Unanimous No. 1 UCLA leads four ranked Pac-12 baseball teams

Pac-12 Content Image
Eric Sorenson

COMPLETE RELEASE

PREVIEWING THE WEEK:
For the fifth-consecutive week, UCLA is the No. 1 team in the USA Today Coaches poll, making it the consensus No. 1 team in the nation for the second-consecutive week. The Pac-12 boasts four teams ranked in the top 15 in the USA Today poll, including three of the top five spots with No. 3 Stanford and No. 4 Oregon State included. This week, Pac-12 Networks broadcasts six marquee games, including the top-ranked Bruins hosting reigning Golden Spikes Award winner Andrew Vaughn and California; defending NCAA Champion OSU at home against the hot bats of Arizona; and Conference-leading Stanford visiting a clutch Oregon squad. Additionally, Arizona and Oregon State’s Saturday matchup will be on ESPNU at 7 p.m. PT.

The Beavers have remained in the top 10 in the national poll throughout the season largely due to a stellar pitching staff. They have the sixth-best ERA (2.83) in the country and the seventh-best WHIP (1.13). OSU’s ace Brandon Eisert has the best individual ERA in the Conference (1.30), racking up seven victories, fourth-most in the country. But, the Beavers face a tough test in Arizona’s productive offense, which has the fourth-best national on-base percentage (0.420), while scoring 9.1 runs a game, good for fourth in the nation. The Wildcats’ shortstop Cameron Cannon is off to a great start, ranking third in the country in doubles (18) while hitting .369.

Stanford is at the top of the Pac-12 standings behind its own nationally-ranked defense. The Cardinal has the fourth-best ERA in the nation at 2.83 and the second-best fielding percentage in the league at .978. Oregon has gained a reputation this year as the comeback team, posting 10 comeback victories, 10 one-run victories, and nine wins when trailing in the eighth inning or later. Thursday and Friday’s games between the Cardinal and the Ducks will be on Pac-12 Networks, while Sunday’s game is available to stream via the Pac-12 Now app, Pac-12 Plus and Pac-12.com/now.

WEEKLY RECAP:
UCLA won four games against ranked opponents last week, with a midweek victory over then-No. 20 UC Irvine and a three-game sweep over No. 15 East Carolina. The Bruins have faced the toughest schedule in the nation this year, as their past opponents’ win percentage of .649 is the highest in the country. Head coach John Savage reached a milestone, collecting his 600th-career victory. He joins Washington’s Lindsay Meggs (896), Oregon’s George Horton (858) and ASU’s Tracy Smith (749) as the only active Pac-12 coaches with over 600 career wins.

Another milestone was reached in the Pac-12 last week, as Oregon State’s junior catcher Adley Rutschman became the program’s all-time walks leader with 125 and counting. He is tied for seventh amongst active career NCAA DI leaders. He already has 45 walks this season, second most in the country.

GOLDEN SPIKES:
Eight Pac-12 student-athletes were named to the Golden Spikes Award midseason watch list, including last year’s winner, Cal’s Andrew Vaughn. He is just one of four Golden Spikes Award recipients all-time to return to school after winning the award. Arizona State’s Hunter Bishop, Alec Marsh and Spencer Torkelson, Washington’s Josh Burgmann and Nick Kahle and Oregon State’s Brandon Eisert and Adley Rutschman also earned the nod. ASU’s three candidates on the midseason watch list is the most of any team in the country. The Pac-12 is home to eight Golden Spikes Award winners after Vaughn claimed the award last season, tying the ACC and SEC for most of any conference. The 42nd Golden Spikes Award will be presented on June 14, 2019.

IN THE RANKINGS:
Four Pac-12 teams are ranked in the top 15 in the latest USA Today Coaches poll, including UCLA at No. 1 for the fifth-straight week. A Pac-12 squad has claimed the No. 1 ranking in six of eight weeks this season. Stanford is No. 3, Oregon State lands at No. 4 and Arizona State is No. 12.

For the second-straight week, the Bruins have been named the unanimous No. 1 team in the nation by five national rankings. Additionally, UCLA, Stanford, OSU and ASU rank in the top 16 in all five polls.

Nine of 11 Pac-12 programs rank in the top 100 in the NCAA RPI rankings, including UCLA at No. 1 and OSU at No. 2. Stanford also lands in the top ten at No. 8.

BY THE NUMBERS:
Pac-12 pitchers have brought the heat this season as three of the top six teams with the best national ERAs are Pac-12 squads. UCLA has the second-best average at 2.62, Stanford’s pitching staff has an ERA of 2.83, good for fourth-best, and Oregon State is sixth-best at 2.83.

