It's Time to Play Ball: Titans Begin Their 35th Div. I Baseball Season Friday Night

Feb. 18, 2009

PLAY BALL! Cal State Fullerton is entering its 35th season at the Div. I level, and second year under Head Coach Dave Serrano. Last year, the Titans (41-22) missed Omaha by two wins and look to erase the memory of the disappointing Super Regional sweep with a returning core of experienced ball players and a line-up full of familiar faces. The Titans were co-champions of the Big West Conference, sharing the title with Long Beach State after a 16-8 record. The Titans were Fullerton Regional champions working their way out of the losers bracket to advance to the Super Regionals.

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THIS WEEK:
Fri., Feb. 20, vs. TCU (Goodwin Field), 7 p.m., (WEB, GT, BWTV)
Sat., Feb. 21, vs. TCU (Goodwin Field), 6 p.m., (WEB, GT, BWTV)
Sun., Feb. 22, vs. TCU (Goodwin Field), 1 p.m., (WEB, GT, BWTV)

GT = Follow the game via Gametracker WEB = Listen for free on fullertontitans.com BWTV - Video on BigWest.tv

PROBABLE PITCHING MATCH-UPS:
Friday:
CSF: RHP, Daniel Renken, (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
TCU: RHP, Tyler Lockwood, (0-0, 0.00 ERA)

Saturday:
CSF: Kyle Witten, (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
TCU: RHP, Sean Hoelscher, (0-0, 0.00 ERA)

Sunday:
CSF: RHP, Tyler Pill, (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
TCU: RHP, Kyle Winkler, (0-0, 0.00 ERA)

PROBABLE OPENING DAY LINEUP:
Gary Brown, 3B
Jeff Newman, LF
Christian Colon, SS
Jared Clark, 1B
Josh Fellhauer, CF
Khris Davis, RF
Nick Ramirez, DH
Dustin Garneau, C
Joe Scott, 2B

TRACKING THE GAME: Follow the Titans all year long via your web browser with CBS College Sports' GameTracker. Go to the bottom of fullertontitans.com or go to the baseball schedule page to link to GameTracker.

AUDIO BROADCASTS: Audio broadcasts of all Titan baseball games will be brought to you live on fullertontitans.com. Go to the home page and click the banner with the microphone on the right hand side...pick your game and that's it. You are there!

VIDEO WEBCASTS: Go to BigWest.tv to sign for a subscription to see selected Cal State Fullerton and Big West games live on your computer.

TITANS VERSUS THE HORNED FROGS: Cal State Fullerton is 6-1 all-time against TCU dating back to the 1987 season. Last year, the Titans won the season-opening series 2-1 (Feb. 22-24 at TCU) by scores of 11-5, 2-4, and 7-4. The last time the Horned Frogs were in Fullerton in 1987, the Titans swept the series at Amerige Park. This is TCU's first time at Goodwin Field. The two programs met once in postseason play in 1994, competing in the Stillwater Regional hosted by Oklahoma State. The Titans beat the Horned Frogs 4-1 in their second game of the tourney en route to a Regional championship and another trip to Omaha.

FOR STARTERS: Cal State Fullerton is 19-15 all-time in season openers, 16-4 in season openers at home, and 5-2 in season openers at Goodwin Field.

MORE ON SEASON OPENERS: TCU is Cal State Fullerton's 15th opening day opponent in the history of the baseball program at the Div. I level. Out of the 34 previous season openers, Stanford has been Fullerton's first opponent 15 times. This year the Horned Frogs will join Cal State Northridge, Cal Poly Pomona, and St. Mary's as the only other teams to play Fullerton more than once on opening day.

FIRST TO PRACTICE: Cal State Fullerton has set out in 2009 to be the "First to Practice, Last to Play," taking the field just after midnight on Feb. 1 - the first official day of practice. 200-plus die-hard family, friends and fans, battled the cool, damp air to watch the `09 squad take batting practice, then play in a nine-inning scrimmage that finished at exactly 4:00 a.m.

