Stanford To Start Second Half Of League Play Versus No. 8 Oregon State Friday

April 26, 2007

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OREGON STATE BEAVERS (32-8, 4-5 Pac-10)
STANFORD CARDINAL (17-21, 2-10 Pac-10)

Friday, April 27 (7 pm, PT) - RHP Mike Stutes (9-1, 2.36) vs. LHP Jeremy Bleich (1-7, 5.32)
Friday's Live Game Coverage: CSTV Telecast - Pay Per View Video | KZSU (90.1 FM)/ Audio Broadcast (Brandon Crockett, Alex Gyr) | Gametracker

All-Time Series: Stanford 35-22
2006 Results: Series - Oregon State, 5-0 (Conference at Oregon State, April 13-14, 16) - Oregon State 3-0, Oregon State, 1-0, Oregon State 12-1 (7 inn.); (NCAA Corvallis Regional at Oregon State, June 10-11) Oregon State 4-3, Oregon State, 15-0
Last Meeting At Stanford: Series - Oregon State 2-1 (April 9DH-10, 2005) - Oregon State 9-7 (DH Game 1), Oregon State 11-10 (DH Gm. 2), Stanford 4-3
Current Game Win Streak: Oregon State - 5 (April 13 - June 11, 2006)
Current Series Win Streak: Oregon State - 3 (April 9DH-10, 2005 - June 10-11, 2006)
Current Regular Season Series Win Streak: Oregon State - 2 (April 9DH-10, 2005 - April 13-14, 16, 2006)Current Season Series Win Streak: Oregon State - 2 (2005-06)
Series Notes: Oregon State dominated Stanford in its CWS Championship season of 2006 with a 5-0 record against the Cardinal with all games being played in Corvallis. The Beavers swept a three-game set that took four days to complete during the regular season when rain caused the postponement of the series finale scheduled for Saturday, April 15. The teams then took to the field on Easter Sunday and the Beavers came away with a 12-1 win in a contest that was shortened to seven innings. Unable to change their flight reservations, Stanford hopped on a bus after the game and arrived home late Easter evening after an approximate 10-hour ride. Stanford went back to Corvallis for an NCAA Super Regional from June 10-11 with a trip to Omaha on the line and the Beavers prevailed again, taking the first game 4-3 before a 15-0 triumph over the Cardinal to secure their ticket to the CWS. Oregon State has actually won seven of the last eight games between the teams as the Beavers previously took two-of-three at Stanford in 2005. Stanford's last series victory over Oregon State came with two-of-three wins in Corvallis.

Stanford is currently in the midst of a six-game homestand over eight days from April 24 - May 1. Stanford hosted San Jose State and Fresno State this past Tuesday and Wednesday prior to its current three-game Pac-10 series versus Oregon State (Friday-Sunday, April 27-29, 7 pm, 1 pm, 12:30 pm, PT) and will conclude a stretch of 10 of 13 contests at home with a non-conference game against Santa Clara (Tuesday, May 1, 6 pm, PT).

Stanford has three upcoming games scheduled to be televised live beginning with CSTV and FSN slated to air back-to-back contests versus Oregon State this Friday and Saturday (April 27 and 28), respectively. CSTV will also televise a contest against Washington on May 13.

Stanford begins the second half of Pac-10 play with its three-game series versus Oregon State this Friday-Sunday. Stanford managed just a 2-10 conference mark in the first half of league action and currently sits in last place in the Pac-10 standings. Ironically, Stanford was also in last place in the conference standings (3-9 record) at the midway point of the 2006 league schedule but bounced back with an 8-4 record in the second half of the league play to finish 11-13 in the conference and tied for fifth in the Pac-10 standings. The second half of Pac-10 play in 2006 earned Stanford a spot in the NCAA Division I Baseball Championships to extend the program's postseason streak to 13 straight years. Stanford then won the NCAA Austin Regional and knocked out defending national champion Texas on its home field in the process before being eliminated by eventual College World Series champion Oregon State at the NCAA Corvallis Super Regional.

