May 15, 2003
Back At It: The Wildcats return to action this weekend after taking a break for final exams. Arizona has won four its last five games and has not lost a three-game series since dropping two of three at UCLA March 28-30.
Notes From the Cal Series: The Wildcats won their fifth Pac-10 series of the season with a 2 games to 1 victory over the Golden Bears in Tucson ... The two wins bumped Arizona's all-time lead in the series to 84-59 in 143 all-time meetings ... As a team, the Wildcats hit just .272 to Cal's .283 ... 10 of Arizona's 28 hits in the series went for extra bases ... The Wildcats were a perfect 10 for 10 in stolen bases in the series ... The pitching staff tallied a 4.50 ERA in the three games with 20 K's and 11 walks ... Individually, freshman Nick Hundley led all Arizona players at the plate witha .429 batting average (3 for 7) ... Junior Brian Anderson finished the series with team-highs in both RBIs (6) and run scored (5) ... Friday: Junior Richie Gardner held Cal hitless over the first six innings en route to his eighth win of the season ... The right-hander gave up three runs on three hits with nine Ks in seven innings of work ... Freshman Trevor Crowe led the way at the plate witha 2 for 4, 3-RBI night ... Crowe's two-run triple in Arizona's 3-run third broke the Pac-10 single season team triples record of 43 previously held by the 1986 Arizona team ... Arizona stole five bases in the game ... Saturday: Freshman Brad Boyer set one Arizona freshman record and tied another as the Wildcats secured their fifth Pac-10 series of the season with a 10-4 win ... Boyer, who finished 3 for 5 in the game, tallied two doubles to break Damon Mashore and Keoni DeRenne's rookie season record of 15. The first-year Wildcat also stole his 22nd base of the season to tie Mashore's freshman record ... On the mound Sean Rierson tossed his third complete game of the season to pick up his team-high-tying eighth win of the season ... The junior right-hander struck out six while giving up just three earned runs on six hits ... The performance was his fifth straight start in which he tossed seven or more innings ... Sophomore Richard Mercado hit his fourth home run of theseason in the game ... Classmate Jeff Van Houten finished with a game-high three RBIs ... Sunday: John Hardy's two-out triple in the ninth inning rallied Arizona to a 6-6 tie and forced extra innings, where a pair of errors and six runs cost Arizona its chance at a series sweep ... Hardy finished the game 2 for 4 ... Brian Anderson's team-leading 14th home run of the season, a three-run shot, brought Arizona back from a 6-2 deficit in the eighth inning ... Reliever John Meloan was the hard-luck loser, giving up six unearned runs in the 10th ... Brad Boyer broke Damon Mashore's freshman streals record with his 23rd stolen base of the season in the game.
Polling Place: A weekend off proved to be quite profitable for the Wildcats in the weekly polls. Arizona jumped up five spots, from 25th to 20th, in the USA Today/Sports Weekly poll, four spots, to No. 18, in the Baseball America rankings and two spots, to a season-high-tying 17th, in the Collegiate Baseball Poll. The complete polls can be found on pages 6-7 of the notes.
Head Coach Andy Lopez: Andy Lopez, now in his second season at Arizona, has posted a career 751-459-6 (.619) record (Current). In his three previous coaching stops, Cal State Dominguez Hills, Pepperdine and Florida, he has averaged eight more wins in his second year than in the first. At Florida his second-year team won a school record 50 games, 18 more than the year before, and advanced to the College World Series.
Andy Lopez's First vs. Second Seasons
CSUDH Pepperdine Florida Arizona
1983 15-27 (.357) 1989 41-19-1 (.680) 1995 32-24 (.571) 2002 31-24 (.564)
1984 25-35-1 (.418) 1990 37-23 (.617) 1996 50-18 (.735) 2003 33-17 (.660)
Overall Wins: Arizona has already surpassed its win total from a season ago and matched it highest win total in a season since the 1993 team won 35 games. Both the 1998 and '99 teams won 33 games.
Conference Wins: A pair of wins over Oregon State this weekend would tie the 2003 team with the 1999 squad for the most Pac-10 victories since the Pac-10 North and South combined in 1999.
