2010 Fullerton Regional

Capsules by Barrett Neale, Michael Perry, Matt Mullen, Andrew Woods, Sean Ryan, Phil Stanton


1. Cal State Fullerton Titans

Fullerton, California

Automatic bid– won Big West Conference regular season

2010 record: 21-3, 41-15 (first in Big West)

Head coach: Dave Serrano (Trinity College, 2003)

Record at school: 129-53, 3 years

Overall record: 243-119-1, 6 years

Assistant coaches: Sergio Brown, Greg Bergeron, Gregg Wallis

Team offense: .348 BA, 447 R, 56 HR, .528 SLG%, .415 OB%, 103/142 SB

Team pitching: 3.76 ERA, 499.2 IP, 493 H, 135 BB, 435 K

Top hitters: Gary Brown (.438/6/41/31-36 SB), Carlos Lopez (.383/7/49), Corey Jones (.376/6/44), Nick Ramirez (.367/13/68/.668 SLG), Christian Colon (.347/14/58), Tyler Pill (.371/7/41), Billy Marcoe (.322/3/31)

Top pitchers: Noe Ramirez (10-1, 2.50, 90 IP, 75 H, 16 BB, 95 K), Daniel Renken (11-2, 3.95, 93.1 IP, 94 H, 33 BB, 82 K), Dylan Floro (7-0, 2.84, 2 SV, 73 IP, 79 H, 8 BB, 55 K), Tyler Pill (4-4, 3.36, 61.2 IP, 54 H, 13 BB, 58 K), Nick Ramirez (1-3, 3.55, 9 SV, 38 IP, 35 H, 7 BB, 35 K)

Last NCAA appearance: 2009 (3-0 at Fullerton Regional, 2-0 at Fullerton Super Regional, 0-2 at College World Series)

Notes: This is the Titans’ 19th straight NCAA tournament appearance, which is the third-longest active streak in the country, behind Miami (38) and Florida State (33). Fullerton has now been a Regional host site nine times since 2000. In Dave Serrano’s first three years as a head coach at Cal State Fullerton, he has won the 2008 and 2010 Big West championships, two Regional championships and a 2009 Super Regional championship. Now he and the Titans have the chance to make the program’s 17th trip to Omaha. The school record for team batting average is .338, and this year’s team has a chance to top that mark with a current batting average of .348. Four national player of the year awards include Titans on their watch lists: the Johnny Bench Award (senior Billy Marcoe), the Golden Spikes Award (juniors Christian Colon and Gary Brown), the College Baseball Foundation’s National Player of the Year Award (sophomore Noe Ramirez) and the College Baseball Foundation’s John Olerud Two-Way Player of the Year Award (sophomores Tyler Pill and Nick Ramirez). Colon played for the 2008 and 2009 USA National Baseball Teams and in 2009, he became the first-ever captain of the Collegiate National Team. Brown has multiple ties to the Titans – his high school coach was former Cal State Fullerton outfielder Rich Gonzalez and his younger sister Torrie is a current member of the school’s volleyball team. Pill’s brother Brett played for the Titans from 2004-2006 and is now playing in the San Francisco Giants farm system. Brothers Brock and Dylan Floro, a junior and freshman, are both currently playing for the Titans.


2. Stanford Cardinal

Palo Alto, California

At-large bid from Pac-10

2010 record: 14-13, 31-23 (fourth in Pac-10)

Head coach: Mark Marquess (Stanford, 1969)

Record at school: 1357-717, 34 years

Overall record: 1357-717, 34 years

Assistant coaches: Dean Stotz, Rusty Filter, Mario Iglesias

Team offense: .288 BA, 326 R, 34 HR, .409 SLG %, .367 OB %, 37/55 SB

Team pitching: 4.91 ERA, 485.0 IP, 478 H, 258 BB, 371 K

Top hitters: Kenny Diekroeger (.351/5/39), Jonathan Kaskow (.344/1/28), Stephen Piscotty (.321/3/32), Colin Walsh (.321/7/41), Tyler Gaffney (.319/1/22), Dave Giuliani (.265/2/8), Jake Schlander (.256/3/37)

Top pitchers: Jordan Pries (4-3, 3.86, 91.0 IP 90 H, 41 BB, 61 K), Brett Mooneyham (3-6, 4.74, 81.2 IP, 71 H, 60 BB, 94 K), Bryan Busick (5-2, 1 SV, 3.67, 54.0 IP, 58 H, 17 BB, 31 K), Dean McArdle (5-0, 2 SV, 5.25, 48.0 IP, 43 H, 18 BB, 33 K), Alex Pracher (6-4, 4 SV, 3.15, 45.2 IP, 42 H, 21 BB, 28 K)

Last NCAA appearance: 2008 (2-2 in Stanford Regional)

Notes: Stanford makes its third Regional appearance in five years and 25th overall. The Cardinal features two strong starters in Pries and Mooneyham, and Pracher holds the team low ERA with four saves through 45.2 IP. The bats will be the biggest concern for Stanford.


