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No. 15 Baseball Takes On No. 24 Oral Roberts In Three-Game Series
Courtesy: Sun Devil Athletics
Release: 04/07/2004
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Courtesy: Sun Devil Athletics
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April 7, 2004

ASU Baseball Links:

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    Probable Pitching Rotation:
    Apr. 8 vs. Oral Roberts, 7 p.m.
    ORU - Dennis Bigley, RHP (5-1, 1.96 ERA)
    ASU - Erik Averill, LHP (2-1, 5.94 ERA)
    

    Apr. 9 vs. Oral Roberts, 7 p.m. ORU - Adam Lesko, RHP (2-1, 2.52 ERA) ASU - Jason Urquidez, RHP (7-2, 2.90 ERA)

    Apr. 10 vs. Oral Roberts, 1 p.m. ORU - TBA ASU - Jeff Mousser, RHP (1-2, 4.12 ERA)

    All-Time Series vs. Oral Roberts: All-Time Record vs. ORU:.............4-0 Last Meeting:........................ASU 5, ORU 4 (2/2/02)

    National Rankings:
    National Polls (April 5, 2004)
    Arizona State (22-9) dropped several spots in all four polls after losing six of the last nine games. ASU is currently ranked No. 15 by Sports Weekly, No. 23 by Baseball America, No. 21 by Collegiate Baseball and No. 13 by the NCBWA. The Sun Devils have now been ranked in the national polls for 88 consecutive weeks and had a streak ended of being in the top 10 in 29 straight polls. Oral Roberts (24-6) is ranked No. 24 in the nation by NCBWA and No. 27 by Collegiate Baseball.

    Media Exposure:
    All three games of the Oral Roberts series will be broadcast on the radio or internet with Tim Healey and Bob Eger calling all the action from Packard Stadium. KDUS 1060 AM will carry all three games and all games are also available on www.TheSunDevils.com. Every game during the 2004 season will also have the statistical GameTracker on www.TheSunDevils.com.

  • Thursday's GameTracker
  • Friday's GameTracker
  • Saturday's GameTracker

    Did You Know?
    The Sun Devils play their last three-game non-conference series this weekend against Oral Roberts... the Devils hold an impressive 19-3 record in non-conference games this season and are 10-1 against ranked opponents... the Sun Devils are 6-2 after a loss this season and 17-5 against teams with records .500 or better... senior Nick Walsh is coming off an impressive weekend in which he went 10-for-14 (.714) against USC... junior RHP Jason Urquidez picked up his Pac-10 leading seventh victory of the year in 8.1 strong innings against USC... junior SS Dustin Pedroia is second in the Pac-10 hitting .411 and leads the league in hits (53), doubles (16) and runs (42).

    What's On Tap:
    The Sun Devil Baseball team (22-9, 3-6 Pac-10) continues their 25-game homestand this weekend with a three-game non-conference series against the Oral Roberts Golden Eagles. The non-conference series against the Golden Eagles will be ASU's final three-game set against a non-conference opponent. Currently 14-7 during the homestand, the Devils have dropped six of their last nine games. ASU is 19-3 against non-conference opponents this season and 10-1 against ranked foes. After the ORU series, the Devils will conclude the homestand with a single game against rival Arizona on Monday (April 12) at 7 p.m. ASU will then return to the road for a Pac-10 series at UCLA and will continue on to play 16 of its last 21 games on the road.

    Recapping Last Week:
    The Sun Devils dropped its third straight Pac-10 home series with a pair of losses to conference foe USC. The Devils opened the series with high hopes, handing Trojan ace Ian Kennedy his first loss of the season in a 10-3 victory. USC rebounded to outscore the Devils 24-8 over the next two games to take the series. USC won 14-5 on Saturday and concluded the series win with a 10-3 victory on Sunday. Senior second baseman Nick Walsh carried a hot bat in the series going 10-for-14 (.714) for the Devils.

