End Of Baseball At BG Brings Shock, Agony To So Many


Bruce Hefflinger and Dylan Hefflinger
PBR Ohio Senior Writer and PBR Ohio Editor in Chief/NW Scout

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End Of Baseball At BG Brings Shock, Agony To So Many

If no 2020 baseball season in high school or college was not bad enough, the situation has gotten worse … at least at Bowling Green State University.

Last Friday the Mid-American Conference school eliminated the sport of baseball effective immediately.

The financial move by BG leaves so many in limbo, disappointed and upset with a decision to bring an end to the sport of baseball, which in 1915 established the first school-sponsored athletic team at the northwest Ohio campus.

But a little more than a century later, a decision has been made to terminate a program that has produced 49 Major League Baseball draft selections.

Many former, current and future players were hoping to follow the steps of players like Bowling Green graduates Orel Hershiser, Doug Bair, Andy Tracy, Burke Badenhop, Roger McDowell and Nolan Reimold in working their way up the ranks of professional baseball to the big leagues. Instead, those players are left with decisions to make ...

Should they stay at Bowling Green as a student only, all but ending their days as a baseball player? Or should they move on to another college to keep their baseball dreams alive?   

Some have football as an option. Levi Gazarek of North Baltimore was planning on playing both baseball and football at BG while Max Carevic is another with football as a consideration. The 2017 Wellington grad was a standout on the gridiron in high school before attending Cuyahoga Community College for baseball prior to going to Bowling Green.

Here is what a number of current as well as committed Falcons of the future had to say about the ordeal they are now facing.

HOW DID YOU FIND OUT?

Max Carevic RHP / Wellington, OH / 2017

The team had a zoom meeting Friday at 1:45 about the cancellation of the baseball program. I was in complete disbelief.

Tyler Hays RHP / 1B / Copley, OH / 2018

Since the season ended we’ve had a few zoom meetings to stay connected as a team and updated on workouts. A zoom meeting was scheduled for Friday, May 15th and we received the horrible news about BG eliminating Baseball. I was shocked when the athletic director told us. The last few days have been very emotional ... everything from sadness to anger.

 

Griffin Parrill RHP / 3B / Perrysburg, OH / 2018

We first heard about this at 1:45 on Friday through a zoom call. My first reaction was shock. It didn’t start to set in until the next day when it was time to figure out a new plan. It was devastating thinking I wouldn’t get to play with those guys anymore.

Gage Schenk RHP / C / Wapakoneta, OH / 2018

We had a zoom meeting and our athletic director broke the news to us. I was shocked. Didn’t expect anything like that.

Tanner Egger C / SS / Avon, OH / 2019

I first found out in a zoom meeting. Coaches and the AD brought the team together and broke the news to us. First I was shocked and mad because I enjoyed my teammates and the atmosphere so much. But as some time has passed I have come to realize I need to find what’s next.

Adam Fallon 2B / SS / Bishop Watterson, OH / 2019

We found out through our coaches and athletic director as a team when they told us. My initial thought was that everyone’s time here was gone too soon and that we wouldn’t be able to step on the field together with a college and program we all loved to represent … Bowling Green Baseball.

Mason Montgomery SS / RHP / Vermilion, OH / 2019

All of this news came as a surprise when we were told to get into a zoom meeting with the team and coaches and we were informed in there by our athletic director. My initial thoughts were to think that this can’t be real. I was in shock and I started to think about 100 things at once.

Rigo Ramos LHP / 1B / Archbold, OH / 2019

We received the bad news over a big zoom call with all of us players, coaches and the athletic director. You can imagine how quiet everybody was because nobody could believe it.. We still can’t believe it.

Owen Recker RHP / 1B / Kalida, OH / 2019

I heard about it in our team zoom meeting and I had absolutely no clue that that type of information was coming. On first hearing it I was obviously initially shocked and it was a little overwhelming at the time. it took me a while to be able to process the information. I was also very disappointed because I loved playing with the group of guys at Bowling Green and I’m definitely going to miss getting together with them every day and playing the game we all love together.

