Everything seems to be in place for the San Luis Obispo Blues to have a successful, deep run at the 78th annual National Baseball Congress World Series in Wichita, Kan.
They’ve raised enough money to make the trip and ended the regular summer collegiate baseball season on a winning note.
Now, the Blues just need to prove their worth.
“I think we’re playing good baseball,” San Luis Obispo manager Chal Fanning said. “I think we have a chance to stick around.”
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The Blues (34-16) begin their World Series run today at 3 p.m., when they face the Wichita Prospects. Will Cox, of Mississippi State, will get the start on the mound for San Luis Obispo.
To follow the Blues, go to www.ustream.tv and search “sloblues game 51.” Each following game in thedouble-elimination tournament will be listed with the next highest number.
The Blues had to turn down invitations to the national tournament the previous two seasons due to cost of traveling. But this year, the club raised $26,000 to send San Luis Obispo to its first World Series since 2006.
Last year, the Blues shared the California Collegiate League title with the Santa Barbara Foresters, who went on to win the World Series title. Fanning and the Blues were determined not to miss another trip to Wichita.
This year, the Blues and Foresters once again shared the league title with 20-10 records.
The Blues concluded the regular season with a nonleague win over the San Luis Obispo Rattlers, snapping a three-game losing skid.
Now, they’re focused on the World Series.
“I want us to play good baseball,” Fanning said. “I want us to represent San Luis Obispo, the Blues’ name. I want us to play baseball indicative of our body of work all summer. For the most part, we’ve played good baseball. We’re representing the CCL. There’s a lot of people pulling for us — the community, the fans, people who are generally interested in baseball.”