Cal Baseball Visits Oregon State For Pac-10 Series

March 26, 2003

BERKELEY, CA -

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Mar. 28	at Oregon State	Coleman Field/Goss Stadium, Corvallis, OR 5:00 p.m.Mar. 29	at Oregon State	Coleman Field/Goss Stadium, Corvallis, OR 1:00 p.m.Mar. 30	at Oregon State	Coleman Field/Goss Stadium, Corvallis, OR 1:00 p.m.

RADIO: KALX Radio (90.7 FM) will broadcast the Mar. 28-30 Cal-OSU games. Live audio provided on www.calbears.com.

BEAR NOTES: The California baseball team (15-12, 2-1) travels to Oregon State (12-11, 0-0) for its first Pac-10 road series of the season. The Bears are 2-1 in league play and tied for first place (with Arizona and Stanford) after winning two-of-three last weekend versus Washington State (W 8-3, W 9-3, L 5-4) at Evans Diamond. Offensively, Cal has been led by juniors Chris Grossman and Conor Jackson. Grossman, a catcher who had played sparingly before this season, is leading the Bears with a .337 average, five home runs and has 23 RBI. He also has had two game-tying home runs, a game-winning home run and a game-winning RBI single this season. Jackson, a first team Preseason All-American, missed seven games with a sprained right ankle, but is currently batting .300 with a team-leading .567 slugging percentage and .489 on-base percentage. He has hit two home runs in the last four games, including a grand slam Tuesday at Sacramento State - the third grand slam of his college career. Another player who is swinging a hot bat is senior outfielder Brad Smith. Smith started the season 0-for-19, but in the last three games has gone 3-for-7 with a double, a triple, a home run and four RBI. Cal will be looking for offensive production as two of its top hitters, freshman infielder Allen Craig (.324, 2-HR, 15-RBI) and junior outfielder Brian Horwitz (.293, 5-HR, 25-RBI) are out with injuries (sprained left wrist, sprained left thumb, respectively). The Bears, who are trying to qualify for postseason play for the second time in coach Esquer's four-year tenure, return 13 players who were members of Cal's 2001 NCAA Regional squad.

SERIES RECORD: Cal has a 26-13 all-time series record against the Oregon State Beavers. In the last meeting between the two schools, the Bears swept the series (13-7, 2-1 in 15 innings, 8-3), May 10-12, 2002 at Evans Diamond.

HEAD COACH DAVID ESQUER: The 2001 Pac-10 Coach of the Year, Esquer, 37, is in his fourth season at Cal and has a career record of 103-92 (.528). He became only the 10th coach in the history of Cal baseball, which began in 1892, when he was hired June 10, 1999. Esquer replaced longtime Bear mentor Bob Milano, who retired May 17, 1999 after 22 years as the Bears head coach and 29 years involved in the Cal baseball program. Esquer came to Berkeley after serving as the top assistant at Pepperdine from 1996-99. Prior to working at Pepperdine, he was the No. 2 assistant coach at Stanford under Mark Marquess from 1991-96. A shortstop at Stanford from 1984-87, Esquer was a starter on Stanford's 1987 College World Series championship team, earning All-Tournament honors after hitting .350 with six RBI in Omaha. He also earned All-Pac-10 Southern Division honors as a senior and went on to play professional baseball for four seasons with the Baltimore Orioles, California Angels and Milwaukee Brewers organizations.

