Commodores set to wrap up fall in Dominican Republic

Oct. 14, 2014

2014 Dominican Trip

Nashville, Tenn. - Vanderbilt's national championship baseball team returns to the field Monday night to begin fall ball practice and will wrap up fall ball with a week-long trip to the Dominican Republic.

The international trip will be the Commodores' first since the team traveled to Japan and Hong Kong in 2009. The Dores depart Nashville on November 21 and return November 28 after playing seven games during the week on the island. Vandy has games scheduled against the Dominican Army National Team (Nov. 23), the Texas Rangers and Tampa Bay Rays academy teams (Nov. 24), the Cleveland Indians and Boston Red Sox academy teams (Nov. 25) and professional teams Escogido (Nov. 27) and Las Estrellas (Nov. 28).

"The ability to travel abroad for the student-athlete is usually diminished because of the year-round schedule that absorbs their time," head coach Tim Corbin said. "We have been fortunate in the past to use baseball as a way to synchronize the student-life experience of traveling overseas. The past benefits have been widespread and we wanted to take advantage of this moment again.

The Dominican Republic offers a variety of positives for the Commodores and is home to some of the best baseball on the planet. The Dominican Republic Professional Baseball League champion participates in the Caribbean World Series annually and the island hosts all 30 major league baseball teams as well with each MLB team funding an academy. The academies offer ballplayers academic courses in English and programs that help them adjust to life as a professional ballplayer.

"For a short time, we will immerse ourselves in a distinctive culture while gaining a unique perspective on the game of baseball in a nearby nation that the boys are somewhat familiar with," Corbin continued. "Opportunities like these are very difficult to come by individually, let alone an entire team. We are very grateful that Chancellor Zeppos, Vice Chancellor Williams, the University and donors within our culture recognize this as a priority for our students. We thought the Dominican Republic was reachable, time efficient, cost effective and met our baseball `playing' needs. Our sole mission will be to add-on additional experiences of attending Vanderbilt University and continue to grow the kids brains."

Before leaving for the Dominican, Vanderbilt hosts the Black & Gold Series at Hawkins Field November 14-16. Game time on Friday is set for 4 p.m., Sunday 2 p.m. and Sunday at noon. Fall practices are open to the public with the team practicing Monday nights at approximately 9 p.m., Tuesday at 4:30 p.m., Wednesday-Friday at approximately 3 p.m. and Sunday at 10 a.m.

The Commodores open the 2015 slate at home against Santa Clara on February 13 with a three-game series and host non-conference weekend series against Illinois-Chicago (Feb. 20-22) and Illinois State (Feb. 27-March 1) before traveling to Los Angeles to play in the Dodgertown Classic. The Dores will play games against USC, UCLA and TCU over the weekend with Sunday's game against 2014 College World Series participant TCU taking place at Dodger Stadium.

Vanderbilt begins conference play inside Hawkins Field against Arkansas March 13-15; the trip to Nashville will be the Razorbacks' first since 2010. The Dores rotate home and road weekend series throughout the conference schedule beginning with a trip to Auburn for the first time since 2013 (March 20-22) and host Tennessee on the final weekend of March (27-29). The first weekend of April brings a trip to Georgia (April 3-5) with CWS participant Ole Miss returning (April 10-12) to West End the following weekend for the first time since the final weekend of 2012. South Carolina hosts the Commodores April 17-19 before the Dores return home to take on Missouri April 24-26. Vandy finishes the regular season with two of the final weekends on the road with trips to Kentucky (May 1-3) and Alabama (May 14-16) on the final weekend of the regular season. The Crimson Tide is scheduled to play at The Hoover Met in Hoover, Ala. this season with the Dores and Tide playing the final weekend at the site of the Southeastern Conference tournament. A three-game set against Florida at Hawkins Field is sandwiched in between as the Dores close out the 2015 regular season at Hawkins Field May 8-10.

In addition to the Commodores' daunting SEC schedule the squad will play a third 2014 CWS team in Louisville when the two schools rekindle the Battle of the Barrel May 5 at Louisville. Vandy continues a home-and-home series with crosstown rival Belmont. The Bruins visit Hawkins Field April 14 and the Commodores go to Rose Park February 18. VU also plays a home-and-home with Middle Tennessee State with the first game in Murfreesboro March 24 and second in Nashville April 21. The Dores welcome local teams Western Kentucky (Feb. 25), Tennessee Tech (March 17) and Lipscomb (April 7). Vanderbilt rounds out the non-conference schedule with games against UT-Martin (Feb. 24), Evansville (March 3), Quinnipiac (March 10-11) and Wofford (March 31-April 1).

Date - Opponent
Feb. 13-15 Santa Clara
Feb. 18 at Belmont
Feb. 20-22 Illinois-Chicago
Feb. 24 UT-Martin
Feb. 25 Western Kentucky
Feb. 27-March 1 Illinois State
March 3 Evansville
March 6-8 Dodgertown Classic (USC, UCLA, TCU)
March 10-11 Quinnipiac
March 13-15 Arkansas
March 17 Tennessee Tech
March 20-22 at Auburn
March 24 at MTSU
March 27-29 Tennessee
March 31-April 1 Wofford
April 3-5 at Georgia
April 7 Lipscomb
April 10-12 Ole Miss
April 14 Belmont
April 17-19 at South Carolina
April 21 MTSU
April 24-26 Missouri
May 1-3 at Kentucky
May 5 at Louisville
May 8-10 Florida
May 14-16 at Alabama



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