March 9, 2006
Malibu, Calif. -
THIS WEEK: The nationally-ranked Pepperdine baseball team continues its season-long seven-game homestand later this week when it welcomes Oklahoma State to Eddy D. Field Stadium for a three-game series.
The series opens with a 2 p.m. on Friday and continues with a 1 p.m. games on Saturday and Sunday.
Following the weekend series, the Waves are off until Friday, March 17, when they begin a three-game series against Dartmouth in Malibu.
WAVES ON THE INTERNET: A total of 42 regular-season games will be broadcast live on the Internet at www.PepperdineSports.com with live video webcasts for home games. Bill Schindler will handle the play-by-play. There will be no Internet broadcasts available for this weekend's games. However, the action can be followed live at www.Pepperdinesports.com via Gametracker.
NATIONAL POLLS: Pepperdine is ranked No. 23 by Baseball America, No. 24 by Collegiate Baseball and No. 28 by the National Collegiate Baseball Writer's Association (NCBWA).
A LOOK AT THE WAVES: Pepperdine is currently 10-9 on the season and has won two in a row, including a 6-1 victory over UCLA Tuesday afternoon at Eddy D. Field Stadium. Prior to Tuesday's win, the Waves dropped two of three at San Diego State over the weekend. The Aztecs won the first two games by scores of 3-1 and 13-3 before Pepperdine registered an 11-7 come-from-behind victory on Sunday.
UCLA RECAP: Senior right hander James Johnson struck out a career-high seven batters in a career-high eight innings of work as the Waves defeated UCLA 6-1 Tuesday afternoon. Johnson (1-1) allowed just three hits and retired the final 13 batters he faced. The senior right hander's only difficulty came in the fourth inning when UCLA loaded the bases with two outs. However, Johnson retired Sean Smith on a popup to end the inning and did not allow another Bruin to reach base. In eight innings of work, Johnson allowed three hits, walked one and struck out seven in a 99-pitch performance. Pepperdine took advantage of control problems by UCLA left-hander Brian Schroeder (2-1) in the third inning as the Waves sent nine batters to the plate and scored four times to take a 4-0 lead. Schroeder issued back-to-back one-out walks to senior second baseman David Uribes and sophomore shortstop Danny Worth before allowing a run-scoring single to junior designated hitter Chad Tracy. Junior catcher Justin Tellam walked to load the bases and Worth scored the second run of the inning after sophomore right fielder Donald Brown was hit by a pitch to force home a run and end Schroeder's day. Jason Novak relieved Schroeder and immediately issued a four-pitch walk to senior first baseman Nick Kliebert that forced home Tracy. Junior center fielder Luke Salas drove in the inning's final run with a sacrifice fly to left field.
ABOUT OKLAHOMA STATE: Oklahoma State enters the weekend with a 9-2 mark and has won eight of its last and two in a row and sweeping a two-game series from Arkansas-Little Rock earlier this week by scores of 14-8 and 16-6. The Cowboys are batting .368 as a team and have a collective earned-run average of 3.82. Oklahoma State has nine players batting .300 or better, including four with a .400 or better average. Junior shortstop Shelby Ford tops the club with a .458 average, four home runs and 21 RBI. Sophomore left-hander Charles Benoit is the ace of Oklahoma State's pitching staff, possessing a 2-0 record and 0.00 ERA. He has appeared in three games, starting two, and struck out a team-high 16 in 16.0 innings. Head coach Frank Anderson is in the midst of his third season and has led the Cowboys to an 81-51 (.614) overall record.
SERIES VERSUS OKLAHOMA STATE: Friday's series opener will mark the first-ever meeting between Oklahoma State and Pepperdine. The Cowboys will be the first Big 12 opponent the Waves have played since 2001 when they lost two of three at Missouri.
FRIDAY'S STARTER: Senior left-hander Paul Coleman will make his sixth appearance and start of the season on Friday. He is currently 2-1 with a 2.90 ERA. Coleman has worked 31.0 innings, allowed 26 hits, 13 runs (10 earned), walked 14 and struck out a team-high 29. His last outing came on Friday at San Diego State where he suffered his first loss of the season after pitching 7.1 innings, allowing seven hits, three runs (two earned), walking three and striking out seven. He enters Friday's start seventh on Pepperdine's all-time appearance list with 78 and has a career record of 14-9 and 4.45 ERA in 226.1 innings and is three strikeouts shy of 200 for his career.
