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Ducks open three-game series at UCLA Friday

Mar 31, 2022

Series History - vs. UCLA

  • Oregon hits the road for a three-game series at UCLA starting Friday.
  • The Bruins lead the all-time series 32-16, including 21-14 in the modern era and 14-9 at UCLA.
  • Oregon is 7-8 in L.A. during the modern era with a series sweep in 2014 and series wins in 2010 and 2012.
  • UCLA swept the Ducks each of their last two visits to Calif. The Ducks won two of three last season.

National Statistical Rankings

  • Oregon ended the USC series among the national leaders in a number of statistical categories.
  • The Ducks are second in the nation in batting average, fourth in double plays sixth in both hits and slugging percentage, 10th in double plays per game, 11th in home runs, 15th in runs per game, 17th in runs and 18th in on-base percentage.

Pac-12 Team Leaders

  • Oregon leads the Pac-12 in seven major statistical categories, including five on offense while ranking second in three more.
  • The Ducks lead the league in batting average, hits, home runs, HR/game and slugging percentage at the plate, while also leading the conference in double plays and double plays per game.
  • The Ducks are second in runs, runs/game and OBP.

Well-rounded student-athletes recognized

  • Three Oregon student-athletes have been selected as candidates for the 2022 Senior CLASS AWARD®.
  • Third baseman Sam Novitske, left fielder Tanner Smith and closer Kolby Somers are among the 30 candidates.
  • Smith and Somers both earned third-team All-America honors in 2021, while Novitske was a 2020 COSIDA first-team All-District 8 selection.
  • All three have been involved with Oregon's partnership with Team Impact, while excelling in the classroom.
  • To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character and competition.

Record run of long balls comes to an end

  • Oregon put a string of impressive home run streaks together before having them snapped during the two-game midweek series with San Francisco.
  • Oregon homered multiple times in eight consecutive games, the longest streak since the program returned.
  • Before the season, Oregon hadn't hit multiple home runs in more than three consecutive games before going deep more than once four times earlier this year (from Feb. 21 to Feb. 26-- vs. USD, 3x vs. SJU).
  • Oregon also hit at least one home run 17 consecutive before seeing the streak snapped in Wednesday 4-3 win.
  • The longest streak for consecutive games with a home run coming into this season was six, set by the 2021 team on two occasions.
  • Oregon has homered in 21 of the last 23 games.

Ducks on pace to shatter Oregon home run record

  • Heading into the UCLA series, Oregon is on pace to hit 91.4 home runs during its 56-game regular-season schedule.
  • The Ducks have hit 41 long balls in their first 25 games of the season.
  • The 41 homers already rank fifth all-time in a single season at Oregon.
  • The 2021 team set the school record last season with 56 home runs.

Single Season Home Runs
Rank    Team        HR
1.         2021          56
2.         1974          48
3.         1973          46
4.         1965          43
5.         2022          41
Record setting offense

  • Oregon scored 12 runs in the top of the eighth inning at San Diego in a 21-11 (8-inning) win on Feb. 21.
  • The 12 runs were the most ever scored by a Ducks' team with the 12 runs also setting a new record for most runs scored by both teams in an inning (old record of 11 both came when UO scored 11 in the sixth inning at WSU on 4/29/19).
  • Oregon also set a school record for hits in an inning with 10, breaking the old record of eight set in the same game at WSU in 2019.
  • The Ducks also tied school records for most doubles (3) in an inning and most extra-base hits (5) in an inning.
  • The record-setting 12-run inning remained a record for exactly seven more innings before Oregon broke it again with a 13-run eighth inning in the series opener against St. John's on Feb. 25.
  • Oregon scored the 13 runs behind eight hits (2 doubles), six walks and a hit-by-pitch.
  • The 44 combined runs scored by Oregon in the San Diego series finale and the St. John's series opener were the most ever scored by the Ducks in back-to-back games.
  • Oregon matched a school record with 23 runs scored vs. St. John's in game one of the series, tying the 23 runs the Ducks scored against Portland State (5/6/74).
  • The 21 runs scored by the Ducks at San Diego tied for the third most at the time it happened.
  • The Ducks also scored 21 at Washington State (4/12/19), at Sacramento State (3/19/79) and vs. Northwest Nazarene (3/6/76).
  • The 23 runs vs. St. John's also broke the PK Park record which was set when the Ducks' beat New Mexico State 22-7 (2/21/15).
  • In addition to the two 20-plus run games, the Ducks scored double-digit runs in the second (16) and third (13) games of the St. John's series, marking the only time in the modern era the Ducks have scored 10-or-more runs in four-straight games.
  • Oregon added a 10-run first inning in the midweek series opener against San Francisco, running its total to three innings with double-digit runs in 2022.

