UCLA Baseball to Host Super Regional Against Cal State Fullerton
June 9, 2010
LOS ANGELES - The UCLA baseball team continues its postseason run at home this weekend in the NCAA Super Regionals against Cal State Fullerton. The Bruins (46-13) have already established the program's new record for most wins during the season (46) and now seek their first berth to the College World Series since 1997. Game 1 on Friday is slated for 7:30 p.m., and each contest at Jackie Robinson Stadium will be televised live across the nation on ESPN2.
LOS ANGELES SUPER REGIONAL SCHEDULE
Friday, June 11 - 7:30 p.m. (PT), TV: ESPN2
Cal State Fullerton (visitor) - Noe Ramirez, RHP, So. (11-1, 2.63)
UCLA (home) - Gerrit Cole, RHP, So. (10-2, 3.11)
Saturday, June 12 - 4 p.m. (PT), TV: ESPN2
UCLA (visitor) - Trevor Bauer, RHP, So. (10-3, 2.72)
Cal State Fullerton (home) - TBA
Sunday, June 13* - 7 p.m. (PT), TV: ESPN2
Cal State Fullerton - TBA
UCLA - Rob Rasmussen, LHP, Jr. (10-2, 2.90)
*if necessary (home/visiting teams TBA)
TELEVISION AND RADIO
All NCAA Super Regional games will be available nationwide on the ESPN family of networks. UCLA's NCAA Super Regional at Jackie Robinson Stadium will be broadcast on ESPN2. ESPN's Dan McLaughlin and Robin Ventura will call the action on television this weekend. In addition, UCLA's John Ramey will provide play-by-play with an Internet audio broadcast at uclabruins.com, free of charge, for each of UCLA's Super Regional games.
GETTING TO JACKIE ROBINSON STADIUM
Steele Field at Jackie Robinson Stadium is located on the grounds of the West L.A. Veteran Administration, north of Wilshire Blvd. and west of the 405 Freeway. From the 405 North, exit Wilshire Blvd. (west offramp), stay in the right lane coming down the offramp and turn right onto Sepulveda Blvd. Continue until Constitution Ave. and turn left. Parking lots for the ballpark are located on the right side of Constitution Ave. Parking costs $8 on the VA Grounds at Jackie Robinson Stadium.
Tickets to NCAA Super Regional games at Jackie Robinson Stadium can be purchased through UCLA's Central Ticket Office by calling 310-825-2101 or by visiting tickets.ucla.edu. As of 7 p.m. on Wednesday evening, there remain a limited number of All-Session General Admission packages available. Fans are advised to check back at 10 a.m. on Thursday to see if any single-game tickets will be available (310-825-2101). Tickets will be on sale at Jackie Robinson Stadium 2 hours and 30 minutes prior to first pitch, while gates to the stadium will open two hours before the game. All-Session General Admission packages cost $30 for adults and $20 for youth/students. Single-game reserved tickets will cost $16 for adults and $13 for youth/students. Single-game general admission tickets will cost $11 for adults and $9 for youth/students.
THE SEASON SO FAR
- UCLA has established a school record with 46 wins this season, eclipsing the 1997 team's 45-win total.
- The Bruins have advanced to the NCAA Super Regionals for the first time since 2007.
- UCLA earned a Super Regional berth after sweeping last weekend's NCAA Los Angeles Regional at UCLA.
- The Bruins were awarded a national seed (No. 6) on Selection Monday for the first time in program history.
- UCLA's pitching staff ranks second in the nation in ERA (2.95) and first in strikeouts per nine innings (10.3).
- The Bruins' pitchers have registered a Pac-10 record 611 strikeouts this season (ASU had 608 in 2009).
- UCLA enters the NCAA Super Regionals with seven players hitting above the .300 plateau.
