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Pac-12 Weekend Preview (March 15th-17th)

Pac12Logo**Stanford has a bye

Oregon State at Arizona

No.4 Oregon State travels to No. 21 Arizona to kick off the 2013 Pac-12 conference schedule. The Beavers dropped a mid-week game against Tuesday, against San Francisco, but were able to get back to their winning ways on Wednesday by a final of 6-5. Oregon State enters the weekend with a 16-1 record and is a perfect 4-0 this season away from home. The Arizona Wildcats enter the weekend with a 15-5 record. During the week the Wildcats swept the Butler Bulldogs, both finals by the score of 14-2. Arizona has a 14-4 record at home this season and is winding up an 18-game home stand. Entering the series, the Beavers have the best ERA in the Pac-12 at 1.43 while Arizona holds an ERA of 3.39. Offensively the Wildcats hold a .316 team batting average. Oregon State ranks right below Arizona with a 2.90 average. Shortstop Tyler Smith of OSU was named the Pac-12 Player of the Week last week after going 7-15 with a home run and six RBI. This series should be the premiere matchup to start conference play.

Series Prediction: Oregon State takes two of three.

Friday, March 15 – 6:00 p.m. PT
Oregon State- Dan Child RHP (3-1)

Arizona- Konner Wade RHP (2-0)

Saturday, March 16- 6:00 p.m. PT

Oregon State- Matt Boyd LHP (3-0)

Arizona- James Farris RHP (3-1)

Saturday, March 17- 12:00 p.m. PT

Oregon State- Andrew Moore RHP (4-0)

Arizona- Cody Moffett, LHP (2-0)

 

Washington at UCLA

UCLA, ranked No. 7 in the NCWBA poll, will host the Washington Huskies over the weekend. The Bruins are 12-3 on the season and are 7-2 at home. They are coming off a midweek victory against Cal State Northridge by a final of 5-4. The Huskies, on the other hand, are coming into this weekend reeling. Their midweek game against Portland was postponed, but the Huskies were swept at LSU last weekend. Washington is 4-11 on the season and is 2-9 away from home. The Huskies rank last in the Pac-12, with a team ERA of 4.79. Offensively the Huskies come into the weekend with a .245 batting average, which ranks eighth in the league. UCLA comes into the series with a team ERA of 2.38, which sits at fourth in the conference. On offense UCLA has .261 batting average, which puts the Bruins right ahead of Washington.

Series Prediction: UCLA sweeps Washington.

Friday, March 15 – 6:00 p.m. PT
UCLA – Adam Plutko, RHP, (2-0)

Washington- Austin Voth RHP (2-2)

Saturday, March 16 – 2:00 p.m. PT
UCLA – Nick Vander Tuig, RHP, (2-2)

Washington- Tyler Davis RHP (0-2)

Sunday, March 17 – 1:00 p.m. PT
UCLA – Grant Watson, LHP, So. (3-0)

Washington- Nick Palewicz RHP (2-3)

Oregon at USC

The No. 12 ranked Oregon Ducks will travel down to USC this weekend to open each team’s conference schedule. Oregon is 13-5 and is 5-2 on the road this season. The Ducks are coming off a midweek two-game sweep of Texas State. USC is 7-9 on the season but are 5-4 at home. The Trojans lost Tuesday 9-4 against Pepperdine and are riding a three-game losing streak coming into the weekend. For Oregon, the key to weekend will be finding some offensive consistency. The Ducks rank lost in the conference in team batting average (.224). Oregon is fifth in the Pac-12 with a team ERA of 2.86. On the other side of the field, USC sits fifth in the conference with a .281 team batting average. The Trojans rank ninth though with a team ERA of 4.31. USC will also be without one of their best players in Dante Flores who is out with a knee injury.

Series Prediction: Oregon wins two out of three.

 Friday, March 15 – 6:00 p.m. PT

Oregon- Jake Reed, RHP, (1-3)

USC- Bob Wheatley, LHP (2-1)

Saturday, March 16 – 2:00 p.m. PT
Oregon- Tommy Thorpe, LHP, (2-2)

USC- Wyatt Strahan, RHP (0-0)

Sunday, March 17 – 12:00 p.m. PT
Oregon- Cole Irvin LHP, (3-0)

USC- Kyle Twomey, LHP (1-1)

 

Washington State at Arizona State

The Washington State Cougars head down to Tempe to take on the No. 19 ranked Arizona State Sun Devils this weekend. The Cougars are 9-6 overall but are just 2-5 on the road. They are coming off losing three out of four last weekend at UTSA. Arizona State has been arguably the best story so far in the Pac-12. Predicated to finish near the middle of the conference, Arizona State has an impressive 11-2-1 overall record. The Sun Devils are 6-1 at home this season. The Sun Devils are coming off a Tuesday victory against New Mexico and are riding an eight-game winning streak (tied Gonzaga on March 3). Washington State leads the conference in team batting average with a .323 mark, but the Cougars rank tenth in team ERA with a 4.32 line. Arizona State sits at fourth with a 2.88 batting average. The Sun Devils also rank third in team ERA with a 2.15 mark. RHP Trevor Williams is coming off being named the Pac-12 Pitcher of the Week. Williams posted his second-consecutive complete game in the 4-0 victory Saturday night. Williams struck out five and allowed three hits.

Series Prediction: Arizona State sweeps Washington State

Friday, March 15- 6:30 p.m. MT
Arizona State – Trevor Williams, RHP (3-0)

Washington State- Joe Pistorese LHP (1-1)

Saturday, March 16- 6:30 p.m. MT
Arizona State -Ryan Kellogg, LHP (3-0)

Washington State- Scott Simon RHP (0-0)

Sunday, March 17- 12:30 p.m. MT
Arizona State –Adam McCreery, LHP (1-1)

Washington State- Tanner Chleborad RHP (2-2)

California at Utah

California will travel to Utah to start their 2013 conference schedule. The Bears are 10-7 on the season but are just 2-4 on the road so far. The good news for the Bears is that they are coming off a midweek win against Santa Clara and riding a five-game winning streak. Utah is 8-6 to start the season, but have yet to play a game at home. The Utes took three out of four from Saint Mary’s last weekend. California comes in to the weekend with a team batting of 2.70, which ranks sixth in the conference. On the mound, California ranks eighth in the conference with a 4.06 ERA. Utah ranks tenth in the conference with a team batting average of .233, but are sitting at seventh in the conference with a 3.40 ERA.

Series Prediction: Cal takes two out of three.

Friday, March 15- 6:00 p.m. MT

California- Justin Jones LHP (0-1)

Utah- Brock Duke RHP (2-0)

Saturday, March 16- 3:00 p.m. MT

California- Kyle Porter LHP (0-0)

Utah- Tanner Banks LHP (1-3)

 Sunday, March 17- 1:00 p.m. MT

California-Michael Theofanopoulos LHP (0-1)

Utah- Joe Pond RHP (2-1)

 

Pac-12 Power Rankings

 

  1. Oregon State
  2. UCLA
  3. Arizona State
  4. Arizona
  5. Oregon
  6. Stanford
  7. California
  8. Washington State
  9. USC
  10. Utah
  11. Washington