UCLA Baseball Ranked No. 1 in Baseball America's Preseason Poll

Jan. 22, 2008

DURHAM, N.C. - The UCLA baseball team has been ranked No. 1 in Baseball America's preseason top-25 poll, marking the Bruins' highest preseason ranking by any publication in program history. The Bruins opened the 1997 season ranked No. 2 by Collegiate Baseball and No. 5 by Baseball America.

The preseason ranking by Baseball America marks the third time in which UCLA been ranked No. 1. During the 1979 season, UCLA first reached the No. 1 spot (Collegiate Baseball). In 1997, the last season in which the Bruins reached the College World Series, both Baseball America and Collegiate Baseball tabbed UCLA as the No. 1 team the week of March 3.

Including UCLA, four Pac-10 teams are represented in Baseball America's 2008 preseason top-25 poll, including Arizona (2), Oregon State (7) and Arizona State (9). Rounding out the top five teams are Vanderbilt, Mississippi and North Carolina. UCLA will play 13 games against teams ranked among the preseason top-25.

Led by fourth-year head coach John Savage, UCLA returns seven starting position players and two starting pitchers from a 2007 squad that reached the NCAA Super Regionals for the first time since 2000.

The Bruins return four of their five All-Pac-10 selections from one year ago, including juniors Brandon Crawford (.335, 7 HR, 55 RBI), Cody Decker (.307, 14 HR, 57 RBI) and Jermaine Curtis (.329, 4 HR, 33 RBI) and sophomore Gabe Cohen (.345, 10 HR, 36 RBI).

In addition, the Bruins' lineup will feature junior Ryan Babineau (.272, 5 HR, 37 RBI), who has played in more career games (117) than any other Pac-10 catcher, and senior second baseman Alden Carrithers, who led the Bruins with a .352 average one year ago.

Sophomore southpaw Gavin Brooks (6-7, 4.47 ERA, 98 K) and junior left-hander Tim Murphy (5-4, 5.68 ERA, 96 K) will spearhead the Bruins' starting rotation this spring. Sophomore Charles Brewer returns to the staff after having pitched in just four games in 2007, due to illness and injury. Junior Jason Novak (3-0, 4.83, 38 K) and sophomore Garett Claypool (3-1, 3.54 ERA, 35 K) return to action on the mound, as UCLA's pitching staff welcomes the addition of six talented arms (five freshmen, one JC transfer).

In all, UCLA has brought in 12 newcomers, a recruiting class ranked No. 7 in the country by Baseball America and No. 5 nationally by Collegiate Baseball.

In 2007, the Bruins posted a 33-28 record, culminating with their first appearance in the NCAA Super Regionals since 2000. UCLA totaled a 14-10 mark in the Pac-10, finishing in third place, before advancing to the NCAA Tournament for the second consecutive season.

BASEBALL AMERICA 2008 PRESEASON TOP-25 POLL

Rank Team 2007 Record
1 UCLA 33-28
2 Arizona 42-17
3 Vanderbilt 54-13
4 Mississippi 40-25
5 North Carolina 57-16
6 Missouri 42-18
7 Oregon State 49-18
8 Michigan 42-19
9 Arizona State 49-15
10 Miami 37-24
11 San Diego 43-18
12 South Carolina 46-20
13 Long Beach State 39-20
14 Rice 56-14
15 Baylor 35-27
16 Texas 46-17
17 Virginia 45-16
18 Fresno State 38-29
19 Louisiana-Lafayette 45-17
20 Wichita State 53-22
21 Texas A&M 48-19
22 Tulane 34-26
23 Clemson 41-23
24 East Carolina 40-23
25 Old Dominion 35-24

