Diamond Dawgs Continue Busy Spring Break

March 20, 2001

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THIS WEEK: The Washington baseball team (11-4 overall, 2-1 in the Pac-10), fresh from a two-games-to-win series win over No. 10 USC, continues its busy spring break slate this week with a pair of non-conference games vs. Washington State Tuesday and Wednesday evening at 6:30 p.m. at Husky Ballpark and then a three-game series at No. 1 Stanford Friday through Sunday. All five games this week can be heard on KSRB AM-1150 radio, and on KSRB's website (www.ksrb1150.com). Washington currently sits in a three-way tie atop the Pac-10 standings, albeit after only three league games, after taking the Pac-10 opening series from the Trojans. Prior to a doubleheader sweep on Monday, the Huskies had beaten the Trojans only twice in 24 all-time games. Here's a look at this week's games. As of now, the starters for the weekend series are yet to be announced.

 March 20: WSU at UW, 6:30 p.m. -- RHP Jeff Carlsen (1-0, 0.00)
March 21: WSU at UW, 6:30 p.m. -- RHP Randy Vanderplow (0-1, 13.50)
March 23: UW at Stanford, 6:00 p.m.
March 24: UW at Stanford, 1:00 p.m.
March 25: UW at Stanford, 1:00 p.m.

SERIES HISTORY: Washington has played more games against Washington State than any other opponent. The Cougars lead the all-time series, 218 to 154, though the Huskies have held the edge over the last decade or so. Last season, Washington won all five of its games against the Cougars and Husky coach Ken Knutson is 37-18 all-time against WSU. This will be the Huskies' first meeting against WSU under new Cougar coach Tim Mooney. Stanford holds a commanding 25-9 lead in the series vs. Washington, though the Huskies have had some recent success. In 1997, Washington beat the Cardinal two games to one to win the Pac-10 Championship Series. In 1998, the Dawgs took one of three in a three-game regular-season series at Stanford, then swept the No. 1 Cardinal, two games to none, to win a second straight Pac-10 title. Last year, however, Stanford swept a three-game regular season series. Knutson is 6-8 vs. the Cardinal.

COACH 'K': In eight seasons as the head coach of his alma mater, Ken Knutson has led the Dawgs to two Pac-10 championships, four Pac-10 Northern Division titles, two second-place finishes and three NCAA Regionals. His career overall record stands at 296-189 (.610). With those 296 wins, he is the second-winningest coach in UW history, trailing only Bob MacDonald (422). Before becoming the Husky head man in 1993, Knutson served as the Husky pitching coach for eight seasons. In 1985, his UW pitching staff led the nation with a 2.80 ERA. Knutson holds a 144-53 (.731) record in home games. He is 132-81 (.620) in conference games. Knutson has coached 35 first-team All-Pac-10 selections in eight seasons, and has been named league caoch of the year three times. A 1981 All-Pac-10 left-handed pitcher at the UW, he is joined by assistant coaches Joe Ross, Ed Gustafson, and Joe Weis and undergraduate assistant Daniel Jahn.

PROBABLE STARTERS: Here's a look at the probable starters at each position, with 2001 stats and notes:

Pos.  Player, Year         Avg.-HR-RBI Notes C -- Jefferson Thiel, So.  .386-2-12  .400 (8-for-20) with three HR vs. WSU in 2000      Tim Rice, Jr.         .214-0-0   Started both games in Monday's doubleheader1B -- Bryan Johnson, So.    .290-2-18  Only Husky player to have played in all 152B -- Jon Otness, Fr.       .389-0-1   Starting in place of injured RittenhouseSS -- Tila Reynolds, So.    .315-2-9   Has hit safely in 11 of 13 games this season3B -- Michael Done, Jr.     .451-2-14  5-for-7 with homer and 2 RBI in doubleheaderOF -- Tyler Davidson, So.   .349-0-10  10-for-15, 8 RBI vs. WSU last yearOF -- Jay Garthwaite, So.   .310-2-18  Hit four HR in four games vs. WSU in 2000OF -- Brandon Jacobson, So. .425-2-5   Now starting in leadoff spot, 5-for-10 vs. USCOF -- Ben Miller, Jr.       .333-1-5   14-for-34 (.412) since 0-for-first-23OF -- Andre Marshall, Jr.   .167-0-3   5 starts in CF, 2 of 3 hits are for extra basesDH -- Duggan Moran, Sr.     .229-1-3   Already quadrupled '00 hit total

