Ducks and Pilots play for third time this season: Oregon and Portland will meet for the third time this season on Tuesday when the teams play in Portland at 3 p.m. It will be the first of two meetings in Portland, with the Ducks and Pilots playing again in the Rose City next Tuesday. Oregon won both games earlier this season in Eugene, beating the Pilots 3-1 on February 26 and 5-1 on March 26. In the first two games the Ducks have out-hit the Pilots .241 to .169 while the Ducks pitching staff has a 1.00 ERA compared to a 3.94 ERA by the Pilots. Brett Thomas, Aaron Payne, Tyler Baumgartner and Josh Graham all have two hits against the Pilots, while Mitchell Tolman leads the Ducks with three RBI vs. Portland and Thomas has driven in two runs. Jeff Gold and Darrell Hunter have the wins for Oregon.
Ducks wrapping up eight-game road swing: Oregon will finish an eight-game road swing on Tuesday when the Ducks visit Portland. Oregon enters the game with five straight road wins and a 5-2 record during the stretch. After losing the first two games of the swing at Arizona State, Oregon won the series finale at ASU before winning at Oregon State last Tuesday and sweeping a three-game series at California last weekend.
Ducks pick up first Pac-12 road sweep since 1976: Oregon swept California in a three-game Pac-12 series over the weekend marking the first time since the Ducks reinstated baseball for the 2009 season that Oregon has won all three games of a Pac-12 series away from PK Park. Oregon’s last sweep of a three-game series in conference play came in May 1976 when UO took three at Washington.
Heineman named Pac-12 Player of the Week: Scott Heineman has been named the Pac-12 Conference Player of the Week after leading Oregon to a 4-0 record last week. Heineman batted .438 (7-for-16) with three doubles, three home runs, six RBI and five runs scored as the Ducks went 4-0 on the road and earned their first Conference road sweep since the program was reinstated in 2009. The Pacific Palisades, Calif. native, who finished the week with a .500 on-base percentage and a 1.188 slugging percentage, hit safely in all four outings and logged a pair of multiple-hit games against California over the weekend. Heineman, who entered the weekend with one career home run, went yard twice in Saturday’s 10-4 victory over the Bears and added a homer in Sunday’s 5-4 win in Berkeley. All three of his doubles and six of his seven hits came in the weekend set.
Ducks return to Pac-12 play with three-game series against UCLA at PK Park Friday through Sunday: Oregon jumps back into Pac-12 Conference play this weekend when the Ducks host UCLA at PK Park. Oregon, ranked 10th in the latest Baseball America Poll, will enter the series in first place a half-game ahead of Oregon State, with a 12-3 record. No. 13 UCLA is tied for third in the Pac-12 standings with Stanford at 7-5, 3.5 games behind Oregon in the standings. Games one and two of the series will be broadcast on the Pac-12 Networks and will have game times of 7 p.m. instead of the normal Friday and Saturday start times. Sunday’s series finale will have a regular 12 p.m. first pitch.
Sherfy named to Pitcher of the Year Award and Golden Spikes Award watch lists: Jimmie Sherfy has been named to the initial watch list for the 2013 Pitcher of the Year Award, sponsored by Diamond Sports and presented during the College Baseball Hoff of Fame’s Night of Champions on June 29. Sherfy is one of 41 players to make the initial list. The junior right-hander leads the Pac-12 Conference and is tied for third in the nation in saves with 11, while boasting a 2-0 record with a 1.11 ERA. He also ranks fourth in the country in active career saves. Previously, Sherfy was named to the watch list for the Golden Spikes Award, which is sponsored by Major League Baseball and honors the top amateur baseball player in the country. Sherfy earned multiple postseason All-America honors as a sophomore after finishing the season with 19 saves and a 2.20 ERA. The right-hander claimed first-team ABCA/Rawlings All-America recognition, while being named second-team All-America by the NCBWA, Baseball America, and Perfect Game, and third-team by Louisville Slugger. Sherfy was also a NCBWA Stopper of the Year finalist and claimed first-team All-Pac 12 accolades after leading the league in saves. Sherfy set an Oregon record with 19 saves last season while finishing with a 5-3 record in 36 appearances. He struck out 93 hitters in just 61.1 innings (an average of 13.6 strikeouts per nine innings pitched) and held opponents to a .172 batting average.
