|Baseball Hosts Hawai'i In WAC Showdown|
The Spartans return home this weekend after some recent success on the road to host Hawai’i in their first Western Athletic Conference series at home. San Jose State is off to a 3-0 start in WAC play for the first time since 2005 and has won eight of its last 10 and four in a row.
90.5 FM KSJS and The GoldZone on sjsuspartans.com is the radio broadcast home for San Jose State baseball in 2012. Friday night and Sunday afternoon’s games will be broadcast live concurrently on KSJS and The GoldZone. Jon Wold and Jess Knaster will have the call Friday night, while Jeff Bowe and Mike Marqua team up for Sunday’s broadcast. Saturday’s game will be streamed live on The GoldZone with Knaster and Raj Davis doing play-by-play and color.
Live stats are available free of charge for all San Jose State home games and a majority of road contests. Click on the Live Stats icon at the top of the San Jose State Athletics web page at SJSUSpartans.com and select the game. Fans can also access the live stats from the Schedule/Results section off the baseball page.
SCOUTING SAN JOSE STATE
The Spartans (18-14, 3-0 WAC) picked up its seventh consecutive road win Tuesday with a victory at No. 10 Stanford. It was the first time they had beaten the Cardinal since 2007.
Matt Lopez has been hot of late, batting .588 in the team’s last four games with three multi-hit performances. Nick Schulz has resumed his streaky ways, hitting safely in four straight after his 16 game streak ended.
Six Spartans pitchers with at least eight appearances carry ERAs below 3.00. Johnny Melero leads the starting rotation with a 2.51 ERA in 43 innings pitched. Zack Jones has 40 strikeouts and seven saves. Mike Aldrete leads the staff with five wins in 12 appearances.
The Rainbows (21-15, 2-1 WAC) have won seven of their last 10 games after splitting a four-game series at home last weekend with Saint Mary’s (Calif.). Hawai’i began its WAC season April 5-7 with a series win at home over Fresno State.
The Rainbows’ offense is led by three hitters’ batting over .300. Collin Bennett leads the way with a .328 average and 22 RBIs. Pi’ikea Kitamura (.315) and Stephen Ventimilia (.305) are also above the .300 mark.
Brent Harrison leads the Rainbows out of the bullpen with a 0.81 ERA in 14 appearances. Lefty Jarrett Arakawa has been Hawai’i’s top starter with a 4-3 record, 1.75 ERA and 48 strikeouts.
CRACKING THE CARDINAL
Michael Gerlach’s eighth-inning, two-out RBI single Tuesday allowed San Jose State to defeat No. 10 Stanford for the first time since 2007, as the Spartans won their seventh straight road game with a 3-2 win over the Cardinal at Sunken Diamond.
Two consecutive four-pitch walks with one out started the Spartans’ rally in the eighth. San Jose State tried a double steal but had the lead runner thrown out, leaving Matt Lopez at second with two down. That’s when Gerlach sent a 2-0 pitch into center field, scoring Lopez and giving the Spartans the lead.
BREAK OUT THE BROOMS
San Jose State got off to a sweeping good start to its 2012 WAC season over the weekend with a three-game sweep at Fresno State. It was the first time the Spartans had swept the Bulldogs since 2002 and the first time they had done it in Fresno since 2000. The sweep moved the Spartans to 3-0 in the WAC for this first time since 2005.
HOT START TO WAC PLAY
San Jose State is 3-0 in the Western Athletic Conference for the first time since 2005. That season, the Spartans hosted No. 7 Rice and outscored the Owls 19-10 in a three-game sweep at Municipal Stadium. The last time San Jose State began WAC play 4-0 was in 1999 when the Spartans swept its first two WAC series of the season against New Mexico and Hawai’i for a 6-0 mark.