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Courtesy: Washington State Athletics
WSU Takes On Oral Roberts, Washington And California
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Courtesy: Washington State Athletics
Release: 03/16/2001
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March 16, 2001

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THIS WEEK:
Friday, March 16 - WSU at Oral Roberts, 3:00 p.m. PT, Johnson Stadium, Tulsa, Okla.
Saturday, March 17 - WSU at Oral Roberts, 11:00 a.m. PT, Johnson Stadium, Tulsa, Okla.
Sunday, March 18 - WSU at Oral Roberts, 11:00 a.m. PT, Johnson Stadium, Tulsa, Okla.

NEXT WEEK:
Tuesday, March 20 - WSU at Washington, 6:30 p.m. PT, Husky Ballpark, Seattle
Wednesday, March 21 - WSU at Washington, 6:30 p.m. PT, Husky Ballpark, Seattle
*Friday, March 23 - WSU at California, 2:00 p.m. PT, Evans Diamond, Berkeley
*Saturday, March 24 - WSU at California, 1:00 p.m. PT (FOX Sports Net), Evans Diamond, Berkeley
*Sunday, March 25 - WSU at California, 1:00 p.m. PT, Evans Diamond, Berkeley

LAST WEEK:
Friday, March 9 - Oregon State 6, WSU 3, YVC Field, Yakima, Wash.
Saturday, March 10 - Oregon State 11, WSU 10, YVC Field, Yakima, Wash.
Sunday, March 11 - WSU 8, Oregon State 7, YVC Field, Yakima, Wash.

* = Pacific-10 Conference game

COUGAR DIAMOND NOTES

COUGARS FACE RUGGED SLATE:
The Washington State Cougars, 6-13 and still in search of a series win, head to Oral Roberts this week for a three-game weekend series that kicks off eight-games in 10 days. Following the weekend games at ORU, the Cougars return to the Pacific Northwest for two non-conference games with the Washington Huskies in Seattle March 20-21, then a three-game weekend series at California to begin Pac-10 play. Friday's opener at ORU begins at 3:00 p.m. PT, with the next two games set for 11:00 a.m. starts. Next week's pair of non-conference games Tuesday and Wednesday at Washington both begin at 6:30 p.m. WSU head coach Tim Mooney expects to start Tony Banaszak in the first game at ORU, while Zach Fisher is expected to get his second start of the year in game two. Mooney did not name a starter for the third game Sunday, but indicated Justin Cayetano may be the starter unless he is needed in relief for one of the earlier games. The Cougars are coming off their best weekend at the plate after hitting .308 against Oregon State last week in Yakima. Catcher Jon Baeder had the hot bat with a .556 average while starting all three games, but he had plenty of help in the top half of the batting order.

For the season, Stefan Bailie continues to lead WSU offensively with a .394 average (he hit .462 last weekend), 21 runs scored, 28 hits, 27 RBI and nine home runs. Outfielder Mike Knight is hitting .361 and Evan Hecker .324, the only Coug regulars above .300. WSU is hitting .266 for the season. Banaszak leads the WSU starters with a .494 ERA, but a 1-4 record with 27.1 innings of work. No WSU pitcher has more than one victory. In relief, Donny Davis has been almost untouchable, working 10.2 innings (0.84) and allowing just one earned run.

COUGS ON THE AIR:
Two of WSU's weekend games with Oral Roberts will be broadcast on KCLX radio and will also be available via the internet by accessing WSU's web site at www.wsucougars.com. Cougar Sports Properties will take a feed from the ORU Network Friday and Sunday, while Saturday's game will not be broadcast by either team. All of next week's games at Washington and California will also be carried by CSP on KCLX.

WSU DOUBLE PLAYS:
WSU's 25 double plays ranks in a tie with Stanford and Oregon State for the Pac-10 lead...WSU is second in double plays per game at 1.32.

EARLY STARTS:
Only once has WSU successfully started the home season earlier than March 21...in 1995 the Cougars set March 1 against the LCSC Warriors as the home opener and WSU went on to win the game...in 1998 WSU opened at home March 21 and played three out of four scheduled games against Oregon State, while last year the Cougs opened at home March 21 with LCSC.

COUGS KEEP IT CLOSE:
In 19 games this season, only eight have been determined by more than two runs...WSU is 3-5 in one-run games, 0-3 in two-run games, 0-2 in games determined by three or four runs and 3-3 in games determined by five or more runs...last week Oregon State won by one and three runs over the Cougs, who claimed a one run win in the three games.

TOP OF ORDER HITS:
WSU's leadoff batters are hitting .324 and the number two spot hits .325, but after that the averages dip...WSU hits .282 in the number three slot and .288 in cleanup, but the number five batters are hitting .269...WSU hits .107 in the number six spot, then .194, .271 and .231 in the next three spots in the batting order...overall, the Cougs hit .305 through the top four spots in the order and .298 combined for the top five positions, but the last four batters have a combined batting average of .223.

TO START OR NOT TO START:
Figure this one out...WSU batters, when starting, are hitting .262, while the non-starters are hitting .306...the opponents are more conventional, with their starters hitting .311 and the non-starters .296...on the mound, Cougar starters have an ERA of 8.08 and the non-starting pitchers are at 3.99...for opponents, the starters have a 4.40 ERA and the relief pitchers 6.28.