2013 Sherfy Honors
Pitcher of the Year Watch List
2013 USA Baseball Preseason Golden Spikes Award Watch List
NCBWA Stopper of the Year Watch List
NCBWA Preseason 1st-Team All-America
Louisville Slugger Preseason 1st-Team All-America
Perfect Game Preseason 2nd-Team All-America
Sherfy 2012 Postseason Honors
NCBWA Stopper of the Year Finalist
ABCA/Rawlings 1st-Team All-America
Baseball America 2nd-Team All-America
Perfect Game 2nd-Team All-America
NCBWA 2nd-Team All-America
Louisville Slugger 3rd-Team All-America
Pac-12 1st-Team All-Conference
Sherfy fourth on active career saves list: Oregon closer Jimmie Sherfy ranks fourth among the active career save leaders with 30. The junior moved ahead of Louisiana Tech’s Caleb Dudley with a save last Tuesday at Oregon State and then added two more at Cal over the weekend. He trails only La Salle’s Pat Christensen (38 saves), Texas’ Cory Knebel (35 saves) and Ole Miss’ Brett Huber (33 saves). Sherfy is the career leader at Oregon and set the single-season Ducks’ record in 2012.
Ducks play 10 TV games, including Friday and Saturday UCLA games: Oregon will make 10 regular season appearances on national television during the 2013 season. Oregon plays a total of eight games on the Pac-12 Networks during the season, while also playing one game on ESPNU and one game on the Big 12 Network. (See complete TV schedule on page 6)
Sherfy, Payne and Irvin lead Ducks among national leaders with top 10 rankings; Oregon leads nation in fielding percentage: Jimmie Sherfy, Aaron Payne and Cole Irvin all rank among the top 10 in at least one category in the national ranking. Sherfy ranks third in the nation in saves with 11, one behind the national co-leaders. Irvin is eighth in wins with seven and trails the national leader who has nine wins. Payne is among the top 10 in two categories. He is seventh in sacrifice bunts with 12, behind Arkansas State’s Alex Potts who leads the country with 18. Payne also ranks 10th in sacrifice bunts per game. Ryon Healy is among the top 40 in two categories, ranking 38th in doubles and 40th in total bases. Irvin is tied with fellow starting pitchers Jake Reed and Tommy Thorpe for 20th in starts with nine, just two behind the co-leaders who have 11.
As a team, Oregon leads the country in fielding percentage at .988, while ranking in the top 60 in a total of eight categories. The Ducks are seventh in sacrifice bunts (50) to give the team two top-10 rankings. UO also ranks among the national leaders in win-loss percentage (13th; .771), hits allowed per nine innings (26th; 7.73), ERA (31st; 2.99), WHIP (31st; 1.22), doubles per game (52nd; 1.97) and doubles (53rd; 69).
UO in the polls: Oregon jumped a number of spots in each of the national polls released Monday after going 4-0 last week. The Ducks jumped six spots in the Baseball America poll to 10th, while moving up two spots in the Collegiate Baseball poll to seventh, two spots in the USA Today Coaches Poll to seventh, two spots in the NCBWA poll to seventh and six spots to 10th in the Perfect Game poll.
Ducks schedule features a number of ranked teams, including No. 13 UCLA this week: Oregon will play its fifth ranked team of the season this weekend when No. 13 UCLA visits PK Park. The Ducks have already played 10 games against ranked teams, including six games in a 10-day stretch starting March 1 when the Ducks visited No. 4 (this week’s Baseball America ranking) Cal State Fullerton. The Ducks returned home for a two-game series against Cal State Northridge and then played three games against No. 2 Vanderbilt. Oregon wrapped up a three-game series at No. 9 Arizona State two weeks ago and then faced No. 5 Oregon State last Tuesday. Oregon’s schedule doesn’t figure to get any easier with the Ducks facing two more Pac-12 teams (including UCLA) currently ranked in the Baseball America poll later this season, as well as No. 24 Gonzaga (May 14-15). In addition to playing 13th-ranked UCLA in a three game series this weekend, Oregon plays fifth-ranked Oregon State four more times (May 17-19 at PK Park, May 21 at OSU). Stanford and Arizona, who both dropped out of the BA poll in the last few weeks, are ranked in at least one of the other polls. Stanford, who Oregon plays April 26-28, is as high as 17th in the Collegiate Baseball poll. Arizona, who the Ducks swept in March, is 21st in the Collegiate Baseball poll.
Irvin named NCBWA National Pitcher of the Week and Pac-12 Conference Pitcher of the Week: Freshman Cole Irvin was named the NCBWA National Pitcher of the Week and the Pac-12 Conference Pitcher of the Week after throwing a shutout against Washington. Irvin pitched Oregon’s first complete-game shutout of the season and only allowed two runners to advance past first base in the Ducks’ 6-0 victory over Washington on March 30. He allowed just four hits, while striking out a season-high 11 batters and registering one walk. The Yorba Linda, Calif. product found his rhythm early, fanning seven batters through the first four innings, and never let up. He struck out one in the sixth, another in the seventh, and notched a pair of punch outs in the ninth.
