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5/9/2017

BIg West Conference Baseball Release - Week 13

BIG WEST TID BITS


• League-leading No. 8 Long Beach State (15-3) takes a break from Big West action with a trip to the Midwest to battle Minnesota in a three-game series. Second place No. 14 Cal State Fullerton (10-5) welcomes UC Santa Barbara (6-9) to Goodwin Field for a weekend series. Friday’s showdown is slated to be nationally televised on ESPNU, while Saturday’s contest will broadcast live on FOX Prime Ticket.  First pitch on Friday is set for 6:00 p.m. and Saturday’s will be tossed at 7:00 p.m.

The third and fourth place teams, Cal Poly (9-6) and CSUN (10-8), square off at Baggett Stadium in San Luis Obispo, Calif.  Other Big West series taking place this weekend are UC Riverside at UC Davis and UC Irvine at Hawai’i.

• UC Santa Barbara opened its series versus UC Davis with a 6-3 win over the Aggies, handing Head Coach Andrew Checketts his 200th career win. Checketts (200-131-3) becomes the fourth UCSB coach ever to reach the 200-victory mark, and is the second-fastest in program history to achieve the feat behind Al Ferrer.

• On Sunday, both Cal State Fullerton Head Coach Rick Vanderhook and Long Beach State Head Coach Troy Buckley earned their 100th Big West Conference victory. The Titans defeated Hawai’i, 6-2, to clinch Vanderhook’s milestone and the Dirtbags downed Cal Poly, 5-2, for Buckley’s 100th career conference win.

• No. 8 Long Beach State opened its three-game series against Cal Poly last week with a 3-0 shutout victory to up the Dirtbags season total to nine shutouts. They are currently tied for first in the nation with three other teams.  In 2016, the Dirtbags pitching staff only recorded five shutouts.

Along with their impressive shutout count, the Dirtbags are sporting a 3.09 earned run average to rank ninth in the country.  They are led by senior Dave Smith, who has allowed just 11 earned runs in 54.0 innings for a league-leading 1.83 ERA.

• The Big West Conference has three of the nation’s top 5 teams for walks allowed per nine innings.  Long Beach State is first at 2.25 with Cal State Fullerton sitting in third place with a 2.29 mark. By the slimmest of margins, Hawai’i is in fourth as it allows just 2.30 walks per nine innings.

Individually, a Long Beach State duo of Dave Smith (.83) and Darren McCaughan (1.02) sit fifth and 15th. 

• A pair  of teams are showcasing Top 25 defenses as Cal State Fullerton ranks 14th in the country at .980.  The Titans are followed by Long Beach State in 21st place with a .979 mark.

• It was announced last week, that Cal State Fullerton pitching coach Blake Hawksworth has been selected as one of the pitching coaches for USA Baseball’s 2017 17U National Team. Hawksworth will serve as the pitching coach for the stripes side, while Arkansas’ Wes Johnson has been named as the pitching coach for the stars team.

• USA Baseball announced the coaching staff for the 2017 Collegiate National Team and Dave Snow, Troy Buckley (Long Beach State), Rick Vanderhook (Cal State Fullerton) and Larry Lee (Cal Poly) join manager John Savage (UCLA).

 
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