SATURDAY'S STARTER: Sophomore right hander Adam Olbrychowski will make his sixth appearance and start of the season Saturday against Oklahoma State. He is currently 2-3 with a 5.08 ERA. His last outing came on Saturday at San Diego State where he suffered the loss. Olbrychowski worked 4.1 innings, allowed four hits, four earned runs and struck out two. Overall, he has worked 28.1 innings, allowed 44 hits, 20 runs (16 earned), walked eight and struck out 10.
SUNDAY'S STARTER: Sophomore right hander Barry Enright will make his seventh appearance and start of the season on Sunday. He is 3-1 with a 5.88 ERA. Enright's last outing came at San Diego State where he received a no-decision after pitching 4.0 innings, allowing six hits, five earned runs and one walk. His three victories have come against No. 15 Long Beach State, No. 2 Oregon State and No. 8 Tulane. On the season, he has pitched a team-high 33.2 innings, surrendered 39 hits, 24 runs (22 earned), walked nine and struck out 21. Enright's career record stands at 13-2 with a 4.95 ERA while pitching 131.0 innings over 24 appearances.
COLEMAN AND TRACY ON BROOKS WALLACE AWARD WATCH LIST: Senior left-hander Paul Coleman and junior catcher Chad Tracy were among a group of 120 players named to the 2006 Brooks Wallace Award Watch List. The Brooks Wallace Award is presented annually by the College Baseball Foundation to the national college baseball player of the year. Nebraska third baseman Alex Gordon won the award in 2005. Both Coleman and Tracy are coming off outstanding seasons in 2005 in which they were named the West Coast Conference's (WCC) Pitcher of the Year and Player of the Year, respectively. The Wallace Watch will be trimmed to 12 semi-finalists by late May. Then the selection committee will narrow the list to three finalists following the NCAA Super Regionals at a press conference in Omaha, Neb.. The finalists, their head coaches, and their parents will be invited to Lubbock, TX, for a schedule of special events tied to the award banquet, which will again be nationally televised by the Fox Sports Network.
TRACY NAMED PRESEASON ALL-AMERICAN: Pepperdine junior catcher Chad Tracy was named a first-team preseason All-American by Collegiate Baseball, second teamer by the National Collegiate Baseball Writer's Association (NCBWA) and a third pick by Baseball America. Tracy is coming off a tremendous sophomore campaign in which he was named second team All-American by Collegiate Baseball and was tabbed the West Coast Conference's (WCC) "Player of the Year" and a first team All-WCC selection. Starting all 64 games, Tracy led the WCC with a .367 average, 94 hits, 12 home runs, 22 doubles and 61 RBI. Tracy, who was invited to last summer's USA Baseball National Team Trials, is also expected to be a candidate for the Johnny Bench Award that is awarded to college baseball's top catcher.
PEPPERDINE TABBED AS "SLEEPER" TO REACH COLLEGE WORLD SERIES: Coming off a 41-23 season in which it advanced to the championship game of the Long Beach Regional and returning 24 letterwinners from last year's squad, the Pepperdine baseball team was chosen as the sleeper to make an appearance in the 2006 College World Series, according to Baseball America's Will Kimmey. Kimmey picked the eight favorites to reach Omaha this June, with Pepperdine listed as a contender to steal one of those top spots. Defending national champion Texas was picked to repeat in 2006. The Longhorns return their top four starting pitchers from last season. Among the other teams chosen by Baseball America to advance to Omaha were Rice, Clemson, Florida, Oregon State, Cal State Fullerton, Nebraska, and Florida State.
MORE PRESEASON ACCOLADES: Several Pepperdine baseball players garnered preseason accolades and honors in the most recent issue of Baseball America. Left-hander Paul Coleman was named the 11th-best pro prospect among college seniors, while center fielder Adrian Ortiz was tabbed the 18th best sophomore prospect, catcher Chad Tracy was ranked 25th among juniors and rookie Chase d'Arnaud was selected the 36th-best prospect among freshmen. Tracy and Coleman were also named to the WCC's preseason all-conference team along with sophomore more shortstop Danny Worth and junior first baseman/catcher Justin Tellam in a poll of league coaches conducted by Baseball America. Tellam begins his first year at Pepperdine after transferring from UNLV. The battery of Tracy and Coleman were also picked to repeat as WCC "Player of the Year" and "Pitcher of the Year", respectively.
