Ducks host Stanford in crucial three-game Pac-12 series this weekend: Oregon is home for another crucial three-game Pac-12 series this weekend. The Ducks entertain No. 21 Stanford starting Friday at 6 p.m. It will mark the second straight home series where Oregon will face a team ranked in the top 25 and the third home series against a ranked team overall. The Ducks enter the season in first place in the Pac-12, a half game in front of Oregon State and 2.5 games ahead of Stanford and UCLA. The Cardinal enter the weekend with a 9-6 conference record and are led by right-handed pitcher Mark Appel, the ninth overall pick in last year’s Major League Baseball Draft.
Stanford holds a 24-12 series advantage over Oregon but the Ducks have a 7-5 edge in games played since baseball was reinstated for the 2009 season. Oregon won two of three at Stanford last season in a battle of top 25 teams. The No. 16 Ducks won games one (4-2) and game two (5-0) before the No. 6 Cardinal took the series finale (4-2). Alex Keudell held Stanford to one run on five hits in the opener and the Ducks scored three runs in the 10th inning to break a 1-1 tie en route to the win. Jake Reed picked up the win in game two holding Stanford scoreless on two hits through seven innings and Ryon Healy homered, drove in three and scored twice to lead the Ducks. The Cardinal scored two runs in the second inning against Brando Tessar in the third game and then held on to avoid the series sweep. Healy led Oregon in the three games batting .385 (5-for-13) with a home run, four RBI and two runs scored.
Ducks 15-8 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 23 games against teams ranked in the Baseball America top 25 and compiled an impressive 15-8 record in those games -- a .652 winning percentage. Oregon has hosted two ranked teams already this season with the latest coming last week when No. 13 UCLA won two of three over the Ducks. In March, Oregon hosted No. 2 Vanderbilt and won one of three against the Commodores. The Ducks won the series finale in both of those series.
Until this season, the Ducks had won all but one series against ranked teams they had played in PK Park. 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 out 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. (See a complete list of games Oregon has played vs. ranked opponents on page 7 of this release)
Ducks play 10 TV games, including one game on the Pac-12 Networks and one on ESPNU vs. Stanford this weekend: 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 on watch lists for Golden Spikes Award, Pitcher of the Year Award and NCBWA Stopper of the Year Award: Jimmie Sherfy added another watch list to his list of accomplishments this week. The All-American right-hander earned a spot on the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Stopper of the Year Midseason Watch List. He added that honor to a pair of other watch lists that he was named to earlier this year, the 2013 Pitcher of the Year Award and the Golden Spikes Award Watch list. Sherfy is one of 51 players on the stopper of the year list and one of 41 players to make the initial pitcher of the year list.
The junior is second in the nation in saves with 13, while boasting a 2-0 record with a 0.96 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
NCBWA Stopper of the Year Midseason Watch List
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 active leader in career strikeouts per nine innings, fourth on active career saves list: Oregon closer Jimmie Sherfy’s 13.11 strikeouts per nine innings during his career leads the country in the category. The Duck junior has fanned nearly half a hitter more per nine innings in his three-year career than his closest competitor, Stephen Richter of Delaware, who has 12.73 Ks per nine innings. Sherfy also ranks fourth among the active career save leaders with 32. The junior moved ahead of Louisiana Tech’s Caleb Dudley with a save at Oregon State on April 7, and then added two more at Cal, one at Portland and one vs. UCLA last Sunday. He trails only La Salle’s Pat Christensen (41 saves), Ole Miss’ Brett Huber (36 saves), and Texas’ Cory Knebel (35 saves). Sherfy is the career leader at Oregon and set the single-season Ducks’ record in 2012.
Sherfy second in country in saves while other Ducks rank among national leaders: Jimmie Sherfy picked up his 13th save of the season last Sunday vs. UCLA and is now second in the country in saves, trailing only Austin Peay’s Tyler Rogers who has 16. Aaron Payne ranks in the top 20 in a pair of categories. The junior second baseman is 14th in sacrifice bunts with 12, while ranking 17th in sacrifice bunts per game (0.32). Freshman Cole Irvin is 23rd in victories with seven, three off the national lead. Irvin, Tommy Thorpe and Jake Reed are tied for 27th in games started with 10.
As a team, Oregon is third in the country in fielding percentage at .983, while ranking in the top 60 in a total of six categories. The Ducks are sixth in sacrifice bunts (56) to give the team two top-10 rankings. UO also ranks among the national leaders in win-loss percentage (14th; .750), hits allowed per nine innings (21st; 7.61), ERA (22nd; 2.86) and WHIP (23rd; 1.20).
UO in the polls: Oregon remained highly ranked in each of the national polls released Monday after going 2-2 last week. The Ducks slipped three spots in the Baseball America poll to 13th, while dropping one spot in the Collegiate Baseball poll to eighth. UO remained seventh in the USA Today Coaches Poll, while slipping three spots to 13th in the Perfect Game Poll. The Ducks are seventh in the NCBWA poll.
