he's in the top five is that he has no filter, whatsoever. "Yes I tweeted my nipple. I'm a slut 😳".... and he did tweet a picture of it. (should've added hashtag college baseball). He has a good jump on what could be ahead. "#brokebaseballplayerprobs", which should probably be trademarked. He also tweeted, " The first few minutes of an ice bath are hell." We'll all just take his word for it? (that lacking filter isn't just used for his filthy sense of humor, btw, but to attempt something from the heart: "Not to sound like a bi**h, but I want a girlfriend.")
5. Brian Welch, @bwelchy3, CSU - Instead of explaining a lot, I'll let him speak for himself, as to why he placed this high: the sole reason was his regular tweeting about college classes. Here you go: "This professor loves his overhead markers."; "This girl must know everything there is to know about everything."; "My music app professor is a CLOWN"; "A video about world civ in an 8AM class. #ohboy" Thirty five minutes later... "This video is awful."; And these two were favorites: "The convos that nursing majors have<<<
6. Tommy Donoghue, @SWINGNMISS7, Brown Mackie College- He's all over Twitter. With 42 K plus tweets, he's a consistent presence. Tweets a lot about sports and favorite teams. He tends to get into a conversational groove during games and might throw an expletive or two around. There's a lot of random thoughts and fun. "INCOMPLETE SUCK IT STEELERS". That's a very small sample. He will tweet your face off about football. Bottom line, he's deep into social media and interacting with followers.
7. Brian Ward, @brianward45, UConn- Just fun to read. And loves those creative hashtags. "That's such a girl tweet man #youvechanged;' "; "Just saw Big Papi in Johnny Rockets at the Sun. Straight big leagued me. Honored.; And this: "sorry for the virus I've been sending/giving everyone #thatwhatshesaid"....let's hope not.
8.Jake Gronsky, @14LivinTheDream, Monmouth University- Just a normal day? "Smuggling McGriddles into student employment. #AverageSaturday #TheStruggle; Might need a yoga buddy: "May have just solidified my role as worst yoga student ever.. Any tips or advice would be greatly appreciated. #TheStruggle'; And ponders the English language: "is canoodle even a word?"... and on a serious note, a favorite: "Can't stand when a FOOTBALL GAME is being referred to as a civil war...No greater way to disrespect those of 1861. God Bless our troops." Also, he's a Johnny Cash fan...so he had to make this list. Truthfully, just an entertaining, sociable follow.
9. Dennis Buckley, @dbuck15, CSU- Keeps it lighthearted and loves to talk football. Loves Carrie Underwood. Not the library. "The library is so depressing." He's a creative hashtagger: #BestCutterInTheBigSouth # "There's also an account for the CSU pitching staff (@bucnastymafia): "Baseball team shoulda trademarked "bucnasty" last year. We'd be making bank."
10. Tyler Weekley, @Tweekley5, CSU - His recent tweets on music were good for a laugh: "Jamming to Miley Cyrus with the roomie. #NoShame" ; "Christmas music in the cafe really grinds my gears". Twitter arguments with his brother Austin are always fun to read. No one wins but the reader.
11. Mike Abrunzo, @09mabrunzo, University Buffalo (former Lackawanna)- Checks in regularly and like the guy in the top spot, is super likeable. When he signed with Buffalo he responded to pretty much every congratulations he got. Plus, opened himself up to show love for mom and dad. "Beyond excited to sign today!"; "Idc what anyone says hearing how proud your parents are of you Is one of the best feelings there is #softtweet."
12. Ryan Trauger, @ryantrauger9, St. John Fisher - Sometimes players at the college and minor league level will still tweet from the fan side. Minor leaguers catch themselves (who's paying them?), but at the non-pro level, despite where they might wind up, they can still enjoy fandom. When Trauger read that the Phillies were in talks to trade Dom Brown, he didn't hold back. "If the Phillies actually trade Brown, I'm going to be one unhappy Phillies fan." He's also open about his faith, tweeting Bible verses, and messages to his late father, whom he honors in his Twitter bio.
13. Will Charkowsky, @Chark_27, Mitchell College- A recent highlight were his tweets about overcoming injury. He consistently stays upbeat, energetic, and humble. "To all the kids who claim to have "swag": swag will not pay your bills or make you a better person. #Clowns."
14. Casey Mulholland, @CaseyMulholland, University of South Florida - He got into a heated debate about umpires during the playoffs. A highlight. As is his creative penchant for hashtags. "Is there an umpire stat book that I'm not aware of? #IDontEvenKnowYou"; and in response to hearing a broadcaster he didn't care for, "#mutebutton #PleaseStopTalking."
