#14 CAL STATE FULLERTON AT STANFORD REGIONAL
JUNE 1-5th • SUNKEN DIAMOND
STANFORD, Calif.--- No. 17 Cal State Fullerton is set to make its 39th appearance in the NCAA postseason, as it heads to the Stanford Regional to take on three-seeded BYU in game one of what will hopefully be a very lengthy stay in Stanford for the Titans. Fullerton is joined in the regional by the host Cardinal and fourth-seeded Sacramento State. Game one for the Titans will be Thursday at 1 pm PT out at Sunken Diamond.
Thurs. June 1 (Gm. 2) No. 2 Cal State Fullerton vs. No. 3 BYU (Sunken Diamond) 1 p.m. PT (ESPN3)
Thurs. June 1 (Gm. 1) No. 1 Stanford vs. No. 4 Sacramento State (Sunken Diamond) 6 p.m. PT (ESPN3)
Fri. June 2 (Gm. 3) Loser Game 1 vs. Loser Game 2 (Sunken Diamond) 1 p.m. PT (ESPN3)
Fri. June 2 (Gm. 4) Winner Game 1 vs. Winner Game 2 (Sunken Diamond) 6 p.m. PT (ESPN3)
Sat. June 3 (Gm. 5) Loser Game 4 vs. Winner Game 3 (Sunken Diamond) 1 p.m. PT (ESPN3)
Sat. June 3 (Gm. 6) Winner Game 4 vs. Winner Game 5 (Sunken Diamond) 6 p.m. PT (ESPN3)
Sun. June 4 or 5 (Gm. 7) If Necessary (Game 6 rematch • (Sunken Diamond) 1 p.m. (ESPN3)
CSF vs. BYU • ALL-TIME SERIES
First Year Played/Last Year Played: 1983/2001
Overall Record: 7-4
Current Streak: Won 1
Home Record: 5-1
Road Record: 0-0
Neutral Record: 2-3
Longest Winning Streak: 5 games (3/22/86 to 2/15/01)
Longest Losing Streak: 2 games (3/29/83 to 3/31/83)
Most Runs Scored in a Game: 11 runs (3/31/84)
Most Runs Scored by Opponent: 13 runs, 2x (3/19/86)
Largest Margin of Victory: 10 runs (3/15/96)
Largest Margin of Defeat: 10 runs (3/31/81)
First Year Played/Last Year Played 1979/2017
Overall Record 46-59
Current Streak Lost 1
NCAA Regional Record 1-2
NCAA Super Regional Record 0-2
NCAA College World Series Record 3-7
Overall NCAA Postseason Record 4-11
Home Record 31-23
Road Record 12-29
Neutral Record 3-7
Longest Winning Streak 4 games, 2x (last from 2/27/09 to 6/5/10)
Longest Losing Streak 8 games (2/12/89 to 2/8/92)
Extra Innings 2-6
Most Runs Scored in a Game 13 runs (1/31/85)
Most Runs Scored by Opponent 17 runs (2/2/02)
Largest Margin of Victory 10 runs (1/28/94)
Largest Margin of Defeat 16 runs (2/2/02)
CSF vs. SACRAMENTO STATE • ALL-TIME SERIES
First Year Played/Last Year Played 1997/2002
Overall Record: 16-6
Current Streak: Won 7
Overall Conference Record: 16-5
Big West Tournament Record: 0-1
Home Record: 8-5
Road Record: 8-1
Neutral Record: 0-0
Longest Winning Streak: 7 games (4/9/00 to present)
Longest Losing Streak: 3 games (5/2/99 to 4/8/00)
Extra Innings: 0-2
Most Runs Scored in a Game: 22 runs (4/7/02)
Most Runs Scored by Opponent: 13 runs (5/2/99)
Largest Margin of Victory: 22 runs (4/7/02)
Largest Margin of Defeat: 5 runs, 2x (4/8/00)
• Fullerton has made 39 NCAA appearances in its 43 years at the Div. I level with the exceptions coming in 1985, 1986, 1989 and 1991. Fullerton's 26th CONSECUTIVE postseason appearance bumps them into 2nd place in the nation behind and Florida State (40) for the longest active consecutive streak. Miami did not receive an at large bid to the tournament after finishing 31-27, snapping their 44-year streak of NCAA postseason play – the longest streak in all of Div. I athletics.