Nathan Rose SS / 2B / Shaker Heights, OH / 2019

We were told on Thursday that we would have a team meeting on Friday afternoon. Since Friday was the last day of finals, I figured it would be an end-of-the-year meeting. When the meeting started it was clear that it was very serious and the AD delivered the news. The news was very upsetting and emotional. My heart sank when I realized that I wouldn’t be playing with my teammates again.

Tyler Ross SS / RHP / Olentangy Orange, OH / 2019

We had a team zoom call in the early afternoon and our AD was on the call. He was choked up and told us the news. Initial thoughts are kind of hard to remember cause it was just so emotional you kind of go numb. Then our coaches talked to us and that was hard to hear. Looking on the screen you just saw a lot of guys with red faces and were just shocked.

Levi Gazarek RHP / SS / North Baltimore, OH / 2020

I heard about this on a call from the baseball staff. My initial thoughts were that I was shocked and really didn’t even know what to think. It was definitely the last thing I expected to hear that day the news broke.

Landon Willeman RHP / 3B / Napoleon, OH / 2020

I got a call from the coaches and I could tell by their voices something was up. When I got the news I was in shock and that’s when the emotions started to hit.

Peyton Wilson RHP / 3B / New London, OH / 2020

I was in the middle of taking my AP final exam and I got the call. I knew it had to be important for it to go through. I answered it and I just knew it wasn’t good. I was devastated and still am. I was so excited to go play baseball at Bowling Green and I felt like I had it ripped from me. It broke my heart to have all of us players and coaches looking for new homes for the upcoming season.

Jake Armsey SS / RHP / Walsh Jesuit, OH / 2021

I received a text asking if I had heard about what happened to Bowling Green. I said no and went on Twitter and saw they cut baseball.

Connar Penrod RHP / SS / Wauseon, OH / 2021

I initially read it on Twitter and then shortly later was called by coach Hallock who added the other coaches into the call as well. They explained that they were informed shortly before I got the news and they were deeply sorry for this happening.

Christian Ramos 2B / SS / St. Edward, OH / 2022

When I heard the news about the decision regarding Bowling Green’s baseball future I was getting ready to go work out and I got a text from a friend asking me if I heard the news and if it was true. After I saw multiple posts on Twitter about the program getting shut down, I honestly did not know what to think other than how tough it must be on the athletes and families, and tough to think about the coaches who put a lot of effort into helping the players grow. That is what kind of stuck with me. I feel for everyone who is going to be affected by this.

Samuel Seidel SS / 2B / South Central, OH / 2022

The first thing I saw about it was PBR on Twitter. I wasn’t too worried about it because I thought it was just for the year 2021 and then everything was normal, but about 10 minutes later I got a call from the BG coaching staff and they explained what had happened. I was just shocked. It was so random and unexpected that I was just in disbelief. You could hear the sadness in the voice and that it was definitely not a call they wanted to make.

WHAT WAS YOUR TIME WITH THE PROGRAM LIKE?

Max Carevic RHP / Wellington, OH / 2017

My time at BGSU has been fantastic. It was always a dream to play Division I baseball and the experience met all my expectations and then some.

Tyler Hays RHP / 1B / Copley, OH / 2018

I love being a BG Falcon baseball player. Our coaches were exceptional … I have learned so much about the game and how to compete. I love my teammates and have made friendships that will last a lifetime. It is such a shame that our opportunity to finish what we started has been taken away from us.

 

Griffin Parrill RHP / 3B / Perrysburg, OH / 2018

Until now my time at BG has been great. The friends I made and the memories we have together will last a lifetime.

Gage Schenk RHP / C / Wapakoneta, OH / 2018

My time at BG has been amazing. I couldn’t have asked for a better group of guys or coaching staff to play with

WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS Now?

Max Carevic RHP / Wellington, OH / 2017

My plans are to be determined at the moment, but I absolutely want to continue being a college athlete. ... whether that means transferring to another school to play baseball or attempting to walk on the football team.

Tyler Hays RHP / 1B / Copley, OH / 2018

I will be entering the transfer portal and looking at other schools to continue my baseball career.

 

Griffin Parrill RHP / 3B / Perrysburg, OH / 2018

I now plan to enter the transfer portal and try to find a new home.

Gage Schenk RHP / C / Wapakoneta, OH / 2018

I am not sure of my plans as of now.

