Oregon (12-6) has won seven of its last eight as the Ducks head into this weekend’s series with Nevada (10-6). Unlike the Ducks, the Wolf Pack are playing six games this week, and are coming off wins over Sonoma State and San Francisco State on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Last weekend, Nevada lost 2-of-3 on the road at Cal State Bakersfield.
Over the radio airwaves, Brian Prawitz and Jerry Allen will provide the play-by-play on KSCR 1320 AM in the Eugene/Springfield area for all four Nevada games this week.
The O-Zone will also offer a live video and audio feed of all four contests against the Wolf Pack this week as well.
For Duck fans in Portland, games on Friday and Saturday can be heard on KUIK 1360 AM, while Sunday’s game will be broadcast on THE GAME 95.5 FM.
Live stats will be available for all four games at www.GoDucks.com.
O-ZONE: ONLINE VIDEO & AUDIO
Baseball fans can now watch Oregon baseball home games live on the O-Zone at www.GoDucks.com. All home games will offer live video and audio.
A reminder that single-game tickets for the 2010 season are currently on sale. Duck fans can purchase tickets online by clicking HERE, over the phone by calling 1-800-WEB-FOOT, or in person at the Casanova Center Ticket Office.
Duck fans can use promo code BIMART online to buy one ticket and receive a second free to Friday’s 5 p.m. game with Nevada.
The first 500 children ages 12 and under in attendance at Saturday’s doubleheader will receive a free mini-bat courtesy of Oregon baseball.
Sunday’s 11 a.m. first pitch is Family Day at PK Park. Two adults and two children receive admission and four tickets for the price of $25. The purchase is online only and can be made using promo code FAMILY.
Sunday is also Umpqua Sunday Sundae, and the first 96 fans through the gates receive a pint of Umpqua Mountain Cookie Dough ice cream.
Sunday is also Junior Duck Day at PK Park. Junior Duck members who wear their T-shirt or present their membership card at the marketing tent will receive a giveaway item. Also, one honorary Junior Duck will be introduced alongside the Oregon starting lineup.
Customers who purchase any apparel or Duck item at one of the three Eugene area Duck Stores, will receive a coupon which contains a promo code for $10 off chairback seats when they enter the promo code DUCKSTORE online.
PRESIDENT ON HAND
University President Richard Lariviere will be on hand to throw out the first pitch prior to Friday’s 5:03 p.m. first pitch vs. Nevada.
With a weather forecast of 68 degrees and sunny, it should be a wonderful evening at the ballpark. University of Oregon faculty and staff members will receive up to two free reserved tickets by simply showing your university photo ID at the ticket office located behind home plate of PK Park.
• Oregon welcomes back five position starters from the 2009 squad; Curtis Raulinaitis, Danny Pulfer, KC Serna, Mitch Karraker and Jett Hart.
• The Duck pitching staff has 11 returners, including sophomore left-hander Tyler Anderson, who is expected to get the start the series on Friday night against Nevada.
• Oregon also welcomes 11 newcomers to the roster; eight freshmen and three juniors.
• Oregon opened 2010 on an eight-game road trip to southern California and Hawaii.
• The Ducks played 12 of their first 14 games on the road, but are now halfway through a nine-game homestand.
• Five opponents (CSF, STAN, OSU, UCLA, ASU) on Oregon’s 2010 schedule are currently ranked in at least one national poll.
• Oregon’s longest home stretch of the season is nine games from Friday, March 12-Tuesday, March 23 as Seattle, Nevada and Southern Utah travel to Eugene.
• Believe it or not, UO’s eight-game road trip to start the season is one of two on the year. Oregon will play eight-straight road games from Friday, April 9-Wednesday, April 21, traveling to Stanford, UCLA and Gonzaga.
• After Oregon’s game at UCLA on April 18, the Ducks will play in the Northwest the remainder of the season playing 15 contests at PK Park while traveling to Gonzaga, Oregon State, Portland and Washington.
Oregon and Nevada are familiar opponents as the two programs split a four-game series last year in Reno, Nev.
The Wolf Pack lead the all-time series with the Ducks 5-2, dating back to March 23, 1980.
Nevada has won three of its last five heading into this weekend’s series. On the year, Nevada has taken two-of-three from Santa Clara and Central Arkansas, but has also dropped series to Pacific and CSU Bakersfield.
