Feb. 26, 2009
Phoenix College Classic
February 27-March 1
vs. Gonzaga (Diablo Stadium, Tempe)
vs. Dayton (Diablo Stadium, Tempe)
vs. Creighton (Marich Field, Phoenix)
Gonzaga, Friday (6:00 p.m. MT)
RHP Cole Johnson (1-0, 3.00) vs. RHP Matt Fields (0-0, 0.00)
Dayton, Saturday (6:00 p.m. MT)
RHP Brian Dupra (0-1, 2.84) vs. LHP Quinn Haselhorst (0-1, 12.46)
Creighton, Sunday (10:00 a.m. MT)
RHP Eric Maust (0-0, 5.40) vs. TBA
LIVE GAME COVERAGE
Audio: WHME 103.1 FM (Chuck Freeby, p-b-p); UND.com
All-Time Series: Notre Dame and Gonzaga have never met on the baseball diamond. The Irish and Dayton (former Midwestern Collegiate Conference rivals) have met 57 times in program history with Notre Dame holding a commanding 45-12 lead in the series. The Irish leads the all-time series with Creighton, 8-3, including victories in each of the last four meetings.
2008 Results: Notre Dame did not face any of its three opponents this weekend last season.
Series Notes: The Irish and Flyers have met five times since the start of the 2005 season, but all five have taken place on a neutral site (three in Mesa, Ariz. in `05 and two in Ft. Myers, Fla. in `07. They faced off 36 times in their respective MCC days (1988-93) with Notre Dame winning 30 of those matchups. Creighton and the Irish first played in 1983, but did not face each other for another 14 years (then played 10 times from 1997-2003).
IN THE BATTERS BOX – Notre Dame travels out west and the State of Arizona for the Phoenix Classic this weekend hosted by the University of Dayton. The Irish will play Gonzaga (Fri., 6:00 p.m. MT, Diablo Stadium in Tempe), the host Flyers (Sat., 6:00 p.m. MT, Diablo Stadium in Tempe) and Creighton (Sun., 10:00 a.m. MT, Marich Field in Phoenix). All three games can be heard on WHME 103.1 FM and UND.com.
PHOENIX COLLEGE CLASSIC INSIDER – Notre Dame takes part in the inaugural Phoenix College Classic hosted by the University of Dayton beginning Friday evening (6:00 p.m. MT) when the Irish play Gonzaga (3-1) at Diablo Stadium in Tempe (the spring training home of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim). Notre Dame will face the host Flyers on Saturday at 6:00 p.m. MT at Diablo Stadium before closing the weekend against Creighton at Marich Field on the Phoenix College campus at 10:00 a.m. MT. The field includes four of the 30 catholic schools that field a Division I baseball team.
NOTRE DAME IN ARIZONA – The ND baseball team is looking to improve on its 6-14 all-time record in games played in the state of Arizona. Those previous games include a 1-5 mark at Arizona State (2-16, 5-10, 5-9 in 1992; 11-4 in 1993; 3-16, 8-14 in 2003) and 0-5 at Arizona (3-5, 4-12, 1-6 in 1960; 6-19, 9-10 in 1993). The Irish split four games at the 1991 Oakland A’s Tournament in Phoenix, with a 4-2 win over Dartmouth, an 8-5 win over Nebraska and a pair of losses to Ohio State (1-6, 11-12 in 11). The 2003 season-opening trip to the Valley of the Sun included wins over Dayton (10-9) and Newman (15-5), both at ASU. In Notre Dame’s last trip to Arizona, the Irish dropped two of three games against Dayton (10-2, 9-13, 10-11) at HoHoKam Park in Mesa.
THE STARTING PITCHERS – Notre Dame will start sophomore right-hander Cole Johnson (1-0, 3.00 ERA) against Gonzaga in the opening game of the Phoenix Classic. The Hudson, Ohio native has made 13 career appearances (one this season), including two starts for a total of 38.2 innings pitched. He has allowed 48 hits and nine walks while striking out 30. Johnson has allowed six home runs and opponents are batting .312 against him over his career. He picked up the victory in relief against Illinois on Feb. 21. Johnson tossed 3.0 innings and allowed one earned run on a pair of hits. He struck out two and walked one.
Sophomore right-handed hurler Brian Dupra (0-1, 2.84 ERA) will take the mound against Dayton. Dupra has made 12 career appearances and 10 career starts (including one this season) for a total of 52.2 innings pitched. The Rochester, N.Y. native has allowed 66 hits and 11 walks with 32 strikeouts. He has allowed three home runs and opponents are batting .308 against him over his career. Dupra started the season opener against Ohio State and pitched very well, but was charged with the loss. He allowed six hits and two earned runs in 6.1 innings of work. Dupra struck out a pair and walked one.