Tanner Egger C / SS / Avon, OH / 2019

Right now I plan to enter the transfer portal and am looking for a similar fit to what I had at BG. The environment and hard work from the Falcon program is something I want to continue elsewhere, especially since I have my full eligibility left.

Adam Fallon 2B / SS / Bishop Watterson, OH / 2019

As of right now I have entered into the transfer portal, and my recruitment is now open again in hopes to find a new home for next season and the following years.

Mason Montgomery SS / RHP / Vermilion, OH / 2019

My plans now are to enter the transfer portal and seek options to try and continue my baseball career.

Rigo Ramos LHP / 1B / Archbold, OH / 2019

BGSU has informed us that they will honor our scholarships throughout college, but I’m a baseball player and can’t imagine my life without the game. With that being said, I will be entering the transfer portal in hopes of finding a new home where I can grow as a person and a ball player.

Owen Recker RHP / 1B / Kalida, OH / 2019

I’m having Tommy John on May 29 so at this moment I am planning on going to Bowling Green this next year since they are keeping our scholarships. Then after I’m done with the recovery process and I’m back to full health at the end of the spring, I’m hoping to play summer ball and then possibly transfer to another school to finish out my collegiate career. One good thing is I will still have four years of eligibility left.

Nathan Rose SS / 2B / Shaker Heights, OH / 2019

I’ve entered the transfer portal and I am hoping to find a school that is a good fit for me to continue my academic and athletic career.

Tyler Ross SS / RHP / Olentangy Orange, OH / 2019

Going forward I think I’m going to continue to pursue baseball and transfer from BG. Talking with family members and others close to me, I think it’s the best thing for me.

Levi Gazarek RHP / SS / North Baltimore, OH / 2020

This does not change my outlook on going to BGSU. I am just going to focus on being the best football player and person that I can be. I would love to continue to play baseball, but right now I guess that isn’t in the playing cards.

Landon Willeman RHP / 3B / Napoleon, OH / 2020

I’m just trying to find a new home, a new place I can fit in for the next few years. I’m just going to wait and see how things unfold.

Peyton Wilson RHP / 3B / New London, OH / 2020

As of right now, I’m looking for a new home to play baseball at and I am open to playing at any level. I have to find the right fit for me. I have a lot of JUCO schools contacting me and I know that’s a very solid move for me. I am keeping an open mind and trying to find the best fit to extend my playing career.

Jake Armsey SS / RHP / Walsh Jesuit, OH / 2021

My plan now is to find a school that will fit me as well as Bowling Green did. I will go about this season as I did last year in terms of recruiting.

Connar Penrod RHP / SS / Wauseon, OH / 2021

In regards to my baseball and college future, my plans as of now are unknown. I haven’t fully decided what my future will hold. And for baseball, I haven’t made any decisions on recruiting or anything yet either.

Christian Ramos 2B / SS / St. Edward, OH / 2022

My plans regarding my baseball and college future is to try and be the best player I can be and control what I can control by working hard every chance I can get. I know if I just focus on the game and being the best teammate and player I can be, that will dictate where my future will be.

Samuel Seidel SS / 2B / South Central, OH / 2022

Right now I’m not too sure I have some colleges in mind that I would like to try to go to, but I’m going to have to get back into the recruitment stage and jump through all the hoops again. Showcases are not my strength so it definitely won’t be easy but, hopefully, I get to where I need to be.

WHAT CAN YOU BRING TO A PROGRAM?

Tanner Egger C / SS / Avon, OH / 2019

I feel like I can bring a good bat and a teammate that is willing to grind through tough times with my teammates to meet our goals. Physically I’m much stronger and in great shape.

Adam Fallon 2B / SS / Bishop Watterson, OH / 2019

I feel as though I bring more of a dirtbag baseball style, energetic and speed game to the field everyday, along with strong academics in the classroom.

Mason Montgomery SS / RHP / Vermilion, OH / 2019

I feel that I’m a high-energy player that works hard and will do anything for the team to help contribute and win. No matter where I’m put on the field or in the lineup, I’m going to do my job.