Ducks schedule features a number of ranked teams, including No. 21 Stanford this week: Oregon will play its sixth ranked team of the season this weekend when No. 21 Stanford visits PK Park. The Ducks have already played 13 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. 8 Arizona State three weeks ago and then faced No. 7 Oregon State on April 9. The Ducks just finished a three-game series against No. 9 UCLA last weekend. Oregon’s schedule doesn’t figure to get any easier with the Ducks facing two more Pac-12 teams currently ranked in the Baseball America poll this season, as well as a two-game set against No. 24 Gonzaga (May 14-15). In addition to playing 21st-ranked Stanford in a three-game series this weekend, Oregon plays seventh-ranked Oregon State four more times (May 17-19 at PK Park, May 21 at OSU). Arizona, who dropped out of the BA poll in the last month, is ranked in at least one of the other polls. The Wildcats, who the Ducks swept in March, are 24th 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.
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 from April 9 to April 14. 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.
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.
Ducks pick up first Pac-12 road sweep since 1976: Oregon swept California in a three-game Pac-12 series earlier this year 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.
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.
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.
The Scenario: Oregon and Stanford play a crucial three-game series for both teams this weekend at PK Park in Eugene. The Ducks lead the Pac-12 by a half a game over Oregon State, but Stanford and UCLA are just 2.5 games out of first place with five weeks to go in the season. The Ducks enter this weekend with a 13-5 conference record and four league series still to play. In addition to hosting Stanford this weekend, Oregon travels to Washington State next weekend, entertains Oregon State May 17-19 and visits Utah to end the regular season May 24-26. Stanford, who enters this weekend 9-6, has five series left with four of those against teams ranked in the top 13 in the country. After visiting the No. 13 Ducks, the Cardinal travel to No. 8 Arizona State next weekend, host No. 7 Oregon State on May 10-12, play at California May 17-19 and end the season with a home series vs. No. 9 UCLA on May 24-26.
The Ducks enter this weekend behind a strong pitching staff. Oregon has a team ERA of 2.86, which ranks 22nd in the country. Oregon is also 21st in the nation in hits allowed per nine innings and 23rd in WHIP. The Ducks’ starters have combined for 20 quality starts including 18 from the three weekend starters -- Tommy Thorpe, Cole Irvin, and Jake Reed -- with six coming from each. Oregon’s starters have combined for a 3.17 ERA, while the bullpen has been even better with a 2.45 ERA. The back end of the bullpen -- Jimmie Sherfy, Garrett Cleavinger, Christian Jones and Darrell Hunter -- have combined to allow just 16 runs in 89.1 innings for a 1.61 ERA. Oregon’s team batting average is .264 with freshman Mitchell Tolman leading the way hitting .345 in 23 starts. Ryon Healy is batting .340 and leads the Ducks in home runs (7), RBI (35), hits (54), doubles (13) and slugging percentage (.553). Scott Heineman has four home runs and 30 RBI, both good for second on the team, while hitting .274. Defensively, the Ducks have committed just 27 errors and rank third in the nation with a .983 fielding percentage.
Healy pushes consecutive start streak over 100: Oregon first baseman Ryon Healy has run his consecutive start streak over the century mark. Healy started his 100th straight game in a March 23 win over Arizona before making it 117 straight starts on Monday. The junior has started Oregon’s first 40 games this season after starting all 65 of the team’s games last year. The Duck junior began his streak on May 13, 2011 when he started at first base in the series opener against Stanford during his freshman season. He finished that year starting the final 12 games of the year. The last game Healy didn’t start was a 7-7 tie at Seattle on May, 11, 2011.
Healy’s streak is 95 games longer than anyone else on the Ducks’ team. Second baseman Aaron Payne had his 76-game streak snapped March 4 when he didn’t play against Cal State Northridge in the first game of the two-game series with the Matadors. Payne had started the first 11 games this season and all 65 games in 2012. Shortstop J.J. Altobelli had his 51-game streak snapped when he didn’t start at Portland on April 16. Freshman Mitchell Tolman is now second on the team with 22 straight starts.
Name: 2013 Total
Ryon Healy 40 117
Mitchell Tolman 22 22
Tyler Baumgartner 19 19
Brett Thomas 13 13
Scott Heineman 11 11
J.J. Altobelli 4 4
Connor Hofmann 2 2
Shaun Chase 1 1
Desmond Santos 1 1
Oregon picked fourth in preseason Pac-12 Coaches Poll: The Oregon Ducks were picked to finish fourth in the 2013 Pac-12 Preseason Baseball Coaches’ Poll. UO received 73 points behind only preseason favorite Stanford, UCLA and Oregon State. The Ducks won a school-record 46 games in 2012 before ending their season in the Super Regional in Eugene. UO returns seven position player starters this season behind a pitching staff that features four returning starters and an All-American reliever.