Stanford has dropped five straight series overall as well as five consecutive Pac-10 series dating back to the final conference series of 2006. The current overall series losing streak includes each of the team's four 2007 Pac-10 series versus UCLA (sweep), at Arizona State (sweep), against Arizona (2-of-3) and at California (2-of-3) and a non-conference home set to USC (2-of-3). Stanford hasn't won a series since sweeping California at Sunken Diamond in a three-game non-conference series March 2-4. Stanford's five series Pac-10 losing skid includes the same four 2007 conference series as well as the final league series of 2006 at UCLA with the team's last Pac-10 series win coming in a road sweep at Washington (May 12-14, 2006). Both streaks are the program's longest since Stanford lost its final five series of 1993 (all Pac-10) as well as its first non-conference series of 1994 to Cal State Fullerton to extend its overall series losing streak to six. The 1994 team ended the program's Pac-10 string of five straight series losses by winning its first Pac-10 series of the season versus Arizona State.

Although Stanford still has two long series losing streaks going, the Cardinal has been able to end three long losing streaks recently. Stanford snapped a six-game home losing skid and a nine-game Pac-10 losing streak that were both the longest in recorded school history with a 6-3 victory over Arizona on April 15 after having previously ended a six-game overall losing streak that was its longest since 1982 with a 9-4 victory in a non-conference game at Nevada on April 10.

Stanford started Pac-10 play with an 0-8 league mark that was the worst in recorded school history before winning its first conference game against Arizona on April 15. Stanford also started the season with an 0-3 record to mark the first time since 1989 the Cardinal had lost its first three games of the season. In addition, the sweep at Cal State Fullerton was also the first time Stanford had been swept in a three-game season-opening series in the school's recorded history.

Stanford is battling to extend its current strings of 13 straight winning seasons and the same number of consecutive appearances in the NCAA Division I Baseball Championships from 1994-2006. The Cardinal has a current 17-21 overall record that is four games under .500. The last time Stanford did not have a winning season and did not qualify for the postseason was in 1993 when the club missed the postseason with a 27-28 overall mark. Stanford has actually had winning seasons in 41 of the last 42 years and 58 of the past 60 campaigns prior to 2007.

Stanford is the fifth all-time winningest program in college baseball history with a record of 2507-1571-32 (.614) in 4109 games over 114 seasons including 2007. Fordham, Texas, USC and Michigan are the top four.

OFFENSE - Stanford is tied for seventh in the Pac-10 in home runs (22), as well as eighth in batting average (.280) and hits (367), and last in runs scored (206) and stolen bases (19).
PITCHING - Stanford has also struggled on the mound with an uncharacteristically high 6.05 ERA that is last in the Pac-10 by a wide margin over Washington State's 5.14 mark that ranks eighth and 69 points higher than the highest ERA in the school's recorded history when the 1979 pitching staff posted a 5.36 mark. The team's .318 opponents' batting average is also last in the Pac-10.
FIELDING - Stanford also ranks last in the Pac-10 in fielding percentage (.959) by a wide despite five errorless games in its last nine contests. Stanford's errors of late have come in bunches and with eight multiple-error contests in the last 15 games, including a season-high five versus Arizona (April 14), 11 in a series at Arizona State (April 5-7) and seven in its most recent series at California (April 20-22). Stanford's best defensive stretch came during a four-game errorless streak from March 10-25.

