Beavers Make A Run For The Border
Feb. 18, 2003
FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 21-SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 23
OREGON STATE AT BASEBALL FIESTA;
COHEN STADIUM; EL PASO, TEX.
Friday, February 21Oregon State vs. New Mexico; 1 p.m. PSTSaturday, February 22Oregon State vs. New Mexico State, 9:30 a.m. PSTOregon State vs. New Mexico; 1 p.m. PSTSunday, February 23Oregon State vs. New Mexico State, 9:30 a.m. PST
Oregon State (3-3 overall) heads for the border this weekend, looking to continue its early-season improvement in the Baseball Fiesta that runs from Friday through Sunday. The Beavers will play four times in three days, with two games each against New Mexico (5-4) and New Mexico State (9-0).
'It's another great opportunity for us to play good competition in a good ballpark,' said OSU head coach Pat Casey. 'Playing four times in three days, it's another chance for us to take a look at a lot of people. We've got enough new faces on this team that it's going to take us a little while to figure out the capabilities of some people and how all the pieces are going to fit together.'
The Baseball Fiesta is being played at Cohen Stadium, the home of the Class Double-A El Paso Diablos. Last weekend, OSU opened the new spring training home of the Kansas City Royals and Texas Rangers, Surprise Stadium, with wins over Oklahoma State and Gonzaga before falling to sixth-ranked Arizona State in the Coca-Cola Classic.
'I really felt good about the way our guys went down there and competed,' Casey said. '(Pitcher) Jake Postlewait set the tone for us; he struggled a little in the first inning against Oklahoma State but he battled and didn't give up a run. That really got our pitching off on the right foot, and we wind up shutting out Oklahoma State (in a 4-0 win) and only giving a good Gonzaga club one run (in a 5-1 win).
'We had some people move runners along, we had some big hits ... (first baseman) Andy Jarvis and (leftfielder) Seth Pietsch both played well; they wound up on the all-tournament team along with Jake but we had a lot of guys contribute to our success down there.'
The Beavers still have plenty of things to fine-tune, though, to reach the potential Casey believes this OSU team has.
'We've cost ourselves on the bases,' Casey said. 'We've been aggressive, which isn't a bad thing; but we've got to be smart-aggressive. That's something we'll be working on. In the field, a few errors have cost us runs but our defense is coming along and the more we play, the better it will get. On the mound, we've done a good job overall but here and there we miss with a pitch and it costs us some runs.
'The more we get outside and play good people, the sharper we're going to be in those situations. I like what I've seen the first two weekends, and I'm looking forward to playing a pair of tough teams again this weekend. We've just got to keep focusing on getting better, week by week and game by game.'
Pietsch has led OSU's production at the plate early in the season, batting .375 with two home runs, one triple and seven runs batted in; he went hitless on Opening Day but has had a hit in every game since then. Outfielder/designated hitter Kerisi Reynolds is batting .583 with no homers and three RBIs, first baseman/designated hitter Levi Webber is batting .364 with no homers and no RBIs, Jarvis is batting .348 with no homers and three RBIs - and is on a 9-game hitting streak that started in 2002 - and catcher Paul Richie is batting .333 with no homers and two RBIs. Ben Rowe has won both his first two starts, compiling a 4.09 earned run average to go with that 2-0 record; reliever Jared Sanders has tied OSU's career save record and has yet to allow a run in 3.2 innings of work.
New Mexico spent last weekend at a tournament at Texas-Arlington, losing 8-6 to UTA before coming back to beat Arkansas State 12-10 and Southwest Missouri State 10-2. Leading hitters for the Lobos this spring have been sophomore infielder Josh Mader (.462 batting average, 0 homers, 7 RBIs), junior outfielder Sean Murray (.450, 1, 6), freshman outfielder Josh Huwer (.444, 0, 1), senior infielder Dusty Young (.381, 2, 15), junior outfielder Joe Salas (.367, 2, 8) and senior infielder Chris Alexander (.333, 2, 10). Likely to get the pitching starts against the Beavers are senior righthander Chad Giannetti (2-1 record, 4.20 earned run average) and senior righthander Kris Gross (1-0, 3.55).