Rigo Ramos LHP / 1B / Archbold, OH / 2019

I feel like I can bring a lot to a program. I’m a lanky lefty with growing velocity, great offspeed pitches, and the ability to pound the strike zone. With my upside and attitude, I believe that my best baseball is still ahead of me and that will allow me to be a weekend guy for any program.

Owen Recker RHP / 1B / Kalida, OH / 2019

I feel like I can bring a lot to a team and program. I believe I have a strong presence on the mound and with me what you see is what you get. I’m never gonna try to be someone else, I’m gonna stick to who I am and what got me to this point.

Nathan Rose SS / 2B / Shaker Heights, OH / 2019

I am very confident with my abilities on the field. I have a strong work ethic with a desire to get better and better. I brought this to BG and will continue to bring it wherever I end up. I am known to be a leader by example and I’m bringing it.

Tyler Ross SS / RHP / Olentangy Orange, OH / 2019

Personally I think I can bring a lot of different things to the next program I go to. Leadership and grit are two things I’ve always had and they grew in my time at BG. I’m just a player that my teammates and coaches can trust to show up everyday and lay it all on the line.

Landon Willeman RHP / 3B / Napoleon, OH / 2020

I’m going to be a competitor and a hard worker for the next program and just going to better myself and the team.

Peyton Wilson RHP / 3B / New London, OH / 2020

I feel as if I’m a very smart and powerful right-handed pitcher. I am very dynamic and I can be anything a coach needs me to be. I have been taking my game to a new level since quarantine started. I cleaned up my delivery, fixed my off speed, and have gotten into a lot better shape. I believe I now have five legit pitches that will play at any level. I have a great work ethic and I am willing to do whatever a coach needs. I believe I am a good teammate and can help any program go to another level.

Jake Armsey SS / RHP / Walsh Jesuit, OH / 2021

I feel like I can bring a lot to a program at the next level. I bring a strong bat that can be an impact in a college lineup. I can also bring leadership and energy to a team.

Connar Penrod RHP / SS / Wauseon, OH / 2021

I’m a right-handed pitcher that has never been able to commit to a full offseason worth of work. I play three sports so I’ve never fully been coached and put in a full offseason workout program. I think I have a lot of upside.

Christian Ramos 2B / SS / St. Edward, OH / 2022

What I know I can bring into a program at the next level is dedication and hard work. I take pride in those two aspects, along with being coachable. My own talents can only take me so far, so listening and trusting in what the coach wants for the betterment of the team,is going to be done at the best it can be done by my role.

Samuel Seidel SS / 2B / South Central, OH / 2022

I feel like I can bring some leadership to the next level as well as my offensive skill set. I think that wherever I go I’m going to be able to produce at the plate.

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING

Jay Ward LHP / 1B / Carmel Catholic, IL / 2018

I heard about what happened while I was taking my last final of the semester. I initially thought to myself how can this be real ... is this actually happening. Then I thought of all of my teammates and the coaching staff and all of the bonds and friendships that we made over my time here. I was unbelievably shocked and really emotional when I heard the news. Everyone on this team I consider to be my brother and I cannot thank them enough for the people they are and the friendships I have made with them. I also thought of all of the alumni and the program that they built for me to be a part of and I couldn’t be more thankful for that opportunity. My time with the program has been amazing. I had a rocky start to my freshman year but I took it upon myself to step up and help my team win. Pitching under coach Hallock, I have learned a lot of lessons and tips throughout the years that have helped me become the person I am today and only for the better. I have learned to persevere and continue to grind every day in order to achieve my goals the right way no matter how crazy they may be. As for my college career future, I plan on continuing to play baseball at the Division-I level and ultimately making it to the pros. Ay Ziggy Zoomba. Falcons forever.

FINAL WORDS

Christian Ramos 2B / SS / St. Edward, OH / 2022

I have nothing but respect and appreciation for the coaches at Bowling Green. They are the first school to believe in me in either sport I play in. That’s something I’m going to always appreciate in my life. The coaches there were the type of people I wanted to play for, which is the reason why I committed as a sophomore. My summer team coach, Coach Adrian Abrahamowicz, was a very big role in this decision as well. He has a good relationship with the staff and was just being very honest about the program and how they are. He told me the coaching staff are the type of guys that are going to help you grow outside of baseball as a man. After some phone calls with the coaching staff, I knew this would be a good fit for me as an athlete, and as a person. I will always be thankful that  Bowling Green was the first program at the next level to believe in me, and I wish the best for everyone affected by this decision.