• The Titans' all-time NCAA Record is 152-83 (.647) including a 118-54 mark in Regional games, an 18-11 record in the Super Regionals and a 34-29 record at the College World Series.
• The Titans have NEVER gone winless in Regional play. They have gone 0-2 twice in Super Regional action (2008 and 2013) and six times in Omaha (1975, 1982, 1990, 2007, 2009 and 2015).
• Overall it has won 21 Regional titles – including a national best 11 on the road (two each in Fresno and Baton Rouge and one each at USC, Austin, Starkville, Stillwater, South Bend, Tempe and San Diego).
• The Titans NEVER hosted a regional before 2000 but have since hosted 12 at Goodwin Field (10-2). They lost the first (USC, 2000) and won eight in a row from 2003-2010 before being eliminated by Illinois in 2011.
• In the 19-year Super Regional era (4-team Regional format), The Titans have had to travel to a Regional seven times – four of those coming in the last 6 years.
• The Titans and Cardinal have long storied postseason histories, with Fullerton making 17 trips (t-7th) to the College World Series, and Stanford one behind at 16 (10th). Fullerton has played in 172 (4th most in NCAA) Regional and Super Regional Games, Stanford has 142 (9th).
Consecutive trips to the NCAA Postseason
1. Florida State 40
2. Cal State Fullerton 26
TITAN HEAD COACHES IN THE POSTSEASON
Regionals (App) Super Regional (App) CWS (App)
Augie Garrido 40-22 (16) - 20-10 (8)
Larry Cochell 8-0 (2) - 2-4 (2)
George Horton 30-11 (11) 13-4 (7) 12-11 (6)
Dave Serrano 12-4 (4) 3-4 (3) 0-2 (1)
Rick Vanderhook 10-6 (5) 2-3 (2) 0-2 (1)
The Titans will be looking to win their first NCAA Regional on the road since 2007 when Fullerton swept through the San Diego Regional in 2007. The Titans have dropped their last three regionals on the road, going 1-2 at the Eugene Regional in 2012, 2-2 at the Stillwater Regional in 2014 and going 1-2 at the Starkville Regional in 2016.
The Titans have gone to Stanford for Regional play twice (1997 and 2002). The Titans did not face the Cardinal in the 1997 Regional, but lost to them in 2002 in 13 innings, 3-2. Fullerton played Stanford at Goodwin Field to begin the season and have played on "The Farm" as recently as 2016, where the Titans opening up the season against the Cardinal once again that year.
The Stanford Regional will begin earlier than any other regional. In fact, Cal State Fullerton's game vs. BYU on Thursday will be the first game of the 2017 NCAA Postseason. But this will be nothing new for the Titans, as they actually moved their regular season opener up from Friday to Thursday in hopes of avoiding inclement weather. The Cougars can't play on Sunday's due to religious beliefs, hence the reason for the early start date.
A BIT ABOUT THE STANFORD CARDINAL (Stanford, Calif.)
• The Pac 12 Conference produced 2 of the 8 National Seeds in Stanford (8) and Oregon State (1).
• Under Marquess Stanford won back-to-back national championships in 1987 and 1988, becoming one of just four programs to do that in the 63 years of the College World Series.
• This is the 30th Regional appearance for the Cardinal and the first since 2014.
• The Titans are 46-59 all-time again the Cardinal and 4-11 against them in postseason action. They have met up just three times in a Regional (2002, 2010, 2011) with Stanford emerging as the victor in 2002 and 2011.
• The Titans and Cardinal opened the season at Goodwin Field where the Titans took the first two games, 1-0 and 8-1, before dropping the Sunday match-up, 7-6, in 11 innings.
