No. 5 Stanford Set to Open 2009 Campaign Tonight

Feb. 20, 2009

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STANFORD CARDINAL VS. VANDERBILT COMMODORES

Friday, Feb. 20 • 5:30 p.m. • Klein Field at Sunken DiamondRHP Jeffrey Inman (7-2, 4.27 ERA in `08) vs. LHP Mike Minor (7-3, 4.28 ERA in `08)

Saturday, Feb. 21 (DH) • 12:00 p.m. • Klein Field at Sunken DiamondGm. 1:RHP Danny Sandbrink (2-1, 2.81 ERA in `08) vs. RHP Caleb Cotham (7-6, 4.50 ERA in `08)Gm. 2:RHP Danny Sandbrink (2-1, 2.81 ERA in `08) vs. RHP Caleb Cotham (7-6, 4.50 ERA in `08)

STANFORD CARDINAL VS. UC RIVERSIDE HIGHLANDERS

Sunday, Feb. 22 (DH) • 12:00 p.m. • Klein Field at Sunken DiamondTBA vs. TBA

All times Pacific; every game is broadcast on KZSU (90.1 FM) and gostanford.com

No. 5 Stanford Set to Open 2009 Season This Weekend at HomeNo. 5 Stanford will begin its 116th season of college baseball this weekend, as it hosts Vanderbilt and UC Riverside at Klein Field at Sunken Diamond in the opening four games of the 2009 campaign. The Cardinal and the Commodores will meet in for a single game on Friday, Feb. 20 (5:30 p.m.) and a Saturday, Feb. 21 doubleheader beginning at 12:00 pm. Stanford and the Highlanders will play Sunday, Feb. 22 at 1:00 p.m.

Broadcast InformationAll 56 of Stanford's regular season games, and any postseason contests, will be carried live on the campus radio station, KZSU 90.1 FM. The KZSU broadcast is available on the intranet either at www.kzsulive.stanford.edu or via a link on www.gostanford.com.

All four of Stanford's opening-weekend games will also be shown on a live webcast at www.gostanford.com.

Golden Spikes On the Mound Friday NightThe pitching matchup for Friday night's season opener will feature two of the 50 players selected by USA Baseball for the preseason Golden Spikes Award Watch List, as Stanford right-hander Jeffrey Inman will oppose Vanderbilt lefty Mike Minor.

Currently in its 32nd season, the Golden Spikes Award honors the top player in college baseball.

Stanford-Vanderbilt SeriesStanford and Vanderbilt are playing for the first time since 1973, when head coach Ray Young led the Cardinal to a 6-0 victory over the Commodores at the UC Riverside Tournament. That contest is the only meeting between the two schools since 1959, which is the first year that Stanford's game-by-game results are available.

Stanford-UC Riverside SeriesStanford and UC Riverside have played 12 times since 1970, with the Cardinal holding an 8-4 advantage thanks to a current three-game winning streak. The two clubs last met in a 2003 NCAA Regional held at Stanford, with the Cardinal winning 13-6 in a May 31 winner's bracket contest.

Cardinal Clips

  • Stanford is 6-1 in season-opening games since 2002, and is 10-2 on opening day since 1997.
  • The Cardinal has posted a victory each of the last nine times it has opened a season at Klein Field at Sunken Diamond, including a 17-7 win over Nebraska on Feb. 22, 2008 (DH Gm. 1).
  • Stanford opens the 2009 season ranked in the top-20 nationally in four of the five college baseball polls, including a trio of top-10 rankings (No. 5 - Collegiate Baseball Newspaper; No. 6 - USA Today/ESPN Coaches' Poll; No. 9 - NCBWA; No. 15 - Baseball America).
  • The Cardinal returns 18 letterwinners from its 2008 College World Series club, including six starting position players, three starting pitchers and its closer.
  • Stanford's 2009 schedule features 25 games against nine 2008 NCAA Tournament teams.
  • 28 of the last 30 classes at Stanford have played in Omaha, as the Cardinal has advanced to the College World Series in 14 of the last 28 seasons (beginning in 1982)...Stanford has also advanced to the NCAA Tournament in 25 of those 28 campaigns.
  • Stanford is the fifth-winningest program in NCAA Division I baseball history, opening the 2009 season with an all-time record of 2,559-1,602-34 (.614).
  • The Cardinal has finished at least .500 in 15 straight seasons and 30 of the last 32 campaigns.