The league’s top hitters have found ways to get on base at exceptionally high rates this year. Four student-athletes rank among the nation’s top 15 in on-base percentage, including OSU’s Adley Rutschman with the best OBP (.577). Washington’s Nick Kahle is right behind with the third-best average at .549. Cal’s Andrew Vaughn ranks fifth at .541 and ASU’s Hunter Bishop is 13th (.520).

ASU’s Bishop was named Perfect Game and D1Baseball’s midseason top player for good reason. He has the second-most home runs in the country (17), while boasting the nation’s best slugging percentage (.891) and collecting the seventh-most runs (50).

STAR POWER:
Oregon’s Spencer Steer earned his first-career Pac-12 Player of the Week award after batting .474 with three home runs and 12 RBI, leading Oregon to a 3-1 record. Two of Steer's three home runs were grand slams, including a two-out, game-tying shot in the top of the ninth inning on Sunday. In addition to his Pac-12 weekly honor, Steer was also named the national player of the week by Collegiate Baseball, NCBWA and College Sports Madness.

UCLA’s Ryan Garcia won his second Pac-12 Pitcher of the Week honor of the season after his career performance against No. 15 East Carolina. He tossed seven scoreless innings on Saturday evening in the nightcap of a doubleheader with No. 8 East Carolina University, helping the Bruins to a 3-0 win that finished off a series sweep. Garcia struck out 13 Pirates, a career-high and the most single-game strikeouts by a Bruin in over five years.

MIDSEASON AWARDS WATCH: 
Halfway through the 2019 season, Pac-12 baseball’s dominance is being recognized nationwide. D1Baseball announced its midseason awards and honored Arizona State’s Hunter Bishop as the midseason top player and Tracy Smith as the midseason co-top coach of the year. Four from the Pac-12 were also named midseason All-Americans.

Perfect Game also chose Bishop as its midseason Player of the Year, as he is batting .396 with 16 home runs and a .932 slugging percentage. UCLA skipper John Savage was named the midseason coach of the year and Arizona State was tabbed the team of the year. Five Pac-12 student-athletes were named midseason first team All-Americans by Perfect Game, the most of any conference on the first team. Bishop, OSU’s Adley Rutschman and Brandon Eisert, Cal’s Andrew Vaughn and ASU’s Alec Marsh all earned the nod.

Rutschman was also named to the Buster Posey National Collegiate Catcher of the Year Award watch list, along with four other league catchers. Seventy-nine catchers were nominated for the 2019 Buster Posey Award by their coaches, given annually to the top Division I collegiate catcher. The winner will be announced on June 27, 2019.

SENIOR CLASS CANDIDATE:
OSU’s right-handed pitcher Bryce Fehmel has been named one of 10 finalists for the 2019 Senior CLASS Award. The award is honored to an NCAA Division I senior that has notable achievements in four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character and competition. Fehmel is a marketing major who comes into this weekend’s series with Arizona State at 31 career wins, which ranks third all-time at Oregon State. He is 5-0 with a 3.20 ERA this season. The 2019 winner will be announced at the College World Series.

PRESEASON NODS:
The Pac-12 has 20 total preseason All-America selections from seven different schools. Six student-athletes were named to all five preseason All-America lists and 2018 Golden Spikes Award winner Cal’s Andrew Vaughn, 2018 CWS Most Outstanding Player OSU’s Adley Rutschman and All-Pac-12 selection UCLA’s Chase Strumpf were named to the first team by five national outlets. Rutschman was also tabbed the Projected Player of the Year by Collegiate Baseball. Baseball America highlighted several league student-athletes as All-American Best Tools with Vaughn earning best hitter, Arizona State’s Spencer Torkelson selected as the best power hitter and Rutschman tabbed as the best defensive catcher.

STOPPER OF THE YEAR:
The Pac-12 has seven student-athletes from five different Pac-12 schools on the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) Stopper of the Year Preseason Watch List, the second-most selections of any conference. Stanford’s Jack Little is featured on the list after being named a finalist for the 2018 season. The NCBWA presents the Stopper of the Year Award to the top relief pitcher in Division I baseball for the 15th straight year at the College World Series on Saturday, June 15. 2019.


