SPARTANS RETURN HOME FOR THREE-GAME SET WITH TEXAS STATE
San Jose State (11-25, 5-7 WAC) has a chance to rebound from being swept last weekend with a three-game set at home against WAC foe Texas State (15-20, 8-4 WAC) on April 19-21.
VS. TEXAS STATE
FRIDAY, APRIL 19, 6:00 P.M.
SATURDAY, APRIL 20, 1:00 P.M.
SUNDAY, APRIL 21, 1:00 P.M.
Pitching matchups to be determined.
KSJS 90.5 FM and The Gold Zone on www.sjsuspartans.com are the radio broadcast homes for San Jose State baseball. All three games against Texas State will be broadcast on both outlets with: Jonathan Wold, Erik Oas, Jordan Serpa, Alex Scott and Lewis Geist as the crew of voices on the call.
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 www.sjsuspartans.com and select the game. Fans can also access live stats through the Schedule/Results section of the baseball page, or at www.sjsu.statbroadcast.com.
Fans coming out to Municipal Stadium for Spartan home games can look forward to all kinds of fun activities including the “Sunday Funday”. Baseball Bingo, postgame autographs and field run, plus in-game promotions sponsored by Poorhouse Bistro are all on the block for Sunday home games. Don’t forget, kids 12 and under get in for free on Sunday Funday!
The promotions department is now taking signups for little league and pony league teams to take the field with the Spartans during the anthem, and also for friends and family to throw out a ceremonial first pitch. To sign up, contact the promotions department at (408) 924-1478. Finally, don’t forget, little leaguers who show up in their baseball uniforms get into any game for just $1!
SCOUTING SAN JOSE STATE
San Jose State (11-25, 5-7) dropped from sixth to seventh place after being swept on the road at UT Arlington last weekend. Coming out of the series the Spartans are 4.0 games out of first place in the WAC.
San Jose State was the best fielding team in the conference heading into the UTA matchup but made nine errors over the course of three games. A .972 mark leaves them second now behind Sacramento State’s .980.
Matt Carroll has a team-leading .350 batting average. He is seventh among hitters in the WAC with his average and also leads San Jose State with a .500 slugging percentage. The 6-foot-six first baseman has hit 12 doubles, two home runs and knocked in 30 RBI.
Despite giving up four earned runs in three innings to UT Arlington in a Sunday start Kyle Hassna (2-4, 2.15) is still leading the WAC with just nine earned runs given up all year. As a staff SJSU has a 5.93 ERA against a 4.23 put up by opponents.
SCOUTING TEXAS STATE
The third place Texas State Bobcats (15-20, 8-4 WAC) come into the series against San Jose State after sweeping Louisiana Tech at home last weekend. It was their second WAC series sweep of the season as they took care of business against Seattle U at the end of March. They are one game back of WAC leaders CSU Bakersfield and UT Arlington.
The Bobcats have had trouble on the road all season along and are just 2-14 in games away from Bobcat Ballpark in San Marcos, Texas. They are tied at the top of the WAC with 51 errors as a team.
Speedsters Kevin Sah and Morgan Mickan have stolen a combined 22 bases this season and are the top two base stealers in the conference. In WAC play, Texas State’s .399 on-base percentage is second only to SJSU’s .400.
Sophomore outfielder Cody Lovejoy leads the team in batting at .311 in 106 trips to the plate. Sophomore infielder Garrett Mattlage leads the team in hits (40) and RBI (23).
The Bobcats pitching staff carries a 4.68 ERA to their opponents’ 4.41. Donnie Hart (1-0) has pitched 20.1 innings of relief in 24 appearances and has yet to allow an earned run. Taylor Black (3-4, 3.00), Kyle Finnegan (3-2, 5.02) and Scott Grist (3-2, 5.51) have each started nine games for Texas State. Finnegan is third in the WAC averaging 8.87 strikeouts per game.
CSU Bakersfield and UT Arlington are tied at the top of the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) standings with a 9-3 record. Texas State is one game back in third and Sacramento State and Dallas Baptist are two games back. San Jose State is in seventh place with a 5-7 record. The top eight teams at the end of the regular season get a spot in the conference championship in Grand Prairie, Texas on May 22-26.
San Jose State made 23 errors in 33 games heading into the UTA series. But the Spartans made nine errors in the next three games and were swept by the Mavericks. A .976 fielding percentage has them second in the WAC and tied for 28th nationally.
SPARTANS HITTING WELL
The Spartans have reached double-digit hit totals in six straight games and 10 of the last 11. They pounded out a season-high 17 in a 12-8 win over Louisiana Tech on April 7. Matt Carroll, Sheldon Daquioag, Tim Quiery, Nick Schulz and Ricky Acosta are all batting over .300 with at least 100 at bats.
BRING THE BATS TO CONFERENCE PLAY
San Jose State is top three 14 different offensive categories during WAC play including: average (.308, 3rd), on base percentage (.400, 1st), runs (82, 2nd), hits (132, 2nd), RBI (79, 2nd), doubles (26, 2nd), triples (4, 2nd).
Shortstop Ricky Acosta, second baseman Jacob Valdez and center fielder Andre Mercurio have played in all 36 games so far this season. Matt Carroll and Nick Schulz have played in 30 games.