EVENT INFORMATION
UCLA Health Sponsor - Event Information
Friday, Feb 19
vs. North Carolina
Los Angeles, CA
L, 0 - 4
Saturday, Feb 20
vs. North Carolina
Los Angeles, CA
W, 6 - 5
Sunday, Feb 21
vs. North Carolina
Los Angeles, CA
L, 5 - 14
Tuesday, Feb 23
vs. Long Beach State
Los Angeles, CA
L, 1 - 10
Friday, Feb 26
at Cal Poly
San Luis Obispo, CA
W, 7 - 6
Saturday, Feb 27
at Cal Poly
San Luis Obispo, CA
W, 19 - 0
Sunday, Feb 28
at Cal Poly
San Luis Obispo, CA
L, 2 - 6
Tuesday, Mar 01
at UC Santa Barbara
Santa Barbara, CA
L, 6 - 11
Friday, Mar 04
vs. Mississippi State
Los Angeles, CA
W, 2 - 1
Saturday, Mar 05
vs. Oklahoma
Los Angeles, CA
W, 4 - 2
Sunday, Mar 06
vs. USC
Los Angeles, CA
W, 5 - 3 (14)
Tuesday, Mar 08
at CSUN
Northridge, CA
L, 12 - 20
Friday, Mar 11
vs. Texas
Los Angeles, CA
L, 5 - 7
Saturday, Mar 12
vs. Texas
Los Angeles, CA
W, 5 - 4
Sunday, Mar 13
vs. Texas
Los Angeles, CA
W, 6 - 3
Friday, Mar 18
vs. Washington State
Los Angeles, CA
W, 5 - 2
Saturday, Mar 19
vs. Washington State
Los Angeles, CA
W, 6 - 5 (12)
Sunday, Mar 20
vs. Washington State
Los Angeles, CA
W, 11 - 2
Thursday, Mar 24
at Arizona
Tucson, AZ
L, 1 - 6
Friday, Mar 25
at Arizona
Tucson, AZ
W, 4 - 3
Saturday, Mar 26
at Arizona
Tucson, AZ
L, 5 - 6
Tuesday, Mar 29
vs. Cal State Fullerton
Los Angeles, CA
L, 7 - 14
Friday, Apr 01
at California
Berkeley, CA
L, 1 - 9
Saturday, Apr 02
at California
Berkeley, CA
L, 2 - 8
Sunday, Apr 03
at California
Berkeley, CA
L, 3 - 5
Tuesday, Apr 05
vs. CSUN
Los Angeles, CA
L, 1 - 4
Thursday, Apr 07
vs. Stanford
Los Angeles, CA
L, 1 - 4
Friday, Apr 08
vs. Stanford
Los Angeles, CA
W, 6 - 5
Saturday, Apr 09
vs. Stanford
Los Angeles, CA
L, 2 - 8
Tuesday, Apr 12
vs. Loyola Marymount
Los Angeles, CA
W, 6 - 5
Friday, Apr 15
at Washington
Seattle, WA
W, 1 - 0
Saturday, Apr 16
at Washington
Seattle, WA
L, 7 - 8
Sunday, Apr 17
at Washington
Seattle, WA
L, 4 - 7
Tuesday, Apr 19
at Pepperdine
Malibu, CA
W, 10 - 6
Thursday, Apr 21
vs. Oregon
Los Angeles, CA
W, 6 - 3
Friday, Apr 22
vs. Oregon
Los Angeles, CA
W, 4 - 2
Saturday, Apr 23
vs. Oregon
Los Angeles, CA
W, 13 - 1
Tuesday, Apr 26
at Cal State Fullerton
Fullerton, CA
L, 7 - 10
Friday, Apr 29
at Utah
Salt Lake City, UT
L, 4 - 6
Saturday, Apr 30
at Utah
Salt Lake City, UT
L, 4 - 9
Sunday, May 01
at Utah
Salt Lake City, UT
W, 10 - 3
LIVE NOW
at Long Beach State
Long Beach, CA
Friday, May 06 - 6:00 PM PST
vs. UC Irvine
Los Angeles, CA
Saturday, May 07 - 2:00 PM PST
at UC Irvine
Irvine, CA
Sunday, May 08 - 1:00 PM PST
vs. UC Irvine
Los Angeles, CA
Tuesday, May 10 - 6:00 PM PST
vs. Pepperdine
Los Angeles, CA
Friday, May 13 - 7:00 PM PST
vs. USC
Los Angeles, CA
Saturday, May 14 - 7:00 PM PST
vs. USC
Los Angeles, CA
Sunday, May 15 - 6:00 PM PST
vs. USC
Los Angeles, CA
Tuesday, May 17 - 6:00 PM PST
vs. UC Santa Barbara
Los Angeles, CA
BRUINS ON PAC-12 NETWORKS