The Irish will turn to junior righty Eric Maust (0-0, 5.40 ERA) for their match-up with Creighton. The Alpharetta, Georgia native has made 30 career appearances and 14 career starts (including one this season) for a total of 119.0 innings pitched. Maust has allowed 137 hits and 33 walks with 79 strikeouts. He has allowed six home runs and opponents are batting .286 against him over his career. Maust started against Illinois and pretty well before running into command trouble in the fifth inning. He was victimized by a couple errors that resulted in three unearned runs, but settled down to retired 11 of the next 12 Illinois batters, including nine consecutive at one point before running into trouble with command in the top of the fifth inning. With two outs, Maust proceeded to walk three straight Illini before a three-run triple gave Illinois a 6-3 advantage. He allowed four hits and three earned runs in 5.0 innings of work. Maust struck out one and walked three.
PROBABLE POSITION STARTERS
Pos. # Player B-T Cl. GP-GS Avg. HR RBIC Cam McConnell R-R So. 2-1 .600 0 3Served as the primary backup catcher last season; recorded go-ahead two-run single in eighth inning against Illinois (2.21)-or- Matt Scioscia R-R So. 2-2 .167 0 0Son of former major league catcher and current manager of L.A. Angels Mike Scioscia1B Evan Sharpley L-R Sr. 3-3 .222 0 0Led Irish in home runs last season (20th player in ND history to hit 10+ homers); ranked fourth in the BIG EAST2B Greg Sherry R-R So. 2-2 .200 0 0Spent most of 2008 in the nine-hole; was first ND player to hit over .300 in that spot of the order since `04-or- Ryne Intlekofer R-R Jr. 3-2 .250 0 1Versatile player that has contributed off the bench the past two seasons; earned starting nod following exception fall3B Mick Doyle R-R So. 2-2 .714 0 3Athletic player that can play any infield position; back-to-back multi-hit games against Illinois (3) and Purdue (2)-or- Greg Sherry R-R So. 2-2 .200 0 0Spent most of 2008 in the nine-hole; was first ND player to hit over .300 in that spot of the order since `04SS Jeremy Barnes R-R Sr. 3-3 .333 1 5Four-year starter (last three at 2B); named All-BIG EAST 2nd team in `06; belted 3-run HR to cap eight-run 8th vs. IllinoisLF Golden Tate L-L So. 3-3 .500 0 2Two-sport standout led ND football team in rec. (58), rec. yds (1,080), rec. TDs (10) and total TDs (11) in `08CF A.J. Pollock R-R Jr. 3-3 .250 0 2Led ND in hitting in `07 and `08; preseason Baseball America first team All-American in `09; `08 Cape Cod League MVPRF David Mills L-L Jr. 2-2 .333 0 1Two-way player that doubles as situational lefty in Irish bullpen; all-BIG EAST first team in `08-or- Brayden Ashdown R-R Jr. 2-0 1.000 0 3Played in 61 career games and started 29; registered clutch pinch-hit 2-run 1B and go-ahead RBI 1B against Purdue (2.22)-or- Billy Boockford R-R Jr. 2-2 .500 0 0Missed most of `07 season with injury, but returned to start 44 games in `08; batted .275 with one HR and 26 RBIDH David Mills L-L Jr. 2-2 .333 0 1Two-way player that doubles as situational lefty in Irish bullpen; all-BIG EAST first team in `08-or- Matt Grosso L-L Jr. 2-2 .182 1 2High school teammate of A.J. Pollock; Missed last two springs (after transferring twice); hit first career HR vs. Illinois (2.21)
TALE OF THE TAPE (2009 STATS)
Notre Dame Gonzaga Dayton CreightonBatting Average .355 .331 .261 .255Runs Per Game 7.7 10.0 5.0 4.5Home Runs 2 3 2 3Slugging Percentage .455 .503 .357 .355Batters' BB+HBP-K Margin -8 4 -16 -9On-Base Percentage .409 .434 .336 .367Stolen Bases 1-3 2-2 6-7 4-5Team ERA 3.00 5.25 4.13 5.20Opponent Batting Average .196 .257 .319 .293Pitchers' K-BB Ratio 1.3 3.9 1.3 1.6Pitchers' Ks Per 9 Innings 5.0 7.7 5.4 5.2Pitchers' BB Per 9 Innings 4.0 2.0 4.1 4.4Fielding Pct. (Errors) .975 (3) .980 (3) .957 (6) .965 (6)Double Plays Turned 1 4 6 1Record at Home 0-0 0-0 0-0 0-0Record on Road (including neutral) 2-1 3-1 1-2 0-4Record in One-Run Games 0-0 0-0 1-1 0-2Record in Extra Innings 1-0 0-0 0-1 0-2