SCHULZ SETTLING INTO WAC PLAY
Senior outfielder Nick Schulz has settled into WAC play nicely, hitting safely in 12 consecutive games. He’s batting .394 in 33 at bats with a .487 on base percentage and is slugging .636. Both of his homers this year have come in WAC wins.
First baseman Matt Carroll has reached base safely in 26 of 31 games played this season. He has a hit in 12 of the last 14 contests with eight multi-hit performances. He leads the team with a .350 average and is seventh in the WAC in that category. His 12 doubles rank him third in the WAC.
ACOSTA LEADING IN THREE-BAGGERS
Shortstop Ricky Acosta is tied for the WAC lead with his four triples. He has a three-bagger in every conference series but one this year.
ACOSTA, VALDEZ SEE STREAKS END
Shortstop Ricky Acosta and second baseman Jacob Valdez each saw their career-long hitting streaks come to an end at 11 in last Sunday’s loss at UT Arlington. Valdez was 18-for-45 (.400) with 16 runs during the streak. Acosta was 18-42 (.429) with five runs nine RBI and three triples.
I DARE YA
Spartan catchers Jon Nelson and Sheldon Daquioag are both top 10 in the WAC in catching runners stealing. Nelson has eight and Daquioag has gunned down six.
Andre Mercurio, Matt Lopez and Tim Quiery have all recorded over 50 putouts and have a perfect 1.000 fielding percentage.
San Jose State definitely had a little two-out magic during Sunday’s win over Louisiana Tech as all 12 runs scored came with two out. The Spartans put six “tough ones” as head coach Dave Nakama likes to call them in the fourth inning alone on Sunday.
GERLACH BLASTS FIRST-CAREER HOMER
Michael Gerlach hit a three-run jack for his first-career home run on April 7 in a 12-8 victory. The junior from Carmel Valley, Calif., gave the Spartans a two run lead with his shot over the left field fence in a pivotal Western Athletic Conference win over Louisiana Tech.
In the search for a consistent lineup, some Spartans have seen playing time all over the diamond. Michael Gerlach, Tim Quiery and Matt Lopez have all made starts in left field. Sheldon Daquioag has had success as the starting catcher and third baseman. Willy Reel and Kalei Contrades have both served as relief pitchers and starting third basemen. On the other hand, Ricky Acosta and Jacob Valdez have started every single game at short and second respectively. Andre Mercurio is another who has started every game in the same position, center field.
SPARTANS BOUNCE ON CARROLL’S HOMER
San Jose State was a walk-off winner against Nicholls State on March 15 thanks to Matt Carroll’s first-career home run, a solo bomb over the left field wall in the bottom of the 11th inning. The hit put the Spartans on the winning side of an extra inning game for the first time in three tries this season.
MELERO & HASSNA ACHIEVE CAREER HIGHS TOGETHER
Friday starter Johnny Melero struck out a career high eight batters in 7.1 innings of work against Nicholls State on March 15. In the eighth inning Melero turned things over to Kyle Hassna who went on to achieve his career high in strikeouts with 7. Hassna got his in 3.2 innings of relief work and was awarded the win when Matt Carroll blasted one over the fence for a walk-off homer in the 11th.
Dallas Baptist, UTSA, UT Arlington, Texas State, Seattle University and CSU Bakersfield are all new members of the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) for the 2013 season. Dallas Baptist, winner of two games at the 2012 Waco Regional, comes in as the favorite in the WAC Coaches’ Poll receiving eight first place votes. UT Arlington also appeared in the Waco Regional last season. They were 0-2 including a loss to Dallas Baptist, 10-0.
Senior Outfielder Nick Schulz was named a Preseason Second-Team All-Western Athletic Conference choice by collegesportsmadness.com. In 2012 Schulz played in 45 games, making 40 starts in the outfield and two as a designated hitter. The Mountain View, Calif., native led the team with four homeruns, 21 RBIs, 24 walks and a .436 slugging percentage.
LOCAL RIVALS BECOME TEAMMATES
The 2013 Spartans have six San Jose, Calif., natives from five different and very competitive high schools: Sheldon Daquioag (Silver Creek HS), Will Hein (Pioneer HS), Johnny Melero (Archbishop Mitty HS), Jon Nelson (Saint Francis HS), Mitch Ravizza (Willow Glen HS), Mike Simonini(Pioneer HS).
NEW COACHING STAFF
Dave Nakama comes to San Jose State as the new head coach after spending the last three seasons as the associate head coach at the University of Washington. The 1984 graduate of Willamette University has 13 years of coaching experience in the Pac-12 Conference. In 10 seasons as an assistant at Stanford, the Cardinal won four Pac-10 Championships, five NCAA Regional crowns and appeared in the College World Series four times (1997, 2002, 2003 and 2008).
Nakama brings in assistants Brad Sanfilippo (UC Davis, 1998) and Nicholas Enriquez (Menlo College, 2001). Also on the staff are volunteer assistant Jeff Austin (Stanford, 1998) and undergraduate student-assistants Matt Durkin (San Jose State, 2004) and Adam Shorsher (San Jose State, 2002).