• Offensive Leaders: Matt Winaker (.318, 8 HR, 42 RBI, 39 BB), Daniel Bakst (.317, 2 HR, 33 RBI, 15 2B), Nico Hoerner (.315, 74 H, 33 RBI, 17 2B), Quinn Brody (.302, 8 HR, 47 RBI) and Duke Kinamon (.288, 57 H, 3 HR, 22 RBI, 13-for-15 SB)
Team Pitching: 3.44 ERA, .249 bating average against, and have given up 32 home runs.
• Major Leaguers: 92,most notable: Bob Boone, Steve Buechele, Jack McDowell, Ed Sprague, Mike Mussina, Jeremy Guthry, Ryan Garko, Carlos Quentin, Sam Fuld, Steven Piscotty and Drew Storen.
• BYU's Record: 37-19 (20-7, t-1st in WCC) BYU was the regular season West Coast Conference tri-champions with LMU and Gonzaga.
• BYU is making its 16th NCAA postseason appearance, its first since the 2002 Los Angeles Regional. They are 16-30 all-time in NCAA postseason play, 15-26 in Regional and Super Regional action and 1-4 at the College World Series in two appearances (1968, 1971)
• The Titans and Cougars have met 11 times in their histories, with Fullerton leading the all-time series 7-4. Their first meeting came in 1983, their last came in 2001. There have been no postseason meetings between the two teams. Fullerton has won 6 of the last 7 meetings.
• Common opponents with CSF: San Jose State (0-2), UC Santa Barbara (3-1), Saint Mary's (4-0), San Diego (2-1) and Gonzaga (2-3).
• Team Offense: The Cougars are hitting .324 as a team with 73 home runs, 118 doubles and 33 stolen bases. Seven of their regulars are hitting .322 or better, three players are in double digit home runs.
• Offensive Leaders: Brock Hale (.399, 12 HR, 48 RBI), Brennon Anderson (.345, 6 HR, 39 RBI, 86 H, 22 2B, 8 SB), Bronson Larsen (.344, 16 HR, 62 RBI) and Daniel Schneemann (.325, 77 H, 2 HR, 37 RBI, 10-for-11 SB)
• Team Pitching: 4.2 ERA, 2.86 batting average against. Have given up 28 home runs.
• Pitching Leaders: Hayden Rogers (8-2, 3.80 ERA, 41 K, 85.1 IP), Brady Corless (6-1, 4.91 ERA, 76 K, 80.2 IP), Mason Marshall (3-2, 1.47 ERA, 2 SV, 43 K, 43 IP), Riley Gates (3-1, 1.65 ERA, 3 SV, 38 K, 27.1 IP)
• Major Leaguers: 22, most notably: Jack Morris, Vance Law, Rick Aguilera, Wally Joyner, Cory Snyder and Jeremy Guthrie (also went to Stanford)
• Sacramento State's Record: 32-27 (12-12, 4th in the WAC regular season)
• This is the second time in the NCAA Div. I postseason for the Hornets, the first time since 2014. They previously played in four Div. II Regionals and reached the Div. II College World Series in 1986 and 1988. They went 1-2 at the San Luis Obispo Regional.
• Fullerton holds a 16-6 all-time advantage over Sac State with their last meeting coming in 2002. The Titans have won each of the last 7 meetings and 12 of the last 15. All of the meetings came while Sacramento State was a part of the Big West Conference (1997-2002). The pair met up in the Big West Tournament in 1998 at Goodwin Field where the Hornets defeated the Titans, 6-5. The last Sac State wins came in 2000 when they swept the Titans at Goodwin Field in Big West play.
• Offensive Leaders: Ian Dawkins (.341, 3 HR, 29 RBI, 87 H, 15 SB), Kody Reynolds (.312, 11 HR, 43 RBI), Vinny Esposito (.306, 10 HR, 52 RBI, 11 SB) and James Outman, .258, 11 HR, 52 RBI, 11 SB)
• Pitching Leaders: Parker Brahms (8-3, 3.01 ERA, 59 K, 92.2 IP), Justin Dillon (5-7, 3.12 ERA, 103 K, 106.2 IP), Alex Denton (5-1, 2.10 ERA, 32 K, 34.1 IP), Austin Root (2-0, 2.28 ERA, 37 K, 55.1 IP).