NOTRE DAME-DAYTON SERIES NOTES – Notre Dame holds a 45-12 series edge, including victories in 13 of the last 15 meetings and 28 of the last 32 against its old Midwestern Collegiate Conference rival. They faced off 36 times in their respective MCC days (1988-93) with Notre Dame winning 30 of those matchups. The Irish and Flyers have met five times since the start of the 2005 season, but all five have taken place on a neutral site (three in Mesa, Ariz. in `05 and two in Ft. Myers, Fla. in `07. Notre Dame and Dayton met just twice from 1994-2004: an 8-1 Irish win in 2001 (at Eck Stadium) and a 10-9 win for Notre Dame in the 2003 season opener (played at Arizona State). The series dates back to a 1922 game at Dayton (a 10-0 Notre Dame win), with the teams not playing again until 1978. The 2003 game at ASU marked the first in the series to be played on a truly neutral site (Notre Dame posted MCC Tournament wins over Dayton at South Bend’s Coveleski Stadium in 1989, 1990 and 1991).
NOTRE DAME-CREIGHTON SERIES NOTES – Notre Dame and Creighton are slated to meet for the 12th time in school history. The Irish and Bluejays met five separate times during the 2002 and 2003 season. Notre Dame took four of those five meetings. The Irish split a pair of meetings in `02 (back-to-back games in Texas, at Round Rock and San Antonio) before sweeping all three meetings in `03 (one game was played in Jacksonville, Fla., another at Rosenblatt Stadium in Omaha and the final contest was played on the Bluejays’ campus). Notre Dame holds an 8-3 all-time series lead, with all but two of the games played on a neutral field. The first meeting between the teams came in 1983 (a 6-5 Creighton win, at Oral Roberts) — Irish head coach Dave Schrage’s senior year with the Bluejays. The teams then split a pair of Irish Baseball Classic games in 1997 (at San Antonio’s Wolff Stadium), with the Irish winning two more IBC games against the Bluejays in 1999. Notre Dame opened the 1999 NCAA Tournament with an 8-1 win over Creighton (at Eck Stadium).
CAREER STATS VS. DAYTON
Player AVG GP-GS AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB HBP SF SH SBBrayden Ashdown .000 2-1 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 0-0Jeremy Barnes .400 2-1 5 1 2 0 0 0 0 3 0 0 0 0-0Billy Boockford .333 1-1 3 1 1 0 0 1 3 0 0 0 1 0-0Ryan Connolly .200 2-1 5 0 1 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0-1Ryne Intlekofer .000 2-1 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0A.J. Pollock .444 2-2 9 3 4 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 2-2Evan Sharpley .000 1-0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0
Player ERA W-L G GS CG SHO SV IP H R-ER BB-SO B/AVGSam Elam 18.00 0-0 1 1 0 0/0 0 2.0 1 4-4 3-4 .143Eric Maust 0.00 1-0 1 0 0 0/0 0 2.0 1 0-0 0-1 .143
DAYTON CAREER STATS vs. Eric MaustPlayer AVG AB H RBI 2B 3B HR BB HBP SO GDP SF SH SBScott Dunwoody 1.000 1 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0Max Navalinski .000 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0-0Cole Tyrell .000 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0
DAYTON CAREER STATS vs. Sam ElamPlayer AVG AB H RBI 2B 3B HR BB HBP SO GDP SF SH SBScott Dunwoody .000 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0-0Max Navalinski .000 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0-0
DAYTON CAREER STATS VS. NOTRE DAMEPlayer AVG GP-GS AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB HBP SF SH SBCole Tyrell .333 2-1 6 1 2 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 0-0Scott Dunwoody .125 2-2 8 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0Max Navalinski .000 2-2 9 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0
RECAPPING THE BIG EAST / BIG TEN CHALLENGE – Notre Dame opened the season taking two of three games in the inaugural 2009 BIG EAST / Big Ten Baseball Challenge. The Irish were one of three BIG EAST schools to post a 2-1 record. Notre Dame also was the only school among the 18-team field that ranked among the top five in both batting (third) and ERA (third) over the tournament.