URIBES CLIMBING CAREER CHARTS: Senior second baseman David Uribes is working his way up Pepperdine's career offensive lists. Uribes is second on Pepperdine's all-time runs scored list with 197 and is 31 shy of current Waves assistant coach Rick Hirtensteiner (1986-89), who completed his career with 228 runs scored. Uribes also is No. 4 on the school's all-time base hits (268) list and fourth in career at-bats with 836. Uribes is three hits shy of tying current Waves' head coach Steve Rodriguez for third place.
TRACY MOVING UP HOME RUN LIST: Junior All-American catcher Chad Tracy in ninth place on Pepperdine's all-time home run list with 25. He is one home run shy of tying Scott Shockey (1986-89) for eighth place with 28. Tracy has hit 12 home runs in each of his first two seasons in Malibu. He clubbed his first of 2006 against Long Beach State earlier this season.
COLEMAN MOVING UP SCHOOL APPEARANCE LIST: Reigning West Coast Conference (WCC) "Pitcher of the Year" Paul Coleman is making a steady climb up the Pepperdine appearance list. The senior left-hander has appeared in 78 games and is in sixth place on Pepperdine's all-time list. Friday's start will tie him with Steve Montgomery (1990-92) for fifth place.
MISCELLANEOUS NOTES: Pepperdine is 5-3 against ranked opponents...The Waves are currently batting .266 as a team and have a collective ERA of 4.25...Pepperdine is 7-4 when scoring first...The Waves are 7-2 when holding the opponent to three runs or less...Pepperdine is 7-1 when leading after six innings, 9-1 when ahead after seven innings and 9-0 when leading after eight innings...The Waves are 2-2 in one-run games...Sophomore Adrian Ortiz, who hit safely in the Waves first six games, tops the club with a .414 average, 12 hits and four stolen bases (4)...Ortiz has missed the last 12 games due to a left wrist injury sustained against Long Beach State on February 14...Senior David Uribes, who is currently in the midst of a six-game hitting streak, is batting .325 and leads the club in runs scored (18), hits (25) and is a perfect 11-for-11 in stolen bases to lead the West Coast Conference...Uribes is also three doubles shy of moving into a ninth-place tie on Pepperdine's career doubles list and needs seven stolen bases to crack the Waves' Top 10 list...He is also three games shy of moving into a tie for 10th place on the program's all-time games played list...During his six-game hitting streak, Uribes is batting .385 (10-for-26) with six runs scored and six stolen bases...Junior catcher Chad Tracy also has been swinging the bat well over the last six games, posting a team-leading .458 (11-for-24) average with a team-high 11 hits...He is currently batting .308 with a home run and 14 RBI...Senior left-hander Paul Coleman leads the pitching staff with a 2.90 ERA and 29 strikeouts in 31.0 innings over five appearances...Freshman right hander Brett Hunter tops the staff with seven appearances, three saves and has struck out 21 in 15.1 innings while holding opponents to a .102 average.
FORMER WAVE DAN HAREN NAMED TO TEAM USA ROSTER: Former Pepperdine All-American and current Oakland Athletics pitcher Dan Haren is one of 52 U.S. players named to Team USA's provisional roster for the World Baseball Classic that will be held March 3-20 in the United States, Japan and Puerto Rico. The World Baseball Classic is the first international tournament to boast Major League players and includes such U.S. players as Roger Clemens, Ken Griffey, Jr., Derek Jeter and Alex Gonzalez. The final Team USA 30-man roster will not be determined until five days prior to its first game. Team USA opens play in the World Baseball Classic on Tuesday, March 7 at 2 p.m. local time vs. Mexico at Chase Field in Phoenix, AZ.
