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Pac-12 Conference

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Pac-12 Baseball Weekly Release - February 23, 2022

Feb 23, 2022
Mario Terrana

LEADING OFF:  The Pac-12 got off to a great start with a 24-9 record over the opening weekend, which included sweeps of the three tournaments they participated in.  This included a 4-0 mark against teams from the Big 12 and wins over both ranked opponents.

This week the Conference of Champions takes part in two more tournaments.  No. 5 ranked STANFORD will head to Texas for the Karbach Round Rock Classic, which is highlighted by a Top 5 matchup with No. 4 Arkansas on Saturday.  Meanwhile, UTAH heads to San Diego for the Tony Gwynn Legacy where it will battle Fresno State and San Diego State from the Mountain West Conference.

On Tuesday, ARIZONA STATE welcomes No. 8 Oklahoma State to town for a pair of mid-week games.  The Sun Devils will be looking for revenge after their last home meeting with the Cowboys.  In February 2020, Oklahoma State beat ASU 2-1 despite Sun Devil pitchers racking up 18 strikeouts including 12 in six innings by starter Erik Tolman.

Rankings Roundup

  • USA Today (preseason):  #5 Stanford, #15 Arizona, #20 Oregon State, #24 UCLA
  • Baseball America:  #5 Stanford, #12 Oregon State, #14 Arizona, #21 UCLA
  • D1Baseball:  #6 Stanford, #11 Arizona, #14 Oregon State
  • Collegiate Baseball:  #5 Stanford, #10 Arizona, #19 Oregon State, #21 UCLA
  • NCBWA:  #4 Stanford, #8 Arizona, #12 Oregon State, #23 UCLA
  • Perfect Game:  #2 Stanford, #12 Arizona, #17 UCLA, #20 Oregon State

NO “SURPRISE”:  OREGON STATE kicked off its season in Surprise, Arizona with its offense in midseason form to start 4-0.  The Beavers scored 56 runs on 57 hits and are ranked Top 5 in the country in both categories.  Mitch Canham’s squad has also been 9-9 in stolen bases so far this season, one of six teams in the country to swipe at least nine bases without being caught.  Catcher T.J. Wheeler has 10 RBI this season, good for fifth in the country.

ZERO EFFECT:  Stanford’s pitching has been on point so far this season.  With two shutouts in its first four games, the Cardinal is one of just seven Division 1 schools with multiple shutouts so far this season and nearly halfway to its season total of five from last season.  In fact, the Cardinal has allowed one run or less in three of its four games this season.

WHITE OUT:  For his dominant performance in the season opener, CALIFORNIA’s Josh White was named one of Collegiate Baseball’s National Players of the Week.  White tied a career-high with 10 strikeouts over 5 1/3 innings in a 4-2 win over Houston.  The Bears started the season 3-0 with a sweep in the MLB4 Tournament over the weekend before losing a wild game to Gonzaga on Monday.  Outfielder Dylan Beavers had his second career multi-homer game on Monday and is tied for fifth in the country with three dingers.

FIRST IMPRESSIONS:  The three new head coaches in the Pac-12 have gotten off to an impressive start, going a combined 8-2-1 in the opening week. 

Gary Henderson has yet to lose as head coach of the Utes.  UTAH won its first two games of the series against Loyola Marymount before Sunday’s series finale in Los Angeles was called a 9-9 tie in 10 innings due to Utah’s return travel.  Tuesday’s game with Utah Valley was postponed due to weather and rescheduled for Wednesday, April 27th.

Chip Hale has lead ARIZONA to a 3-1 start, including sweeping the State Farm College Baseball Showdown with wins over three Big 12 teams, including No. 12 Texas Tech, thanks to five scoreless innings from Pac-12 Pitcher of the Week Dawson Netz.  The Wildcats outscored their opponents 35-12 in those first three games.  Pac-12 Player of the Week Tanner O’Tremba had 17 total bases in those three games in Texas, with two doubles, a triple and two  home runs.

Willie Bloomquist has also won three of his first four with his alma mater.  The Sun Devils took two of three from Dixie State with the lone loss coming in extra innings on Saturday.  They then shut down Nevada 3-1 on Tuesday, already the second time this season they’ve held their opponent to one run.  Arizona State leads the Pac-12 with seven home runs, tied for 15th best in the country.

DUCKS DIAMOND UPGRADE:  OREGON is looking forward to its home opener on Friday against St. John’s to start a four-game series at the upgraded PK Park.  The Ducks went 23-9 at home last season including 11-3 against non-conference opponents during the regular season.

COACHES CHOOSE CARDINAL:  The Pac-12 coaches took Stanford atop their preseason poll with the Cardinal receiving eight first-place votes for a total of 98 out of a possible 100 points.

Oregon State was second with 84 points and one first-place vote, Arizona was third with 77 points and UCLA with two first-place votes had the fourth-most points with 75.

