#11 UCLA (26-9, 11-6) at Oregon State (25-12, 7-7) at 1:05 PM PDT - Goss Stadium at Coleman Field, Corvallis, OR - KEJO 1240 AM & KPOJ 620 AM - Video and Audio Stream on Beaver Nation Online, for a fee
UCLA and Oregon St. wind up their weekend series today.
Yesterday afternoon, Oregon St. coach Pat Casey crossed things up, and started Freshman LHP Jace Fry (3-2, 2.80 ERA) instead of Dan Child, who has been the Saturday starter much of the season, and it paid off big time for the Beavers on a beautiful afternoon for baseball at Goss Stadium.
Fry had fired a 3 hit, no walk performance at Arkansas Pine Bluff last Saturday in the Beavers' 7 inning 12-2 win over the Golden Lions, getting the win without any relief help. And though he only struck out 2 batters, he only needed 64 pitches to put the win in the books.
Against UCLA, Fry again went the distance, this time 9 innings, and it took 107 pitches, but though he allowed 6 hits, he also struck out 6, and led Oregon St. to the 3-0 win. After Josh Osich's no-hitter in last year's Saturday game, the Bruins have now been shut out 2 years in a row in the middle game of their series with the Beavers.
Fry's 4th win of the season lowered his ERA to 2.23.
While Fry was confusing UCLA batters with ROOT Sports cameras watching, Ryan Dunn was having a great day at the plate for Oregon St. Dunn went 3 for 3 at the plate, including an RBI double in the third inning that drove in Michael Conforto for the first of 2 runs in the at bat, and a solo homer well over the tall left field fence on a full count to lead off the 6th inning.
Tyler Smith went 3 for 4 at the plate to up his average to .425, re-assume the lead in the conference batting average race over UCLA's Tyler Heineman, who was 0 of 3 against Fry. However, Smith was thrown out at second twice, once trying to stretch a single to left into a double, and once stealing, or the Oregon St. advantage might have been even bigger.
UCLA will use RHP Zack Weiss (2-1, 3.48 ERA) to start the game today, while Oregon St. will counter with Child. The RHP sophomore is 4-2, with a 1.93 ERA, after scattering 6 hits across 7 1/3 innings in Monday's 5-0 shutout of the Pilots in Portland, striking out 9 without walking anyone in the process. Child got the win after Matt Boyd and Tony Bryant disposed of the last 5 Pilots in order.
Neither Boyd nor Bryant have done anything more than warm up in the Beaver bullpen since then, so Oregon St.'s pitching is primed for the game.
Weiss went the first 6 innings in the Bruins' 6-2 win at Arizona last Sunday, striking out 5 against 5 hits, and walking 2, as well as giving up both of the Wildcats' runs. Both were earned, coming in the 3rd and 4th innings. It took 91 pitches to get through those first 6 innings against Arizona.
Oregon also lost Saturday, 8-3 to Washington St., so the Ducks remained tied with the Bruins, but now in second place in the Pac-12, after Arizona beat Washington 4-1 at Husky Ballpark, re-assuming the lead in the conference race. Stanford edged Arizona St. 8-7 on the "Sunken Diamond" at Palo Alto, so the Cardinal and Beavers remain tied for fifth, but pulled within 1/2 game of the Sun Devils, with the Cougars right on their heels. Oregon St. and Stanford are within 3 1/2 games of first place, and both have 3 games in hand on all 4 of the teams ahead of them.
California clobbered Utah 9-0, and though they are in 8th place in the conference race, they are only 4 1/2 games back in the tight Pac-12 race.
It's going to be the warmest, sunniest day so far this year, a classic baseball day, with a classic Pac-12 matchup between the Bruins and the Beavers.