March 17, 2009
Thur., Mar. 19, vs. Oral Roberts (Goodwin Field), 7 p.m.
Fri., Mar. 20, vs. Oral Roberts (Goodwin Field), 7 p.m.
Sat., Mar. 21, vs. Oral Roberts (Goodwin Field), 1 p.m.
PLAY BALL: The Titans (13-3) are back home after a long but highly successful 11-day, 8-game road trip to the south and midwest. They host a 3-game series with Oral Roberts that starts Thursday night and concludes with a rare Saturday afternoon game.
Fullerton moved up to No. 4 in the Baseball America national rankings after a 4-1 week that included a 15-5 win over No. 3-ranked Texas A&M, which remains a notch above Fullerton in the polls after an impressive weekend series win over Baylor.
Oral Roberts comes into town with a 7-2 overall record after being completely rained out last weekend. The Golden Eagles have compiled a .248 team batting average and a 3.38 team ERA, but have not played since Mar. 8 when they beat nationally-ranked Rice, 5-3.
Right-hander Mark Serrano has four of the teams' seven wins on the year out of the bullpen (12 IP, 17 K, 4 BB) and boasts an .098 batting average against him to lead the Eagles' staff. Jerry Sullivan, Thursday night's starter is 2-1 with a 1.74 ERA in 20.2 IP.
Seth Furmanek (.313, 3 HR, 10 RBI) and Juan Martinez (.303, 3 HR, 6 RBI) are leading the offense, and are the only two ORU everyday hitters with averages above .300.
PROBABLE PITCHING ROTATION:
CSF: RHP, Daniel Renken (3-0, 2.38 ERA)
ORU: RHP, Jerry Sullivan (2-1, 1.74 ERA)
CSF: RHP, Kyle Witten (2-1, 4.98 ERA)
CSF: RHP, Tyler Pill (3-0, 4.98 ERA)
LISTEN TO THE ACTION: Listen to all Cal State Fullerton baseball games at fullertontitans.com. Click the banner on the right side of the home page that has the microphone on it, and within a few clicks you will be hearing the action as it happens.
WATCH THE ACTION: For most home games you can watch the live video stream of the game at BigWest.tv. Go to BigWest.otv and get your subscription as the Titans head into Big West Conference play, where most every game will be broadcast. This week, Fullerton will be streaming Thursday and Friday's games.Saturday's 1:00 p.m. game with Oral Roberts will not be broadcast due to a scheduling conflict with Titan softball.
TRACK THE ACTION: You can track all of the action on fullertontitans.com with CBS College Sports' Game Tracker. LInks for GameTracker can be found in the schedule portion at the bottom of the home page, or under "schedules" on the baseball page in the floating right sidebar.
TITANS IN THE RANKINGS:
Baseball America: 4
Collegiate Baseball: 5
USA Today: 6 (two 1st place votes)
GOLDEN EAGLES IN THE RANKINGS: Oral Roberts is not recognized on any of the national polls this week.
VERSUS THE GOLDEN EAGLES: Cal State Fullerton and Oral Roberts have met just once in their histories at the Div. I level, with Cal State Fullerton coming out on top, 5-4, against then No. 15 ORU on Mar. 30, 1984. Both were participating in the Riverside Baseball Invitational at UC Riverside. This is the Golden Eagles' first trip to Fullerton.
LAST WEEK: An 8-run ninth inning broke open Tuesday's game in College Station, where the Titans got 21 hits. Khris Davis, whose sixth inning home run put the Titans ahead to stay at 5-4, made it a 9-5 game win a 2-run single. Joe Scott later had a 3-run double that was followed by back-to-back home runs by Gary Brown and Christian Colon.
In Stillwater, the Titans wrapped a pair of wins over Rhode Island around a split with host Oklahoma State. The Titans scored in every inning Friday afternoon for a 17-3 rout of the Rams. Brown and Billy Marcoe each had 3 hits.
Later Friday, the Titans beat the No. 19-ranked Cowboys, 8-4. Tony Harkey drove in four runs and Daniel Renken went five solid innings to improve to 3-0. Nick Ramirez and Michael Morrison finished up as the Titans beat All-American lefthander Andrew Oliver, who lost his first game of the year.
Oklahoma State used the long ball to gain revenge on Saturday, 10-6, and stop the Titans' winning streak at 11 games. Kyle Witten (2-1) took a 6-3 lead into the sixth inning but gave up a pair of two-run homers to Neil Medchill and Tyrone Hanbly. Josh Fellhauer and Ramirez homered for the Titans, who committed four errors leading to four unearned runs and left nine men on base.
On Sunday, the Titans spotted Rhode Island ace Eric Smith a 3-1 lead after one inning and the lefthander made it stand up until the seventh. Tyler Pill's two-run pinch-hit double tied the game and the Titans pushed across the winning run in the eighth on Davis' sacrifice fly. Noe Ramirez (3-0) went seven innings to get the win with Ryan Ackland and Morrison each working one inning of relief.
TEAM OF THE WEEK: The Titans were named Team of the Week by CollegeBaseballInsider.com and CollegeBaseballToday.com on Tuesday after going 4-1 last week with wins over nationally-ranked Texas A&M and Oklahoma State.
LOGGING MILES: The recently concluded road trip took the Titans through, four states (Louisiana, Texas, Oklahoma and Mississippi), four hotels, four airports, and logged them over 4,200 miles (1250 in a bus!) over an 11-day span. Oh yeah, they played eight games too!
TIDBITS FROM THE ROAD TRIP:
&\#149; The Titans finished their 11-day, 8-game road trip to Southern Miss, Texas A&M, and Oklahoma State, 7-1 on Sunday with a 4-3 come-from-behind win against Rhode Island at the OSU Tournament.
&\#149; On the trip, the Titans hit .392 as a team and belted a whopping 17 home runs. Freshman Nick Ramirez hit a team-leading four homers on the trip, with Jared Clark and Josh Fellhauer in tow with three each. Three other had two.
&\#149; The Titans hit .369 with runners on base, .375 with runners in scoring position and .625 with the bases loaded on the road trip.
&\#149; Over the eight games, the Titans out-hit their opponents 120-69 and out-scored them 87-36.
TIDBITS FORM LAST WEEK:
&\#149;Last week (5 games) the team hit .397, hit seven home runs and scored twice as many runs as their opponents (50-25).
&\#149;Josh Fellhauer had a obscene week at the plate going 14-for-21 (.667) with a team-leading pair of home runs and nine RBI. Jared Clark hit .455 (10-for-22) and Gary Brown hit .435 (10-for-23) to join the .400-plus club on the week.
&\#149;Billy Marcoe, making his first two starts of the year this week, went 5-for-8 (.625) at the plate, with an RBI and three runs scored.
&\#149;Tony Harkey made two starts and found his way into six games on the road trip went 5-for-8 with six RBI. He had four in the Titans' 8-4 win over Oklahoma State on Mar. 13.
HITTING DOUBLE DIGITS: The Titans have put up at least 10-hits over the last 10 straight games, including 20-plus on two occasions.
THE CLOSER: Junior Michael Morrison has been about as steady as can be out of the Titans' bullpen since the dreadful opening weekend the Titan staff endured Feb. 20-22. Morrison has now worked 6.2 innings over seven appearances since the opening weekend, and has allowed just two hits while striking out eight without surrendering a run. Despite a run of lopsided wins for the Titans, Morrison has tallied three saves in three chances.