Sun Devils To Host Houston, San Diego And New Mexico State In NCAA Regional

May 29, 2002

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What's On Tap:
For the second time in three years,the Arizona State baseball team will host an NCAA regional. Finishing the year 35-19 overall and third place in the Pac-10 at 15-9, the Sun Devils will host Houston, New Mexico State and San Diego to Hohokam Park this weekend for one of the 16 NCAA Division Baseball Regional Championships. ASU will take on San Diego at 6 p.m. Friday, while seventh-ranked Houston will battle New Mexico State in the 12 p.m. game. ASU last hosted a regional in 2000, getting knocked off by the Texas Longhorns in the regional final. The winner of the Arizona State Regional will play the winner of the regional hosted by the University of Texas.

Arizona State in Postseason Play:
The Sun Devil baseball program has created a dynasty in college baseball that has been matched by few. With 18 appearances in the College World Series, ASU ranks fifth for the most trips to Omaha. Arizona State has now advanced to the NCAA Tournament in 26 of the program's 43 varsity seasons (dating back to 1959), amassing an incredible 122-49 (.730) record. ASU's five National Championships rank as the second most of any NCAA school. In addition to ASU's five national championships, the Sun Devils have also turned in five second-place teams and three third-place finishes. Arizona State is 13-8 in the NCAA Tournament under eighth-year head coach Pat Murphy. In addition to advancing three straight years, ASU has been left out of the tournament only once (1999) in the last six years and played for the national championship in 1998. ASU is a combined 42-5 vs. the schools in the Mesa regional.

Not A Bad Way To Finish:
ASU had a great finish to the 2002 regular season, winning eight of its last 10 games to finish the year16 games above .500 at 35-19. ASU started the 10-game stretch with a convincing 10-2 win at then eighth-ranked Stanford at Sunken Diamond. ASU then took two of three from Pac-10 champion USC and swept Oregon State to end the season. ASU tied for third place in the Pac-10 with Washington, posting a 15-9 record in league play. During the impressive 10-game stretch the Sun Devils hit .354 as a team (120 x 339) and out-scored their opponents 120-99. The pitchers also had a good run with a very respectable 4.66 team ERA.

Quick Hits:

  • Pat Murphy recorded wins No. 302, 303 and 304 in his ASU career this past weekend against Oregon State.
  • The Sun Devils are 19-7 when not hitting a home run this year, while just 16-12 when at least one player connects for a homer.
  • Dustin Pedroia has only three errors in the field in 205 total chances (.985 FLD%). He also has 23 multi-hit games.
  • With his 5-for-5 performance vs. USC (5/19), Sergio Garcia raised his batting average 39 points from .321 to .360.
  • Dustin Pedroia is the only Sun Devil to play and start in all 54 games this year. He has also started three positions.
  • Jeremy West is hitting .514 (18x35) with six extra base hits and 18 RBI in his last 10 games.
  • Senior catcher Cesar Castillo is hitting .292 (21x72) since taking over the starting catcher job and is hitting .272 overall.
  • Of ASU's 426 runs scored this year, 220 (52%) have come with two outs. ASU also has 124 1-out runs and 82 0-out runs.
  • ASU's 4.44 team ERA is second in the Pac-10 behind Stanford and currently the best in the Pat Murphy era.
  • Through 54 games, ASU has four complete games. The Devils had only one all of last year (Jon Switzer).
  • The Devils have scored in the first inning in 30 of their 54 games (56%). ASU is 24-6 when scoring in the first.
  • The Sun Devils have used 42 different lineups this year, including a string of 34 different lineups in the last 38 games.
  • ASU has scored in a NCAA record 429 consecutive games dating back to April 7, 1995. The old record was 349.
  • In his 19 appearances out of the bullpen (34.0 IP), sophomore Ryan Schroyer has struck out 44 batters (1.32 ERA).
  • ASU returned only 39.5% of hits, 38.7% of RBI, 38. 6% of runs, 24.3% of pitching wins and 37.9% of K's from last year.
  • ASU's sweep over Oregon State to end the year was the first in Pac-10 play this year for the Devils.
  • The Devils were 11-13 this year against teams that make up the NCAA Tournament Field of 64.
  • Relief pitcher Mark Sopko got ASU out of several jams in 2002, inheriting 34 runners, allowing only eight to score (24%).
  • ASU is 18-1 when scoring 10 or more runs this year and have tallied double-digits in runs in five of the last 10 games.
  • Andre Ethier returned to the lineup last weekend with five hits. He is now leading the team in hitting at .377.
  • Sophomore RHP Mike Esposito notched his third 10-plus strikeout performance of the year vs. NMSU (4/30).
  • Esposito is 9-5 with a 3.47 ERA and is ranked third in the Pac-10 with 93 strikeouts in 96.0 innings pitched.
  • Freshman Nick Cadena has five home runs and is hitting .333 (16x48) with five home runs and 19 RBI in his last 12 games.
  • The Devils hit .315 in the 24 Pac-10 games and .308 in Non-conference play. Ethier leads the team with a .431 average in Pac-10 play.
  • ASU's 35 home runs is already four more than the entire total from last year. West leads the team with 13 home runs.
  • The Sun Devils have given up 19 home runs in the last 19 games after allowing only 15 in the first 35 games of 2002.
  • West's eight RBI vs. Portland (5/15) were the most by a Sun Devil since 1999 and second most in the ASU record books.
  • Bryce Kartler made his first career start at DH vs. Portland (5/15) and went 2-for-3 with a double and two RBI.
  • ASU is 8-8 against ranked opponents this year and played 25 of their 54 games against teams appearing in the polls.
  • ASU has already had five players earn Pac-10 Player of the Week honors and two players earn National Pitcher of the Week.
  • Cesar Castillo has started 22 of the last 25 games at catcher, adding to his two previous career starts.
  • Ryan Schroyer leads the Pac-10 with a 2.35 ERA. He is 4-1 overall with three wins and four saves in his last nine appearances.
  • Rod Allen and Jeremy West both passed the 100-career RBI mark last weekend vs. Oregon State.
  • Jered Liebeck struck out a career-high eight batters in a career-long seven-inning outing against USC (5/17).
  • ASU is 27-8 in home games this year and 24-8 at Hohokam Park. The Devils are hitting .327 at home and pitching for a 3.78 ERA.
  • Redshirt freshman walk-on Garrett Schoenberger recorded his first hit as a Sun Devil with a single vs. Portland (5/14).
  • Steve Garrabrants is hitting .346 overall and leads the Pac-10 with seven triples and is ranked 4th with 15 stolen bases.
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