- The story of the weekend was the Notre Dame depth, especially its bench, and the bullpen. Sophomore Mick Doyle (LaGrange Park, Ill.), junior Matt Grosso (Hebron, Conn.) and sophomore Cameron McConnell (Bannockburn, Ill.), all of whom did not play in the season-opening loss to Ohio State, started against Illinois and combined to bat .467 (7-for-15) with four runs scored and seven RBI. Doyle went 3-for-4 with two runs scored and two RBI, while McConnell went 2-for-3 with a run scored and career-best three RBI. Grosso was 2-for-5 with his first career home run, a game-tying two-run blast in the eight-run seventh inning.
- The Irish defeated Purdue primarily due to its bench. Junior Brayden Ashdown (Tucson, Ariz.), McConnell and junior Casey Martin (Chesterton, Ind.) all entered the game as pinch hitters in the eighth inning. Ashdown not only scored two runs, but provided a critical two-run, pinch hit single to bring Notre Dame within a run, 4-3, and added a go-ahead RBI single in the 10th. McConnell and Martin each scored a pair of runs and went 1-for-2. For the weekend, the Irish bench went 4-for-8 with three RBI and six runs scored.
- The bullpen worked 12.2 innings over the three games this past weekend and allowed just two earned runs – good for a 1.42 ERA. The sextet allowed just six hits as Ohio State, Illinois and Purdue batted just .143 (6-for-42) against the non-starters. Junior Steven Mazur (Round Rock, Texas) picked up the victory over the Boilermakers and threw 3.0 hitless innings of relief over two separate relief outings. Junior David Mills (Battle Creek, Mich., 1.1 IP) and the freshman tandem of Will Hudgins (Richmond, Va., 1.1 IP) and Joe Spano (Verona, N.J., 0.2 IP) combined to not allow a run on two hits in 3.1 innings of work. Sophomores Todd Miller (Franklin, Tenn., 3.1 IP) and Cole Johnson (Hudson, Ohio, 3.0 IP) were the only two pitchers of the group to allow runs, but each surrendered just one earned run on a pair of hits.
- Notre Dame’s bullpen was at its best in the two come-from-behind victories over Illinois (14-7) and Purdue (9-4, 10 innings). The Irish not only outscored the Illini 9-0 over the final three innings of the game, but Notre Dame’s bullpen retired the final 10 Illinois batters of the evening, including three by strikeout. The Irish were even better against the Boilermakers. They did not allow a hit over the final 4.2 innings of the game.
ON DECK – After this weekend’s games, Notre Dame travels southwest for the Rice Classic in Houston, Texas next weekend to play Oral Roberts (March 6, 1:00 p.m. CT), Rice (March 7, 1:00 p.m. CT) and Washington State (March 8, Noon CT) before remaining in the Longhorn State for spring break. The Irish will play a two-game series with Grambling on March 10-11 (3:00 p.m., Noon) in San Antonio at Wolff Stadium. Notre Dame will then host its annual Irish Classic that weekend (March 12-15) at Wolff Stadium against Illinois State (Thur., 3:00 p.m. CT), Texas-Pan American (Fri., 3:00 p.m. CT and Sun., Noon CT) and Trinity (Sat., 7:00 p.m. CT).
RANKINGS – Notre Dame is unranked in each of the four polls, but the Irish are receiving votes in three of those four polls. Gonzaga, Dayton and Creighton are also all unranked. The Bulldogs, thanks to a pair of victories over previously 11th-ranked Missouri, are each receiving votes in the NCBWA poll.
TAKING ON THE ALMA MATER – Notre Dame third-year head coach Dave Schrage earned four letters with the Creighton baseball team from 1980-83. He finished his career with a .358 career batting average (tied for sixth-best in school history) and remains one of two Bluejays to ever post two .400 or higher hitting seasons in school history (former Major Leaguer Scott Stahoviak was the other). Schrage also ranks sixth all-time with 62 career stolen bases. As a senior in `83, Schrage batted .433 (fourth-highest single-season average) and earned second team Academic All-American. He also spent two years (1984 and 1985) on the Creighton staff with current Chicago Cubs general manager Jim Hendry, who ultimately coached the Bluejays to the 1991 College World Series. Schrage played two games against the Irish in his career (1982 and 1983), but just one counted as the other contest took place in the fall. In that fall matchup on Sept. 18, 1982, Schrage went 0-for-3 with a walk and three putouts in centerfield.
