Arizona Baseball Notes
May 5, 2004
Up Next: UCLA
National Rankings: None
Times: Fri. - 6 pm, Sat. - 1 pm, Sun. 12 pm
Site: Jackie Robinson Stadium, Los Angeles, Calif.
Radio: KNST 790 AM - Brian Jefferies on P-B-P
Live Stats: www.arizonaathletics.com (Baseball Schedule Page)
First Meeting: 1951 - Last Meeting: 2004
Series Record: UCLA leads the all-time series 104-101-1
Current Streak: Arizona won the last meeting in the 3-game Pac-10 series earlier this year.
Pitching Probables:Friday: RHP Koley Kolberg (7-3, 3.62 ERA) vs. TBA
Saturday: RHP Kevin Guyette (5-5, 6.03 ERA) vs. TBA
Sunday: RHP John Meloan (4-0, 6.15 ERA) vs. TBA
A Look at UCLA
The Bruins will entertain the Wildcats this weekend for a three-game non-conference series after returning home for a two-game road trip to Wichita State ... UCLA is coming off a Pac-10 series win over rival USC in Westwood last weekend ... The Bruins scored six runs in the bottom of the ninth in the series finale on Sunday to win two games to one ... Heading into the week of play, UCLA has a team batting average of .286 and is averaging 6.1 runs and 9.9 hits per game ... Junior Mat Thayer leads the Bruins individually with a .331 average for the season while also scoring a team-high 31 runs ... Classmate Ryan McCarthy paces the UCLA attack with eight home runs and 10 doubles ... On the mound the Bruins have a 4.84 team ERA with 324 strikeouts in 392 innings pitched ... Senior Casey Janssan leads the hurlers with seven wins in 12 starts this year ... Head coach Gary Adams will be facing the Wildcats for the final time in his 30-year career this weekend.
Arizona - UCLA Statistical Comparison Arizona Pac-10 Rank UCLA* Pac-10 Rank *HittingAverage .311 3rd .286 9thRuns 280 7th 268 9thRuns Per Game 6.5 - 6.1 -Hits 465 4th 435 8thHits Per Game 10.8 - 9.9 -RBI 250 t7th 250 t7thRBI Per Game 5.8 - 5.7 -2Bs 75 6th 80 5th3Bs 25 1st 13 5thHRs 36 t7th 37 6thSBs 50 1st 37 6thPitchingW-L 23-19 25-19Saves 10 t6th 10 t6thERA 4.87 6th 4.84 5thIP 381.0 5th 392.0 3rdStrikeouts 293 7th 324 4thWalks 183 5th 181 4th
* UCLA's Stats and Pac-10 Rankings are prior to its series at Wichita State this week.
Last Week Recap
The Wildcats took two of three from Cal in Berkeley in a Pac-10 series ... The Wildcats won the opener 5-3, dropped the middle game 10-8, and won the finale 8-3 ... Arizona batted .355 as a team during the series with seven doubles and six home runs ... Junior John Hardy paced the Wildcats with a .429 average (6 for 14), a pair of RBI, a home run and three runs scored ... Sophomore Jordan Brown hit two home runs in the series and Richard Mercado, Jeff Van Houten and Bill Rhinehart each added one apiece ... On the mound the Wildcat pitchers went 2-1 with a 4.85 ERA and 14 strikeouts in 26 innings pitched ... Senior Scott Burns picked up saves in both of UA's wins, the first two saves in his career ... Burns tossed five scoreless innings of relief, giving up only one hit while striking out four ... Junior Koley Kolberg struck out seven over 6.1 innings to pick up his team-leading seventh win of the year in Friday's victory ... Sophomore John Meloan improved to 4-0 for the year with 6 1/3 innings on Sunday. The right-hander almost missed his scheduled start due to a stomach virus, but went on to limit Cal to just two earned runs on five hits.
Scott Burns Pac-10 Pitcher of the Week
Fifth year senior Scott Burns was named the conference pitcher of the week after his outstanding performance at Cal last weekend. The right-hander picked up two saves in five innings of work. Cal collected just one hit (.063 average) while striking out four times against him. In Sunday's series clinching win, Burns entered the game with the bases loaded and the Wildcats clinging to a one-run lead. He got out of the inning with a liner to short to preserve the Arizona advantage. Burns, who entered the 2004 season with just 12 career innings pitched, earned his first two career saves
The weekend series at UCLA will mark the end of the longest span of road games this season for the Wildcats. Arizona traveled to Washington two weeks ago for a three-game series with the Huskies before going to Berkeley for a Pac-10 series with Cal last weekend. The non-conference three-game set to UCLA this weekend will wrap up the nine-game trip.