HOT START: With its 11-4 start, Washington has equalled its best 15-game start since the 1994 season, when the Dawgs opened the season 10-0 and 13-2. Washington also posted 11-4 records in 1999 and in 1998. The 1994 team that started 13-2 went on to the NCAA Regionals, losing in the regional finals to Nomar Garciaparra and Georgia Tech. A good early start usually bodes well for the rest of the season, as during the 1990s, no team that started with a winning record over 15 games finished the year with a losing record. Over the last two decades, six UW teams have posted an 11-4 or better mark over the first 15 (including the 1994, 1998 and 1999 teams). In 1990, Coach Bob MacDonald's Huskies began the year 11-4 and finished 30-19. The '86 team also went 11-4. In 1985, Washington went 14-1 in its first 15 games, but all of those were against non-Division I opposition. That team finished 25-23. Here's a look at the last 10 years of Husky baseball, with record after 15 games and end-of-season record:

Year After 12  Season  Notes           Year After 12  Season  Notes2000    6-9     26-30                  1995   4-11     24-301999   11-4     33-23                  1994   13-2     46-18  Regionals1998   11-4     41-17  Pac-10 champs   1993    7-8     39-19  Div. champs1997    7-8     46-20  Pac-10 champs   1992   10-5     39-21  Div. champs1996   5-10     30-28  Div. champs     1991   10-5     27-23

BUSY SLATE: Beginning last Saturday, when the Huskies took on USC in the first game of a three-game series, the Washington baseball team began its most hectic stretch of the year. Starting Saturday, the Huskies began a stretch that will see them play 12 games over 16 days and 22 games over the next 32 days. Washington was, by at least two weeks, the last Pac-10 team to begin its season. Of course, that means that the Huskies' have to compact the 56-game schedule into a shorter period of time.

ONE YEAR OLDER: Washington fielded its youngest team since 1996 last season, with four freshmen in the everyday starting lineup and only one senior on the roster. The Huskies are hoping that they can repeat what happened with that young '96 squad, which went on to win Pac-10 Championships in 1997 and 1998. This season, Washington returns 24 players that played last season, plus two redshirts. Offensively, returning players started 66 percent of last year's games, and accounted for 64 percent of the Huskies' at bats, runs and hits. Returners hit 46 of the Dawgs' 67 home runs (69 percent) and stole 51 of 88 stolen bases (58 percent). On the mound, the Huskies are even more experienced. Members of the 2001 roster made 156 appearances last season and accounted for 77 percent (20) of the Huskies' 26 wins and 73 percent of starts (41 of 56). Returning pitchers worked 382 innings (79 percent) and fanned 300 (76 percent).

STILL YOUNG PUPS: While Washington is fielding a much more experienced team than it did last year, it's still a very young club. If you are to break down the starting players so far this year, you'll find that freshman or sophomores have earned one-third of the starts. Going with the notion that 10 players start each game (pitcher and DH included), and that the Huskies have played 15 games so far, 87 starts have gone to sophomores and 15 to freshmen, for a total of 102, or 68 percent of the 150 total starts.

THE POWER HOUSE: History will eventually be the judge of whether the new Husky Ballpark favors the hitters or the pitchers. So far, however, it definitely has been advantageous to the offense. Through 66 games at Husky Ballpark, the Huskies have belted 116 home runs, an average of 1.8 per game, while visitors have hit 78 home runs, or 1.2 per game. In 66 games, a total of 935 runs have been scored (both teams combined), an average of 14.2 per game.

