Oregon State, who shocked the nation Monday morning when it was revealed it would be the number three overall seed in this year's tournament, their highest seed ever, and will host Texas A&M, UC Santa Barbara, and Texas-San Antonio this weekend in the Corvallis Regional. By virtue of gaining a national seed, the Beavers are automatically the one in their own region, with the Aggies behind them at two, the Gauchos at three, and Roadrunners at four.
Oregon State will face Texas-San Antonio on Friday at 5:00 PM PT in a game that will be covered by the ESPN Family of Networks. The Runners finished the season at 35-23 overall, with a 15-11 mark in the WAC. It's tough to find a quality win on their resume, but they did go 6-3 against common Oregon State opponents. Freshman RHP Brock Hartson will likely take the bump on Friday, coming in with a record of 9-4 and a 3.10 ERA. At the dish, junior shortstop RJ Perucki leads UTSA with a .349 average and 46 RBI's.
Preceeding the OSU-UTSA battle will be the opening game between Texas A&M and UC Santa Barbara at 12:00 PM, two teams that were on my list of first eight out heading into Selection Monday. But that doesn't matter now, as the committee decided to reward the Aggies for winning ten of their last 15, and the Gauchos for 11 of their last 14. TAMU has posted wins over the likes of Cal State Fullerton, LSU, and Vanderbilt, so they can surely play with the best in the nation in a regional format. UCSB also beat the Titans, with additional impressive victories against Cal Poly (3) and San Diego.
Sophomore outfielder Cameron Newell leads the Gauchos at the plate, batting a clean .313. Newell, of course, is an Oregon State transfer. Senior Mikey Reynolds is hitting a team-leading .343 for A&M. The Aggie-Gaucho showdown will also be covered by the family of networks.
Of course, also released Monday were the eight national seeds, and as we mentioned in the opening, the Beavers got a good surprise when they were announced. Pat Casey and company heard their name called following North Carolina and Vanderbilt at one and two, meaning the Beavers would host 14th overall Kansas State in a super regional if the bracket were to hold. LSU, Cal State Fullerton, and Virginia follow at the four-six spots, with Florida State and Oregon rounding out the eight.
The Ducks will host Rice, San Francisco, and South Dakota State in Eugene, while UCLA has Cal Poly, San Diego, and San Diego State coming to Los Angeles. Arizona State will be the two seed in the Fullerton Regional, joining New Mexico and Columbia. The selection committee's emphasis on regionalizing teams hurts the Bruins the most this season, as all three teams in that regional are dangerous and will bring plenty of visiting fans, with the furthest campus being just over three hours away from Jackie Robinson Stadium. With the number one overall seed and plenty of mid and low majors around them, North Carolina hosts the easiest regional, with Florida Atlantic, Towson, and Canisius making their way to Chapel Hill.
Oregon State's regional is matched up with that of Kansas State's, who has one of the more intriguing pods in the nation. A hot Wichita State team will be no walkover in the opener for the Wildcats, especially since it's an in-state rivalry. Arkansas was likely one of the first teams out of a hosting spot, and it will be the two seed in Manhattan. And then there's a dangerous Bryant club, who played Oregon State tough earlier in the season before taking the NEC auto bid.
Looking further down the line, if the brackets were to hold all the way to the College World Series, Oregon State would meet Virginia in the opening game. The Cavaliers have a fairly easy regional, hosting UNC Wilmington, Elon, and Army. They are matched up with Mississippi State's regional.
The NCAA also released the game times for each regional after the Selection Show, and Corvallis will follow the 12:00 PM/5:00 PM format all the way through the regional. If a Monday game is necessary, first pitch will be at 5:00 PM. To view the entire bracket, click here. The Beavers ended up playing seven teams in 2013 that made the tournament, posting a 16-7 record against them.