HITTING STREAKS:
Evan Hecker boasts the longest current hitting streak at seven games, while Stafan Bailie's nine-game streak earlier in the season is the year's longest for WSU...Bailey, Brent Robertson and Bookie Gates all are working on four game hitting streaks going into the Oral Roberts series...Bailie has nine multiple hit games, while Hecker and Knight each have collected more than one hit in seven games...Bailie has had two or more RBI in seven games.

WSU NEEDS TO START PLAYING EARLIER:
WSU would do well to start their baseball games in the sixth inning...the Cougs have been outscored 87-49 over the first five innings, including 21-9 in the first frame...over the last four innings WSU has a 66-36 run advantage...the Cougs' best innings are the sixth with an 17-9 advantage, the seventh with a 21-8 lead and the ninth at 14-3.

COUGS ADD CWU TO SCHEDULE:
WSU has added a home game with Central Washington for 3:00 p.m. Monday, April 16. The loss of early season games allowed the Cougars to add the game to their schedule.

OSU SERIES REVIEW:
Washington State had its best weekend at the plate against Oregon State last week, but unfortunately so did the Beavers...the Cougs hit .308 for the weekend, the first time the team topped .300 in a weekend series...OSU, however, hit .389 off Cougar pitchers...at the plate catcher Jon Baeder broke out of his slump by collecting five hits in nine at-bats, a .556 average...Stefan Bailie continued his torrid hitting, going 6-13 (.462) with one home run and four RBI...Brent Robertson also had his best series of the season with a .444 average, while Bookie Gates hit .385 and Evan Hecker .308...Cougar pitchers were especially hurt by the long ball, with the Beavers collecting 10 home runs, eight doubles and two triples in three games...OSU's slugging percentage was .761, compared to WSU's .467...on the mound, Donny Davis continued to throw well in a closing role...he picked up his first win of the year against OSU and allowed just one hit in 2.1 innings of work.

FROM TIM MOONEY . . .

LONG WEEK AHEAD:
"It is a full week of baseball for us. We hope to get some extended innings from our pitchers so we are not into our bullpen in the second and third innings. If we can get some good starts from them, it will allow our staff to hold up through the eight games."

OSU REVIEW:
"Tony Banaszak pitched well for us and we had good relief performances by Lanakila Niles and Zach Fisher. Donny Davis is still our steady closer. Overall at the plate we were more patient. We improved, but we still are not where we need to be."

MORE HITS NEEDED:
"Our biggest problem at the plate is stringing hits together. When you get runners on base and you have a hole in your lineup that gives the other team an out or two, you can't manufacture the runs you need. When you get them on base you need some hits at the end of the order."

BAILIE:
"When he comes up to the plate with runners on base he wants to do it so badly, something special, he might go get a pitch out of the zone because he's so anxious to hit. He almost hits better without runners on base because he is more patient. His defense at first base has been fine. I wish we could clone him and have one bat in front of him and one behind him. I think teams will pitch around him more and more. He needs to realize that and accept some walks. If he doesn't, he'll get himself out."

DEPTH:
"A key for us is whether or not we have the depth in the lineup to turn the one run games into one and two run victories.

FORMER HUSKIES FACE UW:
"I don't worry about them (former Huskies now with WSU) pressing when we play Washington. Maybe I am not in tune with it, but I think they are just baseball players who are trying to play the game every day. We talk a lot about playing at the same level every game. They are all of the same importance."

HOW DO THE NORTH TEAMS WIN IN THE PAC-10:
"The Pac-10 is arguably the best conference in baseball. All the schools have to get the best talent they can to compete at this level. Then we have to teach them to play the game effectively. I don't have a simple answer on how you get the best talent. If I had, it would be easy. It is a fine line in recruiting the first through fifth round player who never shows up on your campus and finding the best player you can sign who will show up. We are really trying to convince the Northwest kids, the Washington kids in particular, to stay home. We tell them you don't have to jump on someone else's train to be a champion. If the best kids stayed in the Northwest, we could go down there and compete. We can't have a talent drain. You can win with Northwest kids if you keep the best ones."

THE ASSISTANTS:
Tim Mooney's new WSU staff includes Gary Picone, a 1976 graduate of LCSC, and Bobby Lee, who finished up at WSU in 1991 after three years at Eastern Washington. Picone handles the pitchers, while Lee coaches the outfielders and catchers.

105 YEARS OF COUGAR BASEBALL:
Baseball, the first sport played at Washington State University in 1892, completed its 105th season of diamond action in 2000...during its first 105 seasons, WSU baseball teams won 64.9% of their games, posting a 2,246-1,237 record...the Cougars did not field baseball teams in 1893-94-95-97.

WSU ON TV:
WSU and California will square off March 24 in a regionally televised Pac-10 baseball game from Berkeley. FOX Sports Net will air the game...in addition, FOX Sports Net Northwest will televise a pair of Cougar baseball games, April 6 when WSU hosts Arizona and April 22 when the Cougs visit Oregon State.

WSU ON THE RADIO/INTERNET:
The majority of Washington State's baseball games will be broadcast by KCLX (1450 AM) in Colfax, Wash., during the 2001 season...WSU radio broadcasts are handled by Cougar Sports Properties, a sub-division of Learfield Communications...airtime is 20 minutes before the start of the game...Alex Webster or Troy Hirsch will call most of the Cougar games...games broadcast on radio can also be heard on the internet at the WSU web site, www.wsucougars.com.

COUGAR BASEBALL RANKS FIFTH IN ALL-TIME NCAA VICTORIES:
In a list compiled by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA), Washington State University ranks fifth in all-time NCAA Division I baseball victories with 2,246 prior to the 2001 season.

Washington State Cougars Baseball
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