FIRST-TIME FOES – Gonzaga will become the 297th different opponent faced by the Irish in 117 seasons of college baseball. The Irish now are 22-8 in their past 30 games against a first-time opponent, dating back to a win over Sam Houston State at the 2001 Alamo Invitational. Notre Dame is slated to face one more first-time opponent in 2009 (Grambling).
RECENT SEASON OPENERS – The Irish have captured nine of their last 12 season openers. Notre Dame suffered a tight loss to New Orleans in the 2001 season opener (7-6 at Mississippi State), last year (6-2 vs. Liberty in Clearwater, Fla.) and this season (2-0 vs. Ohio State in Dunedin, Fla.), but have opened season with victories in 1998 (10-1 vs. Florida State in Orlando), 1999 (8-4 vs. James Madison at FIU), 2000 (6-0 vs. Air Force in Millington, Tenn.), 2002 (7-6 vs. Missouri at New Orleans), 2003 (10-9 vs. Dayton at Arizona State), 2004 (7-1 vs. San Diego State at USC), 2005 (19-8 vs. Florida A&M at UCF), 2006 (3-0 vs. Indiana State in Millington, Tenn.) and 2007 (15-8 vs. Prairie View in San Antonio).
- The 2001-03 openers each produced one-run games (the Missouri game in 2002 went 10 innings), but Notre Dame has won the 2004-07 opening games by a combined 44-17 margin. The 19-8 rout of Florida A&M in 2005 was Notre Dame’s largest margin of victory and most runs in a season opener since the 1963 squad won 20-3 at Indiana.
SEASON-OPENING SITES – This year marked the 76th season and 19th straight that Notre Dame opened its season away from home. The 1990 Irish team played a rare Feb. 5 home game against Goshen to open the year.
- Florida (now with nine) is the site of the second-most season-opening games in the history of Notre Dame baseball. Tennessee ranks third with seven games and Texas and Georgia are tied for the fourth-most common site for an Irish season-opener. Other states that have been the site of multiple Irish openers include: Kentucky and Louisiana (five), California (four), Arizona, Arkansas, Illinois, Ohio and Oklahoma (all with three), Mississippi, Alabama, Michigan, Missouri and North Carolina (two). Obviously, Indiana leads all states with 13.
- The most common sites for a Notre Dame road season opener have included: Indiana University (six), Purdue (four), Georgia Tech (three) and USA Baseball Stadium in Millington, Tenn. (three).
OPENING-DAY HOME RUNS – Three members of the 2007 team (A.J. Pollock, Michael Wright and Mike Dury) smacked home runs in the `07 season opener vs. Prairie View A&M. Pollock (3-run) and Wright (solo) homered two batters apart in the second inning (their first career ABs with the Irish) and are believed to be the first Notre Dame freshmen ever to homer in a season opener. Since 1989, Notre Dame players now have combined for 16 HRs on opening day. The Prairie View A&M game was the first time since 1993 that the Irish have hit three home runs in an opener (Craig DeSensi, Paul Failla and Eric Danapilis all homered in the `93 opener, a 11-4 win at Arizona State). Notre Dame players had homered in each of the past six season openers before failing to do so in last season’s opener against Liberty. The previous six opening day home runs included Matt Bok in 2002 (vs. Missouri, at University of New Orleans), Kris Billmaier in 2003 (vs. Dayton, at Arizona State), Matt Edwards in 2004 (vs. San Diego State, at USC), Steve Andres and Edwards in 2005 (vs. Florida A&M, in Orlando) and Matt Bransfield in 2006 (vs. Indiana State, in Millington, Tenn.). Edwards is the only player among those listed below to hit multiple opening-day homers in his Notre Dame career. Of the program’s 16 opening-day home runs in the past 20 seasons, seven have come from seniors, five from juniors, two from sophomores (none since 1993, when DeSensi and Failla did it) and two from freshmen. The 16 have also included three first basemen (Edwards twice), three DHs and three leftfielders, plus two catchers, two shortstops, a centerfielder, a rightfielder and a third baseman.
