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Devils Open 2007 College World Series Saturday
Courtesy: Sun Devil Athletics
Release: 06/15/2007
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Courtesy: Sun Devil Athletics
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June 15, 2007

OMAHA, Neb. -

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Leading Off:

The 2007 Pac-10 Champion Arizona State Sun Devils will make their 20th College World Series appearance, thanks to their sweep of Mississippi in the Tempe Super Regional. ASU came from behind to win 4-3 in game one, then clinched a CWS berth with a 7-1 win in game two. The Devils will open the College World Series in Omaha, Nebraska against the UC Irvine Anteaters, who are making their first ever College World Series appearance.

 

The College World Series:

Arizona State has a long history with many of the 2007 College World Series participants. They have faced UC Irvine, their first opponent, 11 times, winning seven of them. They have not faced the Anteaters since 2003 when ASU won 11-1 in Tempe. They have faced the other seven participating teams a total of 124 times, going 78-46. They went 3-1 against Oregon State this season, the only team they faced during the regular season.

 

National Seed:

Arizona State earned a national top eight seed for the third time since the NCAA began using the current format in 1999. The #5 seed this year is the highest ever for the Sun Devils. They were the #7 national seed in both 2000 and 2004.

 

Lights, Camera, Action:

ESPN will televise every game of the 2007 College World Series.

 

Facing Tough Competition:

During the regular season, ASU had 10 losses against teams who have been ranked at some point this season, including one to Vanderbilt, who was the #1 overall seed in the NCAA Tournament. The Sun Devils also have 28 wins against teams that have been ranked at some point this year, including a three-game sweep at Oregon State, who has been ranked as high as 2nd. Also, seven of the losses have been by one run, including an extra inning game with Vanderbilt. ASU faced eight teams that advanced to the 2007 NCAA Tournament, including three teams that advanced to Super Regionals. ASU went 7-1 against the Super Regionals teams they faced in 2007.

 

On To Omaha:

Arizona State will make their 20th all-time appearance in the College World Series, fourth most in NCAA history. It is the third appearance for head coach Pat Murphy, and the second in the past three years. The Devils last went to Omaha in 2005, when they finished third in the country. ASU has 58 all-time College World Series victories, third most in history. The five national championships are also good for third.

 

Pac-10 Champions:

With their win against Arizona on May 23, the Sun Devils clinched the Pac-10 Conference championship for the first time since 2000, when they shared it with UCLA and Stanford. The outright conference crown is the first for Arizona State since 1993. It is the second Pac-10 title for head coach Pat Murphy and the seventh overall in school history. ASU also won 11 WAC titles from 1963 to 1978. The 19 conference wins ties the record for most wins since the divisions merged in 1999. Stanford (1999) and Oregon State (2005) each won 19 as well.

 

Pac-10 Player of the Year:

Sophomore 1B Brett Wallace, who currently leads the Pac-10 in all three Triple Crown categories, was named the 2007 Pac-10 Player of the Year. Wallace becomes the 12th Sun Devil to earn the honor, and the first since Dustin Pedroia shared the award in 2003.

 

Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year:

Junior 2B Eric Sogard was named the 2007 Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year, the first Sun Devil to ever win the award. Sogard, who is also having an outstanding season at the plate, has helped to solidify one of the top defenses in the nation.

 

Pac-10 Coach of the Year:

Head Coach Pat Murphy has been named the 2007 Pac-10 Coach of the Year, the second time in his tenure at ASU that he has earned the award. Murphy also won the award in 2000. He has led the Sun Devils to a #5 National Seed, the College World Series, a Pac-10 title and has won more than 40 games for the 28th time in school history.

 

All Pac-10 Honors:

Arizona State landed seven members on the All Pac-10 team and an additional four Honorable Mentions. Eric Sogard, Ike Davis and Petey Paramore each earned All-Conference honors for the second straight year. They were joined by teammates Brett Wallace, Mike Leake, Josh Satow and Kiel Roling. Brian Flores, Andrew Romine, Matt Spencer and Tim Smith were each Honorable Mentions. The seven honorees ties the school record for most All-Conference selections set in 1982. ASU led the conference with their seven players on the team.

 

Academic All Pac-10 Honors:

Arizona State had three student-athletes garner Academic All-Pac-10 honors, including two players make the First Team. Petey Paramore and Ryan Sontag were both First Team members, while Joe Persichina was an Honorable Mention. It is the third straight year Persichina has been honored by the Pac-10 for his academics.

 

All-Americans:

The 2007 Sun Devils have been well represented on many All-American lists. 1B Brett Wallace has been named a First Team All-American by both Collegiate Baseball and Rivals.com. He was also named the District IX Player of the Year by the NCBWA. LHP Josh Satow was named a Second Team All-American by Collegiate Baseball, while OF Ike Davis, 2B Eric Sogard and RHP Mike Leake were all named Third Team All-Americans. Leake was also named a Freshmen All-American by Collegiate Baseball. Sogard also earned Second Team All-American honors from Rivals.com.

