Watch Spartans Baseball All Weekend Live

Jacob Valdez has emerged as San José State's leading hitter after 29 games.

April 1, 2014

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SPARTANS GET SECOND CRACK AT WOLF PACK THIS WEEKEND
San José State will square off against the Nevada Wolf Pack for the second time this season in a three-game set at Municipal Stadium beginning Friday April 4 at 6:00 p.m. The Spartans lost the first series 2-1 in Reno, Nev., back on February 28-March 2.












GAMES #30-32

vs. Nevada Wolf Pack (13-13, 6-6 MW)
Municipal Stadium (5,200)
San Jose, Calif.

Saturday, April 5, 1:00 p.m.
LHP Johnny Melero (1-3, 5.40) vs. RHP Jason Deitrich (0-0, 2.97)


Saturday, April 5, Approx. 30 minutes after game 1
LHP Jonathan Hernandez (0-3, 4.76) vs. LHP Barry Timko (2-1, 4.02)


Sunday, April 6, 1:00 p.m.
RHP Logan Handzlik (2-1, 4.42) vs. RHP Michael Fain (3-2, 2.28)


TV: Mountain West Network (All three games)

Radio: KSJS 90.5 FM & KSJS.org (All three games)



YOUTH
GETINFREE

All season long youth under 12 years old will receive free admission to Spartan baseball games. Tickets for adults are just five bucks and can be purchased at the ticket window beginning one and a half hours prior to first pitch. For advanced ticket sales call the Spartan Ticket Office at 408-924-SJTX (7589).

FANPROMOTIONS
Fans of all ages can look forward to fun and engaging action at Spartans baseball games this year.  Each Sunday at home will be "Sunday Fun Day" where fans can collect baseball cards featuring the 2014 Spartans. As part of Sunday Fun Day, fans can bring their cards on the field for postgame autographs. Little League baseball teams get to take the field with the Spartans for the National Anthem on every Sunday Fun Day and run the baseball following the game. To sign your team up for these fun activities call Promotions & Fan Experience Coordinator Dan Hackett at 408-924-1596. California Pizza Kitchen and Rubios are just a few of the in-game sponsors that provide giveaways. Be sure and pick up a Spartan Gameday Program to have a chance at winning.

SPARTANS WEEKEND RECAP
San José State traveled to Washington State and dropped three out of four games to the Cougars at Bailey-Brayton Field. The Spartans took game one, 7-3 behind a clutch pitching performance by Johnny Melero. Melero went 6 1/3 innings allowing three hits on the way to his first win since 2012. The Spartans led in the next three games of the series but in each case, went on to lose the game. The eighth inning seemed to be a problem for SJSU as the Cougars pushed across 15 runs in three games combined during the eighth. San José State is 1-5 against Pac-12 opponents this season.

MOUNATIN WEST OUTLOOK
With San José State (4-8) and UNLV (9-3) taking a break from MW action last weekend, Fresno State (6-6), New Mexico (8-4) and San Diego State (7-5) were on the move in the standings. New Mexico remained in second place after taking 2-of-3 from Air Force. The Lobos trail UNLV by 1.0 game. Fourth place Fresno State went down to San Diego and dropped two against the Aztecs who sit in third.

This Weekend In The MW
Jacksonville State at New Mexico
Air Force at San Diego State*
UNLV at Fresno State*
Nevada at San José State*
*-MW series  Bold denotes home team

LEADING SPARTANS
Jacob Valdez has emerged as San José State's leading hitter with a .311 batting average. He is 11-for-28 (.393) with five RBI and three runs during a seven-game hit streak. Matt Lopez saw a seven-game hit streak come to an end over the weekend, but his bat is still trending for the Spartans. In the last 10 games, Lopez is hitting .361 with seven RBI and six runs. Lopez leads the team in slugging (.413), runs (15), RBI (18), doubles (8) and total bases (43).

VALDEZ BECOMES TOP-10 CAREER HITTER
A current seven-game hit streak has helped vault Jacob Valdez into 10th place all-time on San José State's career hits list at 197. He trails Ryan Brucker (1998-2001) in ninth place by four hits. Jason Martin (2008-11) remains the all-time hit king with 277.