New Mexico State remained unbeaten last weekend by sweeping Rhode Island 14-0, 18-6, 13-4 and 14-6 at home. Leading hitters for the Aggies thus far are junior outfielder Keith Jenkins (.643, 1, 7), junior infielder Billy Becher (.500, 5, 24), junior infielder Gavin Monjaras (.438, 0, 4), junior infielder Ryan Liermann (.421, 0, 3) and senior outfielder Alex Borgo (.417, 3, 13). Tentatively set to start against OSU are junior righthander Jason Williams (1-0, 2.25) and senior lefthander Christian Jackson (2-0, 3.86).
OREGON STATE LINEUP, PITCHING ROTATION:
C - Paul Richie, jr.; Kelso, Wash. (Kelso HS);.333, 0 HRs, 2 RBIsor - Ian McMullen, sr.; Kennewick, Wash. (Lower Columbia CC);.000, 0 HRs, 0 RBIsor - Billy Munich, fr.; El Macero, Calif. (Jesuit HS);.000, 0 HRs, 0 RBIs1B - Andy Jarvis, sr., Renton, Wash. (Liberty HS);.348, 0 HRs, 3 RBIsor - Levi Webber, jr.; Glide, Ore. (Glide HS);.364, 0 HRs, 0 RBIs2B - Chris Kunda, fr.; Philomath, Ore. (Philomath HS);.235, 0 HRs, 2 RBIs3B - Tony Calderon, jr.; Orange, Calif. (Santa Ana JC);.222, 1 HR, 3 RBIsSS - Rob Recuenco, so.; Vancouver, B.C. (North Idaho JC);.200, 0 HRs, 0 RBIsor - Mark Jackson, fr.; Granite Bay, Calif. (Del Campo HS);.000, 0 HRs, 0 RBIsLF - Seth Pietsch, jr.; Wilderville, Ore. (Hidden Valley HS);..375, 2 HRs, 7 RBIsCF - Jacoby Ellsbury, fr.; Madras, Ore. (Madras HS);.222, 0 HRs, 3 RBIsRF - Chris Biles, sr.; Tigard, Ore. (Tigard HS);.176, 0 HRs, 1 RBIsDH - Levi Webber, jr.; Glide, Ore. (Glide HS);.500, 0 HRs, 0 RBIsor - Kerisi Reynolds, jr.; Renton, Wash. (Liberty HS);.583, 0 HRs, 3 RBIsFri. RHP - Ben Rowe, jr.; Perth, Australia (Greenwood HS);2-0 record, 4.09 ERASat. LHP - Jake Postlewait, jr.; Corvallis, Ore. (Corvallis HS);1-0 record, 3.24 ERASat. RHP - Stephen Copeland, sr.; Keizer, Ore. (McNary HS);0-1 record, 7.71 ERASun. P - To be announced
OREGON STATE ALL-TIME VS. THIS WEEK'S OPPONENTS: Oregon State has an all-time record of 3-0 against New Mexico in a series dating back to 1991. The last meeting was in 1998, when OSU took an 11-0 win in the San Diego Baseball Classic; however, the game was played in Yuma, Ariz., due to wet weather in San Diego.
Oregon State has an all-time record of 3-1 against New Mexico State in a series dating back to 1995. The last meeting was in 1999, when OSU won 7-1 at a tournament at Peoria, Ariz.