OFFENSE - Sean Ratliff is having a big season and has arguably been the team's most consistent hitter this season. Ratliff is leading the Cardinal in nearly every offensive category, including batting average among those with enough at bats (2.5 per game) to qualify (.316), triples (3, co-leader), home runs (7), runs scored (39), hits (48), stolen bases (9), total bases (83), slugging percentage (.546), on-base percentage (.373, co-leader), at bats (152), games played (38) and games started (38). Other offensive team leaders or co-leaders include Michael Taylor (29 RBI, 5 HBP), Cord Phelps (13 2B, 3 3B, 16 BB), Joey August (.373 OB%, co-leader; 3 SAC) and Brent Milleville (3 SF). Adam Sorgi is notably hitting .357 (29-81) and has a .432 on-base percentage but is still a little shy of reaching the 2.5 minimum number of at bats per game to qualify for the team lead in both categories.
PITCHING - Jeffrey Inman (3-2, 5.72, 50.1 IP, 45 SO) leads the club in wins and strikeouts, while Jeremy Bleich (1-7, 5.32, 67.2 IP, 38 SO) paces the team in innings pitched and starts (11). Bleich also has the lowest ERA among any pitcher with at least one inning pitched per team game played. Nolan Gallagher (2-5, 7.47, 1 SV, 47.0 IP, 34 SO) has the team's only complete game and shutout. Gallagher had been in the team's rotation along with Inman and Bleich for most of the season before coming out of the bullpen in each of his two most recent appearances with a save at California (April 21) and versus San Jose State (April 24). David Stringer (0-2, 6.09, 7 SV, 34.0 IP, 24 SO) paces the club with seven saves and 22 appearances, ranking tied for third and tied for fourth in the Pac-10 in those two categories.

OFFENSE - Stanford scored just nine runs despite a .295 batting average in its most recent series as the Cardinal left 28 runners on base in the three games. Stanford also had problems getting big hits with the team's only extra base hits among the team's 31 hits coming from one double each by Adam Sorgi and Michael Taylor. Grant Escue (1.000, 1-1), Ryan Seawell (.600, 3-5), Sorgi (.455, 5-11, 2B, RBI) and Brent Milleville (.400, 2-5) all managed to hit .400 or better in the series.
PITCHING - Stanford posted a 5.76 team ERA in the series despite giving up 10 earned runs in the series finale. Three Stanford relievers -- Nolan Gallagher (0.00, 0-0, 1 APP, 1 SV, 2.0 IP, 1 H, 1 BB, 2 SO), Erik Davis (0.00, 1-0, 2 APP, 1.0 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 1 BB) and Andrew Clauson (0.00, 0.00, 0.2 IP, 2 H, 1 BB) -- did not allow an earned run in their appearances out of the bullpen. Cory Bannister (2.70, 0-0, 1 APP, 3.1 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 5 SO) was also impressive in his relief outing, while Jeremy Bleich (0-1, 3.52, 1 APP, 1 GS, 7.2 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 4 SO) and Jeffrey Inman (3.60, 0-0, 1 APP, 1 GS, 5.0 IP, 9 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 2 SO) had respectable starts.
FIELDING - Stanford was errorless in the first game of the series before combining for seven in the final two contests with three on Saturday and four more on Sunday for a team fielding percentage of just .937.

Stanford's four-game home run drought ended when Sean Ratliff went deep for his team-high seventh of the season versus Fresno State in Stanford's most recent game on April 25. The Cardinal's most productive home run stretch of the season had come right before the four-game drought when Stanford hit 10 long balls in its previous 12 games.

Sean Ratliff struggled as a two-way player during his 2006 freshman year but is having a big season offensively in 2007. Ratliff is leading the Cardinal in nearly every offensive category, including batting average among those with enough at bats (2.5 per game) to qualify (.316), triples (3, co-leader), home runs (7), runs scored (39), hits (48), extra base hits (18), stolen bases (9), total bases (83), slugging percentage (.546), on-base percentage (.373, co-leader), at bats (152), games played (38) and games started (38). Ratliff was 0-for-14 with 10 strikeouts in limited offensive action last season and has still struggled with his strikeouts in 2007 with a team-high 47.

