Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

JU's Dobbins Undaunted, Unbeaten; after a Quiet 2004-05, Sophomore Ace Alters Approach with Success

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

JU's Dobbins Undaunted, Unbeaten; after a Quiet 2004-05, Sophomore Ace Alters Approach with Success

Article excerpt

Byline: JASON SCHNEIDER

Tim Montez calls them adjustments. Matt Dobbins refers to them as tweaks.

But no matter the term, the changes that Dobbins made from the end of the 2004-05 season through the current one have turned the little-used position player into one of college baseball's most successful pitchers.

Entering the Atlantic Sun Conference Tournament -- regular-season champion Jacksonville University is scheduled to open against sixth-seeded Campbell at 11 a.m. today in DeLand -- Dobbins has the country's best overall record at 12-0 and is tied with five others for the most wins. The sophomore left-hander was the A-Sun pitcher of the week last week. On Tuesday, he was named a semifinalist for the Brooke Wallace College Player of the Year Award, which is given to the top college pitcher.

"It's been a crazy season," Dobbins said. "I didn't expect to be where I am, and I'll say that no one else thought I'd have the season I'm having."

In 2004-05, Dobbins appeared in 23 games and pitched just 3 2/3 innings. It was the first time that Dobbins, who was a four-year starter at Longwood Lake Brantley High School, spent more time on the bench than in the field.

Dobbins expected to play more this season and worked with pitching coach Montez during the offseason. Montez, who also has worked with the likes of major-leaguers Russ Ortiz and Barry Zito, didn't drastically change Dobbins' style, but he altered the pitcher's arm speed and delivery while helping the brainy pitcher simplify his mental approach.

"He was being a little too fine, a little too careful" said Montez, who's in his first year as JU's pitching coach. "I wanted more -- more momentum, more rhythm, more attacking."

The changes added a few mph to Dobbins' fastball. Also armed with a reliable curveball and a solid changeup, he was slotted in the Dolphins' rotation. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.