OREGON STATE NOTES: Junior righthander Jared Sanders tied Oregon State's record for career saves in the Beavers' 8-6 win at California-Riverside on Feb. 8. Sanders' 10 saves tie him with Mike Boire (1996-98); Sanders set OSU's single-season record with 9 saves last season ... in OSU's 3 wins this season, 3 different Beaver relievers have walked away with saves - Sanders, Jon Koller and Mike Ekstrom ... Sanders and Andy Baldwin have both pitched 3.2 innings this season without allowing a run ... in Ekstrom's last 2 appearances, he's pitched 4 scoreless innings ... Koller's first 3 appearances of the season resulted in 7.1 innings without allowing an earned run; that streak ended against sixth-ranked Arizona State ... OSU's team ERA of 5.29 is lower than 2002's final mark of 5.60; Beaver starting pitchers have an ERA of 4.88 ... righthander Ben Rowe is averaging over 5.1 innings pitched per start ... OSU has allowed just 1 stolen base through the season's first 6 games; meanwhile, the Beavers have stolen 4 bases ... OSU has only reached the 10-hit mark in 1 game this season, but the Beavers haven't had fewer than 7 hits in a game ... OSU is breaking in a new infield this season, with freshman Chris Kunda settling in at second base and junior college transfers Rob Recuenco at shortstop and Tony Calderon at third base. Through 6 games, the trio has committed 5 errors but OSU is also averaging over 1 double play per game. Kunda has yet to make an error ... Recuenco has drawn at least 1 walk in 5 of 6 games this season ... last week, Kerisi Reynolds batted .556 (5-for-9) with 2 RBIs, while Andy Jarvis hit .455 (5-for-11) with 2 RBIs and Seth Pietsch batted .417 (5-for-12) with 1 homer and 3 RBIs ... Pietsch leads the Beavers in multi-hit games with 3, while Reynolds, Jarvis and Paul Richie have 2 each. Pietsch also has a pair of multi-RBI games ... Aaron Mathews' 14-game hitting streak is on hold. Mathews ended last season on a 13-game hitting streak, and NCAA guidelines allow hitting streaks to carry over from season to another. Mathews pushed his streak to 14 games with a hit on Opening Day at California-Riverside; the next day, Mathews was hit by a pitch in the first inning and had to leave the game, and he's expected to be out until at least mid-March ... Oregon State received votes in the Sports Weekly/ESPN Coaches Top 25 preseason poll; it's the first time in recent years that the Beavers earned votes in the preseason poll ... OSU was picked for eighth place in a preseason poll of Pacific-10 coaches. However, OSU has placed higher than the coaches' prediction in each of the last 3 seasons.
LAST WEEK: Oregon State went 2-1 at the Coca-Cola Classic in Surprise, Ariz. The Beavers blanked Oklahoma State 4-0 on Feb. 14, beat Gonzaga 5-1 on Feb. 15 and lost to No. 6 Arizona State 9-4 on Feb. 16. OSU had 3 players named to the all-tournament team - first baseman Andy Jarvis, leftfielder Seth Pietsch and pitcher Jake Postlewait.
On Feb. 14, Oregon State and Oklahoma State played the first-ever game at Surprise Stadium, the new spring training home of the Kansas City Royals and Texas Rangers. The Beavers rode the pitching of Postlewait and Jon Koller to the 4-0 win over Oklahoma State, and Pietsch added 1 run and 1 RBI. OSU jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning on sacrifice flies by Jarvis and Tony Calderon. The Beavers tacked on another run in the second when Pietsch grouned a run-scoring single through the left side. After allowing runners to first and second in the opening frame, Postlewait shut down the Cowboy offense, scattering two hits over the next 4.1 innings before a double from Jason Jaramillo sent the lefthander to the dugout. Postlewait gave up 4 hits in 5.1 innings and struck out 3 while walking 2. Koller then allowed 1 hit over the next 3.2 innings to earn his first career save at OSU. Pietsch and Jarvis both had 2 hits for OSU.
