Feb. 5, 2014
2014 Schedule | UTTIX.com
The start of the 2014 Tennessee baseball season is just nine days away!
In January and February, UTSports.com will count down the days remaining until the start of the Vols' 2014 campaign (Feb. 14) with looks back at the many players who donned jersey numbers 30-1.
The baseball season in Knoxville kicks off on the diamond on Feb. 14 when the Vols host the Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks at Lindsey Nelson Stadium at 4 p.m. With one of the youngest teams in the country in 2013, head coach Dave Serrano and company have the foundation in place on Rocky Top.
The 2014 slate is highlighted by 33 games in Knoxville, including early nonconference matchups against Purdue (Feb. 15-16) and UNLV (Feb. 21-23). The Vols open with a 13-game homestand, starting things off with three straight days of doubleheader action.
Practice continues this week on Rocky Top as the Diamond Vols are in action Tuesday through Sunday, with scrimmage sets for Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. All outdoor practices at Lindsey Nelson Stadium are free and open to the public. For more information and to view this week's pitching schedule, visit UTSports.com.
In total, 28 Vols have worn the No. 9 for the Orange and White, including All-American right fielder Eli Iorg. The Knoxville native, who played for the Vols from 2004-05 and helped lead UT back to the College World Series as a junior in 2005, went on to be one of the Vols 15 first round MLB Draft picks and would play five seasons at the Minor League level.
#9 Eli Iorg
2004-05 | OF | R/R | 6-3 | 200 lbs. | Knoxville, Tenn. (Karns HS)
Eli Iorg burst onto the Tennessee baseball scene as a sophomore in 2004, transferring in from Samford University. Iorg finished as UT's second-leading hitter with a .324 average while leading the team in hits (77), triples (6) and stolen bases (26) that season. He tied for second with 47 runs scored and was fourth on the squad with 36 RBIs. His six triples tied for fourth on UT's single-season list and he ranked second in the SEC in steals and triples. Iorg hit .462 in the SEC Tournament, earning SEC All-Tournament Team honors. Iorg was also awarded Team MVP honors as a sophomore.
Iorg enjoyed a monster year in 2005, earning second-team All-America status and leading the Vols to the College World Series. He led the SEC with 27 stolen bases while ranking second in the league with 72 hits and posting a .381 average at the plate. His average ranked third in the conference. He also added a team-high 15 longballs. Iorg's 2005 season stands out in the record books. His 168 total bases ranks fourth, his 96 hits are tie for fifth and his 72 RBIs ranks sixth. Iorg also brought home the Rick Honeycutt Team MVP Award in 2005.
On the career charts, the right fielder is tied for fifth all-time in UT's record book with 10 triples and ranks tied for eighth with 53 stolen bases.
After being drafted by the Chicago Cubs in the 14th round a season before, Iorg became Tennessee's 15th first round MLB Draft choice in 2005. He was selected by the Houston Astros with the 38th overall pick and went on to play five seasons in their minor league system. He hit .273 with 352 hits, including 75 doubles and 16 home runs, over the course of 357 games. Iorg played for the Greeneville Astros (Rk), Lexington Legends (A), Salem Avalance (A+), Corpus Christi Hooks (AA), Round Rock Express (AAA) and the Tri-City ValleyCats (A-).
NOTES ON IORG
- Full name is Eli James Iorg (Last name pronounced: OAR-j)
- Majored in political science at UT
- Graduated from Karns High School in Knoxville, Tenn