With just three non-conference games remaining on the schedule, UA has a 16-11-1 record in non-Pac-10 action ... UA has played five schools ranked in the top 25 at the time of the game/series and has gone 4-7 against them ... Arizona is 10-2 when scoring 10 or more runs in game ... Arizona's No. 4 spot in the batting order has driven in only 20 runners through 43 games, but Bill Rhinehart's solo homer against Washington got the spot off the schnide for home runs. Rhinehart's blast is the lone HR hit by an Arizona clean up batter this season despite seven different players having been slotted there ... The Wildcats are averaging 8.3 runs per game in their wins and just 4.3 in their losses ... The average margin of victory for Arizona this season is 3.9 runs, the average margin of defeat is 3.0 ... The Wildcats have won more one-run games through 43 contests this season, six, then it did in all 58 games last year, three ... Arizona has posted double-digit hits in 29 of its 43 games and has gone 18-10-1 when doing so ...UA's 10 saves this season have already passed the season total of seven in all 58 games last year.
The Wildcats are averaging 6.5 runs, 10.8 hits, 4.0 walks and 1.7 doubles per game this season ... Junior John Hardy leads the team in average at .359 ... Freshman Jason Donald continues to pace the UA effort in home runs (7) and runs scored (38), but sophomore teammate Jordan Brown has overtaken him for the team RBI lead at 37 ... Sophomore Nick Hundley has the longest current hitting streak at six straight games ... Junior Richard Mercado holds the longest non-active hitting streak of the season of 10 consecutive games.
Overall Non Conf. Pac-10Games 43 28 15Avg. .311 .309 .314Runs 280 (6.5) 176 (6.3) 104 (6.9)Hits 465 (10.8) 300 (10.7) 165 (11)2Bs 75 (1.7) 44 (1.6) 31 (2.1)3Bs 25 (0.6) 19 (0.7) 6 (0.4)HRs 36 (0.8) 19 (0.7) 17 (1.1)RBI 250 (5.8) 160 (5.7) 90 (6.0)
Numbers in ( ) are per game averages
In The Nick Of Time
Sophomore Nick Hundley has rebounded from a rough first half of the season. After batting just .211 in his first 14 games this year, the second-year starter has gone 18 for 44 (.409) over his last 12 games to improve his season average 106 points (from .211 to its current .317). During the 12-game hot streak Hundley has driven in 10 runs, hit five doubles and a triple and has scored 14 times.
It's no laughing matter that Arizona's team-leading hitter has batted in the No. 9 spot for the majority of the season, in fact junior John Hardy has done quite a nice job for the Wildcats batting last. Since dipping down to a season-low .300 average after an 0 for 3 night at Oregon State, the third-year starter has gone on a tear over his last 17 games to the tune of a .450 average (27 for 60) with 16 RBI, three home runs and 14 runs scored. The last 17 contests have earned him a team-high .359 average for the year.
Wildcats Find Their Legs
After averaging just 1.6 stolen bases attempts per game through the first 31 contests this season, Arizona broke out its track shoes over a six-game span. The Wildcats stole 15 bases in 18 attempts, an average of three attempts and 2.5 stolen bases per game, during a six-game stretch from April 12-18. Sophomore Trevor Crowe, who tied an Arizona single game record with four stolen bases at Arizona State on April 12 and is the team leader with 14, has led the way in thievery, going a perfect seven for seven in stolen bases in UA's last nine games. Arizona, which led the Pac-10 in stolen bases with 144 in 2003, has regained its top spot in the conference in the stat with 50 for the year. Washington is second at 49.
They're Not Cal Ripken, but....
Freshman Jason Donald is the lone Wildcat to start all 43 games this season. The first-year infielder, who has made 39 starts at shortstop and four at third base, has not missed a play in any of Arizona's contests this year. Junior John Hardy has also played in all 43 games, including 37 straight starts, but entered the Feb. 15 game against Cal State Fullerton as a pinch hitter and defensive replacement for his lone non-start appearance of the season.. Hardy currently has the longest streak of consecutive games played at 98 straight. The last time he did not appear in a game was on Feb. 1, 2003 against BYU.
The Arizona defense, which went the first 25 games with just 14 double plays, has finally found love for the twin killing. Over the last 18 games, the Wildcats have more than doubled (no pun intended), from 14 to 36, their season total for DPs. Highlighted by a four double play-game at Oregon State on April 2, Arizona has four contests over the past month with three or more DPs turned in them. Second baseman John Hardy, shortstop Jason Donald and first baseman Jordan Brown have teamed up for the majority of them, but UA has also turned two on strike 'em out, throw 'em out, as well as outfield catch and throw.
Arizona pitchers are 23-19 with a 4.87 ERA in 381 innings this season ... UA's starting staff is 17-11 with a 5.05 ERA overall this year, while the bullpen has tallied a 6-8 record with 10 saves and a 4.51 ERA ... Opponents are averaging 9.7 hits per game against Wildcat pitchers ... Arizona relievers have allowed 38 of their 94 inherited runners to come around and score (40%).