On Feb. 15, Oregon State capitalized on 2 key Gonzaga errors and got a line drive homer from Pietsch to claim a 5-1 win over the Bulldogs. Pietsch became the first player to hit a home run at Surprise Stadium when he drove a 2-out pitch over the left-centerfield wall and onto the outfield berm to give OSU a 2-1 lead in the third; both runs were unearned. Another error led to 2 more Beaver runs and a 4-1 lead in the bottom of the sixth inning. Kerisi Reynolds was 4-for-5 and Jarvis was 2-for-4 for OSU. Righthander Ben Rowe went 6.0 innings to earn the win and Mike Ekstrom pitched the final 3 innings for the save. OSU third baseman Calderon made a huge defensive play in the fifth inning to keep a run from scoring. With the Beavers leading 2-1 and 2 out, GU's Gordon Corder ripped a 1-hopper right at Calderon; he bobbled the ball but controlled it and fired a bullet to first to get Corder and prevent the tying run from scoring.
On Feb. 16, a pair of 4-run innings cost Oregon State in a 9-4 loss to sixth-ranked Arizona State. ASU picked up an unearned run in the first inning against OSU starter Stephen Copeland, but the Beavers tied the game on Reynolds' run-scoring single in the top of the third. The Sun Devils took the lead for good in the bottom of the inning; Jon Koller relieved Copeland with 2 out and gave up a run-scoring single to Andre Ethier and a 3-run homer to Steve Garrabrants to make it 5-1. Jacoby Ellsbury's sacrifice fly brought OSU within 5-2 in the top of the fourth. In the bottom of the fifth, though, Dustin Pedroia led off with a homer and Rodney Allen added a 2-out, 3-run homer to make it 9-2. Pietsch was 2-for-4 for OSU.
JARVIS MOVING UP CAREER LISTS: Oregon State senior first baseman Andy Jarvis has a chance to spend this spring making a significant mark on the school's list of all-time career leaders. Through Feb. 16, Jarvis is tied for third in home runs (27); fourth in total bases (287); sixth in RBIs (127); and eighth in doubles (33). Jarvis is currently on a 9-game hitting streak that includes the final 3 games of 2002; during the streak, he's batting .389 (14-for-36) with 1 homer, 2 doubles and 4 RBIs.
PIETSCH'S POWER NUMBERS: Oregon State junior leftfielder Seth Pietsch has made a habit of seeing double and triple at OSU. In Pietsch's career, he has 81 hits and 46 of them have gone for extra bases - 27 doubles, 7 triples and 12 homers. In 2002, Pietsch shattered the school's single-season record for doubles by hitting 24 of them. Earlier this season, his triple at California-Riverside on Feb. 8 moved him onto OSU's career leaders list in that category, tying him for eighth place. He needs 4 doubles and 9 homers to move into OSU's career top 10s in those categories. Pietsch is currently on a 5-game hitting streak; during the streak, he's batting .450 (9-for-20) with 2 homers, 1 triple and 6 RBIs.
2003 BEAVERS ON OREGON STATE'S LEADER LISTS: Where Oregon State players ranked among the school's all-time leaders through Feb. 16:
CAREER DOUBLES1. Joe Gerber, 1997-2000 442. Josh Carter, 1999-2001 423. Brian Barden, 2000-02 394. Drew Hedges, 1997-2000 375. Ken Bowen, 1984-87 366. Troy Schader, 1997-99 357. Tim Lambert, 1985-88 34> 8. Andy Jarvis, 2000-present 33
(tie) Seth Pietsch, 2001-present 7 (tie) Andy Jarvis, 2000-present 27 Brian Barden, 2000-02 1543. Matt Bailie, 1995-98 1444. Ken Bowen, 1984-87 1315. Bob McNair, 1978-80 130> 6. Andy Jarvis, 2000-present 127 Brian Barden, 2000-02 3552. Joe Gerber, 1997-2000 3473. Ken Bowen, 1984-87 303> 4. Andy Jarvis, 2000-present 287 (tie) Jared Sanders, 2002-present 10 (tie) Stephen Copeland, 2000-present 5
OREGON STATE SCHEDULE: Oregon State's 2003 schedule includes 13 games against teams in the Sports Weekly/ESPN Top 25 coaches poll of Feb. 17: No. 4 Arizona State (4 games), No. 7 Southern California (3 games), No. 9 Stanford (3 games) and No. 25 California. The Beavers' schedule includes another 9 games against teams receiving votes in the poll - Arizona (3 games), Oklahoma State (1 game) and Washington (5 games).