Notre Dame Opening-Day Home Runs Since 1989
Ed Lund (Jr., C, ’89) – at Trinity (12-2)
Craig DeSensi (So., DH, ’93) – at Arizona State (11-4)
Paul Failla (So., SS, ’93) – at Arizona State (11-4)
Eric Danapilis (Sr., CF, ’93) – at Arizona State (11-4)
Bob Lisanti (Sr., C, ’96) – at Georgia Tech (4-12)
Dan Leatherman (Jr., 1B, ’98) – vs. Florida State, Orlando (10-1)
Brant Ust (Jr., SS, ’99) – vs. James Madison, Miami (8-4)
Matt Bok (Sr., DH, ’02) – vs. Missouri, New Orleans (7-6)
Kris Billmaier (Sr., RF, ’03) – vs. Dayton, Tempe (10-9)
Matt Edwards (Jr., 1B, ’04) – vs. San Diego State, Los Angeles (7-1)
Steve Andres (Jr., LF, ’05) – vs. Florida A&M, Orlando (18-3)
Matt Edwards (Sr., 1B, ’05) – vs. Florida A&M, Orlando (18-3)
Matt Bransfield (Sr., LF, ’06) – vs. Indiana State, Millington, TN (3-0)
Michael Wright (Fr., LF, ’07) – vs. Prairie View A&M, San Antonio (15-8)
A.J. Pollock (Fr., 3B, ’07) – vs. Prairie View A&M, San Antonio (15-8)
Mike Dury (Sr., DH, ’07) – vs. Prairie View A&M, San Antonio (15-8)
OPENING-WEEKEND LONG BALLS – Notre Dame players combined to hit 34 opening-weekend home runs during the past 15 seasons (1995-09). Four players in that span hit multiple opening-week homers: infielder Brant Ust (two; 1998 and 1999), RF Kris Billmaier (three, in 2003), 1B Matt Edwards (two; 2004, 2005) and LF/DH Steve Andres (two; 2003, 2005). Billmaier is the only Notre Dame player among those listed below who had a multi-HR game during the opening weekend (vs. Newman, at Arizona State). A.J. Pollock (vs. Prairie View A&M, in San Antonio in 2007) is one of six from this list to homer during the opening week of their freshman season, as did Michael Wright (vs. Prairie View A&M, in San Antonio in 2007), Andres (at Arizona State in 2003), Ed Golom (as a pinch-hitter, at Florida International in 1999), OF Brian Stavisky (at Memphis, in 2000) and RF Cody Rizzo (in the second 2003 game at Arizona State). The position breakdown of the opening-weekend home run hitters since 1995 is as follows: RF (6), DH (5), SS (5), LF (4), 1B (4), C (3), CF (2), 3B (3), PH (1) and 2B (1).
Opening-Week Home Runs Since 1995
Rowan Richards (Jr., CF, ’95) – game 3 vs. Pepperdine, Anaheim (14-5)
Ryan Topham (Jr., RF, ’95) – game 3 vs. Pepperdine, Anaheim (14-5)
Bob Lisanti (Sr., C, ’96) – game 1 at Georgia Tech (4-12)
Justin Scholl (Sr., RF, ’97) – game 2 vs. USC, Long Beach (4-14)
Dan Leatherman (Sr., 1B, ’98) – game 1 vs. Florida State, Orlando (10-1)
Brant Ust (So., 3B, ’98) – game 2 vs. NC State, Orlando (8-10)
Jeff Wagner (Jr., C, ’98) – game 2 vs. NC State, Orlando (8-10)
Brant Ust (Jr., SS, ’99) – game 1 vs. JMU, Miami (8-4)
Ed Golom (Fr., PH, ’99) – game 2 at FIU (1-14)
Alec Porzel (Jr., SS, ’00) – game 3 at Memphis (4-3)
Brian Stavisky (Fr., RF, ’00) – game 3 at Memphis (4-3)
Matt Bok (Sr., DH, ’02) – game 1 vs. Missouri, New Orleans (7-6)
Andrew Bushey (Sr., C/3B, ’02) – game 2 at New Orleans (7-8)
Kris Billmaier (Sr., RF, ’03) – game 1 vs. Dayton, Tempe (10-9)
Kris Billmaier (Sr., RF, ’03) – 2 HRs in game 2 vs. Newman, Tempe (15-5)
Steve Andres (Fr., DH, ’03) – game 3 at Arizona State (3-16)
Matt Macri (So., SS, ’03) – game 4 at Arizona State (8-14)
Cody Rizzo (Fr., CF, ’03) – game 4 at Arizona State (8-14)
Matt Edwards (Jr., 1B, ’04) – game 1 vs. San Diego State, Los Angeles (7-1)
Steve Andres (Jr., LF, ’05) – game 1 vs. Florida A&M, Orlando (18-3)
Matt Edwards (Sr., 1B, ’05) – game 1 vs. Florida A&M, Orlando (18-3)
Matt Bransfield (Sr., LF, ’06) – game 1 vs. Indiana St., Millington, TN (3-0)
Ross Brezovsky (So., 2B, ’06) – game 2 vs. Air Force, Millington, TN (8-2)
Mike Dury (Jr., 1B, ’06) – game 4 vs. Oklahoma, Millington, TN (3-4)
Michael Wright (Fr., LF, ’07) – game 1 vs. Prairie View, San Antonio (15-8)