NATIONAL AWARDS PRESEASON WATCH LISTS

GOLDEN SPIKES

  • OF Dylan Beavers, California
  • OF Brock Jones, Stanford
  • IF Ethan Long, Arizona State
  • IF Sean McLain, Arizona State
  • RHP Max Rajcic, UCLA
  • C Daniel Susac, Arizona
  • RHP Josh White, California

BOBBY BRAGAN COLLEGIATE SLUGGER AWARD

  • OF Dylan Beavers, California
  • C Cole Elvis, California
  • OF Brock Jones, Stanford
  • IF John Kasevich, Oregon
  • OF Tanner Smith, Oregon
  • C Daniel Susac, Arizona

NCBWA STOPPER OF THE YEAR

  • Holden Christian, Arizona
  • Stone Churby, Oregon
  • Aaron Roberts, California
  • Kolby Somers, Oregon
  • Mitchell Verburg, Oregon State

PRESEASON ALL-AMERICAN TEAMS

  D1 Baseball Baseball America Collegiate Baseball
1st Team: C Daniel Susac (Arizona), OF Brock Jones (Stanford) C Daniel Susac (Arizona) C Daniel Susac (Arizona), OF Brock Jones (Stanford)
2nd Team: SP Josh White (Cal), RP Holden Christian (Arizona) OF Brock Jones (Stanford), OF Dylan Beavers (Cal), SP Cooper Hjerpe (OSU) 3B Ethan Long (ASU), OF Dylan Beavers (Cal)
3rd Team: OF Dylan Beavers (Cal), DH Ethan Long (ASU), RP Kolby Somers (Oregon) 2B Sean McLain (ASU), SP Max Rajcic (UCLA) RP Kolby Somers (Oregon), OF Tanner Smith (Oregon)
  NCBWA Perfect Game
1st team: C Daniel Susac (Arizona), OF Brock Jones (Stanford), OF Dylan Beavers (Cal) C Daniel Susac (Arizona), OF Brock Jones (Stanford)
2nd team: 3B Ethan Long (ASU) OF Dylan Beavers (Cal)
3rd team: OF Tanner Smith (Oregon) UT Ethan Long (ASU), SP Cooper Hjerpe (OSU)

AMERICAN MADE:  Seven Pac-12 players were part of the 45-man roster for the 2021 Collegiate National Team.  Normally this would include exhibitions against international opponents but instead played an 11-game intrasquad series last summer at Appalachian League ballparks.  The roster included OF Dylan Beavers (CALIFORNIA), OF Brock Jones (STANFORD), OF/1B Ethan Long (ARIZONA STATE), INF/OF Sean McLain (ARIZONA STATE), C Daniel Susac (ARIZONA) and RHP Josh White (CALIFORNIA).

NEXT GENERATION:  The Class of 2021 recruits will get their first taste of Pac-12 play this season and it was a strong class across the board for the conference.  

Baseball America ranked UCLA’s class number one in the country for the first time in their 22 years for rankings.  The class is highlighted by a pair of Top 100 pitchers in RHP Thatcher Hurd (#44) and LHP Gage Jump (#57) along with Top 100 outfielder Malakhi Knight (#72).

Three other schools made their Top 25 with Oregon State (#6), USC (#17), and Washington (#24).

ALUMNI TOP PROSPECT LISTS:  In the latest lists by MLB Pipeline, Baseball America and The Athletic’s Keith Law, former Oregon State catcher Adley Rutschman is considered the top prospect in Major League Baseball.  The #1 pick in the 2019 draft by the Baltimore Orioles hit a combined 23 homers over 123 games between their AA (Bowie) and AAA (Norfolk) affiliates.

Former Sun Devil Spencer Torkelson, the #1 pick in the 2020 draft by the Detroit Tigers comes in #4 on all three lists.  Torkelson hit 30 home runs over three different minor league levels.

INAUGURAL PAC-12 TOURNAMENT:  The inaugural Pac-12 Baseball Tournament is scheduled for May 25-29, 2022 at Scottsdale Stadium.  The double-elimination tournament will be spread over five days at the Spring Training home of the San Francisco Giants.

The top eight teams in the Conference standings at the conclusion of the regular season will earn berths in the Pac-12 Baseball Tournament, from which the champion will receive the Conference’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. The Pac-12’s initial agreement with the City of Scottsdale runs through 2024.