CONFERENCE STANDINGS (Expanded Standings)

Teams Pac-12 Record Overall Record
Stanford 10-2 24-6
UCLA 9-3 28-6
Oregon State 11-4 25-8
Arizona State 10-5 28-7
Oregon 7-5 22-12
California 7-5 19-12
Arizona 6-9 18-16
USC 6-9 15-20
Washington 5-10 16-15
Utah 3-12 11-19
Washington State 1-11 8-25

UPCOMING SCHEDULE (All Times Pacific - Expanded Schedule Details)

Thursday, April 18 TV/Stream Time
#12 Arizona State at Utah* Pac-12 Now 5 p.m.
Washington State at USC* Pac-12 Now 6 p.m.
BYU at WASHINGTON Pac-12 Now 6:05 p.m.
Arizona at #4 Oregon State* Pac-12 Networks 7 p.m.
California at #1 UCLA* Pac-12 Networks 7 p.m.
#3 Stanford at Oregon* Pac-12 Bay Area 7 p.m.
Friday, April 19 TV/Stream Time
#3 Stanford at Oregon* Pac-12 Networks 4 p.m.
#12 Arizona State at Utah* Pac-12 Now 5 p.m.
Washington State at USC* Pac-12 Now 6 p.m.
BYU at WASHINGTON Pac-12 Now 6:05 p.m.
Arizona at #4 Oregon State* Pac-12 Networks 7 p.m.
California at #1 UCLA* Pac-12 Networks 7 p.m.
Saturday, April 20 TV/Stream Time
#12 Arizona State at Utah* Pac-12 Now 12 p.m.
#3 Stanford at Oregon* Pac-12 Now 12 p.m.
Washington State at USC* Pac-12 Now 1 p.m.
BYU at WASHINGTON Pac-12 Now 1:05 p.m.
California at #1 UCLA*   2 p.m.
Arizona at #4 Oregon State* ESPNU 7 p.m.
Monday, April 22 TV/Stream Time
Gonzaga at #3 STANFORD Pac-12 Now 1:05 p.m.
#4 OREGON STATE at Nevada Mountain West Network 6 p.m.
Tuesday, April 23 TV/Stream Time
#4 OREGON STATE at Nevada Mountain West Network 12 p.m.
UTAH at Utah Valley   5 p.m.
Grand Canyon at ARIZONA   6 p.m.
UC Irvine at USC Pac-12 Now 6 p.m.
#1 UCLA at CS Fullerton   6 p.m.
WASHINGTON STATE at Gonzaga   6 p.m.
WASHINGTON at Portland   6 p.m.
San Jose State at #3 STANFORD Pac-12 Now 6:05 p.m.
UNLV at #12 ARIZONA STATE Pac-12 Now 6:30 p.m.
Sacramento State at CALIFORNIA   7:05 p.m.

* Pac-12 Conference game

Rankings listed are USA Today Coaches Poll


2019 PAC-12 BASEBALL PLAYERS OF THE WEEK

 Week of Player Pitcher
Feb. 19 Spencer Torkelson, Arizona State Bryce Fehmel, Oregon State
Feb. 26 Andrew Vaughn, California Brandon White, Washington State
March 5 Braiden Ward, Washington Josh Burgmann, Washington 
March 12 Hunter Bishop, Arizona State Erik Miller, Stanford
March 19 Adley Rutschman, Oregon State Zach Pettway, UCLA
March 25 Hunter Bishop, Arizona State Ryan Garcia, UCLA
April 1 Hunter Bishop, Arizona State Brandon Eisert, Oregon State
April 8 Adley Rutschman, Oregon State Brendan Beck, Stanford 
April 15 Spencer Steer, Oregon Ryan Garcia, UCLA

NATIONAL HONORS 

USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award Midseason Watch List
Hunter Bishop, Jr., ASU
Josh Burgmann, RS So., WASH
Brandon Eisert, Jr., OSU
Nick Kahle, Jr., WASH
Alec Marsh, Jr., ASU
Adley Rutschman, Jr., OSU
Spencer Torkelson, So., ASU
Andrew Vaughn, Jr., CAL

D1Baseball.com Midseason Top Player
Hunter Bishop, OF, ASU

D1Baseball.com Midseason Co-Top Coach
Tracy Smith, ASU

D1Baseball.com Midseason All-Americans
Adley Rutschman, C, OSU
Andrew Vaughn, 1B, CAL
Hunter Bishop, OF, ASU
Brandon Eisert, RP, OSU

Perfect Game/Rawlings Player of the Week
March 5 - Andrew Vaughn, IF, CAL

Midseason Perfect Game/Rawlings Player of the Year
Hunter Bishop, OF, ASU

Midseason Perfect Game/Rawlings Coach of the Year
John Savage, UCLA

Midseason Perfect Game/Rawlings Team of the Year
Arizona State

Midseason Perfect Game/Rawlings College Baseball All-American Teams
First Team
Adley Rutschman, C, OSU
Andrew Vaughn, 1B, CAL
Hunter Bishop, OF, ASU
Alec Marsh, SP, ASU
Brandon Eisert, RP, OSU