Among the best

  • Oregon heads into the UCLA series among the national leaders in a number of statistical categories.
  • The Ducks are fifth in the country in batting average, while ranking fourth in hits, 11th in slugging percentage, 13th in runs, 14th in home runs, 17th in runs per game, 18th in home runs per game and 24th in on-base percentage.
  • Oregon leads the Pac-12 in six major statistical categories, including four on offense.
  • The Ducks lead the league in batting hits, home runs, HR/game, and slugging percentage at the plate, while also ranking second in the conference in batting average, runs, runs per game and on-base percentage.
  • Oregon also leads the league in total bases.
  • The Ducks are third in the conference in doubles.

Smith named preseason All-America

  • Coming off a season where he claimed Collegiate Baseball third-team All-America honors, JR OF Tanner Smith has been named preseason third-team All-America by both Collegiate Baseball and the NCBWA.
  • A junior from Newport Beach, Calif., Smith finished last season batting .324 with five home runs and 36 RBI while batting leadoff for the Ducks.
  • He had a Pac-12 best 24 doubles, which set a new Oregon single-season record for two-baggers, while reaching base at a .417 clip and slugging .533.
  • The Ducks' left fielder ranked third among all Pac-12 players with 33 extra-base hits.
  • His 24 doubles ranked fifth nationally and his 0.44 doubles per game were the best in the Pac-12 and 12th overall in the country.
  • He also tripled four times, which was good for second in the Pac-12 and 28th nationally.
  • Smith is batting .319 (23-for-72) with three doubles and three home runs heading into the Utah series.
  • All 10 of his extra-base hits this season have come in the last nine games.

It's hot in the Shade

  • After battling injuries early in the season as a true freshman, SO OF Colby Shade is healthy and producing for the Ducks in 2022.
  • The Ducks' centerfield produced in a big way in the St. John's series, batting a team-best .667 (8-for-12) with a home run, three doubles, nine RBI and nine runs.
  • He added four walks and three HBPs to finish with a .789 on-base percentage while slugging 1.167.
  • He also reached base in 13 straight plate appearances during the series.
  • For the season, Shade leads the team in batting average (.430), on-base percentage (.519), slugging percentage (.656) and stolen bases (4), while ranking second in runs (21), doubles (6), triples (1), RBI (20) and base on balls (10). He is third in HBP (3).
  • In the Pac-12, Shade ranks second in batting average, third in OBP, sixth in slugging, tied for seventh in runs scored and is tied for eighth in RBI and hits.
  • Nationally, Shade is 23rd in the country in batting average and 52nd in on-base percentage.

Walsh tabbed Pac-12 preseason freshman of the year by Baseball America

  • The one infield position Oregon entered the season with no returning starts at was first base, but after five weeks, it looks like the position is in good hands with FR Jacob Walsh, who was named the preseason Pac-12 Conference Freshman of the Year by Baseball America.
  • Heading into the USC series, Walsh is batting .364 (32-for-88) with four home runs, eight doubles, 21 RBI and 19 runs scored, while boasting a .417 OBP and a .591 slugging percentage.
  • He has a team-high 12 multi-hit games and seven multi-RBI games.
  • He is also tied for first in three-hit games with three and leads the team with three three-RBI games.
  • He is the team leader in hits, doubles, RBI and total bases, while ranking second in at-bats and third in runs scored and OBP. He is fourth in slugging percentage.
  • In the Pac-12, Walsh ranks fourth in hits, third in doubles and fifth in total bases (52).
  • Among Pac-12 freshmen, he is the league leader in both hits and total bases and ranks second in doubles.
  • Nationally, Walsh is 40th in hits, 72nd in doubles and 88th in total bases, while among all freshmen he ranks second in hits, seventh in double and ninth in total bases.
  • In the opening four-game series at San Diego, Walsh finished batting .375 with a home run, two RBI and four runs scored.
  • In the St. John's series, he batted .438 with a home run, six RBI, seven runs scored and four walks.
  • In the UCSB series, he batted .286 with team highs in doubles (5) and RBI (5).
  • At No. 2 Stanford, Walsh batted .438 (7-for-16) with a home run, double, four RBI and two runs scored.
  • He had multiple hits in all three games against the Cardinal, finishing with two hits in each of the first two games and three hits (and three RBI) in game three.
  • At USD, he had three 2-hit games, including a 2-for-4 effort in his first career game.
  • In Oregon's 21-11 get-away day win, Walsh hit his first career home run while reaching base four times (2-for-4, 2 BB) with two RBI and four runs scored.
  • In game three of the series, he scored his first run while going 2-for-4 at the plate.
  • Earlier this season, he put together an eight-game hitting streak and has reached base in 14 consecutive games heading into the Utah series.
  • A Las Vegas native, Walsh was a consensus top-300 player in the country by Perfect Game (No. 132) and Prep Baseball Report (No. 297).
  • He also ranked as a top-five first baseman nationally by both PG (No. 3) and PBR (No. 5).
  • He ranked as the No. 4 player from Nevada by both Prep Baseball Report and Perfect Game.