OREGON STATE HEAD COACH PAT CASEY: Pat Casey, now in his ninth season at OSU, celebrated the 400th victory of his head coaching career on April 14, 2002 when the Beavers completed an 11-9 win over Hawai'i-Hilo. Casey's career record is 413-291-5, which includes 7 years at George Fox in Newberg, for a winning percentage of .586.
Casey has a record of 242-178-4 with the Beavers for a winning percentage of .575. Of the 19 head coaches in OSU baseball history, only Ralph Coleman (1923-28, 1930-31, 1938-66) and Jack Riley (1973-94) have coached more wins for the Beavers.
Casey was named the Pacific-10 Northern Division Coach of the Year in 1997 after leading the Beavers to a 38-12-1 mark, a school record for wins in a regular season.
During Casey's time at OSU, 19 Beavers have been drafted by Major League Baseball teams and 4 more players have signed as free agents.
Casey came to OSU from his alma mater, George Fox, after leading the Bruins to a 171-113-1 record and winning 3 NAIA District 2 titles at the school in Newberg, Ore.
CHILDHOOD CHUMS COMBINE ON SHUTOUT: The reunion of Jake Postlewait and Jon Koller worked out well for Oregon State on Feb. 14, as the Beavers beat Oklahoma State 4-0 at the Coca-Cola Classic in Surprise, Ariz. The 2 pitchers were childhood friends in Newport, Ore., but both had moved by the time they began playing high school baseball - Postlewait to Corvallis, Ore. (Corvallis HS) and Koller to Carlsbad, Calif. (Carlsbad HS). Against the Cowboys, the pair combined on a 5-hitter, lefty Postlewait going the first 5.1 innings for the win and righty Koller the final 3.2 for the save.
Postlewait spent the past 2 seasons in Oregon State's bullpen, leading the Pac-10 in appearances in 2002 with 30. Koller began his college career in 2002 at California-Irvine, earning Collegiate Baseball Freshman All-America honorable mention as he was third in the Big West in appearances with 28; he transferred to Oregon State during the winter break.
Incidentally, the shutout gave the Beavers 18 straight scoreless innings against the Cowboys. In their last meeting, Oregon State took a 1-0 win in the 1999 San Diego Baseball Classic.
BEAVERS POST FIRST-EVERS AT SURPRISE STADIUM: When Oregon State visited the Coca-Cola Classic at Surprise, Ariz., on Feb. 14-16, the Beavers got to play the inaugural game at Surprise Stadium, which opens this season as the spring training home of the Kansas City Royals and Texas Rangers. The Beavers got the first-ever victory at the park, shutting out Oklahoma State 4-0.
The Beavers' Jake Postlewait was the first winning pitcher at the new park and Jon Koller got the first save, combining on a 5-hitter. In the top of the first inning, Jacoby Ellsbury's single to leftfield was the first hit, Andy Jarvis' sacrifice fly to right was the first run batted in, and it scored Rob Recuenco with the first run. The next day, in a 5-1 win over Gonzaga, OSU's Seth Pietsch had the ballpark's first homer with a third-inning, 2-run drive over the leftfield wall.
RAIN ON THE ROAD: If the trend from recent years continues this spring, Oregon State will have a lot better luck with the weather at home than it does on the road.
Since the start of the 1997 season, the Beavers have had 26 games either canceled or rescheduled due to rain. Of those, only 6 have been games at OSU's Goss Stadium at Coleman Field; 14 were at ballparks in California, Nevada, Hawai'i, Texas or Florida. Another 6 were at ballparks elsewhere in the Pacific Northwest.
