This Week in Pac-10 Baseball
May 6, 2008
As the regular season begins to wind down, the watch lists for many national awards begins to narrow as well. This week, the College Baseball Foundation narrowed its field of candidates aiming for the 2008 Brooks Wallace College Player of the Year Award to 100. The Wallace Award is presented annually to the nation's top collegiate baseball player. Of those 100 players still in the running, the Pac-10 is represented with 11 players from ARIZONA, ARIZONA STATE, CALIFORNIA, STANFORD, and UCLA. In addition to national awards, Pac-10 teams have not lost sight of the race for the Conference title. In its biggest jump of the season, WASHINGTON went from eighth to sole possession of third place in the league standings. This week, the Pac-10 boasts three teams among the nation's leaders, including (Baseball America): Arizona State (3), Stanford (6) and California (16).
Tue., May 6No. 3 ARIZONA STATE vs. Kansas State, 6:30 p.m.No. 16 CALIFORNIA vs. UC Davis, 2:30 p.m.No. 6 STANFORD at San Francisco, 3 p.m.UCLA vs. No. 8 San Diego, 6 p.m.USC vs. Cal Poly, 7 p.m.WASHINGTON at Portland, 3 p.m.WASHINGTON STATE at BYU, 6 p.m.
Wed., May 7No. 3 ARIZONA STATE vs. No. 14 Wichita State, 7 p.m.OREGON STATE vs. Portland, 4 p.m.WASHINGTON STATE at BYU, 6 p.m.
Fri., May 9ARIZONA vs. Utah Valley State, 7 p.m.No. 16 CALIFORNIA at No. 6 STANFORD*, 6 p.m.UCLA at OREGON STATE*, 5 p.m.WASHINGTON STATE at WASHINGTON*, 6:30 p.m.
Sat., May 10ARIZONA vs. Utah Valley State, 6 p.m.No. 3 ARIZONA STATE vs. Loyola Marymount, 7 p.m.No. 16 CALIFORNIA at No. 6 STANFORD*, 1 p.m.UCLA at OREGON STATE*, 1 p.m.USC vs. Cal State Northridge, 7 p.m.WASHINGTON STATE at WASHINGTON*, 2 p.m.
Sun., May 11ARIZONA vs. Utah Valley State, 12 p.m.No. 3 ARIZONA STATE vs. Loyola Marymount, 6 p.mNo. 16 CALIFORNIA at No. 6 STANFORD*, 1 p.m. Comcast SportsnetUCLA at OREGON STATE*, 1 p.m.USC vs. Cal State Northridge, 1 p.m.WASHINGTON STATE at WASHINGTON*, 1 p.m.
Mon., May 12ARIZONA STATE vs. Loyola Marymount, TBAOREGON STATE vs. Utah Valley State, 6 p.m.STANFORD vs. Santa Clara, 6 p.m.
* - Pacific-10 Conference game
All times are local to site and subject to change.
ARIZONA (31-15, 8-10): ARIZONA took on No. 16 California last weekend and was able to take the final game of the series from the Golden Bears. On Friday, Arizona could not stop the Pac-10's homerun leader as California hit four home runs, including a game-breaking grand slam in the bottom of the seventh inning, resulting in a 11-5 loss for the Wildcats. On Saturday, California's Blake Smith snapped a 5-5 tie with a solo home run in the bottom of the eighth inning to hand Arizona its fourth straight Pac-10 Conference loss in a 6-5 decision. On Sunday, Arizona collected 18 hits and took advantage of 10 walks issued by the Cal pitching staff to salvage a win in its three-game Conference series against the Golden Bears. The 16-5 victory snapped a four-game league skid for the Wildcats.
ARIZONA STATE (37-8, 12-6): The ARIZONA STATE baseball team took two of three games from UCLA to win the series. Brett Wallace had an impressive performance as he went 7-for-14 (.500) with three homers and five RBI to lead the Sun Devils. Wallace homered twice during the Devils' 11-8 win on Sunday and drove in the go-ahead run in the top of the ninth with a single to right center. He also scored seven times and played flawless defense at third. Teammate Tommy Rafferty improved his record to 10-0 on the season as he came out of the bullpen both Friday and Sunday to help lead the Sun Devils to victories in both games. Rafferty earned the wins both days as he struck out five in 6.2 innings.
