Baseball Season Enters Final Weekend
Big West Conference Baseball Release – Week 15
BIG WEST TID BITS
• Titans Capture Another Title: Cal State Fullerton wrapped up the 2018 Big West regular season championship on Sunday with an 11-4 victory over CSUN. The Titans improved to 16-5 in conference play – four games in front of second place Cal Poly and UC Irvine – with just three games remaining. In earning the Big West’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament, CSF qualified for postseason for the 40th time in program history – and will be making its 27th straight NCAA appearance.
• Historical Significance: CSF’s dominance continues with the 2018 trophy in possession. Since 1999, the Titans have captured 14 of the 20 championships (12 outright, 2 shared).
• Versus the Nation: Cal State Fullerton ranks No. 29 in team ERA (3.51)...the Titans recorded their sixth shutout of the season in a 3-0 win over CSUN on Saturday...they are tied for No. 12 nationally in shutouts...Cal Poly sits at 23rd in the country with 550 hits...CSUN’s 63 home runs this season is tied for 17th-best in the country and is the most by a Big West squad since Cal State Fullerton had 65 in 2010...CSUN’s Albee Weiss is tied for No. 8 in the NCAA with 18 bombs, and he needs one more to enter the school’s all-time single-season top 10...Long Beach State’s Clayton Andrews is the nation’s toughest to strike out, fanning just six times in 203 at-bats...as a pitcher, Andrews is tied for No. 24 with 107 strikeouts...UC Irvine’s Andre Pallante leads the Big West and is tied for No. 20 nationally with 110 strikeouts...Pallante also sports the nation’s sixth-lowest ERA (1.43)...Hawai'i closer Dylan Thomas is tied for seventh with 14 saves, needing one more to become the school’s all-time single-season leader...UH’s Johnny Weeks has laid down 20 sac bunts this year to rank No. 2 in the country.
• Midseason Watch Lists
Pitcher of the Year Award
UC Irvine’s Andre Pallante
UC Riverside’s Cole Percival
John Olerud Two-Way Player of the Year
UC Irvine’s Nick Anderson
Long Beach State’s Clayton Andrews
NCBWA Stopper of the Year
Cal State Fullerton’s Brett Conine
Long Beach State’s Chris Rivera
Hawaii’s Dylan Thomas
• One of the nation’s biggest baseball rivalries takes center stage on live TV as Cal State Fullerton and Long Beach State battle on ESPNU Thursday, May 24 and FOX Sports West Saturday, May 26 at Blair Field. Thursday’s first pitch is slated for 5:00 p.m. and Saturday’s is set for 2:00 p.m. It’s a rematch of the 2017 best-of-three NCAA Super Regional at Blair Field, which the Titans won to advance to their 18th College World Series.
• The 2018 NCAA Division I Baseball Championship Selection Show, with regional pairings and site assignments, will be revealed in a live, one-hour telecast on ESPNU at 9:00 a.m. (PDT), Monday, May 28.
• UC Irvine head baseball coach Mike Gillespie will retire at the end of the 2018 season and will be replaced by associate head coach Ben Orloff, UCI athletic director Mike Izzi announced. Gillespie has amassed 392 wins since joining UCI in 2008. Under Gillespie’s guidance, UC Irvine made five trips to the NCAA postseason, including a College World Series (2014), the year he was named NCBWA Coach of the Year.