OSU has lost just 2 home games to rain during that time, while having 11 games canceled at sites outside the region and 3 called off at other Pacific Northwest ballparks. The Beavers have had to postpone 4 home games, 3 games at sites outside the region and 3 at other Pacific Northwest ballparks.
OREGON STATE'S ALL-TIME RECORD: Oregon State's all-time record in varsity baseball is now 1,725-1,191-15, a winning percentage of .591. OSU's all-time record in conference games is now 770-560, a winning percentage of .579.
To break the numbers down a step further, since starting varsity baseball in 1907, the Beavers have scored 19,151 runs and allowed 14,786 runs. That's an average score of 6.53-5.04.
GOSS STADIUM AT COLEMAN FIELD: Oregon State has been playing on the same site since starting varsity baseball in 1907, making Goss Stadium at Coleman Field the oldest diamond in the Pacific-10 and one of the oldest in the country.
Now having played 93 seasons at Goss Stadium at Coleman Field, the Beavers are 901-387-1 at home for a winning percentage of .699. Since the start of the 1993 season, OSU is 151-58 at Goss Stadium at Coleman Field for a winning percentage of .722.
In 2002, OSU went 18-9 in its own ballpark and set a number of attendance records. Goss Stadium at Coleman Field was renovated prior to the 1999 season; the Beavers set post-renovation records for total home attendance (20,791), average home attendance (799 per game), attendance for a home series (4,226, April 26-April 28 vs. No. 4 Stanford) and attendance for a single home game (1,838, April 27 vs. No. 4 Stanford). After OSU's 4-3 win in that April 27 game, the Beaver players went outside their clubhouse behind the third-base side of the ballpark and thanked exiting fans for being part of the victory.
OSU attracted 10 home crowds of at least 1,000 during the season, including 7 of the last 9 home games. The numbers for total home attendance and average home attendance were the largest since 1985, the first season for which complete attendance figures are readily available.
Oregon State's ballpark made its first venture into night baseball in 2002 with the addition of its first-ever set of lights. The first night game saw OSU beat fourth-ranked Stanford 4-1 on April 27. The first use of the lights in a game had come on April 13 as the Beavers hosted Hawai'i-Hilo in a doubleheader; after rain delayed the games twice, the lights came on in the second inning of the second game.
Goss Stadium was added to Coleman Field over the winter of 1998-99. The ballpark holds 2,000 fans, with the main grandstand seating 1,500 of those. The structure includes a press box, concession/lobby area, dugouts, locker rooms, restrooms and storage areas.
The playing surface has been completely rebuilt recently, with the infield undergoing renovation in 1996 and the outfield in 1998.
OREGON STATE DUGOUT CLUB: The Oregon State Dugout Club is an organization devoted to supporting Beaver Baseball. The group is open to the general public; dues are $75 per year.
Also, anyone entering the OSU Dugout Club Golf Tournament automatically gains membership. This year's tournament will be held June 23 at Tokatee Golf Club in Blue River. For more information on the OSU Dugout Club, call (541) 737-2825.
OREGON STATE RADIO BROADCASTS: Oregon State baseball will again be broadcast this season, with most of the Beavers' schedule heard on KEJO-AM (1240) and also availabe via the internet at www.osubeavers.com. The first broadcast of the season will be March 11 when the Beavers host Washington. Mike Parker, the voice of the Beavers, will handle play-by-play duties with assistance from John Warren and Kip Carlson.
TELEVISION BRINGS OUT BEST IN BEAVERS: Oregon State will have several games televised this season on Fox Sports Net; dates and opponents will be announced. Oregon State has played on national cable television each of the last 5 seasons, and the Beavers have gone 3-2 in those games, including a 3-0 mark at home. Since Fox Sports Net (formerly Prime Sports) began televising games in 1990, Oregon State has a 29-15 record in televised games, including 8-3 in national TV games.