Buster Posey National Collegiate Catcher of the Year Award Watch List
Matthew Dyer, Jr., ARIZ
Maverick Handley, Jr., STAN
Nick Kahle, Jr., WASH
Korey Lee, Jr., CAL
Adley Rutschman, Jr., OSU

NCBWA National Player of the Month
March - Hunter Bishop, OF, ASU

NCBWA National Hitter of the Week
April 16 - Spencer Steer, IF, ORE

Senior CLASS Award Finalist
Bryce Fehmel, P, OSU

College Sports Madness National Baseball Players of the Week:
Feb. 18 - Ryan Holgate, OF, ARIZ (Field Player)
April 15 - Spencer Steer, IF, ORE (Field Player)

Collegiate Baseball’s National Players Of The Week:

USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award Preseason Watch List:
Kevin Abel, RHP, OSU
Jack Little, RHP, STAB
Nick Quintana, IF, ARIZ
Adley Rutschman, C, OSU
Kyle Stowers, OF, STAN
Chase Strumpf, IF, UCLA
Michael Toglia, IF, UCLA
Spencer Torkelson, IF, ASU
Andrew Vaughn, IF, CAL
Kenyon Yovan, RHP, ORE

NCBWA Stopper of the Year Preseason Watch List: 
Brandon Eisert, Jr., OSU
Jack Little, Jr., STAN
Connor Lunn, Jr., USC
Jake Mulholland, Jr., OSU
Ryne Nelson, Jr., ORE
Jacob Palisch, So., STAN
Holden Powell, So., UCLA

Collegiate Baseball Preseason All-Americans:
First Team 
Kevin Abel, RHP, OSU
Jack Little, RHP, STAN
Adley Rutschman, C, OSU
Andrew Vaughn, 1B, CAL
Spencer Torkelson, 1B, ASU
Chase Strumpf, 2B, UCLA

Second Team
Bryce Fehmel, RHP, OSU
Kenyon Yovan, RHP, ORE
Jeremy Ydens, OF, UCLA

Third Team
Brendan Beck, RHP, STAN
Jake Mulholland, LHP, OSU
Nic Kahle, C, WASH
Michael Toglia, 1B, UCLA
Nick Quintana, 3B, ARIZ

Collegiate Baseball Projected  Player of the Year:
Adley Rutschman, C, OSU

D1Baseball.com Preseason All-Americans:
First Team
Adley Rutschman, C, OSU
Andrew Vaughn, 1B, CAL
Chase Strumpf, 2B, UCLA
Spencer Torkelson, DH, ASU
Kevin Abel, SP, OSU
Jack Little, RP, STAN

Second Team
Michael Toglia, 1B, UCLA
Cameron Cannon, 2B, ARIZ
Kenyon Yovan, SP, ORE

Third Team
Nick Quintana, 3B, ARIZ
Brandon Eisert, RP, OSU

Perfect Game Preseason All-Americans:
First Team
Adley Rutschman, C, OSU
Andrew Vaughn, 1B, CAL
Chase Strumpf, 2B, UCLA
Spencer Torkelson, 1B, ASU
Kevin Abel, SP, OSU
Jack Little, RP, STAN

Second Team
Bryce Fehmel, SP, OSU
Third Team 
Michael Toglia, 1B, UCLA
Nick Quintana, 3B, ARIZ
Jake Mulholland, RP, OSU 

Baseball America Preseason All-Americans:
First Team
Adley Rutschman, C, OSU
Andrew Vaughn, 1B, CAL
Chase Strumpf, 2B, UCLA
Kyle Stowers, OF, STAN

Second Team
Spencer Torkelson, 1B, ASU
Erik Miller, SP, STAN
Jack Little, RP, STAN

Third Team
Nick Quintana, 3B, ARIZ
Ryne Nelson, SP, ORE

Baseball America Preseason All-American Best Tools:
Best Hitter

Andrew Vaughn, 1B, CAL
Best Power
Spencer Torkelson, 1B, ASU
Best Defensive Catcher
Adley Rutschman, C, OSU

NCBWA Preseason All-Americans:
First Team 
Adley Rutschman, C, OSU
Andrew Vaughn, 1B, CAL
Chase Strumpf, 2B, UCLA
Spencer Torkelson, 1B, ASU
Kevin Abel, SP, OSU
Bryce Fehmel, SP, OSU
Jack Little, RP, STAN
Jake Mulholland, RP, OSU

Second Team
Nick Quintana, 3B, ARIZ
Joe Wainhouse, DH, WASH

Third Team
Michael Toglia, 1B, UCLA
Kenyon Yovan, UT, ORE
Brendan Beck, SP, STAN
Brandon Eisert, RP, OSU

Now on Pac-12 Network
4:00 PM PT

Airing on:

  • Pac-12 Network