UCLA and Cal State Fullerton were each awarded No. 1 seeds in their NCAA Regionals last weekend and held serve at home to face each other this weekend. The Bruins swept three games against Kent State (15-1), LSU (6-3) and UC Irvine (6-2) to advance to their second Super Regional in four years. Cal State Fullerton won four consecutive games in three days after losing a 3-1 decision to Minnesota in Game 1 on Friday. This weekend's meeting marks the third time in the last four years that UCLA will play Cal State Fullerton in the postseason.
Anchored by a strong weekend rotation featuring sophomores Gerrit Cole and Trevor Bauer and junior Rob Rasmussen, UCLA's pitchers have posted the second-lowest ERA in the nation (2.95) and lead the country in strikeouts per nine innings (10.3). The Bruins notched nine strikeouts in a 6-2 win over UC Irvine last Sunday, setting a new Pac-10 record for strikeouts in one season (611). Cole, Bauer and Rasmussen have each collected 10 wins, marking the first UCLA ballclub to ever feature three or more pitchers with 10 or more wins.
UCLA batted at a .320 clip in three NCAA Regional contests last weekend, belting four home runs and outscoring the opposition by a 27-6 margin. Freshmen Beau Amaral (6-for-12) and Cody Regis (4-for-9) were instrumental in leading UCLA's offense in the three-game Regional. Regis belted crucial home runs in each of UCLA's wins against LSU and UC Irvine, totaling six RBI, five runs and five walks in three games. Sophomore Steve Rodriguez went 5-for-11 with two runs and two RBI.
THE COLE FILE
Sophomore right-hander Gerrit Cole enters this weekend's NCAA Super Regional with a 10-2 record and 3.11 ERA, having logged 131 strikeouts and 47 walks in 101.1 innings. One of UCLA's five All-Pac-10 team selections, Cole ranks 10th in the nation with 11.64 strikeouts per nine innings, the second-best average in the Pac-10 Conference. The native of Santa Ana, Calif., has logged 10 or more strikeouts in four games this spring, notching a season-high 15 at Texas A&M Corpus Christi at the Whataburger College Classic (March 12).
Sophomore right-hander Trevor Bauer, slated to start Game 2 of this weekend's Super Regional, earned NCAA Los Angeles Regional MVP honors on Sunday after striking out 11 batters in eight-plus innings to lead the Bruins past LSU, 6-3. Bauer carried a shutout into the ninth inning before surrendering three runs (one earned) in the final frame without recording an out. Bauer has gone 10-3 with a 2.72 ERA, posting a Pac-10 best 135 strikeouts in a team-leading 109.1 innings (second-most in the Pac-10).
Junior Rob Rasmussen has gone 10-2 with a 2.90 ERA, serving as the Bruins' third pitcher in the weekend rotation. Selected by the Florida Marlins in the second round (73rd overall) of the MLB Draft on Tuesday, Rasmussen earned the victory in UCLA's 6-2 regional-clinching win over UC Irvine on June 6. The southpaw from Arcadia, Calif. went 6-2 with a 3.04 ERA and .230 opponent batting average in nine Pac-10 starts during the regular season. Rasmussen currently ranks fourth in the Pac-10 with 101 strikeouts.
Since the NCAA adopted a 64-team tournament format, including the Super Regional round in 1999, UCLA has advanced to three Super Regionals - 2000, 2007 and 2010. The Bruins went 0-2 in the 2000 Super Regional at LSU and dropped both games in 2007 at Cal State Fullerton. UCLA has not advanced to the College World Series since 1997, when the Bruins went 5-1 at the NCAA Midwest Regional before going 0-2 in Omaha. The Bruins also went 0-2 in their only other College World Series appearance in 1969.
Senior Blair Dunlap has batted .330 in 52 games, starting 50 contests as the Bruins' designated hitter. Dunlap has posted a career .299 batting average in 192 games and ranks sixth on UCLA's all-time doubles list with 48 two-baggers. Dunlap collected his team-leading 20th double in UCLA's 6-2 win over UC Irvine last Sunday. Uribe has batted .327 with two homers, 26 RBI and 15 runs in 46 games as a first baseman in 2010. Uribe, who earned first-team All-Academic Pac-10 honors this season, has batted .308 in 155 career ballgames.