3. New Mexico Lobos

Albuquerque, New Mexico

At-large bid from Mountain West

2010 record: 14-8, 37-20 (second in Mountain West)

Head coach: Ray Birmingham (New Mexico State, 1978)

Record at school: 108-65, 3 years

Overall record: 926-393-2, 23 years

Assistant coaches: Ken Jacome, Chad Tidwell, Clint Stoy

Team offense: .350 BA, 478 R, 38 HR, .502 SLG%, .420 OB%, 48/78 SB

Team pitching: 5.36 ERA, 508.1 IP, 627 H, 198 BB, 394 K

Top hitters: Justin Howard (.455/10/72/.712 SLG), Chris Juarez (.406/2/30), Rafael Neda (.369/10/63/.604 SLG), Ryan Honeycutt (.358/6/53), Daniel Gonzalez (.337/0/40), Max Willett (.324/3/35/15-20 SB), Adam Courcha (.313/1/27), Alex Allbritton (.308/0/30)

Top pitchers: Willy Kesler (6-3, 3.78, 95.1 IP, 87 H, 24 BB, 92 K), Kenny Toves (5-2, 4.55, 65.1 IP, 80 H, 31 BB, 43 K), Richard Olson (4-3, 41.9, 1 SV, 53.2 IP, 68 H, 29 BB, 48 K), Rudy Jaramillo (4-2, 5.92, 59.1 IP, 74 H, 14 BB, 27 K), Gera Sanchez (2-2, 5.32, 5 SV, 22.0 IP, 31 H, 9 BB, 16 K)

Last NCAA appearance: 1962 (1-2 in District 7)

Notes: This is the Lobos’ first NCAA regional berth in 48 years, but coach Ray Birmingham is no stranger to playoff victories. At New Mexico Junior College, he won a national title in 2005 and finished second in 2007, and his son Josh played on a College World Series team at the University of Nebraska. Birmingham won his 100th game as a Lobo on May 1 against San Diego State, and his 900th game overall against Louisiana Tech on March 13. New Mexico finished second in the Mountain West for the third-straight year, and several players were selected to the All-MWC Baseball Team. Senior pitcher Willy Kesler made the first team, while junior catcher Rafael Neda, senior first baseman Justin Howard and senior outfielder Chris Juarez were named to the second team. Howard leads the conference in batting average (.455), runs (74), hits (117) and doubles (32). Senior Daniel Gonzalez, a transfer from El Paso Community College, has now started 115-consecutive games at shortstop.  Sophomore Gera Sanchez is one of 45 closers on the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Midseason Watch List for the 2010 Stopper of the Year Award. Junior Rafael Neda was one of 53 catchers on the Johnny Bench Award Watch List. New Mexico has two Australians who played on national championship teams – junior Richard Olson, from Sydney, played on the 2005 title team and senior Adam Courcha, from Perth, played for the 2006 title team.


4. Minnesota Golden Gophers

Minneapolis, Minnesota

Automatic bid – won Big Ten Tournament

2010 record: 15-9, 30-28 (first in Big Ten)

Head coach: John Anderson (Minnesota, 1977)

Record at school: 1,036-673-3, 29 years

Overall record: 1,036-673-3, 29 years

Assistant coaches: Rob Fornasiere, Lee Swenson, Todd Oakes

Team offense: .306 BA, 356 R, 38 HR, .432 SLG%, .380 OB%, 37-64 SB

Team pitching: 4.62 ERA, 516.2 IP, 559 H, 184 BB, 386 K

Top hitters: Michael Kvasnicka (.350/7/46/.562 SLG), Nick O’Shea (.339/13/59/.577 SLG), Trip Shultz (.336/2/19), Kyle Knudson (.333/5/45), Matt Puhl (.327/1/19).

Top Pitchers: Scott Matyas (4-1, 2.59, 31.1, 27 H, 13 BB, 7 SV, 48 K), Seth Rosin (8-4, 5.02, 95, 97 H, 12 BB, 88 K), Phil Isaksson (6-1, 3.29, 82.0, 70 H, 26 BB, 57 K),

Last NCAA appearance: 2009 (2-2 at Baton Rouge Regional)

Notes: In the past 12 seasons the Golden Gophers have gone to the NCAA Tournament eight times. Minnesota’s eight Tournament appearances are the most by any Big Ten team since 1998. Coach John Anderson has the most Tournament appearances by any coach in the Big Ten. Minnesota has the most Tournament appearances since 1982 in the Big Ten. Last year, the Gophers picked up two wins before falling to national champion LSU. Nick O’Shea, a catcher and outfielder, wears No. 23. His freshman brother Kyle pitches and wears No. 32. Michael Kvasnicka’s father Jay was an eighth-round pick of the Minnesota Twins and reached AAA. Catcher Kyle Knudson has been a mainstay the past three years and has driven in 118 runs in his career. Lefty Phil Isaksson has gone 11-2 the past two years, and opponents are hitting .236 off of him. Seth Rosin was a 28th round pick of the Minnesota Twins out of high school.