BIG WEST ALL-CONFERENCE AWARDS
Freshman Sahid Valenzuela has been named the Big West Freshman of the Year. He also joins Scott Hurst, Dillon Persinger, Connor Seabold and Brett Conine on the All-Big West Conference First Team. Blake Workman received second team honors while Timmy Richards was an honorable mention.
Fullerton has now won 30-plus games in each of its 43 seasons at the Div. I level. The 30+ win streak will ended for Arizona State this year. It currently has a record of 23-29 with three games left to play in the regular season. It finished 23-32 on the season.
Consecutive 30+ win seasons (active)
1. Miami, Fla. 47
2. Clemson 43
2. Cal State Fullerton 43
HISTORIC HOMERS FOR HURST
Scott Hurst put together one of the best offensive performances in college baseball history on May 20th at CSUN. He was perfect at the plate, going 5-for-5 with a school-record equaling four home runs, seven RBI and six runs scored, as the Titans cruised by CSUN 16-7. Hurst's four-homer performance ties Fullerton's school record for the most home runs recorded in a game, as Sam Favata also blasted four jacks in a 34-5 victory over La Verne on April 23, 1980. However, Hurst is the only Titan to hit four homers against a current Division I opponent. Hurst and Louisville's Brendan KcKay are the only two players to have hit four home runs in a game this season. Hurst's seven RBI fell just one shy of the school-record of eight runs driven in set by David Olmedo-Barrera on April 4, 2015. The six runs scored were the most since Austin Diemer scored four runs on March 7, 2014. The five hits went down as the most since Matt Chapman also collected five on April 26, 2015 vs. Hawaii. Hurst set new career highs in runs scored, hits, RBI and home runs. The performance earned him Big West Player of the Week for the second time this season, and earned him Collegiate Baseball's National Player of the Week honors
The Titans finished the regular season 11-3-1 in weekend series. The 11 series wins is the most since claiming 14 in 2013.
Once the ball is in Conine's hand the Titans don't lose. He's collected 12 saves on the year without blowing one. Before May 9th's game vs. UCLA he'd gone 23 consecutive innings without allowing an earned run over 17 appearances. He's collected 36 strikeouts while only walking five on the year to go along with his 1.45 ERA. His 12 saves led the conference during the regular season and are ranked 20th in the nation. Conine's next save will move him into a tie for seventh place on Fullerton's all-time saves list. Vinnie Pestano and Ted Silva currently hold the spot down with 13 saves.
HURST MAKING IT HURT
Scott Hurst has given opponents fits all season long. He led the Big West in runs scored (49), runs per game (0.92), ranks third in slugging percentage (.592), third in total bases (129) and ranks fourth in the conference in triples with four, while he's just two triples away from placing eighth on the Fullerton all-time single season triples list. Hurst leads the Titans in batting average (.339), slugging percentage (.592), on-base percentage (.430), runs scored (49), hits (74), runs batted in (37), triples (4), home runs (11), total bases (129), games played (55), games started (55) and total plate appearances (257).
BRYANT SWINGS THE BAT
Taylor Bryant leads the team in doubles (14), walks (32) games played (52) and games started (52).
Dillon Persinger has been of those guys you hate to play against, but would love to have on your team. Persinger has reached base via HBP a team-leading 10 times this season, which is tied for fifth in the Big West. He also placed third in the Big West in stolen bases (14) and ranks second in steals per game (0.30). Titans are 7-5 when Persinger starts at second base this season, as opposed to 22-13 when he starts at first base.
THE KID CAN PLAY
Freshman Sahid Valenzuela has made his impact felt from the very beginning. He ranked fourth in the Big West with a .339 batting average. His 21 multi-hit games lead the team, while he's collected knocks in 33 of his last 39 games with 18 of those being multi-hit performances.
KEEP EM COMING
The Titans have collected double digit hits in 17 of the last 31 games.
GOOD THINGS HAPPENING AT GOODWIN
Until April 30th, the Titans had won 15 consecutive home games. It matched Titans' longest home win streak since winning the final 15 home games of the 2009 season. Fullerton finished 21-8 at home this season.
