Jan. 5, 2006
Fullerton, Calif. - Baseball America released its 2006 Pre-Season Top 25 Poll Thursday morning, ranking the Cal State Fullerton baseball team fifth in the nation behind Texas (1), Clemson (2), Florida (3) and Georgia Tech (4).
The Titans, 46-18 in 2005, missed their 14th College World Series appearance by one game, losing the best-of-three Fullerton Super Regional to the Sun Devils of Arizona State last June.
Fullerton will look to rebound in 2006, as five Titan starting position players (John Curtis - C, Brett Pill - 1B, Justin Turner - 2B, Blake Davis - SS and Danny Dorn - LF) will return to their positions after being part of the largest draft class Fullerton baseball has ever seen. Big West Freshman pitcher of the Year, Wes Roemer (7-3, 3.80 ERA), will be back to lead the Titan pitching staff, as will Big West Honorable Mention Vinnie Pestano, whose 13 saves in 2005 were second in the conference.
Head coach George Horton, fresh off picking up his 400th win late in 2005, will skipper a squad that will also feature 13 newcomers (six transfers and seven incoming freshman), and the anticipated returns of former Freshman All-Americans Dustin Miller (2003) and Clark Hardman (2004), both returning from season-ending injuries.
The 2006 baseball schedule has the Titans playing 13 games against 4 ranked teams by Baseball America (3 vs. No. 7 Rice, 2 vs. No. 11 Pepperdine, 2 vs. USC and 6 vs. No. 22 Long Beach State), with just five of them to be played at Goodwin Field.
The Titans start the 2006 season on the road as they make their way up north to visit the Stanford Cardinal in their annual match-up, this year at Sunken Diamond Feb. 3-5.
The complete Baseball America Top 25 Pre-Season Poll: 1. Texas, 2. Clemson, 3. Florida, 4. Georgia Tech, 5. Cal State Fullerton, 6. North Carolina, 7. Rice, 8. Oregon State, 9. Tennessee 10. Missouri, 11. Pepperdine, 12. Tulane, 13. Mississippi State 14. South Carolina, 15. Florida State, 16. Arizona State, 17. Southern California, 18. Arkansas, 19. Texas Christian, 20. Louisiana State, 21. Fresno State, 22. Long Beach State, 23. Mississippi, 24. North Carolina State, 25. California