Healy delivers first walk-off home run in modern history at Oregon: Since Oregon reinstated baseball before the 2009 season; no Oregon Duck had hit a walk-off home run until March 28. Ryon Healy became the first to do it when he lined a two-run home run over the left field wall in the bottom of the 10th inning to give UO a 5-3 win over the Washington Huskies. Healy’s blast came two innings after he singled in the tying run to eventually send the game into extra innings.
Jones gets first start since May 28, 2011: Senior Christian Jones made his first start in 21 months Feb. 26 against Portland. The 6-foot-3 left-hander entered the game on a pinch count and threw 3.0 innings, allowing just two hits while striking out five. Jones missed all of the 2012 season while recovering from an elbow injury. He returned to the mound during this year’s season opener when he pitched three innings in relief, allowing just one hit while striking out two in a win over Hawaii on Feb. 16. Jones earned the save in the Ducks’ win and appeared in two more games out of the bullpen before making his start, throwing an inning at Hawaii on Feb. 18 and two innings against Loyola Marymount on Feb 22. For the season, Jones has a 0.00 ERA in 13.0 innings while allowing just four hits with 15 strikeouts. In 2011, Jones finished the season with a 7-2 record and a 3.24 ERA. He started 12 games for the Ducks, striking out 73 hitters in 77.2 innings. The Danville, Calif., native struck out more than 10 hitters twice that season. He had 13 against BYU and 12 vs. Saint Mary’s.
Four Duck pitchers combine for 15 strikeouts in 3-1 win over Portland: Christian Jones, Jeff Gold, Garrett Cleavinger and Jimmie Sherfy combined to strike out 15 Portland batters in a 3-1 win on Feb. 26, while not allowing a walk during the game. Jones started the game and struck out five in three innings before giving way to Gold who fanned a career-high seven Pilots in four innings. Cleavinger struck out two in the eighth inning, and Sherfy added one punch out in the ninth to give the Ducks their most strikeouts since Feb. 18, 2012 when Oregon pitchers struck out 17 Hawaii batters in a 12-inning win.
Ducks 14-6 all-time against ranked teams at PK Park: Oregon is no stranger to hosting ranked teams at PK Park. During the program’s four-plus seasons playing in the park, the Ducks have played 20 games against teams ranked in the Baseball America top 25 and compiled an impressive 14-6 record in those games -- a .700 winning percentage. Oregon hosted No. 2 Vanderbilt March 8-10 and won one of three against the Commodores. The Ducks dropped games one (4-1) and two (4-2) before winning the series finale (7-5) on Sunday. Vanderbilt was the highest-ranked team to visit PK Park, matching the number-two ranking of Arizona State in 2010.
The Ducks have won every series against ranked teams they have played in PK Park, with the exception of the Arizona State and Vanderbilt series. Oregon beat defending National Champion, and 15th-ranked, Fresno State two out of three in 2009 in the first series in ballpark history against a ranked team. The Ducks won the first two, 1-0 and 7-1, before losing game three 10-3. In 2010, Oregon dropped two of three to No. 2 Arizona State winning game two 6-5 in 12 innings, while beating No. 19 San Diego 13-4. In 2011, UO beat No. 23 Arizona two of three and swept No. 6 Oregon State at PK Park. Last season, the Ducks swept No. 14 Arizona State in a three-game series, while beating No. 23 Oregon State in a single Tuesday game. Since baseball was reinstated at Oregon, the Ducks have played the No. 1 team in the country in two separate series on the road. In 2009, UO lost two games at UC Irvine (9-6, 7-4) before taking two of three games (5-4, 8-4, 1-5) at UCLA in 2010.
Horton named 2012 Division I Coach of the Year by FieldTurf: University of Oregon head baseball coach George Horton won the 7th annual FieldTurf Baseball Award as the 2012 NCAA Division I Coach of the Year Field Turf announced in January. Horton led the Ducks to within one win of the College World Series in just the program’s fourth season after it was reinstated for the 2009 season. Under Horton’s tutelage, Oregon finished the 2012 season with a 46-19 record and a No. 11 ranking in the final Baseball America Top-25 poll. The Super Regional appearance was the eighth by a Horton coached team, and the first for Oregon since 1954. The 40-win season was the ninth in Horton’s 15 years as a head coach at the Division I level and the team’s .708 winning percentage was the best by a Ducks team since 1978.
Ducks 2013 recruiting class ranked No. 6 by Perfect game: The Oregon Ducks 2013 baseball recruiting class is ranked sixth in the nation by Perfect Game. The Ducks signed the nationally-ranked class after advancing to within one game of the College World Series last season. Oregon won a school-record 46 games in 2012 before ending its season in the Super Regional in Eugene.