Baseball Notebook: Ratajczak hopes to play

Following practice on Wednesday, Louisville 2B Nick Ratajczak updated his injury status

Despite field temperatures climbing above 100 degrees on Wednesday afternoon, Dan McDonnell had his team working hard at Jim Patterson Stadium in preparations for the trip to the College World Series.

"You want to be fundamental," McDonnell explained. "You want to push them and keep them focused, but we have to be smart and not overdue it."

The soaring heat helped to intensify the focus and drive of his players during the two-hour practice session.

"Today, with the temperatures, I had planned that this was going to be the toughest day of the week and it was."

ALL-AMERICANS

Louisville righthanded pitchers Nick Burdi and Jeff Thompson were honored as All-Americans on Wednesday afternoon by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association.

A Second Team All-America selection, Burdi (Downers Grove, Ill./Downers Grove South HS) leads the Cardinals with 16 saves (second highest single season total in school history) to go with a 0.78 ERA and 61 strikeouts in 28 relief appearances and 34.2 innings pitched this season.

The 2013 Big East Conference Pitcher of the Year and a Golden Spikes Award semifinalist, Thompson (Greenville, Ind./Floyd Central HS) is 11-1 on the mound with a 2.00 ERA and 109 strikeouts in 103.1 innings pitched this season. Seven of his 16 starts have been scoreless outings and opposing batters are hitting just .169 against him.

In head coach Dan McDonnell's seven seasons in Louisville, the Cardinals have now produced 15 different All-American selections.

DEPARTURE

While some of the eight teams have already arrived in Omaha for the College World Series, the Cardinals won't depart Louisville until Thursday afternoon.

The team will participate in a final practice session before flying to Nebraska.

[More: Visit CardinalAuthority.com baseball forum, In The Pen, for the team schedule on Friday in Omaha]

RATAJCZAK HOPES TO PLAY

Following practice, senior second baseman Nick Ratajczak visited with the media and spoke about his shoulder injury, participating in the dog pile in Nashville and his goal to play in Omaha.

Practice clip...


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