A TRUE HOME FIELD ADVANTAGE
The Titans are 21-8 at home this season as opposed to 13-12 on the road. The pitching is a big reason why, as the staff holds a 2.98 ERA at home, as opposed to a 4.62 ERA on the road. The staff has struck out 233 batters at home and just 174 on the road, while it's walked 62 batters at home and 63 on the road.
PASSING THE TEST
Cal State Fullerton played its highest ranked team of the season on March 15, defeating then-ranked No. 12 Arizona 4-0. The win over the national runners up was its highest ranked victory since defeating No. 6 Louisville on June 8, 2015 in Super Regional play. This weekend the Titans will play their highest ranked opponent of the season. Fullerton's recent win over No. 7 Long Beach State on May 25th is its highest ranked win of the season.
NONE FOR YOU
The Titans have four shutout victories on the year thus far. They had four all of last year.
Blake Workman went career-high 6.0 innings of scoreless relief while striking out a career-high equaling five batters in Fullerton's wild 3-2 14-inning win over UC Irvine on April 29th to earn him Big West Pitcher of the Week Honors. He also earned the win three weekends ago in the series finale at Hawaii to help the Titans claim their ninth series win of the season. He's 6-2 with a 2.81 ERA overall. However, Workman also has 13 wild pitches on the season. That's already tied for second most in Titan history for a single season.
Fullerton has already taken on some of the best teams college baseball has to offer. Fullerton has gone 6-8 vs. teams that made the NCAA Tournament this season.
Team RPI Rank
Long Beach State 13
MAKING EM EARN IT
The Titans currently rank fifth in the nation in walks allowed per nine innings (2.41), ninth in strikeout-to-walk ratio (3.06) and 12th in fielding percentage (.980). Fullerton leads the Big West in fielding percentage and walks (213), runs (292) and scoring (5.6)
WE SEE YOU SEABOLD
Connor Seabold has been mighty impressive thus far as Fullerton's Friday night guy this season. His 110.1 innings pitched and his 108 strikeouts lead the team, while his 2.94 ERA is the second lowest of any starter to go along with a 10-4 record. In addition, he's tossed three complete games this season, which ranks 22nd nationally and is third best in the conference. He's claimed Big West Pitcher of the Week honors twice this season, on Feb. 20 and March 10, while he's recorded quality starts in 10 of his last 12 outings. His complete-game shutout on April 7 vs. UC Davis, marked Fullerton's first complete-game shutout Thomas Eshelman threw one on May 15, 2015.
JOHNNY BE GOOD
John Gavin has been more than just good in 2017. He owns a 6-2 record with a 3.07 ERA in 85 innings pitched this season. Gavin was named Big West Pitcher of the Week and the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association's National Pitcher of the Week after pitching a career-high 8.0 innings against New Mexico on March 19th. In his eight innings, the San Jose, Calif. native allowed just two hits, zero earned runs, zero walks and struck out a career-high 14 batters. The 14 strikeouts were the most any Titan had accumulated since Thomas Eshelman also collected 14 on May 30, 2015 vs. Arizona State.
Fullerton has blasted 37 home runs in its last 35 ballgames. Before this stretch, the Titans had hit just three home runs through the first 19 games of the season. The 40 total home runs are the most Fullerton has hit since hitting 65 as a team in 2010.
GET AHEAD, STAY AHEAD
The Titans are 25-9 when scoring first this season, 17-4 when scoring in the first inning, while they're 24-1 when leading after the sixth frame, 28-2 when leading after seven and 31-1 when leading after eight. They're also 20-4 when holding their opponent to two runs or less.
While it's definitely good news when the Titans take an early lead, Fullerton has shown the ability to get the job done in the late stage of games this year. The Titans have outscored their opponents 42-19 in the seventh, 31-22 in the eighth and 23-9 in the ninth frame this season. They've outscored their opponent 96-50 in those three innings combined.
AMONG THE BEST
John Gavin has been named to the College Baseball Foundation's initial watch list for the National Pitcher of the Year Award. Sahid Valenzuela has been named to the organization's initial watch list for the Brooks Wallace Award, which honors the nation's best shortstop.
