February 28, 2013

No. 17 Titans Return to Goodwin Field

Weekly Release (PDF)

CATCH ALL THE ACTION: Fans wishing to watch No. 17 Cal State Fullerton host 14th-ranked Oregon this weekend, can catch all the action on BigWest.tv. The broadcast, which offers an live audio feed, is free of charge. In addition, live stats are available for all three games, and are accessible by accessing the baseball schedule page at FullertonTitans.com.

SOCIAL MEDIA: Follow @BaseballTitans for daily updates during the 2013 season.

CSF vs. OREGON • ALL-TIME SERIES

First Year Played/Last Year Played 2010/2012

Overall Record: 0-2

Current Streak: Lost 2

NCAA Regional Record: 0-1

Overall NCAA Postseason: Record 0-1

Home Record: 0-1

Road Record: 0-1

Neutral Record: 0-0

Most Runs Scored in a Game: 5 runs (6/2/12)

Most Runs Scored in a Game by Opponent: 7 runs, 2 times (6/2/12)

Largest Margin of Defeat: 4 runs (2/19/10)

 

OREGON NOTES: Currently ranked 14th in the country, Oregon (7-1) will play its first ranked opponent this season when the Ducks travel to Goodwin Field.  UO opened the season with a four-game road sweep of Hawai'i, and returned to Eugene to clinch a series victory over Loyola Marymount, winning two-of-three. The Ducks most recently added a 3-1 win over Portland on Tuesday.

Oregon is batting .221 as a team led by J.J. Altobelli (.429), Ryon Healy (.345) and Scott Heineman (.308). Oregon's pitching staff is managing a 2.38 ERA, and similar to the Titans, the Ducks use three underclassmen in the weekend rotation: sophomore right-hander Jake Reed (1-1, 3.27), sophomore left-hander Tommy Thorpe (2-0, 0.75) and freshman left-hander Cole Irvin (2-0, 2.40).

VERSUS OREGON: Since the Oregon baseball program was reinstated for the 2009 season, the Titans and Ducks have squared off on two occasions. The first meeting was 2010 season opener (Feb. 19) as Oregon upset then No. 4 Fullerton, 7-3. Last year, Fullerton was sent to Oregon as the No. 2 seed at the Eugene Regional. The Ducks and Titans played one another on the second day as Oregon edged CSF, 7-5, on June 2. Seven members of Oregon's starting lineup from last year's postseason game are currently on the 2013 UO roster, as well as right-hander Jimmie Sherfy, who was credited with the save. Similar to the Ducks, seven players from CSF's starting lineup on June 2, 2012, remain on Fullerton's roster, as well as right-hander Willie Kuhl, who appeared in relief.

VERSUS THE PAC-12: The Titans hold a 268-202-3 record all-time against teams currently in the Pac-12 Conference. 

CSF vs. USD • ALL-TIME SERIES

First Year Played/Last Year Played: 1976/2011

Overall Record: 53-8-2

Current Streak: Won 1

Overall Conference (SCBA) Record: 20-3-1

NCAA Regional Record: 1-0

Overall NCAA Postseason Record: 1-0

Home Record: 33-5-1

Road Record: 18-3-1

Neutral Record: 2-0

Longest Winning Streak: 16 games (4/7/87 to 3/2/97)

Longest Losing Streak: 2 games, 2 times (last from 3/14/07 to 3/11/08)

Extra Innings: 3-0-1

Most Runs Scored in a Game: 17 runs, 2 times (last on 4/9/91)

Most Runs Scored in a Game by Opponent: 11 runs, 2 times (last on 4/4/81)

Largest Margin of Victory: 17 runs (4/9/91)

Largest Margin of Defea: 5 runs (3/17/87)

USD NOTES: The University of San Diego was selected to win the 2013 West Coast Conference baseball championship, in a preseason poll of the WCC's nine head coaches. The Toreros (3-4) travel to Coastal Carolina (Thursday) and Wilmington, N.C., this weekend to play in the UNC Wilmington Tournament, before returning home to host the Titans on Wednesday.