CUBA TRIP: Last September, the Husky baseball team travelled to Cuba for a week of baseball. The Dawgs were to play four games against the Cubans, with a fifth game pitting two mixed teams (half Huskies, half Cubans) against one another. Washington went 2-2 against teams made up of Cuban pros and the mixed game was rained out. UW was the first major college team to play in Cuba.

POSITION PLAYER NOTES (in alphabetical order):

Tyler Davidson, Soph. OF: After a slow start (0-for-8 at Tucson), Davidson got it going during the UC Riverside series, going 6-for-17 (.353) with four RBI ... has gone 15-for-35 (.429) since the 0-for-8 start ... only Husky to hit safely in all three vs. USC, going 5-for-11 with five RBI in the series ... only got two ABs in Southern Utah series while recovering from a bruised ankle ... last season vs. WSU, went 10-for-15 (.667) with a double, a triple, two homers and eigth RBI ... began his freshman year last season on the bench, but ended up starting 28 of the last 30 ... cracked the starting lineup April 5 at Washington State, when he went 3-for-4 with a double, a triple, a home run, and an intentional walk in his last at bat ... top batting average (.345) among returning players ... 17 of 38 hits last year were for extra bases ... named honorable mention freshman All-America by Collegiate Baseball.

Michael Done, Junior 3B: Easily leads the team with his .451 batting mark ... went 5-for-11 (.455) with a homer and two RBI last weekend vs. Stanford ... 5-for-7 in Monday's doubleheader ... has started 14 of 15 games, 13 at third base and once at second ... 7-for-20 (.350) with two homers and five RBI last year vs. WSU ... March 10 vs. Southern Utah, went 3-for-4 with a homer, a double and four RBI ... went 7-for-13 (.538) at the Illini Desert Classic in Tucson ... drove in the tying run in the ninth vs. BYU in the season opener ... started all but two games at third base last season ... stole 10 bases on 11 tries last year ... made only 14 errors in 54 games last year ... named the best infield arm in the Pac-10 by Baseball America.

Justin Drake, Soph. OF: One of several candidates for the starting spot in center field ... started March 11 vs. SUU in left, going 2-for-4 with a double ... started in left vs. Illinois ... scored winning run in 6-5 win over BYU, appearing as a pinch runner ... perhaps the fastest runner on the team ... spent a good portion of last season as the starter in center, starting a total of 20 games.

Jay Garthwaite, Soph. OF: Has emerged as the Huskies' top slugger with his 18 RBI in only 14 games ... also co-leads the team with his six doubles and two homers (tied for lead) ... ... the Huskies' starter in left in 11 games, in right twice, and at DH in the other ... missed a start in Monday's game two vs. USC after being ejected in the 10th inning of game one ... had a great weekend at UC Riverside, going 7-for-16 with two homers and 10 runs batted in ... dating back to last season, has hit safely in 20 of the last 23, hitting .344 (31-for-90) over that stretch ... last year, went 6-for-18 with four solo homers vs. Washington State last year ... broke the UW freshman home runs record with 12 last season ... had off-season surgery to repair the shoulder that had relegated him to DH duties in 2000 ... honorable mention Freshman All-America.

Bryan Johnson, Soph. 1B: The only Husky to have started in all 15 games this season ... has started one game at third and 14 at first base, but has also played second base ... went only 1-for-13 vs. USC ... 3-for-5, and a homer short of a cycle, with four RBI March 11 vs. Southern Utah ... three-run homer at Oregon State March 6 ... good weekend at Riverside, going 7-for-16 (.412) with two doubles, six RBI and a grand slam (in Saturday's game two) ... struck out in only career AB vs. WSU ... had an outstanding summer with Athletes in Action, batting .327 with a wood bat and leading his team to a fourth-place finish at the NBC World Series.