Through Six Pac-10 Series: The Wildcats have won five of their first six Pac-10 series for the just the second time since Arizona joined the conference in 1978-79. Arizona's 1989 team won seven of its first eight series and eight of its 10 total season series in the now defunct Pac-10 South. Prior to this year, Arizona had never won more than four series in a season since the Pac-10 North and South combined in 1999.
Power Surge: Dating back to April 25, Arizona has hit 14 home runs in its last seven games. Juniors Moises Duran and Brian Anderson have supplied the majority of the long balls with four home runs each during the seven game stretch.
Three Times The Fun: Arizona's 45 triples this season has established a new high-water mark in the Pac-10. This season's team eclipsed the 1986 Arizona team for the most triples in a single season in conference history. However, while the 45 triples this season set a new Pac-10 record, the 2003 team has a ways to go before breaking the school record of 64 three-baggers set in the 1960 season. The 2003 Wildcats are averaging just under one triple per game this year.
National Leaders: Arizona continues to rank, both individually and as a team, among the top teams in the nation in a number of statistical categories. Heading into play this week, here's where UA and its players rank:
Batting Average Scoring
1. Southern .360 1. Southern 10.5
16. Arizona .328 5. Arizona 9.4
Batting Average RBIs Per Game
1. Rickie Weeks, Southern .493 1. Billy Becher, NMSU 2.09
39. Jeff Van Houten, Arizona.403 12. Moises Duran, Arizona 1.32
13. Jeff Van Houten, Arizona 1.31
Triples Per Game
1. Lee Curtis, College of Charleston 0.26
4. Brad Boyer, Arizona 0.17
t5. Jeff Van Houten, Arizona 0.16
t5. Brian Anderson, Arizona 0.16
Stealing Them Silly: Head coach Andy Lopez and his staff put an emphasis on improving Arizona's team speed. It appears they did just that. The Wildcats have already stolen 132 bases this season, 58 more than Arizona stole the entire season last year, and are just the 10th team in school history to swipe over 100. The Wildcats currently average nearly three steals a game. Arizona stole a season-high 11 bases in their 15-12 win over Portland on March 12. The school record for stolen bases in a season is 150 set by the 1985 team.
Team Stolen Bases (Last 10 Seasons) Top Arizona Teams
Year Stolen Bases Rk. Year SB
2003 132 - Through 50 games. 1. 1985 150
2002 74 2. 1986 147
2001 52 3. 1980 135
2000 67 4. 2003 132
1999 62 5. 1956 130
1998 69 6. 1957 120
1997 112 7. 1960 112
1996 78 1997 112
Grand Theft: Arizona's ability to steal bases has made the 2003 one of the most successful in terms of stolen bases vs. attempts. The 2003 team is stealing bases at a 79-percent success rate. That figure is bettered by only a handful of Arizona teams in school history, none of which attempted as many steals as the 2003 team.
Stolen Base Percentage Leaders
1. 1975 114 for 123 93%
2. 1970 82 for 98 84%
3. 1971 64 for 79 81%
1981 102 for 126 81%
5. 1973 49 for 61 80%
6. 2003 132 for 168 79%
1977 88 for 11 79%
1976 110 for 139 79%
Getting Offensive: The Arizona offense currently has a team .328 batting average, down three points from last week's .331 ... Arizona has hit two inside-the-park home runs this season (Jeff Van Houten vs. Wagner 3/14 and Brian Anderson's grand slam at Stanford 4/26) ... The Wildcats have 66 home runs, six more than all of last season and the most since the 2000 team had 78... As a team, Arizona ranks either first or second in nearly every offensive category in the Pac-10 this season ... Heading into play this weekend, the Wildcats are slugging at a Pac-10-best .545 clip and have a .394 on-base percentage, third in the conference ... The Wildcats' 45 triples and 132 stolen bases not only lead the Pac-10, but double up on the nearest school in the rankings ... Heading into the weekend, sophomore Jeff Van Houten continues to lead Arizona in average (.403) and RBIs (64) ... Junior Brian Anderson has hit career-highs in both home runs (14) and triples (8)and leads Arizona and the Pac-10 with a .729 slugging percentage ... Freshman Brad Boyer has 67 runs scored, second in the Pac-10, and 23 stolen bases, best in the conference ... See pages 4-5 of the notes for the Pac-10 leaders and where Arizona ranks heading into this week.