The game will be played at Fowler Park, the Toreros' baseball facility that opened on Feb. 15, 2013.

VERSUS USD: Cal State Fullerton and San Diego have not played one another since 2011, and Wednesday's trip will be the only game between the two programs in 2013. In 2011, the teams split their season series, and Fullerton has a monstrous 53-8-2 lead in the all-time series.

CSF vs. USC • ALL-TIME SERIES

First Year Played/Last Year Played: 1975/2013

Overall Record: 46-37-1

Current Streak: Won 2

Home Record: 23-15

Road Record: 19-19

Neutral Record: 4-3-1

Longest Winning Streak: 6 games (2/23/82 to 5/25/84)

Longest Losing Streak: 5 games (2/7/89 to 2/5/91)

Extra Innings: 1-3

Most Runs Scored in a Game: 17 runs (2/25/96)

Most Runs Scored in a Game by Opponent: 14 runs (4/15/08)

Largest Margin of Victory: 14 runs (2/19/85)

Largest Margin of Defeat: 10 runs (4/15/08)

USC NOTES: The 2013 Trojans were picked to finish tied for the eighth in the Pac-12 by a vote of the conference coaches. USC returns just four position starters from the 2012 squad which finished the year with an overall record of 23-32 as well as 8-22 in the Pac-12 Conference. USC associate head coach Dan Hubbs, a former Trojan All-American pitcher now in his second season at Troy, was named head coach of the USC baseball team on Feb. 15, after Frank Cruz was dismissed.

VERSUS USC: USC and Cal State Fullerton have met 84 times dating back to 1975.  The Titans hold a 46-37-1 in the all-time series, while Cal State Fullerton boasts a 23-15 record at its home field. The clubs are knotted with a record of 19-19 at Dedeaux Field.

Wednesday will mark the second meeting between the two programs in 2013. On opening night, Thomas Eshelman was the first Titan freshman since 1987 to start a season opener for Cal State Fullerton, and he didn't disappoint the sellout crowd of 3,508 as CSF edged the Trojans, 3-2, on Feb. 15 at Goodwin Field. In the win, Eshelman (1-0) allowed two unearned runs on four hits while striking out six in six innings of work.

TITAN CONNECTIONS: George Horton (head coach Oregon) spent 17 seasons at Cal State Fullerton serving as the Titan head coach from 1997-07, and as an assistant from 1991-96. During his time as head coach, CSF made 11 consecutive postseason appearances, including six trips to the College World Series and a national championship in 2004. Horton also played for the Titans for two years (1975-76), earning all-conference honors as a first baseman during both seasons.

UNDEFEATED: Cal State Fullerton enters the weekend as one of 12 undefeated Division I teams along with North Carolina, Oklahoma, Virginia, Miami, Florida State, VCU, Cal Poly, Creighton, Oregon State, Mississippi State and South Alabama. The Titans' 8-0 start is the best for the program since 2003, when Fullerton opened the year with eight straight wins. Fullerton's eight-game win streak is its longest winning streak since winning nine games from March 25-April 5, 2011.

ROOKIE ARMS: Head coach Rick Vanderhook has a pair of freshman right-handers in his weekend rotation, with Thomas Eshleman getting the nod on Friday nights, followed by Justin Garza (Saturday).

On Feb. 15, 2013, Eshelman (2-0, 0.00) became the first freshman to start a season opener for the Titans since Feb. 5, 1987 when Mark Beck took the mound at Saint Mary's. The rookie didn't disappoint the sellout crowd of 3,508 as CSF edged USC, 3-2. In the win, Eshelman allowed two unearned runs on four hits while striking out six in six innings of work. He followed that performance by tossing five and 2/3 innings shutout innings at then No. 22 TCU last Friday, limiting the Horned Frogs to three hits while striking out eight.