Freshman Beau Amaral has batted .353, second-highest on the team, in 55 games this spring (48 starts, all in center field). Amaral's .353 batting average is the highest by any UCLA freshman since Garrett Atkins set the school's freshman single-season record with a .383 average in 1998. Amaral had a 15-game hitting streak midway through the season and batted .333 in all 27 Pac-10 games.
Sophomore right-hander Dan Klein leads UCLA with nine saves, third among Pac-10 pitchers, and has posted a 5-0 record and 2.03 ERA in a team-leading 35 appearances (tied, second-most in the Pac-10). Klein was named to the Midseason Stopper of the Year Watch List in mid-April by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers' Association (NCBWA). Klein has registered 48 strikeouts and eight walks in 44.1 innings.
RELIABLE IN RELIEF
UCLA's relief corps has gone 9-3 with a 3.27 ERA, limiting the opposition to a .234 batting average in 168.0 innings. Right-handers Dan Klein (35 appearances) and Erik Goeddel (33 app.) and left-hander Matt Grace (30 app.) have been the most utilized pitchers. Goeddel has gone 2-0 with a 3.48 ERA, 53 strikeouts and 20 walks in 44.0 innings. Grace has gone 0-1 with a 3.24 ERA, 20 strikeouts and seven walks in 25.0 innings.
Sophomore Tyler Rahmatulla has started at second base in 58 of the Bruins' 59 games this season. The former standout at Mater Dei High School has batted .326 with team-highs of 71 hits, 50 runs and 39 walks. Rahmatulla ranks second on the ballclub with 17 doubles and 13 stolen bases. He is currently tied for third in the Pac-10 with 39 walks. Rahmatulla leads all Bruin hitters with 23 multiple-hit games.
WORTH AN ESPY
Sophomore Dean Espy enters this weekend's Super Regional leading UCLA with a .366 batting average. He is tied for the team lead with eight home runs (along with sophomore Steve Rodriguez) and leads the Bruins with 48 RBI and a .621 slugging percentage. A versatile player (first and third base), Espy transferred to UCLA last summer after haivng played as a freshman at South Mountain Community College. Espy led all Bruins in Pac-10 play with a .388 batting average, going 26-for-67 with three home runs and 21 RBI.
AGAINST THE BEST
UCLA has gone 11-8 against teams ranked in Baseball America's top-25 poll (team ranked in poll on day of game). UCLA defeated then-No. 25 Oklahoma, 5-2, on March 14 before winning two of three games against No. 19 Stanford, No. 17 Oregon State, No. 17 Arizona. and No. 22 Washington State. The Bruins were swept in three games against No. 3 Arizona State the weekend of April 30-May 2 and dropped a 5-2 decision at No. 8 Cal State Fullerton on May 25 in their final midweek contest of the season.
BRUINS IN THE DRAFT
UCLA had 11 players selected in this week's MLB First-Year Player Draft, one shy of the school record of 12 selections (in 2000 and 2006). Junior left-hander Rob Rasmussen headlined the group as a second-round selection by Florida (No. 73 overall), while redshirt sophomore Dan Klein was drafted in the third round by Baltimore. Junior left-hander Matt Grace went in the eighth round to the Washington Nationals, while senior right-hander Garett Claypool was selected in the 11th round by the Philadelphia Phillies. UCLA's first five selections, each in the top 20 rounds, were pitchers.
UCLA has gone 19-4 away from home this season (15-4 road, 4-0 neutral). Road losses have come at No. 17 Oregon State (April 9), No. 17 Arizona (April 25), UC Irvine (May 11) and No. 8 Cal State Fullerton (May 25). Freshman outfielder Beau Amaral has led UCLA in road games with a .361 batting average and .477 on-base percentage (minimum 25 at-bats). Senior right-hander Garett Claypool has gone 5-2 with a 1.35 ERA in seven road games, totaling 36 strikeouts and 10 walks in 40.0 innings.
