Sharing some info on a new way to follow the Olean Oilers as well as an update on one of their former players:
— The New York Collegiate Baseball League, to Oilers owner/manager and league vice president Brian O'Connell Jr., is "forward-thinking" with its approach to summer developmental baseball.
The league, he said, has limited its schedule to 42 games through June and July, trying to avoid overtaxing pitchers before they return to their college teams.
In addition to the players, the NYCBL has kept its fans in mind. With the launch of the NYCBL Digital Network, they now have the ability to watch from their living rooms.
Five of the league's 10 teams, including Olean, are live-streaming video of their home games this season through the new digital network, whose app can be downloaded through Amazon Fire TV and Roku. The free broadcasts can also be accessed through the Olean Oilers app and online at www.teamline.cc. The other teams streaming home game video are the Genesee Rapids, Niagara Power, Syracuse Salt Cats and Cortland Crush.
"We're one of the first (college summer baseball) leagues that is now going to video live-stream," O'Connell said. "It's a voluntary program this year; the Oilers (are) one of the teams doing it. ... Next year it'll probably be mandatory, and that's a new wave.
"Parents, coaches, scouts, people that can't make it to the stadium are going to be able to watch our games on video, and then it'll be patched right into our radio announcer, Chris Russell (of WGWE 105.9 FM), doing the play-by-play."
He added: "I guess in life you either lead or get out of the way, and I think that was a Chrysler commercial years ago. It's kind of how we've thought from our league standpoint."
— Allen Murphy couldn't have had a much better junior year at St. John Fisher College — on the field or in the classroom.
The Bolivar-Richburg graduate was named a Third-Team All-American by both the American Baseball Coaches Association and D3baseball.com, in addition to earning a first-team spot on the Google Cloud Academic All-America Division III Baseball Team by the College Sports Information Directors of America.
The biology major was one of nine Division III student-athletes to carry a 4.0 cumulative GPA.
At the plate, Murphy, an infielder, led the Empire 8 Conference in home runs (nine) and was second in batting average (.394) and RBIs (42). He started all 43 games, including six on the mound, for the Cardinals, who went 29-14 and reached the Empire 8 championship game for the third straight year.
The Empire 8 Player of the Year was also tabbed New York Region Player of the Year by both the American Baseball Coaches Association and D3baseball.com.
Murphy was an NYCBL all-star with the Oilers in 2017. This summer, he's in his second season with the Newark (N.Y.) Pilots of the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League, where he was an All-League First Team selection last year.
(Shawn Campbell, a Times Herald sports writer, can be reached at email@example.com)