 

Century Mark:

With his three hits against Nebraska on June 3, Brett Wallace topped the 100-hit mark for the season, becoming the 24th all-time Sun Devil to hit the mark. He has 107 hits so far this season, tying him with Chris Bando for 13th most in school history. Paul Lo Duca holds the school record for hits in a season with 129 in 1993.

 

40 Time:

The Sun Devils have reached the 40-win plateau for the 28th time in school history and the sixth time under head coach Pat Murphy. Arizona State baseball has topped the 30-win mark for the 45th consecutive season and 47th season overall in school history. Murphy has never failed to win at least 30 games as a Division I head coach. ASU has the longest 30-win season streak in the nation. Florida State has hit the mark 43 straight times, including 2007.

 

Home Sweet Home:

The loss to Arizona in the regular season finale ended ASU's 22-game home winning streak at Winkles Field-Packard Stadium at Brock Ballpark. The Devils finished the regular season 30-3 at home, with the other two losses coming to Long Beach State. The school record for consecutive home wins is 33, set from 1976 to 1977. Arizona State won all five postseason games they played in Tempe, including two where they were the designated road team.

 

Hosting Time:

2007 marked the 17th time Arizona State hosted an NCAA Regional, and the fifth time since 2000. It's the 31st overall postseason appearance and eighth in a row for the Devils. ASU last hosted a regional in 2005, when they advanced to the College World Series. This is the third time since 2000 Packard Stadium hosted, as the regionals were played there in 2000 and 2005. Hohokam Park in Mesa hosted the 2002 regional, while Tempe Diablo was the site in 2003. This is the first time they have ever hosted a Super Regional.

 

Lights Out Leake:

Mike Leake picked up his 13th win of the season in the Regional against UC Riverside, extending his Pac-10 lead. His 13 wins so far put him in a tie for third place for the most wins by a freshman in school history. Kendall Carter set the mark in 1981, winning 19 games for the National Champs. Skip Hancock won 13 in 1964, as did Ken Jones in 1978.

 

Wally USA:

Sophomore 1B Brett Wallace was named one of the first 11 members of the 2007 USA Baseball National Team. He was also a semi-finalist for the Wallace Award, the Howser Award and the Golden Spikes Award.

 

Double Digit Delight:

With his win against Monmouth in the Regional, junior lefty Brian Flores picked up his 10th win of the year, joining Josh Satow and Mike Leake as ten-game winners. ASU last had three 10-game winners in 1990, when Sean Rees (13-3), Todd Douma (16-3) and Kip Yaughn (11-5) all accomplished the feat. Leake is currently 13-1 while Satow is 13-3 and Flores is 11-1.

 

Save Me!:

With another save against Nebraska in the Regional, freshman righty Jason Jarvis upped his ASU freshman record saves total to 11. Mitch Dean (1976) and Zechry Zinicola (2004), who each recorded eight during their rookie years, previously held the record. Jarvis was not declared eligible to participate until Pac-10 play began in late March.

 

O Captain! My Captain!:

Head coach Pat Murphy named junior OF Rocky Laguna the team captain, prior to the season. This is the first time in the 13 years that Murphy has been at ASU that he has named a team captain. Laguna is a redshirt junior who is in his fourth year with the program. The Yuma, Ariz. product is a key reserve, providing a steady glove in the outfield and an experienced bat.

 

Consistency In The New Millennium:

Since the 2000 season, Pat Murphy and the Arizona State Sun Devils have the highest winning percentage in the Pac-10, and the 13th highest winning percentage in the nation. ASU is 340-147-2 since 2000, a winning percentage of .697. Stanford is the next highest Pac-10 club, with a 339-161 record this millennium, a winning percentage of .678.

 

Quick Hits:

Petey Paramore has been a walks machine this season. Paramore has drawn 50 walks this year, tops in the conference. He was third on the team last season with 34 free passes...Andrew Romine has 16 bunt singles this season...The Challenge at Chase marked the third time in 2007 ASU has played in a Major League facility. They played at Minute Maid Park, home of the Houston Astros and at Surprise Stadium, Spring Training home of the Texas Rangers and Kansas City Royals...Sophomore LHP Jeff Urlaub underwent successful Tommy John surgery June 5. His expected recovery time is 10-16 months.

 

Exclusive Company:

Arizona State Head Coach Pat Murphy achieved a coaching milestone against USC, collecting his 500th victory as skipper of the Sun Devils. Earlier this season, Murphy won his 800th career Division I game as well as his 900th career win in his coaching career. With the win over UC Riverside in the Tempe Regional, Murphy moved past Bobby Winkles, ASU's first head coach, for the second most wins in school history. Murphy now has 528 victories at ASU in his 13 seasons, four more than Winkles, who led the Sun Devils for 13 years. Jim Brock amassed 1,100 victories in his 23 years at the helm of Arizona State baseball.

