Baseball Preview: vs. San Diego State [May 15-17]
The Bulldogs take a seven-game home winning streak into their final three-game series at Beiden Field of 2014
May 14, 2014
By: Matt Burkholder
Games 52-54: San Diego State (35-17, 15-12 MW) at Fresno State Bulldogs (26-25, 12-15 MW)
Fresno State Game Notes
San Diego State Game Notes
First Pitch: May 15-17 - Thu: 6:35pm, Fri: 6:35pm, Sat: 2:05 pm
Stadium: Beiden Field
Dimensions: 330 (LF), 400 (CF), 330 (RF)
All-Time Series: Fresno State leads 87-86
Last Meeting: SDSU defeated FS, 1-0 (2014)
Radio: AM 790 ESPN "The Deuce" (Thu. & Fri.)
AM 940 ESPN (Sat.)
Play-by-play: Paul Loeffler
Analyst: Bryan Marsoobian
Video: Mountain West Network
Live Stats: GoBulldogs.com
Fresno State closes the regular season vs. San Diego State, May 15-17, with a chance to move as high as the No. 3 seed in the Mountain West tournament.
Projected pitching matchups -
Thu., RHP Jordan Brink (4-2, 2.49 ERA) vs. RHP Bubba Derby (6-3, 2.72 ERA)
Fri., RHP Tim Borst (3-4, 2.91 ERA) vs. RHP Mark Seyler (8-4, 3.92 ERA)
Sat., TBA vs. LHP Mike RoBards (5-4, 4.32 ERA)
Saturday is Senior Day, prior to first pitch Sr. Jake Alvarez will be honored.
Fresno State is currently riding a seven-game win streak at Beiden Field.
Luplow has been named to two national watch lists - Golden Spikes & Gregg Olson.
The Bulldogs played at SDSU March 28-30 and lost two of three.
Manny Argomaniz has hit six home runs in the last 12 games.
Trent Woodward was named to the Capital One Academic All-District team on May 1.
Fresno State vs. San Diego State - The Series
The Bulldogs and Aztecs will pair for the 174th all-time meeting on Thursday night at Beiden Field. Fresno State holds a slim all-time series lead, 87-86, in a series that dates back to 1939. On March 28-30, 2014 the two programs squared off in San Diego for the first series of a home-and-home. The Aztecs won two of three. In the two losses Fresno State was outscored 3-1. In the first year as Mountain West foe the Bulldogs and Aztecs played seven times after just three meetings since the turn of the century. San Diego State edged the Bulldogs 4-3 in those games with the most important win coming at the Mountain West Tournament; the Aztecs defeated Fresno State 4-0 on May 24, 2013 to end the Bulldogs season. SDSU and Fresno State have shared conference affiliation in the California Collegiate Athletics Association (1939-69), the Pacific Coast Athletic Association (1969-78) and the Western Athletic Conference (1992-1999) prior to being reunited in the MW for the 2012-13 season.
Scouting San Diego State
The Aztecs (35-17, 15-12 MW) enter their series vs. Fresno State tied for the No. 3 seed in the Mountain West with Nevada and could finish anywhere from first to fifth in the final standings depending on how the final weekend of the regular season plays out. Similarly to the Bulldogs, San Diego State has had trouble playing on the road. 24 of the Aztecs 35 wins have come at home, while they sit below .500 at 11-12 in games away from Tony Gwynn Stadium this season. SDSU did not play a midweek game this week, the last action the Aztecs saw came last weekend with a home series against UNLV. The Aztecs won two of three games, losing the Friday night opener and rebounded Saturday and Sunday. From behind the dish Ty France leads SDSU with a .364 batting average. He has reached base safely in 28 of the last 29 games. Speedy lead-off hitter Greg Allen leads the MW with 24 stolen bases, which triples the Bulldogs best base stealer Jordan Luplow (8). Closer Michael Cederoth own 19 saves and has been involved in 24 of SDSU's 35 wins. He ranks second in the nation in saves.
Mountain West Tournament Seeding Implications for Fresno State
Seeding for the end of season MW tournament became a bit clearer last weekend for the Bulldogs as they were assured to be a No. 5 seed or better, as San Jose State dropped beneath the 15-loss mark at Air Force last weekend. The Bulldogs currently stand 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 MW 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.
A Look Back at Fresno State at San Diego State, March 28-30
The Bulldogs lost their away series to San Diego State two games to one. In their two losses the 'Dogs were outscored three runs to one. Jordan Brink tossed a no-hit bid into the sixth inning in the Friday night opener and went on to work seven complete innings, allowing just one hit. The Bulldog offense provided just one run for Brink and a new pitcher on the mound, Derick Velazquez, SDSU rallied for two runs in the eighth and won the game 2-1. The 'Dogs won Saturday's game 6-4 thanks to Austin Guibor and Garrett Mundell closing the door late. Guibor hit a pinch-hit two-RBI double in the seventh to put Fresno State in front, Mundell closed the game with three perfect frames to secure the win. In the Sunday rubber match, scoring came at a premium, Jimmy Lambert worked a shutout into the sixth inning, the Aztecs pushed one run across in the frame and it would be all they would as they won the game 1-0 and took the series.