Adam Sorgi has returned from a shoulder injury that caused him to miss the entire 2006 season and limited him early in 2007. Sorgi played his first game in the field since 2005 against California on March 4 and has started 21 of the 23 games at the position since, including all 19 since the Cardinal returned from a 12-day break on March 24. He is hitting .354 (28-79) with five doubles, nine RBI and 15 runs scored over the 21 games he has started at second base and .357 (30-84) with six doubles, 12 RBI and 16 runs scored overall. He also had the team's longest hitting streak of the season when he hit safely in 12 consecutive contests from March 4 - April 10.

Joey August has quietly put up one of the team's most solid offensive seasons. August ranks second among all players with enough at bats (2.5 per game) to qualify for the team leading in batting average with a .310 mark and also has four doubles, a triple, a homer and 19 RBI, while adding 12 walks, a sacrifice fly, a team-leading three sacrifice bunts and two stolen bases. In addition, he has struck out just nine times in 113 official at bats. August has hit safely in 20 of his last 23 games, including the team's second-longest hitting streak of the season when he hit safely in 11 straight games from March 4 - April 1 to start the stretch.

Stanford has a respectable 8-5 record in games decided by one or two runs this season and also won its only extra-inning contest of the season at San Jose State on March 27. The Cardinal is 5-3 in one-run games and 3-2 in two-run contests.

Stanford has clocked in at 3:00 or over in 22 of its first 38 games this season. Stanford has gone 3:41 or longer nine times and more than 4:00 twice, including a season-long 4:12 against UCLA on March 31 and a 4:02 contest in its most recent league game at California on April 22.

Cord Phelps ranks tied for first on the club with 16 extra base hits this season, leading the club in doubles (13) and tied for the club lead along with Sean Ratliff in triples (3). Last year, all 18 of Phelps' hits were singles.

Stanford has come from behind in 12 of its 17 wins this season. Stanford's biggest comeback of the year came versus USC (March 11) when the Cardinal was down 8-4 heading into the bottom of the seventh inning before scoring four times to the game at 8-8 and six more in the eighth in an eventual 14-9 win. The Cardinal also came back in each of its last three victories over Arizona (April 15) at California (April 21) and versus Fresno State (April 25).

Stanford has already played some of the best teams both in the nation and the Pac-10. The Cardinal has played six of its first nine three-game series and 18 of its first 38 games against teams ranked in at least one national poll at one point in the season. Stanford also opened its Pac-10 slate with series against each of the conference's three top teams in the current standings as Arizona State (10-2), Arizona (9-3) and UCLA (8-1) have totaled a combined 27-6 Pac-10 mark to this point. The Cardinal will continue its tough schedule against No. 8 Oregon State in a three-game series this Friday-Sunday, April 27-29.

Stanford won six straight Sunday games from February 11 - March 25 and is now 7-3 overall on Sundays in 2007. Stanford is 7-4 in series finales, which includes all of the Sunday contests as well as a loss in a Saturday series finale played at Arizona State on April 7.

Sunken Diamond has served as a host site for 13 NCAA Regionals, as well as NCAA Regionals on five occasions. Stanford has clinched 10 of its 15 trips to the College World Series at Sunken Diamond. Stanford has also made Sunken Diamond a tough place for opponents in recent years, winning at least 17 games at home in each of the last 11 seasons prior to 2007 with an amazing 304-95 (.762) record during the stretch. Stanford is above .500 (11-10) at home this season.

