Notre Dame opens weekend with doubleheader at noon on Saturday
AT NOTRE DAME: Three-year monogram winner enters his senior season with a .256 career batting average, four home runs and 29 RBI ... has added 39 runs, 13 doubles, one triple, 27 walks, one sacrifice fly, two sacrifice bunts and seven stolen bases (14 attempts) in 71 games (46 starts) ... will serve as co-captain (along with Cole Johnson, Brian Dupra and Mick Doyle) of the 2010 Irish team ... spirited veteran who played at both corner outfield spots in 2007 but was predominantly limited to designated hitter duty in 2008, due to series of injury problems ... saw extensive action toward the end of the 2009 season at first base ... appears healthy and able to contribute in the infield and even behind the plate if necessary ... missed all of his freshman season in 2006 due to shoulder injury that required surgery (Oct. `05) ... suffered another setback that limited his play during 2007 fall season ... a tremendous athlete who also starred in football and hockey as a prep athlete ... one of the hardest workers on the team and a quality leader for any role ... a feisty competitor who can hit with power and rates as one of team's fastest runners ... enrolled in graduate school.
SENIOR SEASON (2009): Served as co-captain ... appeared in 29 games and started 22 for the Irish, predominantly at designated hitter ... batted .324 (23-for-71) with four home runs and 19 RBI ... added 23 runs scored, six doubles, 14 walks, 10 hit by pitch, one sacrifice fly, one sacrifice bunt and five stolen bases (nine attempts) ... did not ground into a double play in 71 at bats ... batted .348 (16-for-46) against right-handed pitching ... hit an impressive .378 (14-for-37) with runners on base ... batted .600 (3-for-5) with the bases loaded ... hit .409 (9-for-22) with runners in scoring position ... was a perfect 7-for-7 in RBI opportunities with a runner on third base and less than two outs ... tied for fourth on the team in home runs ... averaged a home run every 17.8 at bats ... led the Irish in times reached base via hit by pitch ... ranked fourth in stolen bases ... hit .313 (10-for-32) with four home runs and 10 RBI in 12 BIG EAST games (nine starts) ... added nine runs scored, one double, four walks, three hit by pitch and one stolen base (two attempts) ... registered five multi-hit games, including one three-hit game (May 10 vs. USF) ... recorded three multi-RBI games, including a five-RBI outing (May 14 at St. John's) ... Notre Dame went 17-5 when Connolly started, including 13-3 when he served as designated hitter and 4-2 when he played first base ... batted .324 (22-for-68) with four home runs and 17 RBI in games started ... went 1-for-3 when coming off the Irish bench ... registered one of two multi-home run games for the Irish ... went 2-for-5 with two home runs, two runs scored and five RBI at St. John's on May 14 ... recorded a career-best five-game hitting streak from May 12 through May 19 ... started the final 13 games of the season and recorded hits in 10 of those contests ... batted .348 (16-for-46) with 15 runs scored, four home runs and 14 RBI over the stretch ... Notre Dame went 9-4 down the stretch with Connolly in the everyday lineup ... added home runs against USF (May 8) and St. John's (May 15).
JUNIOR SEASON (2008): Served as pinch-hitter for Gold squad that won the 2007 Blue-Gold World Series (0-for-2, K) ... appeared in eight games off the Irish bench primarily as a key pinch-runner ... batted .500 (2-for-4) with an RBI and two runs scored ... entered the matchup with Iowa as a pinch-runner and came around to score a run on Feb. 23 ... saw action in the same capacity against both Maine (Mar. 4) and Lehigh (Mar. 6) ... registered a pinch-hit single against top-ranked Arizona on Mar. 9 ... recorded an RBI ground out against Wisconsin-Milwaukee on Mar. 26 ... went 1-for-1 with a run scored against Mississippi Valley State on Apr. 30.
