Freshman Ramirez Gets the Nod in CWS Opener on Saturday

June 9, 2009

Fullerton, Calif. - Freshman All-American Noe Ramirez (Alhambra HS East Los Angeles, Calif.) will throw the first pitch of the 63rd College World Series this Saturday as he was named Game 1 starter by second-year head Coach Dave Serrano on Tuesday. The Titan right-hander is 9-1 with a 2.86 ERA in 107 innings to date.

The Titans open up the 8-team tournament against the Arkansas Razorbacks and will be the designated home team.

Arkansas is likely to counter Ramirez with southpaw Dallas Keuchel, a junior from Tulsa, Oklahoma. Keuchel is 7-3 with a 4.04 ERA in 16 starts.

The Titans depart for Omaha early Thursday morning, with an arrival time somewhere between 3:00 and 4:00 p.m.

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&\#149; This is Fullerton's 31st NCAA appearance in its 35th year of Div. I baseball. The exceptions were 1985, 1986, 1989 and 2001. The current string of 18 CONSECUTIVE appearances is third longest in the nation behind Miami (37) and Florida State (32).

&\#149; The Arkansas opener will be Fullerton's 200th NCAA post-season game. The Titans' all-time NCAA record is 134-65 (.673) including 100-40 (.714) in Regional (85-34) and Super Regional (15-6) play and 34-25 (.576) in Omaha. This is their 16th CWS appearance, which ties Stanford for seventh most. Fullerton is No. 1 in the Super Regional Era (since 1999), making its seventh appearance (six by Stanford, Miami and Rice). And since 1975, Fullerton's first year of Div. I competition, only Miami (22 times) and Texas (17th) have made as many trips. Close are LSU (15th), Arizona State (15th), Florida State (14) and Stanford (14).

&\#149; Fullerton has won seven Super Regionals in nine appearances to advance to Omaha. All but one have come at home but the Titans' first nine appearances all came via the road -- eight regionals and the 1999 Super Regional at Ohio State.

&\#149; Fullerton has won seven Regionals in a row and 18 total - 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 now hosted eight at home (7-1) -- they lost the first (USC, 2000) and have won the last seven.

&\#149; The Titans have NEVER gone winless in Regional play. They have gone 0-2 only once in a Super Regional (2008) and four times in Omaha (1975, 1982, 1990 and 2007).

&\#149; Fullerton is the No. 2 national seed this year which marks the seventh time in the Super Regional Era (since 1999) the Titans have made the Elite Eight -- No. 3 in 1999, No. 1 in 2001, No. 7 in 2003, No. 6 in 2005, No. 5 in 2006 and No. 5 in 2008. Ironically, they were not a national seed when they won their fourth national title in 2004. The 1995 national champion Titans became the first No. 1 seed to win the CWS.

&\#149; Cal State Fullerton was the only non-BCS school in the Super Regional field of 2009 and is the only non-BCS school to make more than one appearance in Omaha in the Super Regional Era (since 1999).

&\#149; Dave Serrano becomes the 11th head coach to bring two or more different schools (UC Irvine in 2007 and CSF in 2009) to Omaha. He joins Dave Van Horn (Nebraska in 2002 and Arkansas in 2004) and Larry Cochell (CSF in 1990 and Oklahoma in 1992) as the only three to bring different teams in a span of only three seasons. He also becomes the fourth head coach to bring Cal State Fullerton to Omaha, following Augie Garrido, Larry Cochell and George Horton. Florida State has been represented by five coaches and Michigan and Oklahoma State are the only other schools with as many as four.

VERSUS THE FIELD: In 2009, the Titans are 4-1 vs. the CWS field (3-0 at Southern Mississippi and 1-1 at Arizona State).

In NCAA post-season competition, the Titans are 19-14 vs. the current field (8-8 vs. Arizona State, 5-1 vs. Texas, 3-3 vs. LSU, 2-0 vs. Arkansas, 1-0 vs. Virginia and 0-2 vs. North Carolina) and 8-4 in Omaha (3-1 vs. Texas, 2-0 vs. LSU, 2-0 vs. Arkansas, 1-1 vs. Arizona State and 0-2 vs. North Carolina). All-time the Div. I Titans are 53-48 against the field (22-26 vs. ASU, 17-17 vs. Texas, 6-0 vs. Southern Mississippi, 4-3 vs. LSU, 3-0 vs. Arkansas, 1-0 vs. Virginia and 0-2 vs. North Carolina).

POSTSEASON VETERANS: There are six veterans of the 2007 CWS team on the current Titan roster: Jared Clark (redshirt), Matthey Fahey, Josh Fellhauer, Joe Scott, Dustin Garneau and Khris Davis but only Fellhauer (then in left field) and Joe Scott (then at shortstop) were starters at different positions.

FIRST TO PRACTICE: Cal State Fullerton set out in 2009 to be the "First to Practice, Last to Play," taking the field just after midnight on Feb. 1 - the first official day of practice. 200-plus die-hard family, friends and fans, battled the cool, damp air to watch the `09 squad take batting practice, then play in a nine-inning scrimmage that finished at exactly 4:00 a.m.

LAST TO PLAY: The Titans have been one of the two final teams to be standing at season's end five times at the Div. I level, and have walked away with the national championship four times over four decades (1979, 1984, 1995, 2004). The Titans were the College World Series runners-up in 1992 after losing to Pepperdine, 3-2 in the championship game.


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