Among the most vital members of UCLA's pitching staff this season, senior right-hander Garett Claypool has gone 8-3 with a 2.05 ERA in 20 games (12 starts), serving as both the Bruins' No. 4 starting pitcher (Tuesdays) and as a right-handed reliever. Claypool, who has totaled 72 strikeouts in 79.0 innings, has posted a 7-3 record with a 2.27 ERA in 67.1 innings through his 12 starts (55 strikeouts, 17 walks, .177 average). In eight relief appearances, he has gone 1-0 with a 0.77 ERA, notching 17 strikeouts and two walks in 11.2 innings.
UCLA's batting lineup was rejuvenated in 2010 by the presence of four talented freshman left-handed hitters, three of which play in the outfield. Beau Amaral (.353), Jeff Gelalich (.333), Cody Keefer (.318) and Cody Regis (.311) have posted a combined .330 (178-for-540) this spring. Amaral has started 48 games as the Bruins' center fielder, while Keefer has started 43 contests in left field. Regis has made 43 starts at third base and one at second, while Gelalich has played in 32 games, making 18 starts (outfield and designated hitter).
DOWN, BUT NOT OUT
UCLA has won four games in 'walk-off' fashion, going 5-11 when tied or trailing after eight innings (3-0 when tied after eight). The Bruins' most thrilling win came in a 2-1 decision over USC (May 16). Trailing 1-0 with two outs, Brett Krill singled before Cody Keefer belted a two-run walk-off homer, helping the Bruins sweep USC. Most recently, UCLA scored three runs with two outs on back-to-back 0-and-2 counts at California (May 21) and held on in the bottom of the ninth for an 8-7 victory.
NOTES ON A STREAK
UCLA opened the season by winning its first 22 games, the Bruins' best-ever start to any baseball season in the program's 91-year history. Prior to going 22-0 in 2010, UCLA's best starts on record took place in 1978 (8-0) and in 1997 (7-0). The Bruins won their first 22 games, outscoring their opponents by a combined 189-59 margin. UCLA posted a .356 batting average during its record streak while the pitching staff logged a 2.22 ERA and 273 strikeouts through 199.0 innings (12.4 strikeouts per nine innings).
- UCLA had 10 players during its win streak post batting averages above .300 (minimum 40 at-bats).
- The starting rotation went 17-0, compiling a 2.20 ERA with 194 strikeouts and 52 walks.
- Tyler Rahmatulla led UCLA's offense with a .451 batting average (37-for-82), 37 hits and 24 runs.
- Gerrit Cole went 6-0 with a 2.49 ERA and 61 strikeouts through 43.1 innings in seven starts.
- Dan Klein tossed 17.2 scoreless innings as the closer, totaling five saves while earning two victories.
- UCLA opened 22-0 and Arizona State started 24-0 - both schools lost their first game on Friday, April 2.
NOT FAR BEHIND
During the Bruins' 22-0 start, UCLA trailed in eight ballgames and was tied (without trailing) in two games. The Bruins twice overcame a deficit of three runs, most recently by scoring two runs in the fourth inning and two in the eighth against Cal Poly on March 26, to secure their 19th consecutive win. The Bruins won two games in walk-off fashion, ironically, in back-to-back games (vs. Nebraska, March 6; vs. UC Riverside, March 9).
In conference games over the last five seasons (2006-10), UCLA ranks second in both wins (73) and winning percentage (.584). Overall, the Bruins rank fourth in winning percentage (.581) and total wins (169). UCLA finished second in the Pac-10 in 2010, after having posted a third-place finsh the previous four years. Arizona State has won each of the last four Pac-10 titles (Oregon State won the Pac-10 in 2006).