Meloan Knocking 'Em Down
Since taking over Arizona's No. 3 spot in the weekend rotation sophomore John Meloan has taken a liking to striking out batters. In 29.1 innings pitched as a starter, Meloan has punched out 28 hitters. The right-hander is 3-0 in his starts this season and has gone six or more innings in all four.
Meloan's Career Starting Numbers6 GS, 4-0, 4.15 ERA, 39.0 IP, 22 H, 21 R, 18 ER, 14 BB, 33 K
D-Rod's Close Out
Junior Derek Rodriguez has already single-handedly matched UA's 2003 team season total for saves in just 43 games this year with a seven. Already fifth on the single season saves list, Rodriguez needs just four more this year to be the Arizona record holder. Last year John Meloan and Kevin Guyette shared the team saves lead at two apiece.
Entering the year, fifth-year senior Scott Burns had pitched a total of 12 innings during his first three seasons and had a career 9.00 ERA in 13 games pitched. Now, with 17 appearances this season alone, he has become a key figure in UA's bullpen. Leading the team with a 2.59 ERA, Burns has limited opponents to just a .205 batting average against him. He has struck out 20 and walked just eight in 24 1/3 innings pitched.
Koley's Among The Pac-10 Best
Junior Koley Kolberg ranks among the top pitchers in the Pac-10 in a number of statistical categories. Heading into the week of play as the leader in innings pitched (97), the right-hander is fifth in ERA (3.62), fourth in strikeouts (84), tied for second in games started (14) and tied for fourth in wins (7).
Complete Games - A Losing Proposition For UA
Arizona starters Koley Kolberg (UC Irvine, Long Beach St., Washington ) and Kevin Guyette (UCLA) have tossed at least one complete game apiece this season... and lost. While none of the four complete game losses have been dominating performances by the two Wildcat arms, all three have given Arizona an opportunity to win. Kolberg and Guyette have an 0-4 record in complete game efforts, have a combined ERA of 3.97, have struck out 25, walked just 12 and limited opponents to a .265 batting average when going all nine. The Wildcat offense has certainly not helped either's case for a win in the situation. The Arizona bats have produced just a .156 average (19 for 122) with one extra base hit and just five runs in support of Kolberg and Guyette in the four games.
Going the Distance
The four complete game losses mark the first time since Shawn Barrington in 1996 that a UA pitcher has worked all nine innings and been saddled with a loss. Barrington was on the losing end of a 4-3 decision at UCLA nine years ago. Former Wildcat Richie Gardner went the distance twice last season without recording a win, but he also did not earn a decision in either contest as both games carried over into extra innings.
March 2 Pac-10 Pitcher of the Week
Junior right-hander Koley Kolberg was named the Feb. 24-March 2 conference pitcher of the week after limiting Baylor to just one unearned run on three hits in UA's 2-1 victory over the Bears in Waco. Kolberg picked up his first win of the season with eight Ks in seven innings pitched. Earlier in the week, Kolberg entered Arizona's 4-0 loss to Arizona State with one out and the bases loaded in the eighth inning and struck out ASU's No. 3 and 4 hitters to keep the Devils from extending their lead.
Head Coach Andy Lopez
Entering his third season with the Wildcats, Andy Lopez has already made a huge impact in revitalizing the program. In two-plus seasons he has put together an 89-65-1 (.577) record at UA, led the Wildcats to their first postseason appearance since 1999 and tallied a pair of top 10 recruiting classes. One of only eight coaches in Division I history to lead two different schools to the College World Series, Lopez is on track to join the select group of skippers to take three clubs to Omaha. Currently only Larry Cochelle (Oral Roberts, Cal State Fullerton, Oklahoma) and Ron Polk (Georgia Southern, Mississippi State, Georgia) can make a claim of that feat.
Kindall Field at Sancet Stadium
On January 24, the Arizona athletics department rededicated it baseball facility to honor the two winningest coaches in school history. Jerry Kindall and Frank Sancet combined to win 1,691 games, three national titles and advance to 14 College World Series appearances. The rededication of the field was held in conjunction with the Jim Click Alumni Weekend that featured a golf tournament, dinner and the annual alumni game. Formerly know as Frank Sancet Field, the facility will now be known as Jerry Kindall Field at Frank Sancet Stadium.
More Than Just A Name Change
In addition to a change in title, the baseball facility also continued its gradual facelift during the off-season. Recently completed projects include a brick facade around the outside of the ticket office and grandstand, as well as a new wooden outfield fence. The new wall in the outfield comes in at 12 feet high from the foul lines, before dipping down to eight feet across center field. The playing dimensions of the field will remain the same.