SOPHOMORE SEASON (2007): Played for the victorious Gold in the 2006 Blue-Gold World Series ... batted .200 (1-for-5) with a run scored and a walk ... walked and scored 5th-inning run to help Gold win tight game-1 (2-1) of series ... ranked fifth on team with seven doubles while appearing in 34 games and starting 24, with his time split between left (11 starts) and right (13) field ... platooned with then-freshman Brayden Ashdown as right fielder/9-hole hitter for part of season ... his season stats included 14 runs scored and 13 walks (.185 batting avg., 9 RBI, 3B, 29 Ks, SAC, 2-5 SB) ... made one error in 27 fielding chances ... 18 of his starts came in the 9-hole, plus starts in the #6 (1) and #8 (5) spots ... made his debut with the Irish in opener versus Prairie View and scored a run in that 15-8 win (in San Antonio) ... started the next day in 6-0 loss to Texas State (1-for-2, 2B, BB) ... registered a hit in 4-1 win over #12 TCU (in Myrtle Beach, S.C.) ... had a two-run double and scored twice in 16-6 win over #7 Nebraska (K; at Stetson) ... hit an RBI double in his only AB versus Duquesne (14-3; in Clearwater, Fla.) ... helped post 11-4 win over Dayton (1-for-3, 2B, BB; at Florida Gulf Coast) ... plated a pair of runs in 17-9 win over Western Michigan (1-for-2, 2B) ... reached base four times and scored twice to help beat Georgetown, 11-2 (1-for-1, 3 BB, SB) ... scored two more runs in 17-6 win over West Virginia (1-for-4, BB) ... helped Irish take series at league-leading Rutgers (3-for-9, 2 RBI, 5 R, 3B, 2B, 2 BB, 3 Ks, SB) ... factored into six of the Irish runs in 15-3 opener at RU (2-for-2, 2 RBI, 4 R, 3B, 2 BB, SB) ... played as defensive sub in BIG EAST Tournament loss to Villanova (2-3; in Brooklyn, N.Y.).
FRESHMAN SEASON (2006): Did not compete during 2006 spring season, due to shoulder injury that required surgery in October of 2005 ... played for Blue team in the 2005 Blue-Gold World Series ... went hitless in six at-bats, but drew two walks, stole a base, scored a run and drove in a run ... got back into the swing of full-time playing in the summer of 2006, with the wood-bat New York League's Amsterdam Mohawks ... served exclusively as Mohawks DH, smacking pair of home runs while swiping 9-of-13 bases and scoring 15 runs (also 18 H, 11 RBI, 11 BB, 3 2B, 3B, 5 HBP, 32 Ks, 2 SAC in 32 GP).
PREP & PERSONAL: Three-sport athlete who starred at Binghamton High School in baseball and football while playing hockey with Binghamton Junior Senators ... earned baseball all-state honors in 2005, as senior captain for conference champs ... rated 12th overall prospect in New York, per Perfect Game/Baseball America ... hit .413 with 17 RBI in 21 games during `05 season (4 HR, 6 2B, 26 B, 16 BB, 4 Ks, 7 SB) ... helped Post 1645 reach quarterfinals at `05 World Youth Classic ... all-conference junior season in `04 included .439 batting (4 HR, 13 RBI, 26 R, 13 SB, 5 2B, 2 3B, 12 BB, 22 GP) ... only player from New York named to Street and Smith's preseason list of the "top-50 juniors to watch across the country" ... hit bases-loaded double to beat Vestal in `04 state semifinal ... went 4-for-5 and scored winning run versus Windsor ... stroked three triples in game-3 of 2004 Empire State Games versus Long Island (hit 8-for-16 overall in the ESG, as leadoff batter for Central Region team) ... all-conference as a sophomore (.459, 10 2B, 15 SB) ... hit 3-run homer in 2003 American Legion district final ... all-metro pick as a freshman (.317) ... a three-time all-division pick as a football quarterback, leading team to sectional title as a senior ... forward and two-year captain with Junior Senators hockey team ... played in hockey senior all-star classic ... he and his mother, Penny, are co-chairs for the Michael E. Connolly Endowment for Lung Cancer Research (named in honor of his deceased father) ... member of the National Honor Society ... candidate for International Baccalaureate Diploma ... other Irish players to wear #10 have included outfielder Rick Chryst (former Mid-American Conference commissioner), infielder Cory Mee (now Toledo head coach), standout infielder Alec Porzel and All-America pitcher Chris Niesel ... born May 3, 1987, in Binghamton, N.Y. ... full name is Ryan Michael Connolly ... graduated in May '09 with a degree in psychology and pre-professional studies from the College of Arts and Letters.