 

Sogey and ESPN.com:

Eric Sogard got the opportunity to participate in an ESPN.com chat prior to the Super Regionals with Ole Miss. Sogard chatted with ESPN.com visitors and answered questions about the team, the tournament and the 2007 MLB Draft.

 

Honoring Pat Tillman:

Former ASU football player and American Hero Pat Tillman had strong ties to the ASU Baseball program. In addition to his brother Kevin playing for ASU, Pat became extremely close with head coach Pat Murphy. Murphy wears jersey #42 in honor of Tillman, and in January Murph donated $100,000 to the baseball program for the construction of the Tillman Training Room, a room that will honor both Pat and Kevin and their commitment to both Arizona State University and the United States of America. The team wears a memorial "PT*42" patch on their jerseys in honor of Pat. Also, senior infielder Joe Persichina is a Tillman Scholar. A Tillman Scholar is a student that must possess passion, leadership abilities and an entrepreneurial spirit.  Tillman Scholars commit to a two-semester experience that begins each fall.

 

You Look Mahvelous!:

The Sun Devils got a surprise during a practice before the season, as actor/comedian Billy Crystal took a break from his performances at Gammage to practice with the Devils. Crystal donned the Maroon and Gold, complete with a jersey with his name and #10 on the back, and took part in drills and batting practice. After practice, he invited the coaching staff to his show, "700 Sundays" at Gammage Auditorium.

 

Dr. Jim Brock, Hall of Famer:

Former Sun Devils head coach Jim Brock has been named a 2007 College Baseball Hall of Fame inductee. Brock, who coached at ASU from 1972 until his death in 1994, will become the third Sun Devil in the Hall of Fame, joining fellow coach Bobby Winkles and former Golden Spikes Award winner Bob Horner. Brock led Arizona State to national championships in 1977 and 1981.

 

Many Happy Returns:

Seven players on the Sun Devils will be making a return trip to Omaha. Andrew Romine, Eric Sogard, Josh Satow, Greg Bordes, Rocky Laguna and Joe Persichina were all members of the 2005 ASU squad that finished third in the country. Matt Spencer played in the College World Series last year, advancing to the championship series with North Carolina. In addition, managers Mikel Moreno and Michael Collins were both members of the 1998 ASU team that lost to USC in the championship game of the 1998 CWS. Assistant head coach Tim Esmay played in the 1987 College World Series with ASU and coached in the CWS three times (1988, 1994, 2005) with the Devils. Assistant coach Turtle Thomas has coached in Omaha 13 previous times with Clemson, Miami and LSU. He won titles with Miami in 1999 and LSU in 2000.

 

Feeling The Draft:

Eight Sun Devils were taken in the 2007 Major League Baseball Draft, including four players selected in the first ten rounds. Eric Sogard was taken by the San Diego Padres in the second round after not having been drafted coming out of high school. Tim Smith, Scott Mueller and Brian Flores each became draftees for the third time in their careers.

            Player                            Round       Team                 Overall

            Eric Sogard                2nd          Padres             81st

          Matt Spencer             3rd          Phillies             113th

          Andrew Romine           5th          Angels             178th

          Tim Smith                  7th          Rangers           230th

          Brian Flores                13th         Devil Rays        395th

          Scott Mueller              21st         Orioles             639th

          Josh Satow                28th         Mariners           855th

          Mike Jones                 42nd        White Sox        1,265th

 

2007 ASU Baseball Team Award Winners:

Arizona State Baseball held their 23rd annual Awards banquet on May 29, where they announced the winners of the 2007 team awards. The winners were:

Mr. Fireman....................................... Mike Leake

Jim Henderson Courage Award............ Kiel Roling

Casey Myers Academic Award.............. Petey Paramore

Phill Lowery Comeback Player............. Tim Smith

Alvin Davis Leadership Award.............. Rocky Laguna

Developmental MVP............................ Joe Van Meter

Newcomer of the Year......................... Brian Flores & Matt Spencer

Outstanding Offensive Player.............. Brett Wallace

Outstanding Defensive Player............. Petey Paramore & Andrew Romine

Pitcher of the Year.............................. Josh Satow

The Tillman........................................ Eric Sogard

Jim Brock - Mr. Sun Devil Award........... Ike Davis

Bobby Winkles Award......................... Raoul Torrez

On Deck Circle MVP............................. Brett Wallace

 

Did You Know:

2007 Pac-10 Coach of the Year Pat Murphy is the only head coach on the 2007 NCAA Baseball Tournament Committee. Murphy flew to Indianapolis immediately following the May 25th game against Arizona and returned to Tempe on Monday the 28th. He is on the committee for the next three years...four members of the Sun Devils have played in the Junior College World Series. CJ Retherford, Dustin Brader and Scott Mueller all played for South Montain when they advanced in 2005. Brian Flores won the Junior College World Series with New Mexico Junior College in 2005.

 

"It's wonderful for our student-athletes to get a chance to experience Omaha because it is in my mind the greatest championship venue there is. It's a wonderful environment and it's what amateur sports are all about. I'm happy for our guys and our staff."- Head Coach Pat Murphy

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