    Quick Hits:

    - Of ASU's 31 games this season, 19 have been played against teams that have been ranked or are currently ranked.
    - Junior shortstop Dustin Pedroia has hits in 27 of ASU's 31 games and is hitting .411 with 16 2B, 5 HR and 29 RBI.
    - Freshman relief pitcher Pat Bresnehan is 3-1 with five saves and is second on the team with a 3.10 ERA.
    - Buck leads the Pac-10 with 38 RBI and is second with seven home runs. He is hitting .360 (40-for-111).
    - Pedroia is ninth in the ASU record books with 255 career hits and seventh with a career .385 batting average.
    - Travis Buck became the first Pac-10 player to earn back-to-back Player of the Week honors since 1998.
    - The Devils have been ranked in 88 consecutive national polls dating back to the start of the 2000 season.
    - ASU's head coach Pat Murphy recorded his 700th career victory at the Division I level last Friday.
    - ASU has left 10 or more runners on base in 16 of 31 games this season, including 35 in three games against USC.
    - Senior Nick Walsh was 10-for-14 against USC, raising his batting average 90 points from .278 to .368.

    Pedroia For National Player of the Year:
    Junior shortstop Dustin Pedroia is a leading candidate for Pac-10 and National Player of the Year honors. Through 31 games, Pedroia leads the Sun Devils and is second in the Pac-10 hitting .411 (53-for-129) with 42 runs scored, 16 doubles, five home runs and 29 RBI. He has hits in 27 of ASU's 31 games, including 14 multi-hit affairs and four games with two or more doubles. Pedroia also leads the Pac-10 in runs (42), hits (53), doubles (16), total bases (84) and is third in on-base percentage (.513) and slugging percentage (.651). As a sophomore, Pedroia hit .404 (120-for-297) and was named the Pac-10 Co-Player of the Year. He led the NCAA with 34 doubles, setting the ASU and Pac-10 single-season record and tied for third all-time in the NCAA record books. With 16 doubles this season, Pedroia now has 63 in his career, ranking fifth in the ASU career record books. He also had 255 hits to rank 9th and his career .385 batting average (255-for-662) ranks fifth. He has played and started all 157 games of his Sun Devil career and has recorded at least one hit in 134 games (85%). He has also recorded 82 career multi-hit games and is a .386 career hitter in 57 Pac-10 games (98-for-254). Additionally, the 2003 Collegiate Baseball Defensive Player of the Year has made only 18 errors in 688 total chances in the field for a career .974 FLD%. He was a two-year starter for the USA Baseball National Team and was named to the all-tournament team in the 2003 Pan American Games in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. Here is a look at Pedroia's season/career highlights and statistics:

    - Among the league leaders in hitting (.411, 2nd), hits (53, 1st), runs (42, 1st), doubles (16, 1st) and total bases (84, 1st).
    - Has a pair of 10-game hitting streaks this season and seven career streaks of 10 or more games.
    - Broke a rare 0-for-10 streak by going 4-for-4 with a home run and a career-high five RBI against No. 11 Tulane (3/13).
    - Second on the team with five home runs and has 10 in his career. Entered the season with only five career homers.
    - Has recorded 14 multi-hit games this season and 82 in his career. Has six three-hit games and three four-hit contests.
    - Rated as the No. 28 overall position player by Baseball America for the 2004 MLB Draft.
    - A career .385 (255-for-662) hitter to rank ninth in hits (255) and seventh in batting average in the ASU career record books.
    - Has recorded at least one hit in 135 of 157 career games (85%) and has started every game of his career.
    - Has hit 63 career doubles, ranking fifth in the ASU career record books. With one more double he will move into fourth place.
    - Set the ASU and Pac-10 single-season record with 34 doubles in 2003. Old ASU record was 30 by Chris Bando in 1978.
    - Named the 2003 Pac-10 Co-Player of the Year with Stanford's Ryan Garko and was a first-team All-American.
    - Played for the USA Baseball National Team in 2002 and 2003, leading Team USA to a bronze medal in the Pan Am Games.
    