A.J. Pollock (Fr., 3B, ’07) – game 1vs. Prairie View, San Antonio (15-8)
Mike Dury (Sr., DH, ’07) – game 1 vs. Prairie View, San Antonio (15-8)
Brett Lilley (Sr., SS, `08) – game 2 vs. Iowa, Clearwater (14-13, 10 innings) Matt Grosso (Jr., DH, `09) – game 2 vs. Illinois, Bradenton (14-7)
Jeremy Barnes (Sr., SS, `09) – game 2 vs. Illinois, Bradenton (14-7)
FREEBIES UPDATE – Over his years as a head coach, Notre Dame skipper Dave Schrage has utilized a formula to measure how many free bases a team allows during a given year. The formula adds walks allowed, errors, stolen bases allowed, hit batters, wild pitches, passed balls, and balks and divides that total by the number of games played. In 2007, the Irish allowed nearly 8.7 “freebies” per game. By comparison, Notre Dame’s 2006 team allowed just 6.2 per game en route to totaling 45 wins. The Irish made tremendous strides a year ago, allowing just 7.4 per game.
- Notre Dame had gotten under 7.0/gm heading into the game with #17 Michigan on May 13, 2008, but the Irish allowed 12 “freebies” to the Wolverines. Michigan benefitted from six stolen bases, four errors and two walks.
- Notre Dame took two of three games last weekend despite a below-par performance in terms of “freebies.” The Irish walked 12 batters and hit four more en route to an average of 8.7 per game.
Freebies 2009 2008 2007 2006Walks Allowed 12 178 191 170Errors 3 54 83 68SB Allowed 4 62 73 65Hit Batters 4 47 61 50Wild Pitches 3 35 45 23Passed Balls 0 8 27 6Balks 0 9 5 7TOTAL 26 (8.7/gm) 393 (7.4/gm) 485 (8.7/gm) 389 (6.2/gm)
PRO PARKS – Notre Dame and Northwestern will play at U.S. Cellular Field on April 15. The Irish played at U.S. Cellular Field last season and knocked off Northern Illinois, 5-4. Notre Dame has recently have played at several pro parks, including three college games and the 2001 exhibition vs. the Tampa Bay Devil Rays at their spring training site, Florida Power Park, plus 2002, ’04 and ’05 games in Texas at both Dell Diamond (home of triple-A Astros affiliate Round Rock Express) and Wolff Stadium (double-A San Antonio Missions), plus ’06-’09 games at Wolff and the 2008 Whataburger Classic at Whataburger Field (home of the double-A Corpus Christi Hooks, also an Astros affiliate). The Irish also played Dayton in ’05 at HoHoKam Park (Chicago Cubs spring-training; Mesa, Ariz.) while the 2006 & 2008 BIG EAST Championships were held in Clearwater, Fla., at Bright House Networks Field (spring training for the Philadelphia Phillies) and the 2007 BIG EAST Championship was in Brooklyn, N.Y., at Keyspan Park (home to the Brooklyn Cyclones, Mets single-A). Notre Dame played at another elite minor-league facility in 2007 (Coastal Federal Field; Baseball at the Beach tournament in Myrtle Beach, S.C.). The Irish opened this season with their first two games at the Major League Spring Training facilities of the Toronto Blue Jays (Knology Park, Dunedin, Fla.) and Pittsburgh Pirates (McKenchie Field, Bradenton, Fla.). Notre Dame will play two games at Diablo Stadium — spring training home of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.
- Previous Irish teams have played at two Major League parks, in ’95 and ’96 tournaments at the Seattle Kingdome while facing the Univ. of Pittsburgh at Three Rivers Stadium in ’98. The Irish also have played BIG EAST Tournament games at minor-league Dodd Stadium (Norwich, Conn.), Waterfront Stadium (Trenton, N.J.) and Commerce Bank Ballpark (Bridgewater, N.J.) while ND and Michigan annually play at Old Kent Park (now 5th/3rd Bank Ballpark), near Grand Rapids. The Irish also played at the 1998 ACC Blast in Orlando (Atlanta Braves’ spring training; Disney Sports Complex) and in the 2000, ’03 and ’06 Hormel/DQ Classics at the Minnesota Metrodome.