TENTATIVE CALIFORNIA LINE-UP

No. Pos. Player 2003 stats5 2B David Nicholson, So. .250, 4 RBI, 0 HR2 RF Ben Conley, Sr. .300, 8 RBI, 0 HR34 3B Conor Jackson, Jr. .300, 15 RBI, 4 HR35 C Chris Grossman, Jr. .337, 23 RBI, 5 HR44 1B James Holder, So. .290, 15 RBI, 3 HR33 CF Jeremy Burchett, Fr. .265, 11 RBI, 1 HR6 DH Justin Nelson, So. .209, 9 RBI, 2 HR3 LF Brad Smith, Sr. .115, 4 RBI, 1 HR9 SS Jeff Dragicevich, Jr. .231, 7 RBI, 0 HR30 RHP Matt Brown, Jr. (Fri.) 2-2, 5.10 ERA20 RHP Brian Montalbo, Jr. (Sat.) 3-2, 5.08 ERA17 RHP Kyle Crist, So. (Sun.) 1-1, 3.99 ERA

OREGON STATE: The Oregon State Beavers, coached by Pat Casey (9th year at OSU, 251-186-4, .574), are currently 12-11, winning two-of-three versus UC Santa Barbara (L 5-4, W 4-3, W 6-4) Mar. 23-24 at Coleman Field. Top hitters for the Beavers are junior left fielder Seth Pietsch (.369, 5 HR, 22 RBI), senior first baseman Andy Jarvis (.356, 1 HR, 27 RBI) and junior third baseman Tony Calderon (.349, 3 HR, 21 RBI). Oregon State's tentative pitching rotation is TBA, junior right-hander Ben Rowe (2-1, 6.15 ERA) and senior right-hander Stephen Copeland (2-2, 6.96 ERA). In 2002, the Beavers were 31-23, 10-14 in the Pac-10 (sixth).

PAC-10 RACE (as of Mar. 26)

Conference Overall W L PCT GB W L .PCTArizona 2 1 .667 --- 21 8 .724Stan 2 1 .667 --- 16 8 .667CAL 2 1 .667 --- 15 12 .556AASU 1 2 .333 1.0 32 5 .865USC 1 2 .333 1.0 13 14 .481WSU 1 2 .333 1.0 6 18 .250Wash 0 0 .000 0.0 17 7 .708OSU 0 0 .000 0.0 12 11 .522UCLA 0 0 .000 0.0 14 15 .483

CAL HONOR CANDIDATES

Conor Jackson, third base, JR - preseason All-American in Baseball America, Collegiate Baseball and the National Collegiate Baseball Writers; 2002 first team All-Pac-10 selection; member of the 2002 USA National Team; led the Pac-10 in total bases (152) and slugging percentage (.691), and was second with a .382 batting average in 2002; is a candidate for the Golden Spikes Award as the nation's top collegiate baseball player and is on the Smith Award watch list. Matt Brown, right-handed pitcher, JR - preseason All-American in Baseball America; two-time Pac-10 Honorable Mention; 2002 Cape Cod League All-Star; is tied for fourth on the Cal all-time save list (14), on the Smith Award watch list. Chris Grossman, catcher, JR - Cal's 2003 leader in home runs (five); batting .337 with 19 RBI; game-winning RBI Mar. 14 vs. UC Irvine; game-winning home run Feb. 7 vs. Loyola Marymount. Brian Horwitz, outfield, JR - Cal's 2003 leader in home runs (five) and RBI (25); tied school record with eight RBI Feb. 14 versus Texas-Pan American; is school record holder with 23-game hitting streak set as a freshman in 2001.

KEY NEWCOMERS

Jeremy Burchett, outfield, FR - Capistrano Valley HS (Coto de Caza, CA) - batting .265 with team-leading nine doubles; had 10-game hitting streak from Feb. 18-Mar. 15. Allen Craig, infield, FR - Chaparral HS (Temecula, CA) - batted .485 with 11 runs, three doubles, two home runs and 10 RBI for USA Junior National Team this summer; helped Team USA to bronze medal at 2002 World Junior Championship; is batting .324 with 12-game hitting streak from Jan. 31-Feb. 18; Feb. 11 Pac-10 Player of the Week.

IMPORTANT HOME DATES

Apr. 17-19 vs. USCCal faces the No. 6 Preseason ranked and defending Pac-10 champion Trojans.

May 9-11 vs. StanfordThe Golden Bears host Bay Area rival Stanford in the last regular season conference series.