    Year Avg GP-GS AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO SB-ATT 2002.... .347 58-58 236 51 82 13 2 1 45 24 19 5-9 2003.... .404 68-68 297 83 120 34 3 4 52 36 13 3-7 2004.... .411 31-31 129 42 53 16 0 5 29 25 7 3-5 TOTAL... .385 157-157 662 176 255 63 5 10 126 85 39 11-21

    Pedroia Times Two:
    Junior shortstop Dustin Pedroia is a doubles machine. Through ASU's first 31 games, Pedroia has 16 doubles. He has picked up right where he left off in 2003, setting an ASU and Pac-10 record while leading the NCAA with 34 doubles. In 154 career games, the Woodland, Calif., native has 63 doubles to rank fifth in the ASU record books. He has averaged .40 doubles per game over his career.

    Pedroia Passes Barry Bonds:
    With 255 career hits, junior shortstop Dustin Pedroia has moved into ASU's career top 10 list. He passed Barry Bonds (1983-85), who had 247 during his three years in Tempe. After recording two hits against USC, Pedroia is only six hits away from eight place (Dan Rumsey). The all-time school record is 322 set by Clay Westlake from 1973-76.

    Poll Mechanics:
    After going 1-2 last week against Washington, Arizona State (22-9) continued its recent slide in the national polls. ASU dropped five spots from No. 10 to No. 15 by ESPN/Sports Weekly and nine spots from No. 14 to No. 23 by Baseball America. The Devils are also ranked No. 21 in the recent Collegiate Baseball poll and No. 13 by the NCBWA. ASU had its impressive streak of 29 straight weeks as a top 10 team (at least one poll) ended, but has still been ranked for 88 consecutive weeks dating back to the start of the 2000 season. ASU entered the 2004 season ranked in all four of the national preseason polls (#7 CB, #10 SW, #11 NCBWA, #18 BA). ASU finished the 2003 season with a 54-14 record and earned a consensus top 10 ranking in all four national polls.

    Travis Buck Going For Triple Crown:
    Sophomore right fielder Travis Buck leads ASU in two of the three Triple Crown categories with seven home runs and 38 RBI. He leads the Pac-10 with his 38 RBI and is only eight away from reaching his entire 2003 total of 46. He is also amongst the league leaders in runs scored (35, 4th), doubles (10, 7th), total bases (71, 3rd), slugging percentage (.640, 4th), walks (32, 1st), on-base percentage (.517, 2nd) and home runs (7, 4th). Buck is hitting .360 (40-for-111) with nine multi-hit games and leads the Devils with nine multi-RBI contests. He also leads the team with four outfield assists and is 6-for-6 stealing bases. He was named Pac-10 Player of the Week and the Collegiate Baseball/Louisville Slugger National Player of the Week after going 10-for-12 (.833) with 13 RBI in the three-game series against UConn (2/27-29). The sophomore outfielder is a career .337 (114-for-338) hitter with 11 home runs and 93 runs scored.

    Buck Repeats As Pac-10 Player of the Week:
    After going 5-for-10 with home runs in all three games against East Carolina, Travis Buck earned his second consecutive Pac-10 Player of the Week award. With his third career Pac-10 POW award, he became the 16th conference player to repeat and first since 1998 when Cal's Xavier Nady earned the award in consecutive weeks in 1998 (Apr. 27, May 4). He is the first Sun Devil since Oddibe McDowell in 1984 to earn back-to-back conference honors.

    Five Times The Fun:
    Travis Buck had a string of hitting a home run in five straight games dating back to the Sunday victory over Connecticut (2/29). He is the first Sun Devil to hit homers in five straight since single-season home run record holder Mitch Jones cleared the fences in five straight games during 2000 season against Florida State (2/6), Duke (2/11-13) and LSU (2/18).