CALIFORNIA (29-15-2, 9-9): The CALIFORNIA Golden Bears had a busy schedule as they took on Cal Poly midweek and Arizona for their weekend series. Junior first baseman David Cooper was 6-for-14 (.429) last week along with a double with a team-high five runs scored, two home runs and five RBI. He then finished the Arizona series going 4-for-9 (.444) with five walks, a double, home run and four RBI. On the year, he is now batting .389 with a team-high 51 runs, 70 hits, 12 doubles, a Pac-10 leading 18 home runs and 52 RBI. Cooper also leads Cal with a .756 slugging percentage and has a .482 on-base percentage. He has two game-winning RBI this season and is already tied for seventh on the Cal all-time list with Conor Jackson of the Arizona Diamondbacks with 30 home runs in less than two seasons. Junior right-hander Tyson Ross improved his record to 7-2 on the year by throwing a season-high 8.0 innings and scattering 11 hits with three runs, three walks and five strikeouts in an 11-5 Cal victory over Arizona May 2. He has now improved his career record to 19-12 and has 251 career strikeouts, good for fourth on the Cal all-time strikeout list.
OREGON STATE (20-18, 8-9): Ryan Ortiz was 4-for-6 and every OREGON STATE player had at least one hit and one RBI as the Beavers took the series finale from Washington State, 19-9, on Monday at Bailey-Brayton Field. Joey Wong had three RBI, while Ortiz, Lonnie Lechelt and Jason Ogata all had three. Ortiz also had two doubles to pace the Beavers. Mark Grbavac pitched four scoreless innings of relief to improve to 4-1 this season. Portland and Oregon State resume their suspended game from April 15 at PGE Park. The game will be played on Wednesday at 4 p.m. PT at Goss Stadium, as the Beavers hold a 3-0 lead entering the bottom of the fourth. Ogata has two hits and an RBI and Daniel Robertson also has an RBI. James Nygren is the pitcher of record thus far having thrown three scoreless innings.
STANFORD (27-15-2, 10-5): STANFORD took part in non-conference action this past weekend as the Cardinal took on San Jose State at home on Saturday and away on Sunday. The No. 3 Stanford baseball team emphatically ended its three-game slide Saturday afternoon, bashing out 15 hits in a 9-1 victory over San Jose State. The Cardinal scored nine consecutive runs in the fourth through sixth innings after spotting the Spartans an early 1-0 lead. Stanford hit the road once again and made a spirited comeback to defeat San Jose State 17-6 on Sunday. Stanford was down 6-1 with two outs in the eighth inning, but used a five-run fifth and an 11-run ninth to turn the game into a blowout.
UCLA (24-20, 7-8): UCLA had a stellar performance last week from Alden Carrithers who went 7-for-16 (.438) and posted a .625 on-base percentage in five games. Carrithers, who logged seven hits and seven walks, scored three runs and netted five RBI during the week. Carrithers hit safely in each of UCLA's five games. He currently leads all Bruins with a .391 batting average and .471 on-base percentage this season. In the Bruins' 6-2 win on Wednesday against Loyola Marymount, Carrithers was 1-for-3 with one run and two RBI. Saturday afternoon, Carrithers reached base four times on one single and three walks as UCLA upset No. 4 Arizona State, 8-3, before a national television audience. In the Bruins' 11-8 loss in Sunday's series finale, Carrithers led UCLA with a 3-for-4 effort and one walk, scoring one run and adding one RBI. Junior right-handed pitcher Jason Novak, this week's Pac-10 Pitcher of the Week, also helped the Bruins during his three appearances last week by limiting the opposition to four hits through seven scoreless innings.
USC (21-25, 7-11): USC sophomore shortstop Grant Green is batting .376 (62-for-165) with 14 doubles, four triples, eight home runs, eight stolen bases and 41 RBI this season. He recorded a career-high 19-game hitting streak which was snapped on Saturday. On Sunday against Washington, Green set the USC career record with his 14th triple, passing the previous record of 13 held by Mark Smith (1989-91) and Seth Davidson (1998-2001).
WASHINGTON (28-16, 8-7): The WASHINGTON baseball team earned its first national ranking of the 2008 season as Collegiate Baseball installed the Huskies as its No. 30-ranked team in today's poll. Over the weekend, the Huskies jumped from eighth to sole possession of third place in the league standings thanks to a three-game sweep at USC. This week, the Huskies play a non-conference game Tuesday at Portland before Washington State visits Husky Ballpark for a three-game series this weekend.
WASHINGTON STATE (24-19, 5-9): WASHINGTON STATE's Michael Weber went 5-for-9 (.556) with eight RBI, including a grand slam, in Washington State's two wins over No. 23 Oregon State in Pullman, May 3-4. Weber, starting for the first time since April 11, was 3-for-4 with a career-high four RBI in an 10-3 win over the Beavers on Saturday. Sunday, he added a 2-for-5 effort, including a grand slam as part of a seven-run second inning for the Cougars to help lead Washington State to an 11-4 victory.