April 11, 2006
Malibu, Calif. -
THIS WEEK: The Pepperdine baseball team returns to action later this week when it opens a three-game West Coast Conference (WCC) series at Santa Clara beginning Thursday.
The Waves and Dons open play with a 7 p.m. contest at Schott Stadium on Thursday. The series continues with a 7 p.m. contest on Friday and concludes with a 1 p.m. start on Saturday. The series was moved up a day in honor of Easter Sunday.
Pepperdine is the two-time defending WCC champion and is seeking its 17th conference title since 1968. The Waves will be attempting to win a third straight league championship for the first time since winning three in a row from 1991-93.
Pepperdine has won three straight WCC titles on two other occasions, accomplishing the feat during the 1974-76 campaigns and again from 1987-89.
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. All the action also can be followed live Gametracker.
NATIONAL POLLS: Pepperdine is unranked for the first time this season.
A LOOK AT THE WAVES: Pepperdine begins this weekend's action with a 21-15 overall record and is 2-4 in WCC play. The Waves are trying to reverse their fortunes of the last two weeks that has seen them lose four of six games to conference rivals Loyola Marymount and San Francisco.
Pepperdine lost two out of three to both the Lions and the Dons.
SAN FRANCISCO RECAP: Pepperdine lost two of three to San Francisco at Eddy D. Field Stadium over the weekend. The Waves fell in the opener, 6-3, before evening the series with a 5-3 win on Saturday. The Dons won Sunday's rubber game, 2-0. In Friday's opener, USF received eight solid innings from junior left-hander Scott Cousins, who scattered seven hits, three runs (one earned), walked one and struck out six. The Dons were spurred on by a four-run third inning to take a 4-0 lead. On Saturday, junior Justin Tellam doubled home two home runs in the bottom of the eighth inning to break a 3-3 that lifted the Waves to the win. Freshman right hander Brett Hunter pitched two scoreless innings of relief to earn the victory. Senior right hander Patrick McGuigan tossed a complete-game six-hitter to lift the Dons to a series-clinching win on Sunday. McGuigan, who did not walk a batter and struck out three. USF scored to support a two-run third inning.
ABOUT SANTA CLARA: Santa Clara enters this weekend's series with a 20-14 overall record and 3-3 mark in West Coast Conference (WCC) play. The Broncos won two out of three at Gonzaga last weekend. After losing Friday's series opener 5-1, Santa Clara came back to register 7-6 and 8-7 victories and capture the series. The Broncos are batting .300 as a team and have a collective ERA of 5.23. Santa Clara has eight players batting .300 or better and is led by freshman outfielder Matt Long, who is batting .363. Freshman left-hander Matt Wickswatt is the Broncos top pitcher, possessing a 6-1, 2.52 ERA. Head coach Mark O'Brien is in the midst of his fifth season and has compiled an overall record to date of 131-127 (.508).
SERIES VERSUS SANTA CLARA: Thursday's game between Pepperdine and Santa Clara will mark the 125th meeting between the two programs with the Waves leading the all-time series, 77-45-2. The two teams met six times last season and Pepperdine won five of the six meetings.
FRIDAY'S STARTER: Senior left-hander Paul Coleman will make his 11th appearance and start of the season on Thursday. He is currently 4-3 with a 2.45 ERA. Coleman has worked 69.2 innings, allowed 50 hits, 24 runs (19 earned), walked 23 and struck out a team-high 61. He suffered his second straight last Friday against San Francisco after pitching 5.1 innings, allowing five hits four runs, walked two and struck out five. Coleman has 229 career strikeouts to rank 10th on Pepperdine's all-time career strikeout list. He also has made 83 career appearances and is fourth all-time in Pepperdine history. Coleman has a career record of 16-11 and 4.11 ERA in 265.0 innings.
SATURDAY'S STARTER: Sophomore right hander Barry Enright will make his 13th appearance and 12th start of the season on Saturday. He is 6-1 with a 4.73 ERA. Enright received a no-decision in his last outing on Saturday against San Francisco. He worked seven innings, allowed eight hits, three runs and struck out a career-high eight batters. He currently has a streak of six consecutive wins, including victories No. 15 Long Beach State, No. 2 Oregon State, No. 8 Tulane and No. 4 Cal State Fullerton. On the season, he has pitched 66.2 innings, surrendered 78 hits, 41 runs (35 earned), walked 13 and struck out 42. Enright's career record stands at 16-2 with a 4.66 ERA while pitching 164.0 innings over 30 appearances.