HUDGINS NAMED TO JOHNNY BENCH AWARD WATCH LIST
Chris Hudgins is one of 85 catchers to be named to the initial Johnny Bench Award Watch List. The award handed out to the best college catcher in the nation for the 2017 season. The watch list will be narrowed down to the semifinalists, whom will be announced on May 17. Ballots will be sent to the national voting panel at the end of May for a vote to determine the three finalists. The finalists will be announced on June 5, while a final vote among the national committee will occur during the College World Series. All finalists will be brought to Wichita and the winner will be announced the 20th Annual Greater Wichita Sports Banquet on June 29th.
WHAT HAPPENS IN VEGAS…
What happens in Vegas doesn't necessarily stay in Vegas. Fullerton's 5-0 win on Feb. 26 over UNLV marked the Titans' first road shutout over an opponent since blanking Hawai'i 4-0 back on May 15, 2015. That's a stat the Titans got to take all the way back to Fullerton.
TO ANOTHER 200
Fullerton's victory of UNLV on Feb. 26 marked Rick Vanderhook 200th win as Cal State Fullerton's head coach. Vanderhook is 232-124 in his sixth seasons as the skipper for the Titans. Here's to another 200 more coach.
TITANS WITH TEAM USA
Cal State Fullerton head coach Rick Vanderhook has been named as an assistant coach on Team USA's Collegiate National Team coaching staff this summer. He's one of four assistants on the staff. Pitching coach Blake Hawksworth has been seleted as Team USA's 17U pitching coach this summer.
FULLERTON IN THE POLLS
The Titans enter the 15th week of the 2017 campaign ranked in the top-25 of all six major preseason baseball polls.
Collegiate Baseball Newspaper: No. 23
USA TODAY Coaches Poll: No. 19
NCBWA Poll: No. 19
Perfect Game: No. 15
D1Baseball: No. 20
Cal State Fullerton ranks 43rd in the latest RPI, while BYU is 58th, Stanford is eighth and Sacramento State is 178th
TITANS ON THE TUBE
Cal State Fullerton baseball will appeared on television a league-leading nine times during the regular season.
After claiming their 21st Big West Conference title a year ago and their sixth in the last seven years, the Titans were the favorites to do it again in 2017, as Cal State Fullerton were picked as the team to beat in the Big West Conference, according to the nine league coaches that voted on the Big West baseball preseason poll. Fullerton received a total of 76 points and eight of nine first place votes in the poll, while Long Beach State and UC Santa Barbara tied for second, as each tallied 65 points.
2017 Coaches Poll Results
T2. Long Beach State - 65
T2. UC Santa Barbara - 65
4. Cal Poly - 55
5. UC Irvine (1) - 48
6. CSUN - 33
7. UC Riverside - 27
8. Hawai'i - 23
9. UC Davis - 13
BEST IN THE WEST
Overall, Cal State Fullerton has posted a dominant 757-267-1 (.741) conference record over now 43 seasons. Rick Vanderhook, the school's fifth Div. I head coach, has compiled a 100-34 Big West Conference record in his five seasons and has led Fullerton to the conference crown in now four of his six seasons at the helm. The four conference titles for Vanderhook is the second most in school history, only behind Augie Garrido (14). Overall, the Titans have won 29 conference titles.
A further breakdown has the Titans winning three PCAA conference championships (1975-76, 1987), eight straight SCBA titles (1977-84), and 18 while playing under the Big West name (1990-91, 94-95, 1997, 1999-2001, 2004-06, 2008, 2010-13, 2015-16). The Big West absorbed the PCAA records in 1990 upon its formation, giving the Titans 20 total Big West championships and a 569-215-1 (.725; 34 years) PCAA/Big West Conference record
TITAN PRIDE NEVER GRADUATES
Cal State Fullerton held its annual Alumni Game back on Jan. 28th and it was the Alumni squad coming up with a 5-3 victory over the Titans. The win marked its first over the Titans since 2007, snapping what was an eight-game losing streak. However, the news isn't all bad for the Titans. The last time Fullerton dropped a contest to the Alumni, the team put together a magical season that ended up seeing the Titans in Omaha.