Brock Stassi, a two-way player for Nevada, leads the Wolf Pack batting .420 with 14 runs scored and 11 RBI, while Nick Leid is hitting .405 with 12 RBI and a .690 slugging percentage. As a team, Nevada hits .303.
The Wolf Pack pitching staff is managing a 5.12 ERA, but Stassi is the gem of the starting rotation. Stassi’s 1.82 ERA leads the starters. He has a 3-1 record in four appearances and three starts, and leads the staff with 23 strikeouts.
Oregon fell just two runs short of sweeping back-to-back series with a 6-4 loss to Seattle at PK Park last Sunday. The Ducks have won seven of their last eight after sweeping Fresno State on the road (March 5-7) and taking the first three games from the Redhawks last week in Eugene.
Once again it was Eddie Rodriguez leading the Ducks hitting .571 at the plate with a team-leading six RBI, .643 slugging percentage and .600 on-base percentage.
Behind Rodriguez’s offensive was a trio of freshman; Jack Marder (.333, 1 RBI, 4 R), Steven Packard (.300, 2 RBI, 2 2B) and J.J. Altobelli (.250, 2 RBI, 2R).
Senior Jett Hart, who appeared in three games, hit .429 and added three stolen bases.
The pitching staff posted a 0.79 ERA against Seattle, pitching 34.0 innings. Tyler Anderson started the series pitching eight scoreless innings in last Friday’s 5-0 shutout of Seattle, while fanning a season-high 11 batters.
In his third start of the season, Justin LaTempa also held Seattle scoreless in seven innings on the mound in Saturday’s (Game 2) 4-0 shutout, while Zack Thornton dealt a career-high 10 strikeouts in Saturday’s (Game 1), 7-3 victory.
Oregon starting catcher Eddie Rodriguez was named Pac-10 Baseball Player of the Week on March 8, and hasn’t cooled off yet.
The Warden, Wash., native leads the Ducks on a 10-game hitting streak - the longest of any UO player in the modern era.
Rodriguez is hitting .434 (23-for-53) on the season, which ranks sixth in the Pac-10 conference. His 11 RBI tie with Danny Pulfer for the team lead, as the senior leads the everyday starters with a .528 slugging percentage and a .466 on-base percentage. Rodriguez has been mainly batting in the clean-up spot, hitting .452.
18 AND SCORELESS
In his last two starts, Tyler Anderson is 2-0 and has tossed 18 innings of scoreless baseball. The Las Vegas native began his streak at Fresno State on March 5, fanning 10 batters and refusing to issue a walk in the Ducks’ 7-2 victory over the Bulldogs.
In last Friday’s 5-0 shutout win over Seattle, Anderson scattered three hits over eight innings. The Las Vegas native improved to 3-1, striking out a season-high 11 Redhawks without issuing a walk in his second straight dominating start while running his scoreless inning streak to 16.
Anderson has a 1.35 ERA on the season, ranking third in the Pac-10, and the second-year starter has fanned a staff-leading 32 in 26 and 2/3 innings on the mound. He is also holding opposing hitters to a .180 average to lead the pitching staff.
THREE IN A ROW
Senior right-hander Zack Thornton is 100 percent healthy, and its beginning to how on the mound. The senior is 3-0 in last three starts with wins at Hawai’i, Fresno State and last week at home vs. Seattle.
Thornton tossed a career-best 10 strikeouts in last Saturday’s 7-3 win over the Redhawks in the first game of the doubleheader, pitching a career-best seven and 2/3 innings on the mound.
On the season, Thornton has a 3.24 ERA and has struck out 20 in 25.0 innings on the mound in four starts.
MARDER IN THE INFIELD
Last week a concussion to Oregon starting shortstop KC Serna changed what had been the starting infield for the first 14 games of the season for the Ducks. Pulfer made the move to shortstop for Serna - who has been cleared to play this week - while freshman Jack Marder made his first three starts at second after starting every game in right field thus far in 2010.
The space open in right field was filled by part-time starter freshman Steven Packard. In his three starts, Packard hit .300 with 2 RBI, two doubles and a walk.
Oregon head coach George Horton hasn’t been shy about putting his true freshmen in the thick of things this season.
Horton has two true freshmen starting regularly on defense with Jack Marder in right field and J.J. Altobelli at third base. Ryan Hambright and Steven Packard have started 10 and nine games, respectively, this season as well.
Altobelli is batting .283 in his rookie season, with 10 RBI, 11 runs scored and four doubles. Marder is hitting .200, but has been struck at the plate six times this season. He has three extra-base hits with a home run and two doubles, and has scored 10 runs on the year.