SUNDAY'S STARTER: TBA
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 212 and is 16 shy of current Waves assistant coach Rick Hirtensteiner (1986-89), who completed his career with 228 runs scored. Uribes also is No. 3 on the school's all-time base hits (294) list needs one shy of tying Hirtensteiner for second place. He is also six away from becoming just the second player in Pepperdine history to total 300 hits. Uribes is also second in career at-bats with 906. Paul Faries (1984-87) is the all-time leader with 921. He ranks No. 6 on the school's all-time games played list with 223 and three games-played shy of tying Scott Shockey (1986-89) for sixth place. He has played in every contest during his Pepperdine career, a streak of 223 straight. The senior second baseman is also tied with Jere Longenecker (1980-83) for eighth on the career doubles list with 46 and is one stolen base away from tying Longenecker for 10th all-time with 68.
TRACY MOVING UP HOME RUN LIST: Junior All-American catcher Chad Tracy is tied with G.J. Raymundo (1998-99) for fifth place on Pepperdine's all-time home run list with 29. He is one home run shy of tying Jared Pitney (1998-2001) for fourth place with 30. Tracy hit 12 home runs during his first two seasons in Malibu and has five thus far in 2006. The junior catcher also is tied for 10th place on the school's all-time doubles list with 45.
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 is fourth in all-time appearances with 83.
MISCELLANEOUS NOTES: Pepperdine is 6-3 against ranked opponents...The Waves are currently batting .283 and has a 3.66 team ERA...Pepperdine ranks sixth in the West Coast Conference (WCC) in batting and is third in pitching. Over their last 15 games, the Waves are batting .306 as a team...The Waves are 14-6 when scoring first and 16-5 when holding the opponent to three runs or less...Pepperdine is 16-2 when leading after six innings, 18-2 when ahead after seven innings and 19-0 when leading after eight innings...The Waves are 4-5 in one-run games...Senior second baseman David Uribes has been Pepperdine's hottest hitter over the last 15 games, batting .413 (26-for-63) with a team-high 15 runs scored, four doubles and six stolen bases...During his career-high 14 game hitting streak that was snapped Sunday against San Francisco, Uribes posted a .444 average (26-for-59) 15 runs scored, four doubles, a home run, eight RBI and six stolen bases...For the season, Uribes is second on the club with a .347 average and tops the team with 33 runs scored, 51 hits and 17 stolen bases...Senior first baseman Nick Kliebert leads the Waves with a .348 average and is batting .396 (19-for-48) over his last 14 games...Junior catcher Chad Tracy is third on the team with a .333 average, second with five home runs and tops the club with 29 RBI...Senior left-hander Paul Coleman leads the pitching staff with a 2.45 ERA and 61 strikeouts in 69.2 innings over 10 appearances...On the season, he has allowed 50 hits, 24 runs (19 earned), walked 23, struck out 61 and limited opposing batters to a .208 average...Freshman right hander Brett Hunter tops the staff with 14 appearances, five saves and has struck out 35 in 36.0 innings while holding opponents to a .230 average.
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.
FIVE FORMER WAVES ON MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL OPENING DAY ROSTERS: As Major League Baseball held its Opening Day on Monday, a total of five former Pepperdine players were on Opening Day rosters. Dan Haren (Oakland Athletics), Noah Lowry (San Francisco Giants), David Newhan (Baltimore Orioles), Will Ohman (Chicago Cubs) and Matt Wise (Milwaukee Brewers) were on big league rosters. A sixth player, Randy Wolf opened the season on the Philadelphia Phillies' disabled list.
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. The Waves are currently 21-15 in 2006 and are nine wins away from posting their 29th consecutive 30-win campaign.
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 WCC record of 151-65 (.699) over the last seven-plus seasons, 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 122-93-1 (.567) 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 1,730-1,216-22 (.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 835-448-11 (.649), including a 453-157-2 (.742) 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 92-70 (.568) 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 719-276-12 (.720) and registering just one losing season in 33 years. Since 1997, the Waves are 196-94 (.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 14-7 in 2006.
WAVES ON THE ROAD: Since 1997, Waves are 145-137 (.514) 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 7-8 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.