ON DECK (Full Schedule

Wednesday, Feb. 23    
Nebraska-Omaha at No. 24 UCLA Pac-12 Los Angeles 6:00 p.m. PT
Thursday, Feb. 24    
Xavier vs. No. 20 Oregon State (1) FloSports 12:00 p.m. PT
Long Island vs. Washington State (2)   12:00 p.m. PT
Milwaukee at No. 15 Arizona Arizona Live Stream 5:00 p.m. PT
BYU at Arizona State ASU Live Stream 5:30 p.m. PT
Friday, Feb. 25    
Louisiana vs. No. 5 Stanford (3) FloBaseball 10:00 a.m. PT
Xavier vs. No. 20 Oregon State (1) FloSports 12:00 p.m. PT
Fresno State vs. Utah (4)   1:00 p.m. PT
Long Island vs. Washington State (2) -  Game 1 of DH   1:00 p.m. PT
St. John's at Oregon Oregon Live Stream 4:00 p.m. PT
Long Island vs. Washington State (2) - Game 2 of DH   4:00 p.m. PT
Milwaukee at No. 15 Arizona Arizona Live Stream 5:00 p.m. PT
Illinois-Chicago at California Cal Live Stream 5:05 p.m. PT
BYU at Arizona State Pac-12 Arizona 6:00 p.m. PT
Nebraska-Omaha at USC USC Live Stream 6:00 p.m. PT
UC Riverside at No. 24 UCLA UCLA Live Stream 6:00 p.m. PT
Washington at UC San Diego ESPN+ 6:30 p.m. PT
Saturday, Feb. 26    
BYU at Arizona State ASU Live Stream 11:30 a.m. PT
Xavier vs. No. 20 Oregon State (1) FloSports 12:00 p.m. PT
Long Island vs. Washington State (2)   12:00 p.m. PT
Washington at UC San Diego - Game 1 of DH   1:00 p.m. PT
Milwaukee at No. 15 Arizona Arizona Live Stream 1:00 p.m. PT
No. 4 Arkansas vs. No. 5 Stanford (3) FloBaseball 2:00 p.m. PT
Nebraska-Omaha at USC USC Live Stream 2:00 p.m. PT
UC Riverside at No. 24 UCLA UCLA Live Stream 2:00 p.m. PT
St. John's at Oregon Oregon Live Stream 2:00 p.m. PT
Illinois-Chicago at California - Game 1 of DH California Live Stream 2:05 p.m. PT
Washington at UC San Diego - Game 2 of DH   4:00 p.m. PT
Utah at San Diego State (4)   6:00 p.m. PT
Illinois-Chicago at California - Game 2 of DH California Live Stream 6:05 p.m. PT
Sunday, Feb. 27    
Indiana vs. No. 5 Stanford (3) FloBaseball 9:00 a.m. PT
Milwaukee at No. 15 Arizona Arizona Live Stream 9:00 a.m. PT
Nebraska-Omaha at USC USC Live Stream 12:00 p.m. PT
Washington at UC San Diego ESPN+ 12:00 p.m. PT
UC Riverside at No. 24 UCLA UCLA Live Stream 1:00 p.m. PT
St. John's at Oregon  Oregon Live Stream 2:00 p.m. PT
Utah at San Diego State (4)   2:00 p.m. PT
Monday, Feb. 28    
No. 5 Stanford at UTSA CUSA TV 11:00 a.m. PT
St. John's at Oregon Pac-12 Network 2:00 p.m. PT
Tuesday, March 1    
Utah at UNLV   2:05 p.m. PT
Gonzaga at Washington   3:35 p.m. PT
No. 8 Oklahoma State at Arizona State Pac-12 Network 4:00 p.m PT
Dixie State at No. 15 Arizona Arizona Live Stream 5:00 p.m. PT
Cal State Sacramento at California California Live Stream 5:05 p.m. PT
Seattle at No. 20 Oregon State Oregon State Live Stream 5:35 p.m. PT
USC at Loyola Marymount   6:00 p.m. PT
Long Beach State at No. 24 UCLA Pac-12 Network 7:00 p.m. PT
Wednesday, March 2    
No. 8 Oklahoma State at Arizona State ASU Live Stream 12:00 p.m. PT
Washington State at Tarleton State WAC Digital Network 4:30 p.m. PT
  • (1) - Surprise, Ariz.
  • (2) - Peoria, Ariz.
  • (3) - Karbach Round Rock Classic, Round Rock, Tex.
  • (4) - Tony Gwynn Legacy, San Diego, Calif.

CONFERENCE STANDINGS (Expanded Standings

Teams Pac-12 Record Overall Record
#20 Oregon Stte 0-0 4-0
Utah 0-0 2-0-1
#15 Arizona 0-0 3-1
Arizona State 0-0 3-1
California 0-0 3-1
#5 Stanford 0-0 3-1
Washington 0-0 3-1
UCLA 0-0 2-2
USC 0-0 2-2
Washington State 0-0 2-2
Oregon 0-0 1-3

PAC-12 BASEBALL WEEKLY AWARDS

  Player of the Week Pitcher of the Week
Feb. 21 Tanner O'Tremba, Arizona Dawson Netz, Arizona