A.J. Pollock PRESEASON HONOR ROLL – Notre Dame junior OF A.J. Pollock was named first team preseason All-American by Baseball America. He was one of just two players from the BIG EAST Conference to be named to the first, second or third team. Pollock has already been named second team All-American by Collegiate Baseball and third team by CollegeBaseballInsider.com. He has also been named to the Wallace Award Watch List and listed as the 39th overall prospect, 16th collegiate prospect and top overall prospect from the BIG EAST Conference for the 2009 MLB Draft by Baseball America. Pollock was also ranked as the seventh-best prospect from the Cape Cod League by Baseball America following his Most Valuable Player season this past summer. He was most recently recognized by Baseball America as the 10th-ranked player from the junior class.
IRISH PICKED BY BASEBALL AMERICA TO RETURN TO NCAA TOURNAMENT – Notre Dame was well represented in Baseball America’s 2009 season preview. The Irish, picked to finish second in the BIG EAST, was projected to reach the NCAA Tournament’s field of 64. Notre Dame was penciled into the Irvine Regional as the fourth seed. UC Irvine was the host and top-seed, while Stanford (#2 seed) and defending national champion Fresno State (#3 seed) rounded out the regional. The Irish had three players listed among the top 50 in their respective class. LHP Sam Elam was rated the 39th-best senior in the nation, while OF A.J. Pollock was the 10th-ranked junior and RHP Evan Danieli was the 48th-rated sophomore. Pollock not only was named all-BIG EAST, but was also listed by the publication as a first team All-American. He and Louisville third baseman Chris Dominguez were the only two BIG EAST players honored. Sophomore RHP Brian Dupra was also named the first team all-BIG EAST relief pitcher. Danieli and Dupra were ranked as the second and third best prospects in the league heading into the 2010 MLB Draft.
MAUST, POLLOCK AND BARNES NAMED PRESEASON ALL-BIG EAST FIRST TEAM – Notre Dame placed the trio of junior RHP Eric Maust, junior OF A.J. Pollock and senior SS Jeremy Barnes on the preseason All-BIG EAST squad. No other conference school had more players on the 14-man squad than Notre Dame.
IRISH PICKED THIRD BY BIG EAST COACHES – The University of Notre Dame baseball team was picked to finish third in the 2009 BIG EAST preseason baseball poll as determined by a vote of the league’s 12 head coaches, who were not permitted to vote for their own teams. The Irish received a total of 99 points.
Team Points 2008 Overall 2008 BIG EAST1. Louisville 121 (11) 41-19 16-112. USF 103 31-27 14-133. Notre Dame 99 33-21-1 16-104. St. John's 93 (1) 41-14 20-75. Cincinnati 77 23-11 19-86. Connecticut 62 27-28 11-167. West Virginia 60 35-21 13-148. Rutgers 58 23-29-1 11-169. Seton Hall 49 31-25 15-1210. Villanova 31 30-28 12-1511. Pittsburgh 27 19-34 7-1912. Georgetown 12 18-32 7-20
PLENTY OF WAYS TO FOLLOW THE IRISH – Notre Dame baseball fans will have several options for tracking the 2009 season on a game-by-game basis, through live streaming video (Notre Dame home games only), live-audio broadcasts, GameTracker live stats, free Irish Alert text messages and the Notre Dame Sports Hotline:
- Live radio broadcasts are available in the South Bend area on WHME 103.1 FM (Notre Dame baseball is part of a small percentage of programs in the nation with its entire season airing live on a commercial station). All games are streamed live on und.com, with the links posted on the lower left corner of the und.com main page. The online broadcasts are free of charge, as part of a quick signup with Fighting Irish All-Access (which includes archives or all audio and video content). See All-Access signup link via the multimedia gold button at the top of each und.com page
- Irish ALERT free text-message updates (three per game) are available to your cell phone or other mobile devices. See link on the right side blue sidebar on the baseball page at und.com.
- GameTracker live stats are provided for all home games and most road games (based on phone-line availability). When Notre Dame is on the road, the home team typically provides the live stats – with bonus GameTracker stats also provided by the Notre Dame SID office for select road games.
- The ND Sports Hotline provides a recap of each game and often will include special in-game updates for postseason action (or for doubleheader days). To access the hotline, call 574-631-3000, choose option 4 (for baseball/softball) and then press “1” for the baseball recap.
- Complete coverage of each and every Irish home game through live streaming video.
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