Samuel Seidel SS / 2B / South Central, OH / 2022

I just would like to say thank you to the BG staff for taking a chance on me and giving me an opportunity. Their staff is some of the nicest people and I had a great relationship with them. It's devastating to hear this news. I was really looking forward to it.

Levi Gazarek RHP / SS / North Baltimore, OH / 2020

I don’t think I’m ready for my baseball career to come to an end, being that I have so much more in the tank and a lot of untapped potential. I’ve never really worked with a true pitching coach before for a good period of time so I was really eager to get to work with coach Hallock. Maybe an opportunity will present itself in the future for baseball.

Landon Willeman RHP / 3B / Napoleon, OH / 2020

I just wanna thank everyone for the support through these tough times, but we are going to come out of this stronger than before!

Peyton Wilson RHP / 3B / New London, OH / 2020

I would like to thank the coaching staff and players at Bowling Green. They all helped me and I’m still going to remain in contact with them. I made a lot of friends and I’m very thankful for that opportunity. I hope everyone can find a home or figure out what is best for them through this very tough time.

Tanner Egger C / SS / Avon, OH / 2019

I was able to make solid gains being in the program my first year.  Academically I had a solid year and should have a GPA around 3.3, so I feel I’m in a good position to be able to transfer just about anywhere.

Rigo Ramos LHP / 1B / Archbold, OH / 2019

Although the news is devastating, BGSU will always have a very special place in my heart. I can’t thank coach Hallock and the rest of the coaching staff enough for taking  a chance on me and giving me the opportunity to continue my career at the highest level of amateur baseball. I’ll be more than ready to give my all and help a different program win next season, but I’ll always be a Falcon at heart.

Owen Recker RHP / 1B / Kalida, OH / 2019

No matter where I end up I know that I will end up being successful because I’m going to work as hard as I can just like I do in everything else to make sure that that happens. It’s also nice for coaches to know that they have nothing to worry about academically with me as I have a 4.0 throughout my first year at BG.

Nathan Rose SS / 2B / Shaker Heights, OH / 2019

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank everyone involved in the baseball program at BG. I am privileged to have had the opportunity to work with coaches Schmitz, Shay, Hallock and Ascue. I appreciate their faith in me and BG will always have a special place in my heart.

Tyler Ross SS / RHP / Olentangy Orange, OH / 2019

I just want to thank the coaches and supporting staff that helped me in my time at BG. The transition to D-I college athletics isn’t easy but they helped in so many different ways. I feel for them and hope they find new homes just like a lot of us players are trying to do.

Tyler Hays RHP / 1B / Copley, OH / 2018

My two years at Bowling Green were great. I enjoyed everything about being a Falcon and I will miss my teammates, coaches and friends. Now it’s time for the next chapter!

PBR THOUGHTS

The last time a Mid-American Conference program was dropped in the sport of baseball came in 2015 when budget issues resulted in the elimination of America’s game at Akron .

While the school has since resurrected baseball, with the sport officially returning this year, the sudden end to the Bowling Green program is difficult to grasp.

For those here at Prep Baseball Report, words like despair, heartbreak, sorrow and shock come to mind.

Dylan Hefflinger is the Editor in Chief and NW Ohio scout for PBR and has worked with and helped out many of the players on this year’s BG roster as well as those still in high school that committed to play at his alma mater.

“When I got the text from a fellow BGSU alum, so many thoughts started rushing through my head,” Hefflinger said. “Bowling Green holds a special spot in my heart as I have so many memories from my youth, through college and now as a scout. Knowing the closest D-I school to my home has closed its doors to the game I love truly hurts.

“There are so many who are affected by this that I am close with and I have already reached out to many of them letting them know I will help in any way I can. I wish the best for all who have been affected by this.”

Jordan Chiero, PBR Ohio Director of Scouting, echoes those words when discussing the situation at BG.

“It’s tough to even put into words how difficult of a pill this is to swallow,” Chiero said. “My heart goes out to the coaches, players and recruits that had committed there. 