    The Last Time ASU Was 3-6 In Pac-10 Play:
    ASU is off to a 3-6 in Pac-10 play, matching two previous starts to league play under 10th year head coach Pat Murphy. Murphy's 1996 and 1997 squads also opened the Pac-10 slate with three wins after nine games. The 1997 squad rebounded to finish the year 16-14 in league play and came within one out of advancing to the College World Series. ASU opened the 1979 and 1988 seasons with 2-7 league marks.

    After 31 Games -- 2003-2004:
    Through 31 games of the 2004 season, the Devils are 22-9 and ranked No. 15 in the nation. Drawing a recent comparison to last season's record-breaking 54-14 team, the 2003 Devils were 29-2 with a national No. 1 ranking (Collegiate Baseball). Dustin Pedroia, who leads the team hitting .411 this season, was hitting .427 (56-for-131) at the same point last year. Junior All-American Jeff Larish has struggled this season hitting .280 with two home runs and 26 RBI. In ASU's first 31 games last season, Larish was hitting .423 (41-for-97) while leading the Pac-10 with 58 RBI and 11 home runs.

    Bresnehan Inching Towards Freshman Saves Record:
    Only 31 games into his ASU career, freshman relief pitcher Pat Bresnehan is on the fast track to break the ASU freshman record for saves in a season. Bresnehan already has five saves to tie for the Pac-10 lead and rank third in the freshman annals. He trails only Mitch Dean (8 in 1976) and Ryan Bradley (6 in 1995). The hard-throwing right-hander is 3-1 with five saves and is second on the team with a 3.10 ERA. He has 30 strikeouts in 29.0 innings.

    Urquidez Returns To Dominating On The Mound:
    Junior right-handed pitcher Jason Urquidez returned to his early-season form last Friday with a victory over USC. Urquidez improved to 7-2 on the season with 8.1 strong innings against the Trojans. He had his bid for a shutout ended when USC scored three runs in the ninth inning. Urquidez leads the Pac-10 with seven wins and through the first nine starts of his ASU career leads the team with a 2.90 ERA and had held opponents to a .225 batting average (4th in the Pac-10). Here is a look at Urquidez's game-by-game breakdown:

    
    Date            Opponent               GS    IP   H   R  ER  BB  SO    2B  3B  HR    WP  BK HBP  DP IBB   Score    W-L  SV    ERA
    Feb 08, 2004    Florida State           *   5.0   6   1   1   3   9     0   0   0     0   0   0   0   0   12-6     1-0   0   1.80
    Feb 14, 2004 vs Utah                    *   6.0   3   0   0   2   7     0   0   0     0   0   0   0   0   11-0     2-0   0   0.82
    Feb 22, 2004 at Rice                    *   9.0   3   1   1   2   7     0   0   0     0   0   0   0   0    3-1     3-0   0   0.90
    Feb 29, 2004    Connecticut             *   3.0   3   1   1   1   1     1   0   1     0   0   0   0   0   18-11    4-0   0   1.17
    Mar 06, 2004    East Carolina           *   7.0   5   4   3   3   4     0   0   2     0   0   1   0   0    6-4     5-0   0   1.80
    Mar 13, 2004    Tulane                  *   5.2   4   1   1   5   5     1   0   0     0   0   0   0   0   11-3     6-0   0   1.77
    Mar 20, 2004    California              *   1.1   4   3   3   2   0     0   0   1     1   0   0   0   0    8-20    6-1   0   2.43
    Mar 26, 2004    Washington              *   4.1   5   5   3   4   6     3   0   1     0   0   0   0   0    1-11    6-2   0   2.83
    Apr 02, 2004    USC                     *   8.1   7   3   3   6   7     1   1   0     0   0   0   0   0   10-3     7-2   0   2.90
    Totals                                  9  49.2  40  19  16  28  46     6   1   5     1   0   1   0   0   80-59    7-2   0   2.90
    

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