Turn two

  • The old saying that a "pitcher's best friend is a double play", has been on display for Oregon this season.
  • The Ducks head into the UCLA series ranked sixth in double plays and 10th in double plays per game.
  • Oregon is tied with two other teams (George Mason, New Orleans) with 25 double plays on the season, just one behind St. Joseph's, UCF and Elon's 26 DPs, two behind Baylor's 27 and seven in back of New Mexico's national-best 32 double plays.
  • The Ducks are averaging 1.00 double plays per game.
  • New Mexico leads the country with 1.28 per game, while St. Joseph's is second (1.18), Baylor is third (1.12), while New Orleans and George Mason are tied for fourth (1.09).
  • Oregon's has turned 20 conventional double plays involving the infielders, pitcher or catcher while also having two double play with a fly out and an outfield assist and one strike-him-out, throw-him out.
  • The most common double play has been the 6-4-3 (6 times), followed by the 5-4-3 (5), 4-6-3 (3), 1-6-3 (3) and the 3-6-1 (2).

Somers named preseason All-America

  • Coming off a season where he claimed NCBWA third-team All-America honors, SR LHP Kolby Somers has been named preseason third-team All-America by both Collegiate Baseball and D1Baseball.
  • A senior from Hillsboro, Ore., Somers claimed first-team All-Pac-12 Conference honors in addition to NCBWA All-America honors last season.
  • He was dominant closing out games for the Ducks in 2021.
  • The lefty finished the season with a 2-2 record and a 3.08 ERA with 11 saves.
  • He fanned 37 in 26.1 innings pitched while holding opposing hitters to a .149 batting average.
  • He ranked third in the Pac-12 in saves, as well as ranking sixth all-time in single-season saves at Oregon.
  • His seven saves in conference games were the second most in the league, one behind the leader.

Bullpen on impressive run

  • With Oregon's recent struggles on the mound to start games, the Ducks' bullpen has come through in a big way over the last 11 games heading into the two San Francisco midweek games.
  • The Ducks have gone 9-2 during that stretch with the Ducks bullpen claiming seven wins and a four saves.
  • During the stretch, the bullpen has tossed 5.1 innings or more in eight of the 11 games with a high of 8.0 innings coming vs. USC on Sunday in a Ducks' come-from-behind win.
  • Oregon's pen also tossed 7.2 innings in a win at Stanford on March 11, 7.1 innings in a win at Gonzaga on March 22, 7.0 innings in a win at Stanford on March 11, 6.1 innings in a loss at Stanford on March 13, 5.2 innings in a win over Utah on March 18 and 5.1 innings in a win over Utah on March 20.
  • During the Ducks current last seven games heading into USF, the bullpen has posted a 1.75 ERA while allowing just eight runs (7 earned) on 22 hits in 36.0 innings pitched with 30 strikeouts and 11 walks.
  • The bullpen has been credited with the win in all five of those seven games, with RHP Logan Mercado picking up three wins in five days.

Ducks boast experienced arms

  • Oregon opened the 2022 season with 12 pitchers on the 17-member staff who had experience at the four-year college level, including nine with double digit outings, six with more than 20 appearances, three with 30-plus appearances and two with more than 50 outings.
  • Heading into the USF games, the staff has six different pitchers who have career saves led by LHP Kolby Somers (16), and transfers RHP Stone Churby (5) and RHP Dylan Sabia (4), and RJ Gordon (1) who picked up his first vs. St. John's.
  • Oregon's closer last year, Somers leads the staff with 70 career appearances, followed closely by Churby's 66 appearances (58 at Sacramento State from 2018-21).
  • Other experienced arms include RHP Caleb Sloan (39 appearances), RHP Christian Ciuffetelli (34), Sabia (29), RHP Andrew Mosiello (28), RHP Isaac Ayon (28), LHP Rio Britton (25), RHP RJ Gordon (21) RHP Scott Ellis (15), RHP Logan Mercado (11) and NAIA transfer RHP Adam Maier (8).
  • Junior college transfer RHP Matt Dallas has gained extensive experience already, leading the team in appearances in 2022 (13).
  • Oregon has also had a pair of true freshmen make their college debuts on the mound with RHP Jacob Hughes (6) and RHP Tommy Brandenburg (5) appearing in games.