 

All-Time Career Hits Leaders

1. 277 Jason Martin (2008-11)

2. 246 Kevin Frandsen (2001-04)

3. 245 Ryan Angel (2004-07)

4. 243 Danny Stienstra (2008-11)

5. 237 Junior Ruiz (1999-2001)

6. 233 Kyle Bellows (2007-09)

7. 217 Anthony Contreras (2002-05)

8. 214 Nate Corrick (2002-05)

9. 201 Ryan Brucker 1998-2001)

10. 197 Jacob Valdez (2011-current) 

 

CONTRADES LEADS SPARTAN PITCHERS
Kalei Contrades leads San José State pitching in multiple categories including ERA (3.31), strikeouts (23) and opposing average (.264). The right-hander's 23 strikeouts to three walks is the second-best ration in the Mountain West behind UNLV's Bryan Bonnell at 11:2.

SPARTANS SOS AMONG TOUGHEST IN THE NATION
San José State opponents have a combined record of 209-132-2 (.611). According to the April 1 Iterative Strength Ratings by Boyd's World, SJSU has played the sixth-toughest schedule in the nation. The Spartans handed #17-UC Santa Barbara one of its three losses in 2014, and SJSU also faced #5-Cal Poly earlier in the year (rankings according to Baseball America).  See the chart below for the top-10 toughest schedules in the nation according to Boyd's World (4/1).

 

Rank

Team

2014 Record

1.

Stanford

10-11

2.

Arizona State

15-11

3.

Purdue

5-18

4.

California

14-12

5.

Brown

4-8

6.

San José State

8-21

7.

Rutgers

9-13

8.

Long Beach State

13-13

9.

Texas

22-7

10.

Cal State Fullerton

14-10

 

SPARTANS BATS SHOWING POSITIVE TREND
San José State is hitting .297 as a team during the last two weeks (8 games). The team's average has risen by 19 points from .232 to .251 during that span. Seven Spartans batted over .300 in the last eight games with freshman Alec de Watteville leading the charge at .406 (13-for-32). 


SCOUTING NEVADA
The Nevada Wolf Pack (13-13, 6-6 MW) split two games this week with Grand Canyon University and now head out to San Jose for the three-game series. Nevada swept Air Force at home on March 21-23 in its most recent Mountain West action. Kewby Meyer leads all Wolf Pack hitters with a .314 batting average in 105 at bats in 2014. Catcher Jordan Devencenzi is also hitting over .300. A team .253 batting average is just two points above San José State's, but Nevada holds an advantage with its 3.83 ERA. Michael Fain (3-2, 2.28) has the sixth-best ERA in the conference and teammate Jason Deitrich is three spots behind at 3.07.

LAST MEETING
San José State dropped two out of three games at Nevada earlier in the season (2/28-3/2). It was a very evenly matched series in the stat sheet: Nevada outhit SJSU by two, outscored SJSU 18-14 and the RBI total rested in favor of Nevada 15-13. A glaring difference in the series was Nevada's 10 extra-base hits compared to the San José State's two.

ROTATION SHAKE UP
San José State's starting rotation has changed since these two teams last met. Jonathan Hernandez moved from Saturday to Friday night, Logan Handzlik was inserted into the Saturday starter role and Kalei Contrades was on the bump on Sunday. It would be the third consecutive week with that rotation if it remains intact for the Nevada series.

FRESHMEN MAKE RECIPE FOR SUCCESS IN 8-5 WIN
Three freshmen put their stamp on San José State's 8-5 win at New Mexico (3/22). Alec de Watteville jumpstarted the offense in the second inning with his first career home run, a solo shot to left in the second inning. Jack Veasey made his second start of the year, his first in the field at first base, and went 2-for-5 with two runs. Logan Handzlik made his third start on the hill for SJSU and pitched 7.0 innings on the way to his second win. He allowed two hits through the first 10 Lobos batters faced.

SPARTANS GO 1-2 AT NEW MEXICO
After splitting the first two games of the series San José State fell 9-4 in game three to the New Mexico Lobos on Sunday afternoon. 38 hits for the Spartans was a season-high total in a three-game set and the team hit .336. Matt Lopez, Jacob Valdez and Alec de Watteville each had six hits against the Lobos. Jack Veasey made a start at first base in Saturday's game and accounted for two of the season-high 16 hits in the 8-5 win. The Spartans have now gone 1-2 in all four Mountain West series in 2014 against: San Diego State, Nevada, UNLV and New Mexico.