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Pac-12 Baseball Weekly Release - March 3, 2022

Mar 3, 2022

LEADING OFF:  The Pac-12 has felt perfectly at home on neutral fields this season, especially in non-conference tournaments.  Five schools have combined to go 14-1 in those five tournaments with the only loss coming in a game that was shortened to seven innings due to travel concerns.

Pac-12 Teams in Non-Conference Tournaments

Result

State Farm College Baseball Showdown (Feb 18-20)

ARIZONA (3-0)

MLB4 Tournament (Feb 18-20)

CALIFORNIA (3-0)

College Baseball Classic (Feb 18-20)

OREGON STATE (3-0)

Karbach Round Rock Classic (Feb 25-27)

STANFORD (3-0)

Tony Gwynn Legacy (Feb 25-27)

UTAH (2-1)

UCLA heads to Minute Maid Park in Houston this weekend for the Shriners Hospitals for Children College Classic to face three Big 12 opponents including No. 1-ranked Texas with all three games broadcast on MLB Network.  The Bruins will be looking for their first win over a top-ranked team since May 2018 at Oregon State.

WASHINGTON STATE will also be in the Lone Star State this weekend for the Frisco College Baseball Classic.  The Cougars will face Texas A&M from the SEC, Wichita State from the AAC and Iowa from the Big Ten. 

Rankings Roundup

  • USA Today Coaches:  #3 Stanford, #9 Oregon State, #10 Arizona,
  • Baseball America:  #2 Stanford, #9 Oregon State, #13 Arizona, #23 UCLA
  • D1Baseball:  #6 Stanford, #11 Arizona, #13 Oregon State
  • Collegiate Baseball:  #2 Stanford, #7 Oregon State, #14 Arizona, #27 UCLA
  • NCBWA:  #3 Stanford, #9 Oregon State, #11 Arizona, #25 UCLA
  • Perfect Game:  #2 Stanford, #12 Arizona, #16 Oregon State, #20 UCLA

HONOR ROLL:  It was a busy week for hardware at STANFORD with infielder Brett Barrera taking home the Pac-12 Player of the Week and Quinn Mathews capturing Pitcher of the Week after the Cardinal swept through Round Rock Classic.  It’s the second straight week that one school has won both awards after ARIZONA collected both in the opening week.

Mathews wasn’t done winning though. He was honored nationally as the College Baseball Foundation’s Pitcher of the Week.  The left-hander struck out 10 and allowed just two hits in six shutout innings as Stanford knocked off No. 4 Arkansas while earlier in the week having a scoreless inning of relief where he struck out the side against Santa Clara.

Not to be outdone, Utah RHP Matthew Sox was selected as a National Player of the Week by Collegiate Baseball Newspaper.  Sox was two outs away from a no-hitter in a win over Fresno State and finished with six strikeouts and one run in 8 1/3 innings.  Sox and Mathews were both nominated for the Golden Spikes Performance of the Week.

Additionally, Arizona’s Nik McClaughry was named national Shortstop of the Week by the College Baseball Foundation.  In addition to being flawless in the field, McClaughry took advantage of his move to the leadoff spot, going 10-21 (.476) with eight runs scored and five RBI.

SEVENTH HEAVEN:  OREGON STATE is the last of the unbeatens in the Pac-12, getting off to a 7-0 start.  The Beavers, one of just 16 undefeated D-1 teams through Wednesday, are off to their best start since going 10-0 in 2019.  Junior Jacob Melton has been leading the way, hitting safely in all seven games with a .536 AVG and leading the Pac-12 with 16 RBI which are both ranked in the top 12 in the country.

LHP Cooper Hjerpe has been dominant in winning both of his starts, allowing just one run and five hits in 11.0 innings with 17 strikeouts.  Hjerpe will start the home opener on Friday against UC Irvine.

IN THE CARDS:  STANFORD had two more shutouts last week, giving it four for the season which is tied for the most in the country.  The Cardinal had five shutouts all of last season.  Stanford allowed just one run in a three-game sweep of the Round Rock Classic and has allowed one run or less in six of its eight games this season.

U-K-LA:  Strikeouts have been the name of the game in Westwood so far this season with their young rotation having a combining for a 12.8 K/9 ratio and a 0.76 ERA through nine games.  The Bruins have racked up at least 15 strikeouts in five of their nine games this season including four straight form Feb. 20-25.

True freshman Thatcher Hurd leads the country with 25 strikeouts and is second in D-1 with a 18.75 K/9 ratio. Hurd had 12 strikeouts in just five innings his last time out, the most by a UCLA freshman since Gerrit Cole had 13 against Washington in 2009.

Sophomore Jake Brooks had a dozen strikeouts over seven scoreless innings in his last start and has yet to give up a run in 12 innings this season.  True freshman Ethan Flanagan has appeared out of the pen three times this season, racking up 16 strikeouts in 9 2/3 innings.

GIANT KILLERS:  CALIFORNIA is already 2-0 against ranked opponents this season with wins over TCU and Sacramento State.  This weekend the Bears take that show on the road with a three-game set in Tallahassee against No. 17 Florida State.  This will be the first meeting between these two schools since the 1992 College World Series

MIGHTY DUCKS:  After a slow start, OREGON has been one of the hottest teams of the league, outscoring their opponents 79-20 over their five-game win streak.  The Ducks started that streak with a 21-11 win at San Diego that included a school-record 12 runs in the eighth inning.  That record lasted exactly one game as Oregon used a 13-run eighth inning to cap a 23-4 win over St. John’s.  The 23 runs also tied a school record for runs in a game, originally set in 1974.