Brandon Jacobson, Soph. OF: Has emerged as the regular starter in center and, with Rittenhouse injured, at the leadoff spot ... has made nine starts in center field and one in right ... 5-for-10 with six runs scored in three games vs. USC ... scored game winner in 10th in game two of USC series, coming home on a strikeout/wild pitch ... homered in game three to lead off the game ... shares team lead with 16 runs scored and leads with four stolen bases ... made two starts in center field at Riverside, going 6-for-10 with a home run and three runs scored ... hit a solo homer at UC Riverside -- the first Husky home run of the season ... batted .393 and led the league in runs and stolen bases last year at Bellevue (Wash.) CC, playing with a wood bat.

Andre Marshall, Junior OF: Has made five starts in center field so far ... two of three hits have gone for extra bases -- a double and a triple ... didn't start vs. SUU ... RBI pinch-hit single in March 10 game vs. Southern Utah ... a transfer from Walla Walla (Wash.) CC ... tripled in the season opener vs. BYU ... known for speed and fielding ... drafted by the Oakland A's in the 29th round of the 1999 draft.

Ben Miller, Junior OF: Has four starts this year -- one in center, one at DH and two in left ... 1-for-3 with an RBI Monday vs. USC (game two of DH) ... hit a two-run homer in four at bats March 10 vs. Southern Utah ... 1-for-1 off the bench March 11 vs. SUU ... drove in the go-ahead run in the 10th vs. Illinois, but the Illini tied it in the bottom of the 10th ... singled and scored in pinch hit appearance at OSU last Wednesday ... closed out last season by collecting eight hits in his last 16 at bats after starting his career hitless in his first 23 ... since the 0-for-23 start, has gone 13-for-31 (.419) first hit was a two-run homer vs. St. Martin's.

Duggan Moran, Senior 1B/DH: Has started seven games at DH and one at first base ... hit first career homer off the bench Sunday vs. Southern Utah ... with eight hits this season, has already quadrupled last year's total ... 3-for-8 at UC Riverside ... 2-for-5 March 6 at Oregon State ... first career hit (last season vs. Northern Iowa) drove in the tying and winning runs.

John Otness, Freshman IF: With Marc Rittenhouse out four to six weeks after thumb surgery, has moved into starting role at second base ... started all three vs. USC, going 3-for-11 with an RBI ... has yet to make an error in 26 chances ... only start prior to USC games came in last game at UC Riverside ... the week prior to USC, came off the bench in three of the four games, going 3-for-3 with three singles and a walk ... doubled in first career at bat off the bench in Saturday's game two at UCR ... primarily a second baseman, but has played SS and 3B as well ... missed fall practice after suffering an kidney injury during summer ball ... batted .560 as a senior and was the Tacoma player of the year.

Jeremiah Porter, RS-Freshman OF: Has made five appearances and one start ... yet to record a hit in eight at bats ... 0-for-3 in first career start Wednesday at Oregon State ... red-shirted the 2000 season due to a back injury that eventually required surgery.

Steve Ramsey, Freshman 1B/OF: Has played in five games, starting once -- March 9 in RF vs. Southern Utah ... had a big hit in that game, doubling with two outs to plate the tying run in the fifth inning, starting a two-out, four-run rally ... serves as a backup at first base and in the outfield, and also has a good shot to start at DH ... won the KingCo Confererence batting championship with a .517 average last year at Eastlake High School.

Tila Reynolds, Soph. SS: Has started 13 of 15 at shortstop this year ... has hit safely in 11 of 13 games in which he's played ... had a rough weekend vs. USC, going only 1-for-14 with one run ... has missed a couple of starts with a sprained ankle, but is essentially healthy ... 2-for-4 with a homer a double, two RBI and three runs March 6 at OSU ... very solid weekend at UC Riverside, batting .474 (9-for-19) with six runs, a double and a home run ...tripled to drive in the opening run of Kentucky game ... started 50 of 56 games at shortstop as a freshman last year ... honorable mention Freshman All-America ... over the last 35 games of 2000, batted .302 and made only six errors in last 32 games.