Garza (2-0, 0.68) has surrendered just one earned run in 13 and 1/3 innings on the hill, picking up victories against Nebraska and at TCU last Saturday. The native of Ontario, Calif., has fanned 11, and leads the starting staff by holding opponents to a .146 clip.

AT THE PLATE: Last week, in a three-game sweep of then No. 22 TCU, the Titans outscored the Horned Frogs 20-4 during the three-game series. Cal State Fullerton never trailed in the series, and the Titans have not trailed since the seventh inning in the first game of the doubleheader vs. Nebraska on Feb. 16. 

In addition, the Titans have scored early and often, holding a 15-0 advantage in scoring against opponents in the first (11-0) and second (4-0) innings, respectively.

In addition, CSF has never trailed in 2013 after an inning. Against USC (Feb. 15) and Nebraska (Feb. 16) when the Trojans and Huskers took leads in the top of the frame, the Titans were able to respond to take back the advantage in the bottom of the same inning.

WEEK IN REVIEW: Last week, the Titans finished 4-0, with a midweek win at Pepperdine as well as three-game  sweep at TCU. Chad Wallach (.400, 2 2B, 3 RBI), Michael Lorenzen (.375, 2 2B, 1 3B, 3 RBI) and Matt Chapman (.353, 4 RBI) led the Titans offensively.

The pitching staff surrendered just seven runs (six earned) and held opponents to a .189 average.

OVER THE FENCES: In 2012, the Titans totaled just 10 home runs. After just two weeks in 2013, Fullerton is already half way to that total with five round trippers, including two grand slams.

GOOD TIMING: Cal State Fullerton is currently batting .303 with runners in scoring position, while limiting opponents to a .180 clip with runners in scoring position. The Titans also have had success with their leadoff batter reaching 40.6 percent of the time.

MAKING THE TOP-30: Senior first baseman Carlos Lopez was one of 30 NCAA® baseball student-athletes selected as candidates for the 2013 Senior CLASS Award® in collegiate baseball, it was announced on Feb. 27.

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.

PICKED TO WIN IT: Cal State Fullerton was picked as the favorite to win the 2013 Big West title as selected by the 10 conference head coaches that voted in the Big West Baseball Preseason Coaches Poll, it was released by the league on Jan. 31.

The Titans were voted to defend their Big West title as the program garnered nine of the 10 available first-place votes.

Fullerton, winner of the past three league titles, captured the 2012 league crown with a 17-7 mark, one game ahead of Cal Poly. Fullerton has won 10 conference championships in the Super Regional era (dating back to 1999; 14 years), sharing the titles with Nevada in 2000 and Long Beach State in 2008.

TITANS AND THE BIG WEST: 

Overall, Cal State Fullerton has totaled 26 conference championships dating back to 1975, including 10 in the last 14 years. With last season's title, the Titans made their 34th postseason appearance as well.

Overall, Cal State Fullerton has posted a dominant 672-235-2 (.741) conference record over 38 seasons. Rick Vanderhook, the school's fifth Div. I head coach, won his first Big West crown in 2012, following in the footsteps of his predecessors, Augie Garrido (14 conference championships), Larry Cochell (1), George Horton (7) and Dave Serrano (3).

A further breakdown has the Titans winning three PCAA conference championships (1975-76, 1987), eight straight SCBA titles (1977-84) and 15 while playing under the Big West name (1990-91, 94-95, 1997, 1999-2001, 2004-06, 2008, 2010-12). The Big West absorbed the PCAA records in 1990 upon its formation, giving the Titans 18 total Big West championships and a 499-189 (.725; 30 years) PCAA/Big West Conference record.

WATCH LIST: Michael Lorenzen was one of 75 players named to the initial watch list for the ninth annual National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Stopper of the Year Award, given to the top relief pitcher in NCAA Division I baseball. Lorenzen was one of two players from the Big West Conference named to the list as UC Irvine's Race Parmenter also made the watch list.

