Feb. 15, 2012
By Jennifer Jones
FRESNO, Calif.- The Fresno State baseball team begins its 2012 season at home on Beiden Field Feb. 17-19. The Bulldogs face the Bulldogs of Butler in a four-game series slated to begin Friday night at 6:05 p.m. Fresno State will be looking to continue its success on the diamond with a group of fresh faces in the lineup after it saw 10 players drafted into Major League Baseball organizations.
Each game of the series will be broadcast on AM 940 KYNO with play-by-play from Paul Loeffler and color analysis by Ray O'Canto. Broadcasts begin one half hour before first pitch.
SERIES PREVIEW: GAMES 1-4
Fresno State Game Notes
BULLDOG TO BULLDOG
Butler University is located in Indianapolis, Ind. Members of the Horizon League, the Bulldogs posted a 23-28-1 record in 2011 under head coach Steve Farley, who is in his 21st season and has a 484-593-2 record at Butler. This is the first meeting between the two programs.
'DOGS PICKED FIRST IN COACHES POLL
Western Athletic Conference coaches voted Fresno State top 'Dog for the seventh-straight year. The Bulldogs received 33 points and four first-place votes in the preseason poll. San Jose State finished a close second with 31 points and three first-place votes. Hawai'i finished third.
IT'S KIND OF A BIG DEAL
With a 584-394-1 overall record, head coach Mike Batesole is just 16 wins away from reaching 600 for his career. He has amassed over 300 wins at Fresno State in nine season at the helm and is 169-102 overall in Western Athletic Conference play.
6-FOR-6 AND COUNTING
Fresno State baseball has won top Western Athletic Conference honors for six-straight years. Four of the years saw the Bulldogs took home both the regular season and tournament titles. The streak of WAC championships is the second longest in conference history.
Sophomore Aaron Judge was named a 2012 Preseason Honorable Mention All-American by College Baseball Insider. The 6-7, 255-pound outfielder was also a 2011 Freshman All-American by Collegiate Baseball Newspaper. He is expected to move to center field and bat third this season.
OLD 'DOGS TEACH NEW TRICKS
Fresno State welcomed over 22 former Bulldogs back to the diamond in the annual Alumni Game on Feb. 11. Both sides were held scoreless for the first five innings. The Alums broke sophomore Tyler Linehan's no-hitter and shutout when Danny Muno (2008-11) singled to left in the top of the sixth inning to score Terance Frazier (1988-92). The score was tied twice before the Bulldogs pulled out the 9-3 win, thanks in part to a seven-run eighth inning.
THE YOUNG AND THE TALENTED
The total number of freshmen and sophomores just edges out the juniors and seniors on the 2012 roster, 17-15. But the young squad is expected to provide many underclassmen starters, including local talents freshmen Jordan Luplow and Chris Mariscal, the latter of whom was drafted in the 41st round of the 2011 draft by the Baltimore Orioles.
Fresno State had a team GPA over 3.0 at the end of the 2011 season with eight student-athletes earning Academic All-WAC. Overall, 53 student-athletes have earned academic honors from the WAC under head coach Mike Batesole's watch.
BACK IN ACTION
Redshirt junior Trent Garrison went down with a season ending injury in the first game of 2011. After nearly a year of rehab, the Murrieta, Calif. native is ready for his return to the diamond. Garrison played in 59 games, earning 55 starts in 2010. He hit .339 with 64 hits and 46 RBI, recording 11 doubles and five home runs.
FRESH FACES COMPLIMENT PROVEN BATS
Fresno State's 32-man roster includes 12 newcomers. Among them are: two juniors, two sophomores and eight freshmen. They join three classes of Bulldogs who have earned top WAC honors each of their years in the program.
AM 940 KYNO HOME OF FRESNO STATE BASEBALL
Fresno State Athletics announced that AM 940 KYNO will continue to be the flagship station of Bulldog baseball in 2012. Paul Loeffler returns for his 12th season as the voice of Bulldog baseball. He is joined by Ray O'Canto, who is entering his fifth year as an analyst. The duo's pregame shows start a half hour before first pitch.
BULLDOGS IN THE PROS
There have been 48 Bulldogs drafted since head coach Mike Batesole took the helm in 2002, including four first round picks. 2011 saw a record setting 10 'Dogs chosen in the MLB draft. There are currently three former Bulldogs on big league rosters: Matt Garza (Chicago Cubs), Doug Fister (Detroit Tigers) and Casey McGehee (Pittsburgh Pirates).
BOYS OF SUMMER
There are 12 Bulldogs on the 2012 roster who participated in summer baseball leagues. Sophomore Aaron Judge was named Alaska Baseball League Top Prospect. Senior Chris Mallory, junior Justin Haley and sophmore J.D. Salles won the Alaska League with the Peninsula Oilers. Redshirt senior Gene Escat earned a Far West League championship with the Humbolt Crabs.
FORMER BULLDOGS IN MLB PLAYOFFS
Doug Fister helped keep the Detroit Tigers postseason hopes alive in 2011 by leading them to their first win of the American League Championship Series against the Texas Rangers. Casey McGehee made a run for the World Series with the Milwaukee Brewers, as they faced the eventual champion St. Louis Cardinals. Fister will remain with the Tigers while McGehee was traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates for the 2012 season.
RECRUITING CLASS RANKED 19TH IN COUNTRY
Baseball America has been ranking the nation's top NCAA Division I recruiting classes for over a decade. This year they announced Fresno State had the 19th-best recruiting class in the country. The newcomers join a program that has won a national championship, had six Western Athletic Conference championship seasons in the past six years and has a rich history of success.
HOLDING ONTO HOMEGROWN TALENT
The Bulldogs boast a 32-man roster of all California natives. Fresno State has made a point of pulling local talent into the fold. With nearly a third of the roster hailing from Fresno County, the 'Dogs have succeeded in doing just that.
'DOGS RANKED 35TH IN PRESEASON POLL
Coming off its sixth Western Athletic Conference championship season, the Fresno State baseball team was ranked No. 35 on College Sports Madness' top 44 college baseball teams list. The Madness also ranked the Bulldogs as the top team in the WAC.
EIGHT SIGN NATIONAL LETTERS OF INTENT FOR 2013
Head coach Mike Batesole announced the signing of eight players, all of whom will graduate from high school in the spring of 2012. This is the most decorated and accomplished class in recent memory. It is anchored by the best players in the San Joaquin Valley. The previous three classes were ranked among the top in the country. In 2009, the 'Dogs were ranked 10th nationally, while the 2010 and 2011 classes were ranked 28th and 19th respectively.
"We Are Your Team!" Check out the action on game day from AM 940 KYNO, the flagship station for Bulldog baseball. Follow us on Facebook (fresnostateathletics) and Twitter (@FSAthletics).
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