Steve Kleen RECEIVES JOHN SCOLINOS AWARD: Steve Kleen, who was named a first team All-American as a senior in 2005, was honored with the 2006 John Scolinos Distinguished Player Award following the Pepperdine baseball team's annual alumni game on January 28. The award, in its second year, is given annually to a Pepperdine baseball player in recognition of exemplary behavior during a season or career in the name of the legendary Scolinos, who was Pepperdine's head coach from 1946-1960. The recipient is honored for demonstrating strong character traits, including humility, resourcefulness, loyalty, honesty, work ethic, Christian behavior and sportsmanship, which contribute to outstanding performance and dedicated efforts both on and beyond the baseball diamond. Cory Brightwell was the first recipient of the award in 2005.
THREE WAVES SELECTED IN 2005 MLB DRAFT: For the 31st consecutive year, Pepperdine had at least one player taken in Major League Baseball's annual amateur draft in 2005. Junior left-hander Paul Coleman was chosen in the ninth round by the Detroit Tigers, while senior utility player Steve Kleen was an 11th round selection by the Oakland A's and senior right hander Kea Kometani was picked in the 15th round by the Texas Rangers. With Kometani's selection in the 15th round, Pepperdine has had players drafted a total of 118 times since the first year of the draft in 1966.
SIX FORMER WAVES ON MAJOR LEAGUE ROSTERS: As teams begin to prepare to open Spring Training, a total of seven former Pepperdine players are on Major League Baseball 40-man rosters. Dan Haren (Oakland Athletics), Noah Lowry (San Francisco Giants), David Newhan (Baltimore Orioles), Will Ohman (Chicago Cubs), Dane Sardinha (Cincinnati Reds), Matt Wise (Milwaukee Brewers) and Randy Wolf (Philadelphia Phillies) will be heading to Arizona and Florida with their big league teams.
WAVES POST ANOTHER 20-WIN CONFERENCE SEASON: After taking two of three from San Francisco over the weekend, Pepperdine registered its seventh 20-win West Coast Conference (WCC) season in the last nine years and 16th in the last 19 seasons while playing a 30-game league schedule. The Waves completed WCC action with a conference-best 21-9 mark. Pepperdine also posted a conference-record 25-5 in 2001.
WAVES POST 28TH STRAIGHT 30-WIN SEASON: For the 28th straight season, Pepperdine posted a 30-win season in 2005. The Waves posted a 41-23 overall mark. Dating back to the 1978 season, the Waves have totaled at least 30 wins every year, 40 wins 12 times and posted two-50-win campaigns.
PEPPERDINE DOMINANT FORCE IN WCC: Since the West Coast Conference (WCC) implemented divisional play in 1999, Pepperdine has been the conference's dominant team, compiling a seven-year WCC record of 149-61 (.709), an average of 21.3 wins per season, captured seven divisional crowns, two conference titles and appeared in the WCC Championship Series each year of its existence. Over that same time period, San Diego has the second-best league mark, registering a 118-91-1 (.564) record, claiming two divisional titles and winning two WCC Championship Series.
WEST COAST CONFERENCE FORMAT CHANGES IN 2006: After seven years of conference play with a two-division format, the West Coast Conference (WCC) will move away from divisional play in 2006 and will play a 21-game round-robin schedule. The first and second place winners will advance to a best-of-three championship series, with the winner being declared the WCC Tournament winner and earning the conference's automatic berth to the NCAA Championships. The three-game series will be played at the site of the first-place finisher.
WAVES CAPTURE 16TH WCC CHAMPIONSHIP: Pepperdine captured its 16th West Coast Conference (WCC) title after taking two of three at Loyola Marymount over the weekend. It marked the Waves second straight after sweeping the Lions last year. Pepperdine's 16 conference titles are the most by any of the eight teams in the league. Since the WCC was re-instituted for baseball prior to the 1985 season, the Waves have either won or shared 12 of the last 21 league championships. Additionally, since the WCC went to a two-division format in 1999, Pepperdine is the only member to appear in all seven conference championship series. Last year's WCC title was the Waves' second straight and third overall since 1999. Pepperdine also captured the conference title in 2001 when it went 42-18 and finished the year with a national Top 20 ranking. Pepperdine captured back-to-back titles for the first time since winning three straight between 1991 and 1993.