LORENZEN PRESEASON HONORS: Michael Lorenzen returns to the diamond after an All-American season in 2012. Lorenzen has received four preseason All-American selections entering 2013. He was projected as the National Player of The Year by Collegiate Baseball, and was named to the 13th annual NCBWA Preseason All-America second team as well as the Perfect Game Preseason College All-American second team. Most recently, he was selected to the 2013 Baseball America Preseason All-America second team.

Lorenzen, who garnered All-American honors as well as Big West Conference First Team accolades in 2012, developed into one of the nation's top two-way players, starting 57 games in center field while making 20 appearances on the mound. Lorenzen did not allow a run in 18 of his 20 appearances. He garnered double first-team All-Big West Conference honors as a utility player on offense, and as a closer on the pitching staff. His 16 saves in 17 chances tied him for second in program history with Nick Ramirez (2011) behind only Scott Wright's school record of 22 saves in 1984.

HOME GROWN: Thirty-four men on the Titans' 35-man roster list their hometown within the great State of California. The lone Titan not from the Golden State comes from, where else? Nebraska. Sophomore southpaw Tyler Peitzmeier is from Yutan, Neb., a city about 25 miles east of the Mecca of college baseball, Omaha.

STRENGTH OF SCHEDULE: In 2013, the Titans will play seven opponents that advanced to the 2012 Division I Baseball tournament (Oral Roberts, Pepperdine, Texas A&M, San Diego) three opponents that advanced to the super regionals (Oregon, TCU) and one opponent that advanced to the College World Series (UCLA)…CSF will play four opponents that finished 2012 ranked in Baseball America's Top-25 (No. 5 UCLA, No. 11 Oregon, No. 16 TCU, No. 19 Texas A&M)…six of Fullerton's opponents were ranked in the top-50 of the NCAA's final top-50  2012 RPI ratings (No. 1 UCLA, No. 6 Oregon, No. 16 Texas A&M, No. 29 Pepperdine, No. 31 TCU, No. 36 San Diego )...four of CSF's opponents were also conference champions in 2012: Pepperdine (West Coast), TCU (co-Mountain West), Oral Roberts (Summit), UCLA (Pac-12).

CONTINUED EXCELLENCE: The Titans have won 30-plus games in each of its 38 seasons at the Div. I level and are tied for third in the nation when it comes to most consecutive 30-win campaigns. The only Titan team to win as few as 30 games was the 1989 squad skippered by Larry Cochell. The Titans have never had a losing season at the Div. I level. Fullerton comes in tied for third with Clemson and behind Arizona State and Miami. Pepperdine, which was ranked No. 5, saw its 32-year streak ended in 2010.

Consecutive 30+ win seasons (active)

1. Arizona State 50

2. Miami, Fla. 42

3. Cal State Fullerton 38

Clemson 38

THE ROOKIES: Cal State Fullerton's 2012 class was ranked the No. 23 recruiting class in the nation, according to Baseball America's annual evaluation.

Under second-year head coach Rick Vanderhook and recruiting coordinator Mike Kirby, the Titans have welcomed 13 freshmen to Goodwin Field. Fullerton's 2012 class ranks second amongst Big West Conference opponents as the Gauchos were ranked 12th with 23 newcomers including 19 freshmen and four junior college transfers.  The Titans and Gauchos were the only BWC programs to make the top 25.  

DRAFT DODGERS: Nine Titans on the current roster have been selected previously in the MLB First-Year Players draft. Carlos Lopez is the only Titan that has been drafted while at Fullerton. He was selected as a redshirt his sophomore year (based on his age), but declined the offer made by the Detroit Tigers in 2010.

TITANS IN THE DRAFT (by round):

J.D. Davis 2011 5th round Tampa Bay Rays

Michael Lorenzen 2010 7th round Tampa Bay Rays

Austin Diemer 2011 26th round Cleveland Indians

Justin Garza 2012 26th round Cleveland Indians

Jake Jefferies 2012 34th round Washington Nationals

Carlos Lopez 2010 37th round Detroit Tigers

Anthony Hutting 2009 38th round Texas Rangers

David Olmedo-Barrera 2012 40th round Oakland Athletics

Chad Wallach 2010 43rd round Los Angeles Dodgers

TOP 50 FRESHMAN: Ontario, Calif., native Justin Garza was ranked ninth by Baseball America in the publication's evaluation of the top 50 freshmen in college baseball released in early February. 