DINOSAURS ARE EXTINCT
Cal State Fullerton earned a 4-3 victory over the NC Dinos on Tuesday night. The contest marked the third straight year the two sides had gotten together for an exhibition game. The Titans now own a 2-1 lead in the all-time series, as they defeated the Dinos 8-7 in 2015 and lost a 10-1 decision in 2016.
IT'S COOL TO STAY IN SCHOOL
Ten Titans on the current roster have been selected previously in the MLB First-Year Players draft. Newcomer Dillon Persinger has actually been selected twice, in 2015 by the Cleveland Indians (31st round) and in 2016 by the Los Angeles Dodgers. He decided to attend Cal State Fullerton instead.
Tristan Hildebrandt 2014 16th round St. Louis Cardinals
Connor Seabold 2014 19th round Baltimore Orioles
Dillon Persinger 2014 17th round Los Angeles Dodgers
Colton Eastman 2015 20th round Minnesota Twins
Chris Hudgins 2014 35th round New York Yankees
Ruben Cardenas 2015 37th round Miami Marlins
John Gavin 2014 39th round Milwaukee Brewers
Timmy Richards 2013 40th round Miami Marlins
The Titans have had 62 former players ascend to the major leagues since their first products, Dan Whitmer and Tim Wallach, got there in 1980. The last being Tyler Pill with the New York Mets on May 26th.
STRENGTH OF SCHEDULE
In 2017, the Titans faced five teams that qualified for the 2016 NCAA Tournament in Gonzaga, Arizona, New Mexico, Long Beach State and UC Santa Barbara. Both UCSB and Arizona advanced to the College World Series last year, while the Wildcats finished as the national runner-up in Omaha.
All three weekend starters of an overall pitching staff that set records last season are back in 2017. All-Conference performers Colton Eastman, Connor Seabold and John Gavin are expected to hold down the weekend rotation once again this season. The three combined to win 17 games for the Titans in 2016.
Sophomore right-handed hurler Colton Eastman has earned a spot on USA Baseball's 55-player preseason Golden Spikes Award watch list. The Golden Spikes Award is given out to the top amateur baseball player in the country for the 2017 season. Last year as a freshman, Eastman proved why deserves to be on this list, as he compiled an 8-3 record to go along with a 2.24 ERA with a freshman school-record equaling 100 strikeouts in 100.2 innings pitched. He racked up numerous honors last season, as he was named a Baseball America Freshman All-American, D1Baseball.com Freshman All-American, NCBWA Freshman All-American, the Louisville Slugger Freshman Pitcher of the Year, Louisville Slugger All-American Third Team member, the Big West Freshman Pitcher of the Year and a member of the Big West All-Conference team.
In addition, he finished his freshman campaign ranked 23rd nationally in WHIP (0.97), 38th in strikeout-to-walk ratio (5.00), 41st in ERA, 49th in wins and 91st in walks allowed per nine innings (1.79). He also led the team in wins, strikeouts and games started.
LOOK'S LIKE A PRO
Connor Seabold was named to the Big West All-Second Team a year ago after claiming two Big West Pitcher of the Week honors during the season and boasting an overall 7-6 record to go along with a 2.48 ERA and 96 strikeouts in 83.1 innings pitched. He's been named on Baseball America's Top-100 Prospects list coming into this season.
Cal State Fullerton will dedicate the 2017 season to Coben Swanson. Eight year old Coben Swanson of Yorba Linda, Calif., is on the road to recovery from a Nov. 2015 diagnosis of T-Cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL), brain hemorrhage, craniectomy and cranioplasty. He is currently battling the side effects of chemotherapy and has been tested at Children's Hospital of Orange County (CHOC) since his diagnosis. He is the son of Jon and Brittany Swanson, and big brother to sister, Saffryn (5). Through the help of Team IMPACT, the Titans have joined Coben in his fight against ALL and made him a permanent member of the Titan family. Throughout the 2017 season you'll see #TEAMCOBEN imprinted on the right side of the Titan batting helmets. Coben has part of his right skull removed last year to repair some damage as a part of his recovery.