Missouri State University doesn’t get a whole lot of love in the media here in St. Louis, but the we here at View From The Pine all graduated from the prestigious university. And you know what? Their sports are actually pretty good. Except football. The football was pretty awful.
But the basketball has been pretty solid. Although they’ve been up-and-down the last few years with some coach swapping going on. They do still hold the esteemed honor of being the team with the highest RPI to miss the NCAA tournament in 2006. You may have heard of Blake Ahearn. He’s just the all-time points leader in NBA Development League history and record holder of the longest consecutive free-throw streak in NBA history at 110. He now plays for the Dongguan Leopards in China.
The Bears baseball team has produced some solid Major League talent over the years. Most notably Ryan Howard who is arguably the biggest superstar to come out of Missouri in recent history. There is Kinsler from Mizzou and He Who Shall Not Be Named from Maple Woods Community College. Most recently St. Louis Cardinals manager Mike Matheny’s son, Tate Matheny, chose to play at Missouri State University, and was recently named the Missouri Valley Conference freshman of the year. So that gets us a little closer to the point of this article.
Petree led the NCAA Division I with a 1.01 ERA in 2012 to go along with a 10-4 record and followed it up with a solid 1.61 ERA in 2013. He’s not an overpowering pitcher with his fastball averaging 87-88 mph, but he did still manage to strike out 111 batters in 100.1 innings while only walking 19 batters. So he appears to have some control.
The most favorable comparison I’ve seen is to that of Greg Maddux and the least favorable being Bruce Chen. Full disclosure, I’ve only seen two comparisons, but it’s tough to beat Maddux. Petree did have Tommy John surgery in 2010 as a freshman, so he already has that pitching milestone out of the way.
I’m probably a little bit of a homer, but I’d love to see Petree make it to the Cardinals. If he keeps putting up sub 2 ERAs, I think he’d have a good chance.