Hambright has appeared in 17 games, making all 10 of his starts at first base. The Corona, Calif., native is hitting .200 with eight walks and eight runs scored. Packard has made six starts at designated hitter and the other three in right field. The San Marcos, Calif., native is hitting .250, and is currently on a three-game hitting streak. Packard has two RBI, two doubles and three walks.
GAGNIER ON STOPPER OF THE YEAR WATCH LIST
Oregon junior right-hander Drew Gagnier was named to the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Preseason Stopper of the Year Watch List.
Gagnier is one of 40 collegiate baseball players that have been named to the initial watch list for the sixth annual NCBWA Stopper of the Year Award, given to the top relief pitcher in NCAA Division I baseball.
The Santa Cruz, Calif., native was named Pac-10 Honorable Mention last season, and was drafted in the 14th round of the 2009 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft by the Oakland Athletics, but chose to return to the University of Oregon for 2010.
The Ducks main closer in 2009, Gagnier appeared in 23 games and finished the year with a 2.70 ERA, a 1-0 record and 30 strikeouts in 30 innings pitched. He finished the year with seven saves, tying for sixth in the Pac-10.
Oregon inked 12 players during the early signing period, and each signed a National Letter of Intent to attend the U of O for the 2010-11 academic year. All 12 newcomers are currently in their senior year of high school.
This is Oregon’s third recruiting class since the reinstatement of the UO baseball program, and if history repeats itself, the 2010 graduating class should garner national honors like its predecessors.
Of Oregon’s 12 signees, six rank among the top-200 high school prospects for 2010, including three of the country’s top-50 ranked prospects, according to PerfectGame Crosschecker.
For two consecutive years, Oregon’s recruiting classes have earned top-25 accolades. The Ducks’ 2009 class, brought in for the program’s first season in 28 years, was ranked No. 2 in the nation by Collegiate Baseball’s annual evaluation, and was also ranked 10th in the nation by Baseball America’s evaluation.
The Ducks’ second class received the No. 24 ranking in the nation from Baseball America earlier this fall.
CIVIL WAR CLASSIC
Tickets are also currently on sale for The Civil War Classic presented by RBC Wealth Management. First pitch is set 6:30 p.m. from PGE Park in Portland on Wednesday, May 26.
Tickets, which range in price from $5-$35, are available at www.ticketmaster.com, and all Ticketmaster locations.
Oregon’s newest facility opened to 2,609 fans on March 2 as UO defeated Washington, 6-2. The park has full locker rooms, clubhouses and team amenities, as well as a state-of-the-art video board and a classic inning by inning score board.
The park has specially designed lighting structures. There is a landscaped area for food and hospitality and even a fan interaction area. There is a student seating area to enhance the intimacy for the Oregon baseball team and spectators.
Eugene architect firm Cameron, McCarthy, Gilbert & Scheibe was the lead landscape architectural firm on the first phase of construction. Larry Gilbert is leading the project.
PK Park is a year-round facility. The park features:
* A large external plaza and walkway
* An in-stadium concourse that can be used as a festival area for other sporting events.
* A pre-game area before home football games, where other games of interest will be played on the large video board.
* Seating for approximately 3,600 fans and a large standing room only section along right field.
“We have designed PK Park with all the features and amenities necessary to help the University of Oregon baseball program quickly establish itself as a regular on the ‘Road to Omaha’. The Ducks’ passionate fans will find their new ballpark to be one of the best places in the country to cheer on their favorite team,” said Greg Garlock, Designer and Principal with DLR Group.
PK Park has a total capacity of 4,000, including 3,000 fixed seats, a tiered party plaza named “Fowl Territory”, a picnic plaza and eight upper level suites.
The field is made of an all-weather base-ball specific FieldTurf, with clay mounds and bullpens. FieldTurf is the leading provider of collegiate baseball synthetic turf. The company has been installing similar products at college ballparks around the country.
2008 – On August 15, 2008 The University of Oregon announced that work has begun on the construction of a new baseball park. PK Park is named after Athletic Director Pat Kilkenny for his leadership, vision, support, and commitment to the University of Oregon. It was projected to cost $15-$18 million.
2009 – Baseball returns to the University of Oregon. In the team’s first game at the park on Feb. 27, the Ducks beat Fresno State, the defending national champions in front of a sellout crowd.