The Ducks have three batters ranked in the top 15 in the country in batting average with OF Colby Shade (.579), INF Drew Cowley (.571) and SS Josh Kasevich (.531).  Cowley is also second in the country with a .700 OBP, while Shade is 4th at .679.

HALE YEAH:  ARIZONA is 7-1 under head coach Chip Hale, tied for the best eight-game start to a head coaching tenure in Arizona’s modern era (1950-present).  The Wildcats went 9-1 in Andy Lopez’s first 10 games in 2002.

U CAN DO IT:  UTAH is also having success with its first-year head coach Gary Henderson.  The Utes are off to their best start since 1981 at 5-1-1.  Their one loss and one tie were both in games shortened due to travel issues.  Perhaps most impressive is the fact that it has been done all away from home.  Utah will not play their first game at Smith’s Ballpark until Friday, March 11.  The Utes will join Washington State that day as the last two Pac-12 teams to play their first game at home.

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

Friday, March 4    
UCLA vs. Baylor (1) MLB Network 9:00 a.m. PT
Cal State Northridge at No. 3 Stanford Stanford Live Stream 2:05 p.m. PT
California at No. 17 Florida State ACC Network 3:00 p.m. PT
UC Santa Barbara at Oregon Oregon Live Stream 4:00 p.m. PT
Texas State at No. 10 Arizona Arizona Live Stream 5:00 p.m. PT
Washington State vs Texas A&M (2) FloBaseball 5:00 p.m. PT
UC Irvine at No. 9 Oregon State Oregon State Live Stream 5:35 p.m. PT
Arizona State at San Diego State Mountain West Network 6:00 p.m. PT
Wagner at USC USC Live Stream 6:00 p.m. PT
Utah at Cal State Bakersfield ESPN+ 6:05 p.m. PT
Yale at Washington Washington Live Stream 6:05 p.m. PT
Saturday, March 5    
UCLA vs. Oklahoma (1) MLB Network 9:00 a.m. PT
Wichita State vs. Washington State (2) FloBaseball 10:00 p.m. PT
Yale at Washington - Game 1 of DH Washington Live Stream 12:05 p.m. PT
California at No. 17 Florida State   1:00 p.m. PT
Utah at Cal State Bakersfield - Game 1 of DH   1:05 p.m. PT
UC Irvine at No 9 Oregon State Oregon State Live Stream 1:35 p.m. PT
UC Santa Barbara at Oregon - Game 1 of DH Oregon Live Stream 2:00 p.m. PT
Wagner at USC USC Live Stream 2:00 p.m. PT
Cal State Northridge at No. 3 Stanford Stanford Live Stream 2:05 p.m. PT
Yale at Washington - Game 2 of DH Washington Live Stream 4:00 p.m. PT
Utah at Cal State Bakersfield - Game 2 of DH   4:05 p.m. PT
Texas State at No. 10 Arizona Arizona Live Stream 5:00 p.m. PT
UC Santa Barbara at Oregon - Game 2 of DH Oregon Live Stream 5:00 p.m. PT
Arizona State at San Diego State   6:00 p.m. PT
Sunday, March 6    
California at No. 17 Florida State ACC Network Extra 9:00 a.m. PT
Texas State at No. 10 Arizona Arizona Live Stream 10:00 a.m. PT
Iowa vs. Washington State (2) FloBaseball 10:00 a.m. PT
UC Santa Barbara at Oregon Oregon Live Stream 12:00 p.m. PT
Cal State Northridge at No. 3 Stanford Stanford Live Stream 12:05 p.m. PT
Arizona State at San Diego State   1:00 p.m. PT
UCLA vs. No. 1 Texas (1)

MLB Network

1:00 p.m. PT
Wagner at USC USC Live Stream 1:00 p.m. PT
UC Irvine at No. 9 Oregon State Oregon State Live Stream 1:05 p.m. PT
Utah at Cal State Bakersfield ESPN+ 1:05 p.m. PT
Yale at Washington Washington Live Stream 1:05 p.m. PT
Tuesday, March 8    
Portland at Oregon Oregon Live Stream/Pac-12 Insider 4:00 p.m. PT
New Mexico at No. 10 Arizona Arizona Live Stream 5:00 p.m. PT
Santa Clara at California California Live Stream 5:05 p.m. PT
Arizona State at UC Irvine ESPN+ 6:00 p.m. PT
Cal State Fullerton at UCLA UCLA Live Stream 6:00 p.m. PT
Seattle at Washington Washington Live Stream 6:05 p.m. PT
Utah at Fresno State Mountain West Network 6:05 p.m. PT
Wednesday, March 9    
Arizona State at UC Irvine ESPN+ 6:00 p.m. PT
  • (1) - 2022 Shriners Children's College Classic, Minute Maid Park, Houston, Tex.
  • (2) - Frisco College Baseball Classic, Frisco, Tex.

CONFERENCE STANDINGS (Expanded Standings

Teams Pac-12 Record Overall Record
No. 9 Oregon State 0-0 7-0
No. 10 Arizona 0-0 8-1
Utah 0-0 5-1-1
No. 3 Stanford 0-0 6-2
USC 0-0 6-2
UCLA 0-0 6-3
Washington State 0-0 6-3
California 0-0 5-3
Oregon 0-0 5-3
Washington 0-0 5-3
Arizona State 0-0 3-6

PAC-12 BASEBALL WEEKLY AWARDS

  Player of the Week Pitcher of the Week
Feb. 21 Tanner O'Tremba, Arizona Dawson Netz, Arizona
Feb. 28 Brett Barrera, Stanford Quinn Mathews, Stanford