    Opening Day SuccessStanford has won six of its last seven season-opening games, and 10 of its last 12 opening day contests. The Cardinal has also won nine-straight opening day games at Klein Field at Sunken Diamond, including a 17-7 victory over Nebraska on Feb. 22, 2008 (Gm. 1).

    Head coach Mark Marquess has guided Stanford to a 25-7 (.781) record in his first 32 opening day contests, including a 21-1 (.955) mark at home.

    'Nine' Going for NinthMark Marquess, who will begin his 33rd year at the helm of his alma mater this weekend, enters the 2009 campaign as the 10th-winningest head coach in NCAA Division I baseball history (fifth among active skippers) with a career 1,326-669-7 (.664) record.

    Marquess is just five victories away from matching Larry Cochell (last with Oklahoma) for ninth on the all-time list (1,331), and is only 16 wins shy of matching USC legend Rod Dedeaux (1,342) for eighth.

    A Look at the PollsWith 18 letterwinners returning from its 2008 College World Series club - including six starting position players, three starting pitchers and a Freshman All-America as closer - Stanford earned a top-20 ranking in four of the five national college baseball polls.

    The Cardinal will open the 2009 campaign as the fifth-ranked team in the country according to Collegiate Baseball Newspaper. Stanford is also ranked No. 6 in the USA Today/ESPN Coaches' Poll, No. 9 by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) and No. 15 by Baseball America. Only Rivals.com left Stanford out of its preseason rankings.

    In a close final tally, Stanford has been picked to finish third in the 2009 Pac-10 baseball race, according to a vote of the league's coaches. The Cardinal was one of five clubs to receive a first-place vote, while finishing with 64 points - three behind second-place UCLA and five shy of defending league champion and the coaches' 2009 favorite, Arizona State.

    Winning on The FarmBeginning this weekend, Stanford will play seven of its first 10 contests at Klein Field at Sunken Diamond. That could bode well for a fast start, as the Cardinal finished 21-11 in official home games last year, and is 330-111 (.758) on The Farm over the last 13 campaigns.

    Inman Named to Golden Spikes Award Watch List; Third-team All-AmericaJunior right-handed pitcher Jeffrey Inman has been named by USA Baseball as one of 50 players on the preseason Golden Spikes Award Watch List, while is also a preseason third-team All-America selection by Baseball America.

    Sponsored by Major League Baseball, the Golden Spikes Award is in its 32nd season honoring the top player in college baseball. The list will be paired down to 30 on May 26 and again to five finalists on June 2, while the winner will be announced in a July 15 awards show as part of MLB All-Star festivities in St. Louis.

    Inman played a key role in Stanford's run to the 2008 College World Series, going 7-2 with a 4.27 ERA (34er, 71.2ip) in 16 games (13 starts) as a sophomore. He showed why he is considered among the nation's top pitchers during a stellar seven-outing, six start stretch in March and April in which he went 5-0 with a 1.49 ERA (6er, 36.1ip). His final start of the season came at the College World Series, when he allowed just two runs and struck out five over 5.1 innings against eventual finalist Georgia. For the season, Inman held right-handed batters to a .246 average (35-for-142).

    The Bakersfield, Calif. native followed his sophomore collegiate campaign by striking out 34 batters in just 31.1 innings for the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox, and was tabbed by Baseball America as the ninth-best prospect in the 2008 Cape Cod League.

    Storen Named to NCBWA Stopper of the Year Watch ListStanford sophomore right-hander Drew Storen is one of 40 players selected to the initial watch list for the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Stopper of the Year Award. The award is in its fifth season, and honors the top relief pitcher in NCAA Division I baseball.

