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April 19, 2014

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SPARTANS TAKE ON SANTA CLARA & NEW MEXICO THIS WEEK
San José State returns home after a five-game road trip to face the New Mexico Lobos for the second time this season in a three-game Mountain West series (MW). It will be the second week in a row that the Spartans have faced the MW leader as the Lobos jumped into first place after sweeping Fresno State last weekend. Tough opponents are nothing new to SJSU baseball this year though as its strength of schedule has jumped up to number two in the nation according to Boyd's World, trailing only Stanford.

 





GAMES #38-40

vs. NEW MEXICO (29-11-1)

SATURDAY, APRIL 19, 1:00 PM PDT
RHP Logan Handzlik (2-1, 4.12) vs. RHP Josh Walker (5-2, 3.21)


MUNICIPAL STADIUM (5,200)

SAN JOSE, CALIF.


SPARTANS END ROAD TRIP AT 3-2
San José State's 10-7 victory over Santa Clara on Tuesday night completed a five-game road trip with an exclamation point. It is the first road trip that the team will return from with a winning record. They did it with two one-run victories over San Francisco and UNLV. The win at UNLV took the Spartans 14 innings, but Matt Carroll's four RBI helped the club prevail in the end. The Spartans had a season-high eight extra-base hits in Tuesday's win. Johnny Melero picked up his second win of the year after exiting the ballgame with a 7-0 lead.

 

MARATHON GAME ENDS IN A SPARTANS VICTORY
San José State played its longest contest of the year, 14 innings, and pulled out a 4-3 victory to avoid being swept by #20-UNLV on Sunday. Matt Carroll knocked in three runs with a double in the first inning, and SJSU didn't score again until the top of the 14th when Carroll struck again with an RBI single. Carroll finished with a career-high four hits in the game which spanned three hours and 49 minutes.

MOUNTAIN WEST OUTLOOK
San José State's win on Sunday over UNLV knocked #20-UNLV out of first place in the MW standings. The Spartans remained in sixth place with a mark of 6-12. The New Mexico Lobos jumped into first after sweeping Fresno State. The Bulldogs who come to San Jose in mid-May, dropped to 7-11 and are just one game ahead of the Spartans in fifth place. Nevada leapt up to third place after sweeping San Diego State at home last weekend and finds themselves 1.5 games out of first place.

SPARTANS' SOS JUMPS TO SECOND IN THE NATION
San José State opponents have a combined record of 262-174-2 (.600). According to the April 14 Iterative Strength Ratings by Boyd's World, SJSU has played the second-toughest schedule in the nation behind only Stanford. The Spartans have played top-ranked teams throughout the year including #3/3-Cal Poly, #7/6-Washington, #17/17-UC Santa Barbara and #20/25-UNLV (Baseball America/Collegiate Baseball). See the chart below for the top-10 toughest schedules in the nation according to Boyd's World (4/14).   

Rank

Team

2014 Record

1.

Stanford

12-16

2.

San José State

11-25

3.

Hawai'i

14-19

4.

California

15-17

5.

Florida

23-13

6.

Arizona State

19-14

7.

Portland

8-29

8.

Baylor

16-19

9.

Long Beach State

16-18

10.

Utah

11-21

 

BERUMEN FINDS LATE-INNING SUCCESS
Freshman Jackson Berumen tossed 4.2 innings over three appearances last week out of the Spartans' bullpen earning a save and a win. He pitched out of a bases-loaded jam in the bottom of the ninth inning to earn a save at San Francisco on April 8. Then he earned the win in San José State's 4-3 14-inning victory at UNLV. He allowed no runs, three hits and struck out six for the week.

BULLPEN HAS STELLAR WEEK ON THE ROAD
Five pitchers out of the SJSU bullpen combined for a 1.34 ERA in 20 2/3 innings over four games last week. Jackson Berumen led the charge earning a win and a save in 4 2/3 innings of work. Kalei Contrades pitched 5 2/3 of scoreless ball in the marathon win at UNLV Sunday. James Glawe also picked up a win in during the week.

VALDEZ NOW CHASING EIGHTH ALL-TIME
Jacob Valdez collected six hits last week, vaulting him in ninth place on San José State's all-time career hits list. The Tracy, Calif., native is eight hits away from eighth and 11 hits away from seventh. See below for the top-10 list of SJSU all-time career hits leaders. 

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. 206 Jacob Valdez (2011-current)

10. 201 Ryan Brucker (1998-2001)

Michael Wright CONTINUES TO IMPROVE 
Michael Wright pitched two scoreless innings on April 5 and earned his first win of the season as San José State defeated Nevada 2-1. Last week, he struck out a season-high four at San Francisco (4/8), and threw two scoreless innings of relief at UNLV (4/11).

SPARTANS BATTING LEADERS
Jacob Valdez at .303 emerged as SJSU's batting average leader after last week's games. Valdez also leads in on base percentage at .375. Kyle Gallegos leads the team with 38 hits, while Matt Lopez is leading in runs (16), RBI (19) and slugging (.379). Matt Carroll is the squad's home runs leader with three.

SCOUTING NEW MEXICO
The New Mexico Lobos (27-11-1, 11-4 MW) come into Municipal Stadium as the Mountain West leader after sweeping Fresno State last weekend. The Lobos rank first in the country with 443 hits, and are also in the national top-10 for average (9th/.313) and total runs (10th/261). Chase Harris comes in hitting .365 in 170 at-bats over 39 games. The hitting numbers are impressive and so are the pitching stats. Josh Walker leads the starters with a 3.21 ERA and a 23 to five strikeout/walk ratio. The Lobos are coached by Ray Birmingham in his seventh season at New Mexico.

LAST MEETING
San José State dropped two out of three games against the Lobos in Albuquerque, N.M. back on March 21-23. The Spartans were hampered by injuries in that series with Matt Carroll, Jacob Valdez and Sheldon Daquioag all missing at least one game. Alec de Watteville hit his first home run of the year against the Lobos in SJSU's 8-5 win.