CAL INDIVIDUAL PLAYER NOTES

MATT BROWN, JR., RHP: Is 2-2 with a 5.10 ERA and has 30 strikeouts in a team-high 42.3 innings...won Mar. 21 vs. WSU (season-high 8.0 innings, six hits, two earned runs, no walks, five strikeouts)...got no decision Mar. 14 vs. UC Irvine (7.3 innings, seven hits, five runs, three walks, seven strikeouts)...lost Mar. 7 at Stanford (4.0 innings, six hits, four earned runs, two walks, three strikeouts)...lost on unearned run Feb. 21 at Long Beach State (7.0 innings, three hits, two walks, four strikeouts)...won Feb. 14 vs. Texas-Pan American (5.0 inning, six hits, five runs, two walks, six strikeouts)...got no decision Feb. 7 vs. Loyola Marymount (6.0 innings, seven hits, four runs, three walks, four strikeouts)...got no decision Jan. 31 vs. UNLV (5.0 innings, eight hits, four runs, one walk, one strikeout)...is 0-0 with a 0.00 ERA (one strikeout in 1.0 inning) career vs. Oregon State...is slated to start Friday...

JEREMY BURCHETT, FR., OF/RHP: Is batting .265 (22-for-83, .083 vs. Pac-10) with a team-high nine doubles, a home run and 11 RBI...had 10-game hitting streak from Feb. 18-Mar. 15 (14-for-41, .341, 4-2B, 6 RBI)...hit a double in four straight games Feb. 18-23...went 5-for-10 with three doubles and three RBI Feb. 21-23 at Long Beach State...was 2-for-9 with two doubles Feb. 14-16 at the College Express Classic...went 2-for-5 with a double and two RBI Feb. 18 vs. Saint Mary's...got a hit in his first collegiate at-bat, Jan. 31 vs. UNLV...went 2-for-7 with a home run and three RBI Jan. 31-Feb. 1 vs. UNLV...

BEN CONLEY, SR., OF: Is batting .300 (12-for-40, .100 vs. Pac-10) with three doubles and eight RBI...missed eight games from Feb. 25-Mar. 18 due to a right hip flexer strain...went 2-for-6 Feb. 21-23 at Long Beach State...was 2-for-4 with a double Feb. 11 vs. San Jose State...was 5-for-12 with a double and six RBI Feb. 7-9 vs. Loyola Marymount...had game-tying RBIs Feb. 7 and Feb. 8, and the game-winning RBIs Feb. 9 vs. LMU... is batting .357 (5-for-14) with runners in scoring position...is 2-for-10 (.200) with a home run career vs. Oregon State...

KYLE CRIST, SO., RHP: Is 1-1 with a 3.99 ERA and has 17 strikeouts in 29.3 innings...got no decision Mar. 23 start vs. WSU (4.3 innings, seven hits, three runs, one walk, two strikeouts)...earned first collegiate win in Mar. 16 shutout vs. UC Irvine (career-high 6.0 innings, two hits, no walks, four strikeouts)...lost Mar. 9 at Stanford (3.3 innings, 12 hits, seven runs, no walks, three strikeouts)...was outstanding Feb. 23 at Long Beach State (no decision, career-high 6.0 innings, two hits, no runs, two walks, two strikeouts)...pitched 4.3 relief innings Feb. 16 vs. Nebraska (4.3 innings, four hits, one run, two walks, three strikeouts)...got no decision Feb. 11 start vs. San Jose State (4.0 innings, five hits, no runs, one walk, one strikeout)...is slated to start Sunday...