    Storen emerged as one of college baseball's premier closers during a stellar freshman campaign in 2008, going 5-3 with eight saves and a 3.51 ERA (22er, 56.1ip) in a club-high 31 relief outings. He was a first-team freshman All-America selection by Collegiate Baseball/Louisville Slugger, while he earned second-team honors from Rivals.com and third-team accolades from Ping!Baseball. The first-team All-Pac-10 performer was fourth in the league for saves (second among freshmen), while he tied for the seventh-highest single-season save total in Stanford history.

    The Brownsburg, Ind. native logged a 3.3:1 strikeout-to-walk ratio during his rookie collegiate season, fanning 50 batters against only 15 walks. He also held opposing batters to a .257 average (53-for-206), including a paltry .229 mark to right-handed hitters (25-for-109). Storen tied for fifth in the Pac-10 for appearances and tied for second by finishing 20 games, while 22 of his 31 outings were at least 1.1 innings.

    Following Stanford's 2008 season, Storen served as the closer for the Cotuit Kettleers in the prestigious Cape Cod League. He posted five saves, a 2.76 ERA (5er, 16.1ip) and .200 average against (12-for-60) in 13 relief appearances, with 15 strikeouts against five walks.

    Back for MoreStanford will welcome back 18 returning letterwinners from its 2008 College World Series club, a total that includes six starting position players, three starting pitchers and its closer.

    The Cardinal will retain the services of the following starting position players: OF Joey August (Sr.), OF Toby Gerhart (Jr.), 3B Zach Jones (So.), 1B Brent Milleville (Sr.), SS Jake Schlander (So.) and OF Jeff Whitlow (Sr.).

    RHP Max Fearnow (Sr.), RHP Jeffrey Inman (Jr.) and RHP Danny Sandbrink (So.) all saw significant time in the 2008 rotation, while closer Drew Storen (RHP - So). is back after a Freshman All-America campaign.

    Milly TimeAlthough Stanford lost some offensive production with four starting position players from a year ago being selected in the 2008 MLB First-Year Player Draft, senior first baseman Brent Milleville looks poised to fill that void.

    Milleville was an honorable mention All-Pac-10 performer in 2008, setting career highs with a .289 average (54-for-187), 33 runs scored, 11 home runs, 57 RBI and a .513 slugging percentage. He was arguably Stanford's top offensive threat over the second half of the season, batting .303 (43-for-102) with eight doubles, nine homers and a club-high 48 RBI over the team's final 37 games.

    Following Stanford's 2008 season, Milleville played in the prestigious Cape Cod League and was one of two designated hitters named to the All-League team after tying for the circuit lead with six home runs.

    Iron ManIn 2008, Jake Schlander became the only Stanford freshman to start every game at shortstop since games played became an officially kept statistic in 1960. He was the first Cardinal rookie to start each contest since current San Diego Padres outfielder Jody Gerut did so in 1996.

    From the Gridiron to the DiamondJunior outfielder Toby Gerhart, who is slated to be the Cardinal's opening night center fielder, is the latest in a proud Stanford tradition of two-sport athletes. During the 2008 football season, the running back established Stanford's single-season record with 1,136 rushing yards. The bruising runner averaged 5.4 yards per carry (210 attempts), while scoring 15 rushing touchdowns - good for second in school history.

    On the diamond, Gerhart will look to build upon a solid end to his 2008 season. The Norco, Calif. native collected 12 RBI over his final 11 games (including seven postseason contests), while hitting at a .356 clip (16-for-56) with four home runs.

    Series-ly SpeakingA big reason behind Stanford's success in 2008 was its proficiency in weekend series, as the Cardinal went 10-2 over its 12 three-game weekend sets.

    The Cardinal will play its first official three-game, weekend series Feb. 27-March 1 at Cal State Fullerton, site of Stanford's 2008 NCAA Super Regional victory.

    A Look at the ScheduleLong a staple under head coach Mark Marquess, Stanford will once again play a tough schedule in 2009. The Cardinal will play a total of 25 games against nine clubs that advanced to the 2008 NCAA Tournament: Arizona (3 games), Arizona State (3), California (5), Cal State Fullerton (3), San Diego (1), Texas (3), UC Davis (2), UCLA (3) and Vanderbilt (2).

