March 1, 2012
LOS ANGELES - The No. 17 UCLA baseball team faces Sacramento State at Jackie Robinson Stadium for a three-game series beginning Friday at 6 p.m. The Bruins (5-3) have won their last three games and own a 3-1 record in the all-time series against the Hornets (4-4).
Friday, March 2 - 6 p.m.
Sacramento State - Hunter Greenwood, RHP, So. (1-1, 4.66)
UCLA - Adam Plutko, RHP, So. (0-1, 4.35)
Saturday, March 3 - 2 p.m.
Sacramento State - Tanner Mendonca, RHP, So. (2-0, 0.56)
UCLA - Nick Vander Tuig, RHP, So. (1-0, 5.91)
Sunday, March 4 - 1 p.m.
Sacramento State - Zach Morgan, RHP, Jr. (0-1, 12.00)
UCLA - Zack Weiss, RHP, So. (0-1, 4.50)
LISTEN LIVE ONLINE (click here)
Each game of UCLA's home games will feature a live audio broadcast online, free of charge, at uclabruins.com. In addition, UCLA will broadcast select road games throughout the season. UCLA's John Ramey and Tim Wilhelm will have the call live from Jackie Robinson Stadium this weekend as the Bruins take on Sacramento State. In addition, fans can follow online through GameTracker, which provides pitch-by-pitch updates of the game in progress on uclabruins.com.
TICKETS AND PARKING
Tickets to UCLA home baseball games at Jackie Robinson Stadium cost $7 for adults and $5 for youth (ages 16 and under). Parking on the West L.A. VA Grounds costs $8. Jackie Robinson Stadium is located on Constitution Ave. just west of the 405 freeway and Sepulveda Blvd. The Bruins have played at Jackie Robinson Stadium since the ballpark's founding in 1981.
BRUINS HOST HORNETS
UCLA hosts a three-game non-conference series against Sacramento State this weekend (March 2-4). The Bruins own a 3-1 all-time record in the series against the Hornets. UCLA won back-to-back games against Sacramento State in 1990 before going 1-1 in a two-game swing against the Hornets in 1992. Sporting a 4-4 record entering this weekend's series, Sacramento State dropped a 13-10 decision to Pacific on Tuesday night.
UCLA WINS THIRD STRAIGHT
Six UCLA pitchers combined to limit Long Beach State to one run and two hits in Tuesday's 9-1 victory at Jackie Robinson Stadium. Grant Watson allowed one run and one hit in four predetermined innings to secure his second win of the season, and four UCLA hitters had two hits in a 12-hit attack. Pat Gallagher went 1-for-2 with a career-high three RBI for the Bruins. UCLA led 5-0 after the first inning, opening an 8-0 cushion after three frames. The Bruins took advantage of two Long Beach State errors, two walks and one hit batter in the first inning.
GELALICH HONORED BY PAC-12
Jeff Gelalich earned Pac-12 Conference Player of the Week acclaim Tuesday, after having gone 7-for-14 with three home runs and seven runs in UCLA's four games last week. The junior outfielder from La Verne, Calif., enters this weekend's series with a team-best .419 batting average, 12 runs and seven RBI. Gelalich has hit safely in each of the Bruins' eight games this season, totaling two hits in each of the last three contests. He became UCLA's first Pac-12 Player of the Week selection since May 2010, when then-freshman Beau Amaral was honored.
FRIDAY'S MOUND MATCHUP
Adam Plutko will make his third start of the season in Friday night's series opener against Sacramento State. The sophomore right-hander from Upland, Calif., has gone 0-1 with a 4.50 ERA in two starts, recording 13 strikeouts and five walks in 10.1 innings. Plutko absorbed the loss last Friday, allowing five runs and five hits in 3.1 innings. In UCLA's season opener (Feb. 17), he struck out 10 hitters in seven scoreless innings (no-decision).
JUNIORS LEADING UCLA'S OFFENSE
UCLA's roster feature a plethora of talented, experienced junior position players and that has certainly shown in the first two weeks of the season. Four of UCLA's top six hitters (by batting average) are from that junior class, a group that helped lead the Bruins to the 2010 College World Series as freshmen. Jeff Gelalich (.419), Cody Keefer (.364) and Tyler Heineman (.346) have hit safely in each of UCLA's eight games.
Nick Vander Tuig and Zack Weiss will start on the mound for the Bruins on Saturday and Sunday, respectively. Vander Tuig did not get a decision last Saturday as the Bruins defeated Baylor, 9-3. The sophomore right-hander from Oakdale, Calif., limited the visiting Bears to three runs and four hits in 5.2 innings. Likewise, Weiss did not get a decision on Sunday as UCLA overcame a 6-4 deficit with four runs in the eighth inning for an 8-6 win.
The Bruins' bullpen has combined for 30 appearances, logging a 3-1 record, 3.82 ERA and two saves in 33.0 combined innings. Ryan Deeter has pitched in seven games, posting a 1.59 ERA in 5.2 innings while limiting the opposition to a .167 batting average. David Berg has eight strikeouts in 7.2 innings, having registered a 1-0 record and 2.35 ERA in five games. Scott Griggs has gone 1-0 with two saves along with a 1.50 ERA.
BRUINS GOING YARD
Jeff Gelalich became the first UCLA player to hit two home runs in one game on Feb. 21 (at Cal State Northridge) since Cody Regis accomplished the feat June 12, 2010. Regis crushed two homers in an extra-inning victory over Cal State Fullerton in an NCAA Super Regional game. The Bruins' 19-7 win at Cal State Northridge marked the first time UCLA hit at least three homers in one game since June 5, 2010 (NCAA Regional win over LSU).
UCLA will play USC at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday, March 13, with first pitch slated for 6:30 p.m. Earlier that afternoon, UC Irvine will face Pepperdine at 2 p.m. The Dodgertown Classic began in 2010, with UCLA securing a 6-1 victory over USC before 14,588 fans. Last season, USC blanked the Bruins, 2-0. Tickets to this year's event cost $5 in advance (when purchased through UCLA's Central Ticket Office), or $12 when purchased on the day of the game. Parking at Dodger Stadium that day is free and concessions will be offered at a discounted price.
Head coach John Savage has produced 51 MLB Draft selections in his seven seasons at UCLA. Last June, right-handers Gerrit Cole (Pittsburgh) and Trevor Bauer (Arizona) became the first and third overall selections in the MLB Draft. Three of Savage's pitchers have already been promoted to the major leagues (Hector Ambriz, David Huff and Josh Roenicke). Most recently, three-year UCLA shortstop Brandon Crawford was promoted to the San Francisco Giants in May 2011. Of the 51 draft selections, 16 have been selected in the first 10 rounds.
EYEING THE BIG LEAGUES
As major league Spring Training opens in Florida and Arizona this month, UCLA has 11 former players who have been invited to major league camp. Seven of those 11 players are currently listed on 40-man major league rosters. The full list of players includes Hector Ambriz (Cleveland), Trevor Bauer (Arizona), Charles Brewer (Arizona), Gerrit Cole (Pittsburgh), Brandon Crawford (San Francsico), Ben Francisco (Toronto), David Huff (Cleveland), Casey Janssen (Toronto), Rob Rasmussen (Miami), Josh Roenicke (Colorado) and Chase Utley (Philadelphia).