Jarod Bull

2018 Championship Tournament Preview: York Yaks

Roster: Jared Laird, Adam Milsted, Dan Potter

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Playing Out Of: York, Pennsylvania

Seed: 3rd

2018 MAW Record: 8-15

Signature Wins: vs. Longballs 6-3 (5/5); vs. Lemon Heads 1-0 (8/4)

Versus Championship Tournament Teams: 4-9

First Game: vs. Longballs

Why They Will Win It All:  No trio on any other playoff team hit as many regular season home runs (16) as Laird (4), Milsted (4), and Potter (8). If those three are clicking on all cylinders offensively, they can make up for any pitching deficiencies the Yaks may have in the Championship Tournament. Any lineup that affords Potter an opportunity to hit at least once per inning is a potentially dangerous one. He is one of a few hitters in this tournament who can single-handedly take over with his bat. The Yaks’ 3-man offense has the potential to score runs in droves if everyone is locked in. That production could allow them to shorten a game or two by mercy rule and/or give Milsted a breather after getting out to a big lead.

Jared Laird had a sneakily solid season on the carpet, posting a 4.46 ERA in 11 2/3 innings. It is conceivable that the Yaks could squeeze a win out of Laird, which would take some pressure off Milsted. On August 4th, Milsted threw 15 shutout innings against a pair of playoff teams – Barrel Bruisers and Lemon Heads – and a quality Shortballs squad. Based off that single tournament performance, it is fair to assume that – on a really good day – Adam might have 20-ish quality innings in his arm, which might be just enough to help his team to the finish line if he gets an assist from Laird.

Perhaps most importantly, the veteran Yaks have become quite adept at finding ways to sneak into the later rounds of tournaments while still leaving bullets in the chamber for later. The Yaks don’t care how they survive, as long as they do. While other teams in the Championship Tournament might be tempted to shift into high gear in their very first game, the Yaks have demonstrated a willingness and ability to hold back early so that they can still put their best foot forward in elimination games. That experience could prove especially useful under this tournament format.

Why They Won’t:  The absence of Jarod Bull might be too big for the Yaks to overcome. If the Yaks had Bull, it would be relatively easy to chart a path to the finals for the hometown team. Without two top tier pitchers, it is far more difficult to see how Yaks will reach the championship series. Even if Laird gives the Yaks two quality games – which might be asking a lot – the team would still need at least four big performances form Milsted. In addition, the Yaks will be without team captain Nick Shirey, who is currently recovering from surgery to repair a torn labrum. The absence of Shirey deprives the team of one of their biggest on base threats. All told, there is a good chance the Yaks will run out of pitching at some point during the day and finish short of the finals.


The Scout #10: Jarod Bull

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As the lone rookie on an otherwise veteran team, Jarod Bull led the York Yaks to a regular season title in Mid Atlantic Wiffle in 2017.  The towering right-hander gained steam during the summer, including one three-tournament stretch where he allowed zero runs over four games (17 innings) with forty punch-outs. Bull is MAW’s best-kept secret and is more-than-ready to test himself against some of the game’s better hitters.

Bull brings a calm, business-like demeanor to the pitching rubber. His straightforward and smooth delivery belies the explosiveness of his pitches. His best and most consistent offering is a screwball that breaks down and in on right-handed batters. The pitch has enough movement – and is mixed in with his other offerings well enough – that he has been able to get away with throwing it down the heart of the plate. The Yaks’ ace also utilizes a hard slider and will drop down with sidearm action on occasion for a riser or drop. The side arm delivery is a particularly great weapon against right-handers and his ability to throw multiple pitches from the arm angle keeps batters guessing. The Yaks were judicious in their use of Bull last season, limiting him to 38 innings in MAW competition and another dozen innings outside of the organization. Their plan paid dividends as Bull stayed strong throughout the entire year and spearheaded a midsummer charge for his team that moved them from near the bottom of the standings to the top.

Similar to his pitching style, Bull uses a simplified approach at the plate. His no-stride swing is helpful in allowing him to stay back on high-movement pitches. Given his size, his lack of power last season in MAW – just one double, triple, and home run each – was somewhat surprising and might be related to the no-stride hitting approach. He still managed a respectable batting average and sprinkled in a few timely hits. Defensively, Bull fields his position very well, a by-product of finishing his motion in a solid fielding position.

2017 Tournament #4 Recap - "You and Johnny, Kid"

YORK, PA (AUGUST 12, 2017) - A little after one o’clock on July 15th, the York Yaks’ season hit rock bottom.

In dropping their final pool play game of tournament #3 to the W2B squad of Ben Stant and Adam Milstead by a score of 8-4, the Yaks’ season record fell to a lowly 2-8. With one pool play game left to play that day, there was no guarantee that the Yaks would even make it into that day’s playoff round. The team was in danger of exiting July six games below .500 on the season and with only 5 playoff points. It was a result that would have left the Yaks – at best – tied for the final spot in the playoffs with only two tournaments left to play.

Then – just like that – their entire season changed.

Five for Friday: The Sub-1.00 ERA Club

Through three tournaments, there are five pitchers in Mid Atlantic who have thrown at least 19 innings and have an ERA under 1.00 – Jarod Bull, Ryan Doeppel, Danny Lanigan, Nick Schaefer, and Connor Young. While they all share the same minuscule earned run average, none of the five pitchers went about it in quite the same way.