    The Cardinal is currently scheduled to have five regular season games televised on a total of three stations. Home contests against Texas on March 6, UCLA on April 11 and Arizona on April 24 are slated to be shown live on the CBS College Sports Network (CSTV). Stanford's April 4 tilt will be televised by Comcast SportsNet Northwest, while the April 17 contest at Arizona State will be aired on Fox SportsNet Arizona.

    Stanford Among the All-Time BestStanford enters its 116th season of college baseball with the fifth-most wins of any NCAA Division I program, having posted a 2,559-1,602-34 (.612) all-time record. That ledger includes 128 NCAA Tournament wins over 28 appearances, tied for the sixth-most all-time.

    Leading the PacSince the Pac-10 disbanded the two-division system and realigned prior to the 1999 season, Stanford leads all conference teams with 431 wins, four league titles and six trips to the College World Series.

    Cardinal ConsistencyAfter going 41-24-2 in 2008, Stanford has finished at least .500 in 15 straight seasons, and in 30 of 32 campaigns under head coach Mark Marquess.

    More impressively, 28 of the last 30 Stanford classes have played in Omaha during some point of their collegiate careers on The Farm, as the Cardinal have advanced to the College World Series in 14 of the past 28 seasons (since 1982). Stanford has also qualified for the NCAA Tournament in 25 of the last 28 campaigns.

    Stanford at the Plate

  • Stanford finished the 2008 season with a .299 team batting average to rank fifth in the Pac-10...the Cardinal was second in the conference with 504 runs scored (7.5 rpg).
  • The Cardinal hit at a .301 clip (118-for-392) during 11 postseason contests, while scoring 84 runs (7.6 rpg).
  • Stanford plated at least 10 runs in 15 games during the 2008 season, with the Cardinal going 14-1 in those contests.

    Stanford on the Mound

  • Stanford ranked third in the Pac-10 with a 4.45 team ERA in 2008.
  • Cardinal pitchers were at their best in the NCAA Tournament, forging a 3.95 ERA (43er, 98.0ip) in 11 postseason contests.
  • Stanford ranked second in the Pac-10 last year with 17 saves.

    Stanford with the Gloves

  • Stanford's .975 team fielding percentage in 2008 was the third-best in school history, led the Pac-10 and ranked ninth among all NCAA Division I clubs.
  • The Cardinal turned 65 double plays a year ago - tied for most in the Pac-10.

    A Memorable Run to Omaha - A Look Back at 2008Stanford finished the 2008 season in a familiar place - Omaha, Neb., as the program made its 16th trip to the College World Series. The Cardinal tied for third at the CWS after a 2-2 record that featured victories over Florida State and Miami (Fla.).

    Stanford's NCAA Tournament run was indeed impressive, as after losing the opening game of the Regional, the Cardinal tied a school record for a single postseason with seven consecutive victories - four to win the Regional, two in a Super Regional sweep at Cal State Fullerton and one in the College World Series opener.

    Head coach Mark Marquess led Stanford to a 14-10 mark and second-place finish in the Pac-10, as the Cardinal finished in the league's top two for the 23rd time in the last 28 seasons. Stanford had five first-team All-Pac-10 selections, matching Arizona and conference champion Arizona State for most in the league.

    The Next LevelThe Stanford Baseball program, which as seen 80 of its former players make it to the majors, had seven players from last year's roster selected in the 2008 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft. Jason Castro led the way when he was selected by the Houston Astros with the 10th overall pick of the draft. Next was Jeremy Bleich, who was chosen in the Compensation A round by the New York Yankees (44th pick overall). Stanford had four first-day choices overall, as Cord Phelps was nabbed by the Cleveland Indians in the third round (107th overall) and Sean Ratliff was selected by the New York Mets in the fourth round (134th overall).

    The draft's second day saw the selections of Austin Yount by the Los Angeles Dodgers (12th round, 367th pick overall), Erik Davis by the San Diego Padres (13th round, 405th overall) and Randy Molina by the Seattle Mariners (43rd round, 1,272nd overall).

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