CHRIS GROSSMAN, JR., C: Is batting a team-leading .337 (34-for-101, .417 vs. Pac-10) with eight doubles, a team-high five home runs and 23 RBI...went 5-for-12 with two doubles and four RBI Mar. 21-23 vs. WSU...was 5-for-14 with two doubles, two home runs and five RBI Mar. 14-16 vs. UC Irvine...went 4-for-6 with a double, two home runs and four RBI, including game-winning RBI in 12th inning Mar. 14 vs. UCI...was 5-for-13 with a double and two-run homer Mar. 7-9 at Stanford...was 1-for-3 with three RBI Feb. 25 at Santa Clara...went 3-for-4 with a double Feb. 18 vs. Saint Mary's...was 1-for-4 with a key home run in the eighth inning Feb. 11 vs. San Jose State...went 5-for-13 with a double, home run and two RBI Feb. 7-9 vs. Loyola Marymount, including hitting the game-winning home run in the ninth inning Feb. 7 vs. LMU... was 4-for-11 Jan. 31-Feb. 2 vs. UNLV, including 2-for-4 with three RBI in Jan. 31 opener...is batting .333 (10-for-30) with runners in scoring position...is 0-for-2 with a RBI career vs. Oregon State...

JAMES HOLDER, SO., 1B/DH: Is batting .290 (27-for-93, .167 vs. Pac-10) with seven doubles, three home runs and 15 RBI...is second in the Pac-10 in hit by pitch (nine)...was 2-for-12 with a double and five RBI Mar. 21-23 vs. WSU...went 3-for-11 with two RBI Mar. 14-16 vs. UC Irvine...was 3-for-10 with a double Mar. 7-9 at Stanford...went 3-for-4 with a home run Feb. 25 at Santa Clara...was 4-for-12 with two home runs and five RBI Feb. 14-16 at the Express College Classic, including going 2-for-3 with two home runs and career-high five RBI Feb. 14 vs. Texas-Pan American...was 3-for-5 with a RBI Feb. 18 vs. Saint Mary's...went 3-for-6 with two doubles and RBI Feb. 7-9 vs. Loyola Marymount...went 2-for-3 in the Jan. 31 opener vs. UNLV...

JESSE INGRAM, SO., RHP: Is 2-0 with four saves (3rd in Pac-10) and a 3.65 ERA in 15 appearances (2nd in Pac-10)...has 21 strikeouts in 24.7 innings...had two appearances last weekend vs. WSU (4.0 innings, two hits, no runs, no walks, four strikeouts)...earned save Mar. 16 vs. UC Irvine (3.0 innings, two hits, no runs, two walks, one strikeout)...earned save Feb. 25 at Santa Clara (1.3 innings, two hits, two runs, two walks, two strikeouts)...earned save Feb. 11 vs. San Jose State (1.0 inning, one hit, one run, no walks, one strikeout)...won Feb. 7 (0.7 inning, one hit, no runs, one walk) and Feb. 9 (1.7 innings, two hits, no runs, one walk, four strikeouts) vs. Loyola Marymount...earned save Feb. 4 at San Francisco (2.0 innings, no hits, no runs, one walk, four strikeouts)... is 1-0 with a 0.00 ERA (one hit, five strikeouts in 6.7 innings) career vs. Oregon State...

CONOR JACKSON, JR., INF: Is batting .300 (18-for-60, .333 vs. Pac-10) with four doubles, four home runs and 15 RBI...has a team-leading .567 slugging percentage, .489 on-base percentage and team-leading 20 walks...went 3-for-9 with a double and a two-run homer Mar. 21-23 vs. WSU and was 1-for-2 with a grand slam Tuesday at Sacramento State...was 2-for-4 with a home run and three RBI Mar. 14 vs. UC Irvine...went 6-for-9 with two doubles, a home run and four RBI Feb. 14-16 at the Express College Classic...sprained his right ankle in the Jan. 31 opener vs. UNLV, missing seven games...hit a home run in first at-bat after injury, Feb. 14 vs. Texas-Pan American...is batting a team-best .467 (7-for-15) with runners in scoring position...is 9-for-25 (.360) with two doubles and three RBI career vs. Oregon State...