Tim Rice, Junior C: Has started in three games at catcher, including both games of Monday's doubleheader vs. USC ... singled once in each of the USC games, going 2-for-9 over the doubleheader ... started 12 games as the backup catcher in 2000 after transferring from Tacoma CC.

Marc Rittenhouse, Senior 2B: Had surgery to repair a ligament in his left thumb last Thursday and will miss the next four to six weeks ... prior to injury, started 11 of 12 games, 10 at second base and one at short ... went 9-for-17 with seven runs and four doubles over his last five games ... 4-for-4 with three runs and two doubles March 11 vs. Southern Utah ... 3-for-4 with two doubles and three runs March 6 at OSU ... co-captain along with Jeff Carlsen ... 12 home runs in 2000 shared the team lead ... had only five homers prior to last season ... second on team with 13 stolen bases and first with 47 walks ... 47 walks ranked third in the Pac-10 ... 10th in UW history in career walks and runs .

Jefferson Thiel, Soph. C: Has started 12 of 15 games behind the plate ... didn't catch either game of the Monday DH vs. USC with elbow soreness ... started at DH in game two ... last year vs. WSU, went 8-for-20 (.400) with eight runs, two doubles, three homers and five RBI ... 0-for-6 last weekend vs. USC ... 2-for-2 with a homer and three runs March 11 vs. Southern Utah in only four innings ... also homered in March 10 win vs. Southern ... 7-for-15 (.467) with two homers and five RBI vs. OSU and SUU ... caught every inning of the opening weekend, and still managed to hit .500 with four RBI ... singled home winning run with two outs in the bottom of the ninth vs. BYU ... started 44 of 56 games as the Husky catcher in 2000 ... named first-team Freshman All-America by USA Today Baseball Weekly ... hit .556 (5-for-9) with two HR during trip to Cuba.

Mike Wagner, Freshman 3B: Backs up at third base and at DH ... has made three starts at DH and one at third base ... 3-for-4 with four RBI March 11 vs. Southern Utah ... hit two doubles off of the bench in game two at UC Riverside ... went 6-for-13 (.545) in three games at UCR ... All-KingCo third baseman as a junior and senior at Woodinville High ... over the summer, once strung together 19 consecutive hits ... 0-for-3 in lone start.

Chad Yarbrough, Soph. C: Will compete to back up Jefferson Thiel ... grounded out in lone at bat so far this season ... has played in two games ... saw action in three games last year, but didn't get a plate appearance.

STARTING PITCHER NOTES (alphabetical order):

Jeff Carlsen, Senior RHP: Made first appearance of the year (after undergoing off-season shoulder surgery) March 11 vs. Southern Utah ... threw three perfect innings in a start, fanning six of the nine he faced ... got the win, the 23rd of his career to take over sole possession of second place in UW career wins ... also surpassed the 200-strikeout mark, only the third Husky ever to do so ... tied atop the career starts list with 41, and tied for fourth in innings pitched with 255.1 and third in strikeouts with 202 ... needs four wins to tie the UW career mark of 27.

Clay Johnson, Freshman RHP: Improved to 3-0 Monday with win over USC ... worked eight innings, scattering eight hits, allowing two earned runs ... got the win March 9 vs. Southern Utah ... fanned five in five innings in that one ... threw five strong innings for first win at UC Riverside (March 3, game two) ... no-hit the Highlanders through the first four ... finished with five innings, three hits, two runs and four Ks ... earned first career start vs. Illinois ... threw 3.1 innings and got no decision ... had a very similar career to fellow Elma High grad Jake Kringen, one of the most successful pitchers in UW history ... like Kringen, led Elma to the state title as a senior and posted a 0.00 ERA as a senior.

