Cooper and Ross Named Baseball America Preseason All-Americans
Feb. 8, 2008
DURHAM, N.C. - The University of California baseball program had two players - junior right-hander Tyson Ross and junior first baseman David Cooper - selected as 2008 Baseball America preseason All-Americans, it was announced Friday by the national baseball publication. Both Ross, the Golden Bears' top starter, and Cooper, Cal's top returning hitter, were tabbed as third-team preseason All-Americans. Major League scouting directors vote on Baseball America's All-America team, which is then tabulated and selected by Jim Callis, Aaron Fitt and John Manuel.
Ross is coming off an outstanding 2007 summer season with the USA National Team. In eight appearances for Team USA, the 6-5, 215-pounder finished 4-1 and had a 0.82 ERA, striking out 39 batters with only seven walks in 43.2 innings. Opponents batted only .194 against him. Ross picked up two victories against The Netherlands, a 5-1 victory over the Dominican Republic July 15 at the PanAm Games in Rio de Janiero, Brazil, and a 7-2 victory over Japan July 4 in Durham, N.C. Ross' pitching efforts against Japan and his first game against The Netherlands can be viewed on the baseball page on CalBears.com.
A first-team All-Pac-10 selection last spring for the Bears, Ross finished with a 6-6 mark and was second in the league with a 2.49 ERA and third in the conference with 120 strikeouts in 115.2 innings. His 120 strikeouts were second on the Cal all-time single-season strikeout list and he threw at least 6.0 innings in 15 of his 17 starts, and 7.0 innings or more 11 times, including a complete game at Stanford. Ross was earlier selected as a third-team preseason All-American by Collegiate Baseball.
Cal's top newcomer in 2007, Cooper was a transfer from Cal State Fullerton where he was a member of the 2006 College World Series All-Tournament team. An All-Pac-10 selection in 2007 for the Bears, Cooper batted a team-leading .382 with a team-best 14 doubles, 12 home runs and 55 RBI. He also paced Cal with a .627 slugging percentage, 30 walks and had a .450 on-base percentage. Cooper was third in the Pac-10 in batting average, fifth in the league in slugging and on-base percentage and seventh in the conference in home runs. His highlights included two, two-run homers versus Kent State Mar. 9, and two solo home runs at UC Santa Barbara Feb. 26. He was named the Feb. 26 Pac-10 Player of the Week after going 10-for-27 with two doubles, three home runs and eight RBI in road games at San Jose State, Long Beach State and UC Santa Barbara.
Both Ross and Cooper were earlier were named to the 2008 Wallace Award Watch List (along with junior right-hander Matt Gorgen) as potential national player of the year candidates.
The Bears (29-26 overall and 12-12 in the Pac-10 last season) open their 2008 season with three home games at Evans Diamond during the Feb. 22-24 weekend. On Feb. 22, Cal plays Kansas State at 1:30 p.m.; on Saturday, Feb. 23 the Bears will play a doubleheader against Utah Valley beginning at 11 a.m.; and on Sunday, Feb. 24, Cal will play Kansas State at 1 p.m. in a single game.
Seven of the Bears' opponents this upcoming 2008 season were 2007 NCAA Regional participants, including two-time defending national champion Oregon State, who will visit Evans Diamond Apr. 4-6, 2008. Cal also travels to San Diego, Feb. 28-Mar. 2 to compete at the University of San Diego Tournament, and to Minneapolis, Minn. Mar. 7-9 to compete in the University of Minnesota Tournament.