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Ben Wetzler Pac-12 Pitcher of Week, Oregon St. Unanimous #1

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Oregon St.'s Ben Wetzler claimed his first ever Pac-12 Pitcher of the Week Award with a 2 hit, 9 strikeout complete game shutout of Washington.
Oregon St.'s Ben Wetzler claimed his first ever Pac-12 Pitcher of the Week Award with a 2 hit, 9 strikeout complete game shutout of Washington.

After a distracting week dealing with the "Wetzler affair", and a disappointing series opening 4-2 loss Friday afternoon to Washington, Oregon St. responded with back to back complete game shutout wins over the weekend. As a result, the Beavers are now the unanimous #1 in this week's college baseball polls, for the first time ever exclusive of the post season after their CWS championships, and Ben Wetzler has been named the Pac-12 Pitcher of the Week.

Wetzler had to beat out teammate Jace Fry, who fired his 4th complete game win at Washington Saturday, but did allow 7 hits, and actually let some Huskies get into scoring position.

Wetzler never let anyone past first base, and kept every leadoff hitter off the bases in his Sunday 2 hitter, striking out 9 in the process. It's Wetzler's first ever Pac-12 Pitcher of the Week honor. Fry has already claimed the honor 3 times this season.

Collegiate Baseball already had the Beavers atop their poll, but taking the series against the still consensus top 10 Huskies, coupled with former #1 Virginia losing 2 of 3 in their ACC series to Wake Forest, prompted the Baseball America poll, Kendall Rogers' Perfect Game list, and the Assistant Sports Information Directors that vote for their Coaches in the USA Today Top 25 poll to all elevate Oregon St. to the top.

Washington is still a consensus top 10 team, with the Huskies at #8 in the Baseball America and Coolegiate Baseball polls, and #6 according to Perfect Game. Only the USA Today poll dropped the Huskies out of the top 10, to #13.

Oregon St. will meet Oregon on Tuesday evening a 7 PM, before heading to Los Angeles for this weekend's series at USC.

The Ducks, despite beating Pacific and then sweeping UCLA, which got them to the 40 win mark for the season, didn't get back into the Baseball America Top 25, or onto the Perfect Game list, but are up to #16 from #18 on the Collegiate Baseball list, and also moved up 2 positions to #15 in the USA Today poll.

Arizona St. is the other ranked Pac-12 team, back into 2 of the polls, at #23 in the Perfect Game Top 25, and #21 on the USA Today list.

The only other ranked team from the west is Cal-Poly, after the Mustangs went 4-0 last week, and swept Cal-St. Northridge to win the Big West Conference, after Cal-Irvine lost first place when the Anteaters were swept by Fullerton St.

Cal-Poly is #5 in the Baseball America, Perfect Game, and Collegiate Baseball polls, and #4 on the USA Today list. The Mustangs have concluded their regular season, and may have re-solidified a "National Seed".

More Pac-12 TV

Winning gets you on at least limited availability TV, and Beaver fans not traveling with the team to Eugene or LA can see all of the games. The Pac-12 Network already had Tuesday's 7 PM game, Friday afternoon's 4 PM start, and Sunday's game at Noon on their schedule, but have opted to pick up Saturday's game against the Trojans as well, and so the game has been pushed back from the original 2 PM scheduled start to a 4 PM start.

Andy_Wooldridge@yahoo.com