The Beavers draw the Pac-10 bye this week, so let's take a look at the other games going on this weekend.
No. 12 Arizona at Washington State
Who has the edge: Arizona. The Wildcats have been hot this season, and we know they will get great pitching. If you care, Arizona played Stanford last weekend, who is currently tied for last place in the Pac-10 with Wazzu. On Saturday, Arizona tattooed Stanford in the fifth inning, scoring 11 runs on their way to a 15-1 victory. Stanford came back to beat the Wildcats on Sunday, with a 6-3 victory, their first Pac-10 win of the season. Stanford did it with great pitching-- their starter went 5 and allowed 3 runs with 6 K's, and their relief pitcher went 4 innings, only allowing one hit.
Who to root for: If you're a Beaver fan, you're definitely rooting for Washington State in this series. Arizona swept the Beavers a few weeks ago, so the Beavers need everything they can get to gain ground on the Wildcats. Arizona is sitting comfortably tied for first place, and the Cougars could help the Beavers out if they roughed up the 'Cats a little.
Stanford at California
Who has the edge: Cal, definitely. The Bears are lead on the mound by Tyson Ross, the guy who gave the Beavers quite a struggle on Friday of last week. The Beavers managed to pull off that game with a 1-0 win, but it wasn't easy. Stanford has to come out clicking on all cylinders like they were Sunday against Arizona if they want a chance against Cal. Who to root for: From a "I want Oregon State to win the Pac-10 perspective", you're going to want Stanford to do some damage here. But in the overall scheme of things, the Beavers won their series against Cal, and unless the Bears make some sort of run in the coming weeks, it shouldn't be that big of a deal. If OS starts playing their brand of baseball, Cal shouldn't be in the Beavers way. So I'm calling this as a toss up.
USC at Washington
Who has the edge: This should be an easily matched series, but I give the edge to the Trojans. The Trojans will be the visiting team, but I don't think that will be much of a factor. They Huskies have had some injuries to overcome, like catcher Joey Dunn (he's back now), but their regular starting right fielder Andy Lentz suffered a season ending blow to the knee in practice and will be out for the season. (Anyone think that this ugly stuff had anything to do with it?)
Who to root for: Even though the Huskies are currently above us in the Pac-10 standings, when have I ever told you to root for the Trojans? I'll probably get beat up for this, but go for the Huskies.
Surprisingly to me, the two other Pac-10 teams not mentioned above are also playing non-conference opponents. Doesn't really matter who you root for in these, they don't have much to do with the overall scheme of things...
Cal State Northridge at UCLA
Louisiana-Lafayette at No. 11 Arizona State
I'll revisit this post on Monday night to wrap up the week.