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Oregon State Baseball: 2018 Pac-12 Civil War Preview

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The Beavs host the Ducks for three games that count toward their Pac-12 records.

NCAA Baseball: College World Series-LSU vs Oregon State Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports

A convincing series win over Missouri State moved the Beavs up a bit in the national rankings this week, but they still have a decent bit of work in front of them in order to get back on top of the Pac-12. A few wins over archrival Oregon would certainly help that effort.

While the Ducks are a relatively average team this season, you can’t take your rival lately.

A few Beavs have been playing especially well in the past few weeks with both Adley Rutschman and Trevor Larnach making the Golden Spikes watch list. Larnach also earned Pac-12 Player of the Week honors alongside Luke Heimlich for his performance against Missouri State. Larnach hit two homers and five RBIs and scored six runs in that two-game series.

Plus, (and I know we’ve been saying this for a few weeks at this point) will we FINALLY see Nick Madrigal back on the field?

Starting pitchers are subject to change

How To Watch

All games of this series will be carried on the Pac-12 Network.

How To Listen

For a full list of radio stations across the state that will carry the games, check the game notes provided by OSU athletics. OSUBeavers.com will also have the audio all weekend.

Schedule

Game 1: Thursday, April 19th - 6:00 PM PT

Game 2: Friday, April 20th - 4:00 PM PT

Game 3: Saturday, April 21st - 4:00 PM PT

Opponent Outlook

The Ducks come into this weekend with a 19-15 record overall and a 6-9 record in Pac-12 play. They come back to their home state this weekend after a 2-1 series loss to UW in Seattle. Prior to that, they dropped a game to Portland at home in extras. But before that, they were no-hit by Washington State, which we poked a little fun at on Twitter.

They’re currently in seventh place in the league after being picked to finish eighth in the league in the preseason poll. They’re in a similar place in pretty much every offensive team statistical category up to this point. They have had some success in baserunning, however, with 34 stolen bases so far. On the pitching side, they’re bringing some heat with a league-leading 302 strikeouts. The downside of those arms is they’re also leading the league in passed balls with 14. Opponents have taken advantage and stolen 29 bases against them.

Kenyon Yovan, arguably the Ducks’ best MLB prospect, is having another commendable year as a pitcher as well as an infielder. He boasts a 2.59 ERA, which is top ten in the Pac-12, with 55 strikeouts. That K count is second to only Luke Heimlich up to this point. Yovan also has 5 saves on the year.

Second baseman Kyle Kasser is the Ducks best bet offensively. He’s leading the team with a .321 batting average with 44 hits, 21 runs, and nine RBIs. But like I mentioned, their offense, as a whole, isn’t a lot to write home about.

In Conclusion

The Missouri State series showed that Oregon State’s offense is still as good as it has been the last couple years and the pitching seemed woken up a bit. But if there’s an offense in this league where it’s probably safe to still be working out the kinks against, it’s this Oregon team. Beavs should win this one.