TOP 50 SOPHOMORES: Matt Chapman, 2012 Big West Freshman of the Year, was ranked 18th by Baseball America in the publication's evaluation of the top 50 sophomores in college baseball released in early February. Chapman was also rated by Baseball America as the No. 1 prospect in the Big West Conference for the 2014 MLB Draft. J.D. Davis was considered the fifth-best prospect in the Big West for the 2014 draft.

TOP 50 JUNIORS: All-American Michael Lorenzen was ranked 19th by Baseball America in the publication's evaluation of the top 50 juniors in college baseball released in early February. Lorenzen was also rated by Baseball America as the No. 1 prospect in the Big West Conference for the 2013 draft.

TOP 50 SENIORS: Senior shortstop Richy Pedroza was ranked 45th by Baseball America in the publication's evaluation of the top 50 seniors in college baseball released in early February. Pedroza led the Titans batting .324 in 2012.

FAMILY AFFAIR: The Titans have six players on the 2013 roster that have had family members play for Fullerton in the past:

•  Outfielder Anthony Hutting is the cousin of former Titan star and major league outfielder Aaron Rowand (.345, 23 HR, 121 RBI from 1996-98).

•  Infielder Richy Pedroza's older brother, Sergio, was a national champion outfielder for the Titans (.328, 27 HR, 121 RBI from 2003-05). 

• Outfielder Austin Kingsolver's father, Kurt, was a national champion catcher in 1979 (.291, 5 HR, 30 RBI in 1979) and was a teammate of College Baseball Hall of Famer Tim Wallach. 

• Catcher Chad Wallach's father, Tim Wallach (.392, 39 HR, 182 RBI), was a national champion, a Golden Spikes Award winner, and a first-round draft pick in 1979. Chad's older brother, and Tim's eldest son, Matt, was also a Titan in 2005 (.255, 5 HR, 28 RBI in 2007) and played first base like his father. Tim is currently entering his third year as the third base coach with the Los Angeles Dodgers.

• Pitcher Dave Birosak's brother, Dustin (0-0, 2.89 ERA), was a relief pitcher for the 2007 Titans.

• And to top it all off… Head Coach Rick Vanderhook has had two nephews, Russ (.500, 0 HR, 0 RBI in 1999) and Cory (.304, 1 HR, 17 RBI in 2006) play in a Titan uniform. Coach Vanderhook, himself, was a player in 1983 and 1984. Cory is currently serving as an administrative assistant.

• Freshman right-hander Joe Navilhon's father (Larry) played at Cal State Fullerton from 1979-1980.

• First baseman Carlos Lopez and right-handed pitcher Michael Lopez are of no relation.

TITANS IN THE BIG LEAGUES: The Titans have had 52 former players ascend to the major leagues since their first products, Dan Whitmer and Tim Wallach, got there in 1980. Erik Komatsu got the call in 2012, taking last year's totals to nine: David Cooper (Toronto), Reed Johnson (Chicago Cubs/Atlanta), Erik Komatsu (St. Louis/Minnesota), Mark Kotsay (San Diego), Brett Pill (San Francisco), Kurt Suzuki (Oakland/Washington), Justin Turner (New York Mets), Vinnie Pestano (Cleveland) and Ricky Romero (Toronto). For the second consecutive year, Romero was named one of 30 nominees for the 2012 Roberto Clemente Award as announced by Major League Baseball. Pestano was named this year's recipient of the Bob Feller Man of the Year Award, as announced by the Cleveland chapter of the Baseball Writers' Association of America. The distinction is bestowed upon the organization's player or executive who consistently performs at the top of his game.