• Joey August (.200, 4 GP, 3 GS, 2-10, 2 BB, 2 SO)
• Jeremy Bleich (1.50, 0-1, 1 APP, 1 GS, 6.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 4 SO)
• Jason Castro (.200, 2 GP, 2 GS, 1-5, 1 RBI, 2 BB)
• Erik Davis (99.00, 0-0, 1 APP, 0.0 IP, 4 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 1 BB)
• Brendan Domaracki (.000, 5 GP, 1 GS, 0-11, 1 BB, 1 HBP, 4 SO)
• Grant Escue (.167, 2 GP, 2 GS, 1-6, 2 SO)
• Nolan Gallagher (2.45, 0-1, 3 APP, 1 GS, 7.1 IP, 8 H, 6 R, 3 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 10 SO)
• Max Fearnow (0.00, 0-0, 2 APP, 1.2 IP, 3 SO)
• J.J. Jelmini (.000, 2 GP, 0-2, 2 SO)
• Brian Juhl (.000, 1 GP, 0-1, 1 SO)
• Brent Milleville (.000, 4 GP, 2 GS, 0-8, 4 SO)
• Randy Molina (.125, 4 GP, 3 GS, 1-8, 1 R, 2 BB, 3 SO, 1 GDP)
• Cord Phelps (.091, 5 GP, 4 GS, 1-11, 1 SO)
• Sean Ratliff (Hitting: .000, 1 GP, 0-1, 1 SO • Pitching: 54.00, 0-0, 1 APP, 0.1 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER)
• Ryan Seawell (.150, 10 GP, 4 GS, 3-20, 1 2B, 1 BB, 7 SO)
• Adam Sorgi (.200, 3 GP, 3 GS, 2-10, 5 R, 1 RBI, 3 BB, 1 SF)
• David Stringer (0-0, 5.79, 2 APP, 4.2 IP, 6 H, 5 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 4 SO)
• Michael Taylor (.346, 8 GP, 8 GS, 9-26, 3 2B, 3 RBI, 2 BB, 3 HBP, 5 SO, 1 GDP)
• Austin Yount (Hitting: .000, 1 GP, 0-1 • Pitching: 6.75, 0-0, 2 APP, 4.0 IP, 4 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 1 SO)

April 13, 2006 - at Oregon State 3, Stanford 0
Stanford was shutout in a Pac-10 game for the first time since 2001 in a 3-0 loss to Oregon State. Four Beaver pitchers limited the Cardinal to four hits with Mike Stutes picking up the win and Kevin Gunderson recording the save by retiring all five batters he faced. Oregon State scored all three of its runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to break up a scoreless pitching dual between Stutes and losing pitcher Greg Reynolds. Bill Rowe gave the Beavers their first run of a three-run sixth when his ground ball deep in the hole between short and third turned into an RBI infield single and Shea McFeely provided a big blow when he followed with a two-RBI bouncing ball single up the middle and just out of Reynolds' reach. Rowe (3-4, RBI) and Cole Gillespie (2-3) were the only players for either team with more than one hit.
Quote of the Day ... 'We just didn't get it going offensively at all tonight. It was pretty simple.' - Mark Marquess

February 25, 2006 - at Oregon State 1, Stanford 0
Oregon State blanked Stanford for the second straight game with a 1-0 victory as the Cardinal suffered back-to-back blankings for the first time since 1975. Dallas Buck earned the victory with 8.1 innings of four-hit work and retired 17 consecutive batters at one point, while Kevin Gunderson got a game-ending double play to notch the save. Oregon State scored the only run of the contest when Cole Gillespie trotted home on reliever Nolan Gallagher's second balk of the seventh inning. Stanford threatened in the ninth when Michael Taylor drew a walk from Buck and John Hester followed with a ground ball single through the left side of the infield to put runners on first and third with just one out before Gunderson relieved Buck and induced pinch-hitter Ryan Seawell into a game-ending double play.
Quote of the Day ... 'Oregon State has quite a pitching staff and they showed it again tonight.' - Mark Marquess

February 26, 2006 - at Oregon State 12, Stanford 1 (7 inn.)
Oregon State closed out a three-game sweep of Stanford that was the first in recorded history with a 12-1 victory that was shortened to just six and a half innings due to a 10-run rule agreement reached prior to the game. Jonah Nickerson tossed a complete-game two-hitter for the Beavers, striking out seven and walking just two. Cole Gilespie (2-3, 3B, HR, 3 RBI) was the offensive hero for Oregon State, while Chris Kunda also drove in a three runs and doubled, and all nine Beaver hitters in the starting lineup had at least one hit with six of the nine driving in at least one run. Stanford scored its only run of the series in the first inning when Chris Minaker drew a two-out walk, stole second and scored on Michael Taylor's RBI double.
Quote of the Day ... 'We need to rebound from what happened to us here this weekend. It obviously wasn't good, but hopefully the lessons we learned will make us better for the rest of the season.' - Mark Marquess