LAST TO PLAY: The Titans have been one of the two final teams to be standing at season's end five times at the Div. I level, and have walked away with the national championship four times over four decades (1979, 1984, 1995, 2004). The Titans were the College World Series runners-up in 1992 after losing to Pepperdine, 3-2 in the championship game.

STRENGTH OF SCHEULE: According to Boydsword.com, the Titans have the sixth-toughest strength of schedule in the nation behind UCLA (1), Stanford (2), Cal (3), Washington (4) and Oregon (5). The Titans' non-conference slate ranks No. 2 behind UCLA.

PRESEASON ALL-AMERICANS: Cal State Fullerton's Josh Fellhauer (Jr., Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.) and Christian Colon (Soph., Corona, Calif.) have been named preseason All-Americans by Collegiate Baseball and Baseball America, respectively. Both were listed as third-team selections.

THE GOLDEN SPIKES WATCH LIST: Junior Josh Fellhauer (Jr., Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.) was named to USA Baseball's initial watch list for the 2009 Golden Spikes Award. The outfielder's abilities are well known to USA Baseball as he spent last summer with the gold medal-winning Team USA at the FISU World Championships. Former Titans Tim Wallach (1979), Phil Nevin (1992) and Mark Kotsay (1995) are previous winners of the national player of the year award.

TRIO OF TITANS BEING WATCHED: Cal State Fullerton's Jared Clark (Sr., Castaic, Calif.), Josh Fellhauer (Jr., Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.) and Christian Colon (Soph., Corona, Calif.) find themselves on the initial Brooks Wallace Award watch list. The award is presented each year by the Lubbock-based organization to the nation's top college baseball player. Former Titan Kurt Suzuki was the first Wallace Award recipient back in 2004 and more recently, Titan hurler Wes Roemer was a finalist for the honor back in 2006. The Titan trio's performance this past summer with Team USA, paired with their solid 2008 collegiate season statistics no doubt contributed to their qualification for the preseason inclusion.

MY THREE SONS: The Titans have 3 players who have had fathers (one step-father) play in the Cal State Fullerton baseball program over the years. Fifth-year senior Jared Clark's (Sr., Castaic, Calif.) step-dad, Rex Ives, was a Titan early on in 1976-77. Tony Harkey's (Soph., Chino Hills, Calif.) father, Mike, was a first-round draft pick out of Fullerton in 1987 and played in the program for three seasons. Harkey went on to a big-league career, and is now the New York Yankees bullpen coach. Freshman Austin Kingsolver's (Fr., Dana Point, Calif.) dad played for Fullerton with the national championship squad in 1979.

WINNINGEST TEAMS OF THE 2000s: The Titans are listed in the 2008 NCAA record book as being the 15th winningest program since 2000 (by winning percentage) and 11th in total wins. Coming into the 2009 season, the Titans were 395-179 (.688) in the nine years of the new century.

TITAN TIDBITS:
&\#149; The Titans were 27-10 at home in 2008.
&\#149; The Titans were 13-3 on Fridays, 4-12 on Saturdays and 12-2 on Sundays in 2008.
&\#149; Fullerton's weekend rotation will consist of a returning sophomore, a junior transfer and a freshman...all right handers after losing a junior and senior that combined for a 23-6 record and 214.2 innings.
&\#149; The Titans welcome 15 newcomers including nine freshman, two sophomores, and three juniors.
&\#149; Freshman Carlos Lopez (Northridge, Calif., Crespi HS) will be out for the entire 2009 season with a knee injury sustained in the fall.
&\#149; Cal State Fullerton is celebrating anniversaries for three of its four national championship baseball teams. It is the 30th anniversary of the 1979 champs, the 25th for the 1984 squad and the 5th for the 2004 squad. A pre-game ceremony is scheduled to precede Sunday's 1:00 game.
&\#149; Cal State Fullerton has won 23 conference titles, four national championships, and has appeared in 30 NCAA postseasons (including 17 straight) in 34 seasons at the Div. I level (since 1975).