Jordan Luplow Named to Two National Watch Lists
On May 8 Jordan Luplow was named to the prestigious 30-man Golden Spikes Award watch list and a few days later, May 12, the 'Dogs right fielder was named to the Gregg Olson Award watch list. The Golden Spikes Award recognizes the top amateur baseball player in the country while the Gregg Olson Award honors college baseball's "Breakout Player of the Year." 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.
Home Sweet Home Equals Seven-Straight Wins
Dating back to an 8-2 win vs. Cal State Northridge on April 8, Fresno State is winners of seven-straight games at home. After its longest road trip of the season, nine games, Fresno State returned home and swept a five game homestand from April 22-27 and won its most recent game at Beiden Field on May 13 vs. Bakersfield. The Bulldogs are 19-8 at Beiden Field this season while going 7-17 on the road.
Fresno State Set to Honor its Senior
What's being called "Jake Alvarez Day" among teammates and supporters, Fresno State will honor its sole senior, Jake Alvarez, prior to first pitch on Saturday at 2:05 p.m. with the traditional senior day celebration. Alvarez is a home grown product from Fresno and played high school ball at Clovis West. He was apart of back-to-back WAC championship teams as a freshman and sophomore, and was named to the WAC All-Tournament team his sophomore season. Alvarez has played in 163 career games as a Bulldog and has made 92 career starts in the infield.
What Got Into Manny Argomaniz
14 games since Fresno State put 20 runs on the scoreboard at Nevada, Manny Argomaniz' offensive stroke has not lost steam. Over the past 14 games, since April 17, Argomaniz is hitting .397 (23-for-58) with 14 RBIs, six home runs, three doubles, 12 runs scored and has a .759 slugging percentage and an .422 on-base percentage. Mirror that with Argomaniz first 37 games prior to the Reno trip and he is a completely different player. Through those first 37 games, Argomaniz owned a .184 batting average (14-for-76) with 11 RBIs, zero home runs, one double, eight runs scored, and had a .197 slugging percentage and .253 on-base percentage.
The Unconventional Homer
A rarity that has not been seen since 2009 was added to Jordan Luplow's impressive resume this season. For his ninth home run of the season on May 13, last time out vs. Bakersfield, Luplow hit an inside-the-park home run. Luplow roped a ball in the seventh inning that fell a couple feet shy of going over the fence in left-center field, Luplow was about to round second base by the time the ball hit the wall and he made it around to touch all four bases standing up. The last Bulldog to hit an inside-the-park home was Trent Soares on April 5, 2009 - also vs. Bakersfield. Coincidently just a few days prior Gavin Hedstrom hit an inside-the-park homer on March 20, 2009 vs. Loyola Marymount.
Schedule Change for Season Finale against SDSU
Fresno State announced on March 31 that the May 17 (Saturday) season finale vs. San Diego State would be moved to 2:05 p.m., from the originally slated 6:35 p.m. start.
The Bulldogs are 18-12 when they are first to score, and 8-13 when having to come from behind. When the 'Dogs have scored six or more runs this season they are 18-4.
Extra Inning and One-Run Games
In extra-inning games the Bulldogs are up to six following the April 23 16-inning game at home against Cal State Fullerton. The 'Dogs are 3-3 this season in those games. In one-run games, the Bulldogs have been involved in 14 one-run games and are 5-9 in those contests. Southern Illinois leads the NCAA in both categories - Extra innings (12), One-run (23)
Trent Woodward Named to Capital One Academic All-District Team
Woodward was named to the Capital One Academic All-District team on May 1, one of five student-athletes from the Mountain West. It is the first Capital One Academic Honor for the junior from Chino Hills, Calif. Woodward holds a 3.42 GPA in communications, and has started all 51 games for the Bulldogs in 2014.
Bulldogs in the Big Leagues
Fresno State has six former Bulldogs in the majors, five were on an Opening Day roster and No. 6, Justin Miller, was called up to the big show on April 18 by the Detroit Tigers. Tanner Scheppers got the opening day start for the Texas Rangers. Matt Garza is with the Milwaukee Brewers. Casey McGehee is in his first season with the Miami Marlins. Justin Wilson returns to the bullpen as a member of the Pittsburgh Pirates and Doug Fister opens the season on the disabled list for the Washington Nationals.
'Dogs Picked Fourth in Mountain West
The 'Dogs received 25 points as voted upon by league coaches and trail preseason favorites UNM and 2013 MW champion SDSU. The Lobos and Aztecs each received 43 points and three first-place points apiece for a deadlock at the top spot. UNLV picked up 40 points and one first-place vote and are predicted to finish third while Nevada (fifth), Air Force (sixth) and San Jose State (seventh) are all behind Fresno State.
"Catch the Wave" - The official home of the Fresno State Bulldogs is 940 AM ESPN Radio.