Baseball Preview: vs. Bakersfield [May 13]
May 12, 2014
By: Matt Burkholder
Game 51: Bakersfield Roadrunners (23-28, 14-10 WAC) at Fresno State Bulldogs (25-25, 12-15 MW)
First Pitch: May 13 - Tue: 6:35 p.m.
Radio: AM 790 ESPN "The Deuce"
After having the weekend off, the Bulldogs return to action to play the team they last faced on May 7, Bakersfield, setting up a rematch to avenge a 6-3 loss at Hardt Field.
The projected pitching matchup will replicate last Wednesday's nonconference game as RHP Tim Borst (3-4, 2.91 ERA) is scheduled to duel against RHP Hayden Carter (2-1, 6.21 ERA). In the CSUB win, Carter earned his first career complete game as he held the Bulldogs to three runs on eight hits.
Prior to playing five-straight games on the road that produced one win, Fresno State swept a five-game homestand during the week of April 22-27. Overall, the Bulldogs own a six-game win streak at Beiden Field and are 18-8 at home this season while going 7-17 on the road.
On Thursday, May 8, Jordan Luplow was named to the USA Baseball 30-man midseason Golden Spikes Award watch list. Luplow currently leads the Bulldogs in nearly every major statistical category. Through 50 regular season games he owns a .378 batting average, best in the Mountain West conference, 73 hits, 20 doubles, eight home runs, 40 RBIs, 119 total bases, .617 slugging percentage and .465 on-base percentage - all team bests. He also has a team-low 20 strikeouts with a minimum 100 at bats.
Bakersfield hosted New Mexico State to close out its home schedule at Hardt Field last time out. The Runners won their WAC conference series opener 13-1 on Friday and went 13 innings with the Aggies to forge out a 7-6 victory Saturday. Bakersfield lost 19-7 in the Sunday series finale. Bakersfield is 23-28 overall and 14-10 in conference action, which puts them in a fourth-place tie in the WAC among the 10-team league.
Tuesday's contest is a rescheduled date due to the originally scheduled game between Fresno State and Bakersfield being postponed due to inclement weather on Feb. 26.
Following Saturday's season finale on May 17, Fresno State will play in the Mountain West baseball tournament, May 21-25. It is being held in Las Vegas, Nev. by host UNLV.
Seeding for the tournament became a bit clearer over the weekend for the Bulldogs as they were assured to be a No. 5 seed or better in the MW tournament, as San Jose State dropped beneath the 15-loss mark at Air Force last weekend. Fresno State is guaranteed two games in the tournament and will avoid the tournament sudden death play-in game that is played between the No. 6 and 7 seeds to open the tournament. The Bulldogs currently sit as the No. 5 seed at 12-15 in the MW with three conference games remaining. San Diego State and Nevada share identical 15-12 conference records. Mathematically, Fresno State can still reach as high as the No. 3 seed behind No. 1 New Mexico and No. 2 UNLV with three wins over SDSU and three Nevada losses to UNLV this upcoming weekend. Tie-breakers are determined by head-to-head matchups.
"Catch the Wave"- The official home of the Fresno State Bulldogs is 940 AM ESPN Radio.