WAVES AMONG TOP TEAMS IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA: Since 1979, Pepperdine is the second-winningest program in Southern California, trailing only Cal State Fullerton heading into the 2006 season. The Waves have registered a 1,047-546 (.657) record and made 16 NCAA Tournament appearances during that time. Cal State Fullerton has compiled an overall record of 1,204-511 (.702) and made 22 NCAA appearances. Pepperdine's 16 NCAA Tournament appearances are second behind the Titans and tie USC.
THE PROGRAM: In the midst of its 67th season of intercollegiate competition, the Pepperdine baseball program has compiled an all-time mark to date of 1,719-1,210-22 (.586). The Waves have advanced to the NCAA Championships on 22 occasions, and Pepperdine has participated at the College World Series twice--finishing third in 1979 and winning the national title in 1992. Pepperdine has won 30 or more games in each of the last 28 seasons dating back to 1978, and surpassed the 40-win mark on 12 occasions during that time span. Since the West Coast Conference was re-instituted for baseball prior to the 1985 season, Pepperdine has either won or shared 12 of the last 21 league championships. Dating back to the start of the 1985 campaign, Pepperdine has compiled a cumulative record of 824-442-11 (.649), including a 451-153-2 (.746) mark against league opponents.
Steve Rodriguez: Steve Rodriguez, a former collegiate All-American and a member of Pepperdine's 1992 College World Series Championship team, is in the midst of his third season as the Waves' head coach. Rodriguez was hired on June 18, 2004 after serving as an assistant for four years under Frank Sanchez. Rodriguez has led the Waves to a 81-64 (.559) record, two West Coast Conference (WCC) titles, two NCAA Regional berths and one national Top 25 ranking. He guided Pepperdine to a 30-32 overall record and into the championship game in 2004 Fullerton Regional Championship game, becoming the fifth head coach in program history to lead his club to post-season play in his rookie season, joining Gary Marks (1963), Dave Gorrie (1979), Andy Lopez (1989) and Pat Harrison (1995). In 2005, the Waves compiled a 41-23 overall record, reached the championship game of the Long Beach Regional and concluded the year ranked No. 23 nationally. During Rodriguez' four seasons as an assistant, the Waves compiled an overall record of 145-98 (.597), including an 88-32 mark in WCC play, captured the conference title in 2001 and made NCAA Tournament appearances in 2001 and 2003. Rodriguez, who earned All-American honors in 1991 and 1992, became only the third former Pepperdine player to assume the head coaching duties for the Waves in the program's 64-year history. Gary Marks became the first Pepperdine player to pilot the program when he skippered the program from 1963-67. Gail Hopkins, who played at Pepperdine from 1962-64, coached the Waves during the 1968 season. Rodriguez was a fifth-round draft pick of the Boston Red Sox in 1992 after helping the Waves' to the national championship and being named the WCC's "Player of the Year." He played professionally for seven years with the Red Sox, Detroit Tigers, Los Angeles Dodgers and Montreal Expos organizations. Rodriguez made it to the major league level with the Red Sox and Tigers in 1995. As a sophomore in 1991, Rodriguez batted .419, the second-highest single-season average in school history. His 104 base hits in 1991 are a Pepperdine record, and his .367 career average ranks second all-time in Waves' history.
HOME FIELD ADVANTAGE: Since Eddy D. Field Stadium opened in 1973, Pepperdine has been a tough team to beat at home, compiling an overall record to date of 711-272-12 (.719) and registering just one losing season in 33 years. Since 1997, the Waves are 188-90 (.676) in games played at Eddy D. Field Stadium. The Waves were 9-12 in the inaugural season of 1973 and since then has produced 31 winning seasons in the last 33 years, including a 19-9 record in 2005. The Waves have had 28 straight winning seasons at home. Pepperdine finished 19-9 at home in 2005 and are 6-3 in 2006.
WAVES ON THE ROAD: Since 1997, Waves are 142-135 (.513) in games played on the road. Pepperdine completed the 2005 campaign with a 22-14 road record. The Waves have registered winning road records in six of the last nine seasons. Pepperdine is 4-6 in 2006.
ON THE WEB: For updated information concerning Pepperdine athletics on the World Wide Web, please bookmark the following address: http://www.PepperdineSports.com.
FOR MORE INFORMATION: For more information on the baseball program, or to arrange interviews with players and the coaching staff, please contact Al Barba at the Pepperdine Sports Information Office by calling (310) 506-4455.