“There were talented players in that program, and they had very talented recruits in the 2020, 2021 and 2022 classes. Coaching wise, you have a coach in coach Schmitz who has dedicated 30 years to this program, coach Hallock who is one of the top upcoming pitching coaches in the country who was just getting things going on the mound there, and coach Shay who has been in the program for 10 years as a player/assistant coach. 

“I truly believe this program was headed in the right direction. It’s just an awful situation that, hopefully, no other program has to go through.”

Ohio Prospects Who May Be Looking For A New Place

** Prospects with PBR Profiles

Class of 2020

Levi Gazarek RHP / SS / North Baltimore, OH / 2020

Landon Willeman RHP / 3B / Napoleon, OH / 2020

Peyton Wilson RHP / 3B / New London, OH / 2020

Class of 2021

Jake Armsey SS / RHP / Walsh Jesuit, OH / 2021

Connar Penrod RHP / SS / Wauseon, OH / 2021

Class of 2022

Christian Ramos 2B / SS / St. Edward, OH / 2022

Samuel Seidel SS / 2B / South Central, OH / 2022

Class of 2019

Tanner Egger C / SS / Avon, OH / 2019

Adam Fallon 2B / SS / Bishop Watterson, OH / 2019

Mason Montgomery SS / RHP / Vermilion, OH / 2019

Rigo Ramos LHP / 1B / Archbold, OH / 2019

Owen Recker RHP / 1B / Kalida, OH / 2019

Nathan Rose SS / 2B / Shaker Heights, OH / 2019

Tyler Ross SS / RHP / Olentangy Orange, OH / 2019

Class of 2018

Adam Dearinger RHP / 1B / Northwest, OH / 2018

Tyler Haas C / RHP / Eastwood High School, OH / 2018

Tyler Hays RHP / 1B / Copley , OH / 2018

 

Griffin Parrill RHP / 3B / Perrysburg, OH / 2018

Gage Schenk RHP / C / Wapakoneta, OH / 2018

Class of 2017

Andrew Abrahamowicz RHP / 3B / Elyria Catholic, OH / 2017

Max Carevic RHP / Wellington, OH / 2017

Dylan Dohanos 2B / SS / Bowling Green, OH / 2017

Adam Furnas 1B / OF / Bowling Green, OH / 2017

William MacLean RHP / SS / William Mason High School, OH / 2017

David Steward RHP / OF / North Royalton, OH / 2017

David Stopp LHP / OF / Green, OH / 2017

Class of 2016

Damon Egnor RHP / 1B / Paulding, OH / 2016

Michigan Prospects Who May Be Looking For A New Place

** Prospects with PBR Profiles

Class of 2021

Gavin Ganun SS / OF / Blissfield, MI / 2021

Zack Horky C / RHP / Blissfield, MI / 2021

Class of 2022

Tate Farquhar OF / RHP / Lakeland, MI / 2022

Class of 2019

Trent Farquhar SS / 2B / Lakeland, MI / 2019

Kyle Gurney C / 1B / Divine Child, MI / 2019

Mason Kolean LHP / OF / Detroit Country Day, MI / 2019

Jack Krause OF / SS / Brighton, MI / 2019

Joshua Slayton LHP / OF / Lake Orion High School, MI / 2019

Anthony Toma SS / OF / Detroit Country Day, MI / 2019

Class of 2018

Andrew Carson RHP / OF / Stoney Creek, MI / 2018

Andrew Oehmke RHP / 1B / L'anse Creuse North, MI / 2018

Class of 2017

Nick Neibauer C / SS / Detroit Country Day, MI / 2017

Jeremy Spezia RHP / SS / L'Anse Creuse, MI / 2017

Class of 2016

Nathan Lohmeier LHP / Hartland, MI / 2016

An Illinois Prospect Who Is Looking For A New Place

Class of 2018

Jay Ward LHP / 1B / Carmel Catholic, IL / 2018

Two Canadian Prospects Who May Be Looking For A New Place

Class of 2018

Ryan Johnston SS / 2B / Appleby College, ON / 2018

Class of 2016

Jake Wilson OF / 2B / Nottawasaga Pines Secondary School, ON / 2016