One of the nation's premier collegiate coaches and the winningest coach in Stanford Baseball history, Mark Marquess is in his 31st season at the helm of the Cardinal and his 39th associated with the program in 2007. Marquess has won more games than any coach in any sport ever at Stanford with the amazing numbers he has posted during his long tenure on The Farm. Marquess has a 1274-638-5 (.666) all-time record in 1917 career games, as well as equally impressive marks in postseason (112-52, .683), NCAA Regional (68-25, .731), NCAA Super Regional (10-4, .714), CWS (34-23, .596) and Pac-10 (503-337, .599) action. He is currently ranked sixth among all active NCAA Division I coaches in victories and 11th on the all-time list among Division I coaches. Marquess became the 23rd coach in the history of NCAA Division I baseball to reach the 1000-win mark with a victory over Florida State on February 9, 2001. Just over two years later, he picked up win No. 1100 versus Nevada on February 17, 2003. He became the 16th NCAA Division I head baseball coach to win 1200 collegiate games just over another two years after that when the Cardinal defeated California at Sunken Diamond on March 5, 2005. He also won his 100th career postseason game in Stanford's NCAA Super Regional clinching victory over Long Beach State (June 7, 2003). The 1969 Stanford graduate has led the Cardinal to two CWS titles and three runner-up showings in five CWS championship appearances, as well as 13 College World Series trips, five NCAA Super Regional titles, 14 NCAA Regional championships and 12 Pac-10 crowns (includes Southern Division and shared titles). Stanford's two CWS championships under Marquess came in back-to-back fashion in 1987 and 1988 as the Cardinal is just one of four teams to have ever won back-to-back Division I College World Series titles. The three runner-up showings have all come this decade with the Cardinal taking second in Omaha in 2000, 2001 and 2003. Maybe even more amazing, all 13 teams that Marquess has taken to the College World Series have won at least one game. Stanford has qualified for the NCAA Championships 24 times in the first 30 seasons under Marquess with a current school record run of 13 straight appearances in postseason play. He has been named NCAA Coach of the Year three times and has received Pac-10 or Pac-10 Southern Division Coach of the Year honors on nine occasions, most recently with his Pac-10 selection in 2003. The Cardinal has also recorded 29 winning seasons in the first 30 campaigns under his leadership. His clubs have finished either first or second in the prestigious Pacific-10 (formerly Pac-10 Southern Division) 22 times in the last 26 seasons including 2006. Stanford has had 134 players drafted by professional baseball in the past 22 campaigns, including 18 in the last 20 years that were drafted either in the first round or as a Compensation A pick. Stanford has had more first round picks (6) since 2000 than any other school in the nation, most recently with the selection of Greg Reynolds as the No. 2 overall pick in 2006. A member of the American Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame, Marquess was the head coach of the 1988 United States Olympic baseball team that captured the gold medal. He was also an accomplished football and baseball standout on The Farm, and is a member of the Stanford Athletic Hall of Fame. He is one of only 10 people to have ever both played and coached in the College World Series. Marquess was the starting first baseman and a First Team All-American on Stanford's 1967 CWS squad and played four seasons in the minor leagues with the Chicago White Sox organization.

Dean Stotz is in his 31st season with Stanford Baseball and his eighth as the team's associate head coach after he was promoted to the position prior to the 2000 season following 23 years of service as an assistant. Stotz currently coaches third base while also handling various offensive and defensive aspects of the game. Tom Kunis is in his eighth season as Stanford's pitching coach, while Dave Nakama is also in his eighth campaign over two stints as an assistant.

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