What is Dirtbag Baseball?
The nickname of Long Beach State baseball team refers to the program's style of play and success against higher profile programs. The moniker was first coined for Coach Snow's first team in 1989 which was comprised of nearly all new players. Playing without a home field (LBCC, Cerritos JC and Blair Field), and practicing at a local all-dirt Pony Field, that team won its first 18 games and advanced to Long Beach State's first College World Series appearance. Then-infield coach Dave Malpass would take his infielders to the all-dirt field for their rigorous workout. The infielders would return to the regular practice field after their sessions covered in dirt. Thus the name Dirtbags was born. The name resurfaced again in 1993 when the 12-12 Dirtbags rallied to win 34 of their next 41 games and finish three outs short of the National Championship game. The Dirtbags were once again a fan favorite at the 1998 College World Series as the country received a lesson in Dirtbag baseball.
"Being a Dirtbag is more about the attitude
that you play with. You are required to give 110% all of the time."
-- Jeremy Ward, Triple A Pitcher
"Being a Dirtbag means giving 100 percent
in everything you do...going all-out on every play, and always putting
the team before yourself."
-- Bobby Crosby, Athletics Shortstop
"It's a badge of honor. It means
you play hard all the time. I've always considered myself to be
-- Steve Trachsel, Mets Starting Pitcher
"A Dirtbag is a style of playing the game
of baseball. It is the type of player every team needs... Loves
to play the game everyday... He maybe does not have all the skills
of the greatest player, but his attitude and the way he commits himself
to the game is what makes this Dirtbag great. Dealing with adversity
is what completes being a Dirtbag. A team player at all times (hardnosed)."
-- Mike Gallo, Astros Pitcher
"Being a Dirtbag means you bring all you
have to the table in every single game. It doesn't matter the conditions
or who you're playing or where you're playing. You have to get down
and get dirty and do what you have to do to win. It means giving up
an at-bat to move the runner over, to hit the sac fly, giving it all
until the moment you walk off the field."
-- Adam Heether, 11th Round Pick of Brewers in 2003
"To me the Dirtbags means a great time in
my life. I enjoyed the camaraderie and excitement I had being part of
the Dirtbags. I still go back for the alumni games and enjoy seeing
my old friends. I guess you could say that you would have to experience
it personally to really know what it means."
-- Rocky Biddle, Former Expos Closer
"We're just a team that scrapes and
gets the little things done to win. That's what we are--Dirtbags.
People that don't understand that yet, don't hafve a clue
to what's behind us."
-- Chuck Lopez, Single-Season Record Holder for Hits
"Being a Dirtbag is great, it's a
great group of guys. We're just players who like to get dirty
and play hard. We'll always battle every inning, every at bat
-- it's just a hard-nosed way to play ball,"
-- Jeremy Reed, Mariners Outfielder
"A Dirtbag doesn't have the greatest
ability--on a scale from 1 to 10, you're always a 5, but you always
play hard and don't care how pretty you look. You just get after
-- Brian Whatley, Starting Catcher on 1993 CWS Team
"It was a tremendous honor to be a Dirtbag.
Being a Dirtbag means you're a never-say-die player who puts it
all on the line all the time.''
-- Terrmel Sledge, Major Leaguer
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