15. Sky Mercado, @SkyJohn15, UMainee- An emotional player in this game, he's very open in what he puts out there. Recent harassment from someone on Facebook shook him up and he tweeted about it. Drops inspirational thoughts about discipline and staying the course, but is honest when he's not feeling so positive. Friendly and funny with followers. And summed up his heart's desire with this tweet: "Baseball is honestly the only place where I can get away."
16. Jeremy Finchum, @II_22FINCH_II, Capital University - What all these guys have in common is tweeting just about anything on their minds. Finchum is great at that. And has a way with a Best Buy story. "I wanna chill with Bill Cosby because he makes zero sense."; Went to Best Buy to pick up a phone charger and ended up playing Xbox One with the Microsoft rep for over an hour. It happens I guess."; And you have to love an emotional observation of an animated heart-tugger: "The first part in Up when they grow old and have an awesome time their entire lives together and then she dies is so dang sad :(" His handle qualifies him for the A-Team.
17. Bobby McCormack, @Bobby_Mac1, Baylor - It was hard to read his timeline and not find myself smiling a lot. His warmth and enthusiasm shine through, whether it's supporting the troops, his Patriots & attending a game with his dad, friends, or his 'Momma'. There's also this, probably a long overdue observation: "Can't stand the constant tweets about working out..lol"... Noted.
18. Jake Roehn, @JRoehn, Ohio State - Tweets daily and is super friendly with readers, offering to field questions, and always making some sort of lighthearted joke or positive remark. And, not sure what happened here, but... "Whoever put super glue in my door making it so I can't get in. I'm pissed & you gotta love this: "Who is the most flawless women alive? — My mom."
19. Landon Simpson, @LandonSimpson, University of Arkansas- Never afraid to let his guard down and be thoughtful and emotional, he tweets sentimental song lyrics and thoughts on faith. But he's also good for a random funny thought. "Mountain Dew and white chocolate Reese's." (will be trying that) and he couldn't have been more right and to the point with this: "Packing can suck it"
20. Matt Hockenberry, @Hocktimus_Prime, Temple University- Best Tweet Ever: I don't normally talk to people with swag; but when I do, I normally ask them for a large fry.Another gem, but on a different note: "Never give up on something you really want. It's difficult to wait, but even more difficult to regret." And that handle is the best on this list.
No one seems to like being an 'Honorable Mention.' But here they are, the guys that more than earn a mention and a follow:
Mike Zaccardo, @MichaelZaccardo, University of Tampa
Harley Moore, @The_HarleyMoore, Dickinson
Myobi Nolan, @Myobi_Nolan, USF
Josh Dezse, @Dezse23, Ohio State
Evan Grimes, @E__grimes30, Lackawanna
Ryan Dolan, @Ryry_Dole, UNCW
Adam Martin, @the OLEmartine, Western Carolina
Steven Schuler, @sschuler33, Saint Joseph's
Weston Wilson, @weswilson25, Clemson University
Justin Sheffield, @Topsheff42, Vanderbilti University
Chris Perez, @Cris_Perez18, Duke University
Drew Weeks, @drewweeks03, University of North Florida
Josh Pettitte, @JPettitte21, Baylor University
Ryan Maxim, @Rymaximus, BCC
Chase Shelton, @ChaseShelton13, CSU
Ty Filliben, @TFilliben, Samford University
AJ Gale, @AjGale_13, Saint John's University
Luke Miller, @lmiller_19, Lackawanna
Kyle Dyson, @KyleDyson27, CSU
Tim Wetzel, @Timmy_Wetz, Ohio State
James Reeves, @JamesReeves28, Citadel
Javi Salas, @javisalas22, University of Miami
Kevin Hickey, @KevinHickey11, CSU
Alex Tomasovich, @tomasovich_13, CSU
Andrew Tomasovich, @tomasovich_13, CSU
Chris Okey, @Chris_Okey25. Clemson
Joe Pistacchio, @joepistacchio, CSU
Drake Parker, @DrakeTparker21, Vanderbilt
Brandon Waddell, @BWaddell20, UVA
Tyler Beede, @TylerBeede11, Vanderbilt
Garrett Rucker, @G_Ruck_5, Arkansas
Zack Hagaman, @zhags10, CSU
Alec Bettinger, @A_TRAINN13, UVA
Bobby Ison, @BobbyIson1, CSU
Grant Silva, @GrantSilva1, Tabor
Matt Witt @MattWitt20, CSU
Derek Fisher UVA @DeFish23
Blake Roland, @TheBlakeRoland, CSU
Drew Woodall, @drew_woodall, CSU
Cody Austin, @Caustin44, CSU
Parker Ross, @ParkerRoss7, SJFC
Kellen Brown, @kbrowntwelve, FAU
Kenny Towns, @Ktowns9, UVA