Tyler Shepple, Sophomore RHP: Yet to pick up a win, thanks to some tough luck ... losing end of a dominant performance by USC ace Mark Prior last Friday in a 5-1 loss ... took the loss March 7 at Oregon State, allowing six runs over four innings ... no decisions in first two starts ... March 2 at UC Riverside, allowed four runs on four hits over six and two-thirds ... vs. BYU, threw six innings, allowing two runs on four hits, no walks and five strikeouts ... gave up a two-run homer in the first for only runs ... 13 appearances, all in relief, in 2000.

Randy Vanderplow, Junior RHP: Could start or relieve ... very good relief outing March 9 vs. Southern Utah, working four innings (3 hits, 1 run, 0 walks, 3 Ks) for the save ... started at Riverside on March and took the loss ... made eight relief outings and one start last season.

Sean White, Sophomore RHP: So far, has emerged as the Huskies' top starter ... no decision vs. USC Monday (game one) ... three wins in four starts so far ... outstanding vs. Southern Utah last March 10 ... six innings, six hits (all singles), one run (unearned), no walks and three Ks in that game ... threw seven tremendous innings vs. Kentucky in first start of 2001 ... allowed no runs on three hits, three walks and three Ks ... at UC Riverside, fanned eight in five innings ... made nine relief appearances and three starts as a freshman in 2000 ... first career start came at Stanford.

BULLPEN NOTES: Brian Barton (Soph. RHP) led the UW with 22 appearances in 2000 ... didn't allow a home run in 28.1 innings, while striking out 30 in that span ... had elbow surgery in off-season and made first appearance (one inning, no other stats) March 11 vs. Southern Utah ... Mike Bomar (Senior LHP) has been outstanding in five appearances so far ... has worked 12.2 innings, allowing three runs on 11 hits, two walks and eight Ks ... threw 5.2 vs. Illinois ... allowed only two hits and one walk while fanning six ... first 4.2 innings were no-hit ... Zack Daniels (Junior LHP) is another possible starter ... fanned three in two scoreless innings March 11 vs. Southern Utah ... earned the win last March 6 at OSU, allowing four earned runs on eight hits and four Ks over 5.0 innings ... started eight and made only one relief appearance last year ... Matt Gardner (Senior LHP) is fully healthy again after shoulder injury ... struck out one in an inning Sunday vs. SUU ... worked 4.2 in relief March 4 at UC Riverside ... outstanding as a lefty set-up man ... Trevor Gibson (Freshman RHP) has been solid in his three outings ... threw a scoreless in March 7 at OSU ... allowed one run on one hit and three Ks in two innings March 10 vs. Southern Utah ... threw four innings (one run) for the save at UC Riverside ... Taylor Grant (Junior LHP) made 16 relief appearances and four starts in 2000 ... led the Huskies and was third in the Pac-10 with six saves last season ... appeared in both OSU games ... threw 2.1 relief innings in tough-luck loss to Illnois ... gave up one run (unearned) on one hit and three Ks ... gave up one run over two innings in two outings at UCR ... Shawn Kohn (Junior RHP) picked up second win in game two of the USC series, working 2.2 perfect innings and fanning three ... threw one scoreless inning March 11 vs. Southern Utah ... threw an inning of relief March 2 at UCR, fanned three and got the win ... threw a scoreless inning, fanning two in March 6 OSU game ... Jeff Petersen (Freshman RHP) led his team to AAAA state title in 2000 .. all-state as a senior and a 25th-round draft choice ... worked a scoreless inning March 10 vs. Southern Utah after a rough inning at OSU ... Scott Robertson (Soph. RHP) has emerged as the Husky closer with seven outings, three saves and a win ... nearly had a dream weekend in Tucson ... threw a scoreless ninth for the win over BYU ... worked out of a jam (second and third, no outs) vs. Kentucky for the save ... came in one run up in the 10th vs. Illinois, but gave up a run, ruining a shot at a two-save, one-win weekend ... one scoreless inning Monday vs. USC ... got a save at UCR March 2, throwing a perfect ninth inning ... got a save March 6 at OSU with one perfect inning ... fanned two in a perfect inning March 11 vs. Southern Utah.

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