BRIAN MONTALBO, JR., RHP: Is 3-2 with a 5.08 ERA...opponents are batting .235 against him (5th in Pac-10)...won Mar. 22 vs. WSU (7.0 innings, five hits, two runs, three walks, five strikeouts)...lost Mar. 15 vs. UC Irvine (4.3 innings, six hits, three earned runs, two walks, four strikeouts)...lost Mar. 8 at Stanford (5.7 innings, five hits, five earned runs, five walks, four strikeouts)...won Feb. 22 at Long Beach State (career-high 8.3 innings, five hits, three runs, one walk, five strikeouts)...got no decision Feb. 15 vs. Southwest Texas State (5.0 innings, four hits, two runs, three walks, three strikeouts)...picked up win in relief Feb. 8 vs. Loyola Marymount (3.0 innings, two hits, no runs, three walks, two strikeouts)...has not made a career Pac-10 appearance vs. Oregon State...is slated to start Saturday...

DAVID NICHOLSON, SO., INF./OF: Is batting .250 (27-for-108, .385 vs. Pac-10) with four doubles, a triple, four RBI and is 10-for-12 in stolen bases (4th in Pac-10)...went 5-for-13 with two RBI Mar. 21-23 vs. WSU...was 2-for-4 Mar. 18 at Saint Mary's...had a career-high eight-game hitting streak from Feb. 1-14 (15-for-32, .469, 3-2B, 2-RBI)...was 5-for-12 with a double and RBI Feb. 7-9 vs. Loyola Marymount...went 3-for-5 Feb. 4 at San Francisco...was 5-for-11 with two doubles Jan. 31-Feb. 2 vs. UNLV, including going a career-best 4-for-4 Feb. 1 vs. the Rebels... is 3-for-17 (.176) with a RBI career vs. Oregon State...

JOE TODOROFF, SO., RHP: Is 3-1 with a 4.15 ERA...got no decision Mar. 25 start at Sacramento State (4.0 innings, two hits, three runs, three walks, five strikeouts)...lost Mar. 18 at Saint Mary's (4.0 innings, six hits, three runs, two walks, five strikeouts)...won in relief Feb. 25 at Santa Clara (career-high 6.3 innings, five hits, one run, one walk, career-high eight strikeouts)...won Feb. 18 start vs. Saint Mary's (5.0 innings, six hits, no runs, one walk, two strikeouts)...earned first collegiate win Feb. 1 vs. UNLV (5.0 innings, three hits, three runs, three walks, two strikeouts)...

DID YOU KNOW?

*Cal won the inaugural College World Series title in 1947, defeating former President George Bush's Yale team, 8-7, in Kalamazoo, Michigan.

*The Golden Bears have had two players go on to be league MVPs in professional baseball - Jackie Jensen was the American League MVP in 1958 with the Red Sox and Jeff Kent was the National League MVP in 2001 with the Giants.

*The 2003 Cal coaching staff of David Esquer, Dan Hubbs and Ron Witmeyer have been a part of 17 NCAA Regionals, four College World Series and two National Championships as either a player or coach.

*Cal is one of only 20 schools that have won NCAA Baseball titles and only one of 12 schools that have won more than one national championship (1947, 1957).

*Junior third baseman Conor Jackson played for the USA National Team last summer and is one of six Golden Bears to have competed for Team USA. Former Bear head coach Bob Milano (1978-99) was an assistant coach for the 1988 United States Olympic team and was the USA National Team coach in 1997. Paul Mohler was a trainer for the USA National Team in 1988.

*Since 1947, Cal has had 31 All-American selections, 72 All-Pac-10 selections and 40 major leaguers. Since 1978, the Bears have had 97 athletes play professional baseball.

*Conor Jackson's dad, John Jackson, plays Admiral A.J. Chegwidden on the television series JAG. Junior first baseman/outfielder Noah Jackson's godfather is Chicago Cubs manager Dusty Baker. Junior left-hander Matt Irwin was a member of the Cal band from 1999-2000 before again taking up baseball.

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