On the Bump: Arizona's staff ERA sits at 4.56 heading into the weekend series with the Beavers, down a fraction from 4.57 after the Pac-10 series with Cal, which is fourth among the Pac-10 schools ... The Wildcat hurlers have recorded a better than 2-to-1 strike out to walk ratio this season (365 to 171) ... Opponents are batting 14 points lower against Arizona pitchers this season than last year ... Junior Richie Gardner ranks among the league leaders in the conference in ERA (3.61), strike outs (82) and innings pitched (89.2) ... Classmate Sean Rierson is tied with Gardner for second in the conference in wins (8) and also ranks among the top 10 in innings pitched (88.0) and strike outs (56).
Up Coming: After a week off for finals, Arizona returns to Pac-10 action this weekend with a three-game set against Oregon State at Sancet Field ... The Beavers, who lost tow of three to Arizona State in Corvallis earlier this week, come to town with a 22-26 overall record and a 6-15 mark in Pac-10 play ... OSU returns 16 letterwinners, five starters and six pitchers from last season's 31-24 team ... Leding the way offensively is junior Tony Calderon ... The JC transfer is batting a team-high .376 with 42 runs scored ... Junior outfielder Seth Pietsch has a team-high 10 home runs and 49 runs scored ... On the mound OSU will send Ben Rowe, Jake Postlewait and Stephen Copeland as the starters .... Postlewait is 4-0 this season in 11 starts with a 2.45 ERA .... Rowe leads the pitching staff with 38 strikeouts in 72 innings pitched ... Head coach Pat Casey is in his ninth season as the skipper of the Beavers and has recorded a 261-201-4 record in Corvallis.
Arizona Probable Pitching Rotation vs. Oregon State
Friday - Richie Gardner RHP (8-1, 3.61 ERA)
Saturday - Sean Rierson (8-1, 4.60 ERA)
Sunday - TBA
Arizona vs. Oregon State All-Time: In a series that dates back to 1963, Arizona and Oregon State have played 26 games against each other ... Arizona owns a 15-11 advantage in the series, but lost two of three against OSU in Corvallis last season ... Since the Pac-10 North and South combined in 1999 Arizona is 7-5 against the Beavers.
Van Hitting: Perhaps Jeff Van Houten should request a name change. From the first game played this season, the sophomore outfielder has done nothing but hit. In 49 games (he missed one game at UCLA with sore ribs) he is batting a team-high .403 while leading the team in RBIs (64). This season he has posted 18 multi-hit games and 16 multiple RBI games. His season-low for batting average came on March 8 at Texas when it "dropped" to .373. He has collected at least one hit in 41 games this year, and when he has gone hitless he has still managed to put the ball in play. In his eight hitless games he has struck out just nine times, while recording three RBIs. No Arizona player in the last five seasons been hitting over .400 50 games into the season.
Ninth Inning Woes: The Wildcats have picked a particularly bad inning to be out-scored in this season. Arizona is out-scoring its opponents in the first eight innings by a combined 210 runs this year. The ninth inning however has proven to be a different matter. With big innings being the main culprit, the Wildcats are getting out-scored by over a 2-to-1 margin (42 to 19) in the final frame. The good news is that Arizona has won 11 of the 16 games that it has surrendered runs in the ninth, including an 11-inning win over Washington State on April 18. The bad news is that the Wildcats have blown five ninth-inning leads that have eventually led to losses.
Anderson Adding Up: Junior Brian Anderson has bounced back nicely from a down year in 2002. The third-year starter has already surpassed his career home run total of nine in just this season alone with a team-high 14 and has also topped his single-season-bests in runs scored (52 in 2003, 40 in 2001) and RBIs (58 in 2003, 38 in 2001). His eight triples this season not only lead the team this year, but are also one more than his freshman and sophomore seasons combined.
Doing the Streak: Brian Anderson has put together three impressive hitting streaks this season. The third-year starter has not gone hitless in consecutive games this year and has at least one hit in 47 of the 49 games he has played. Only USC (3/22) and Washington State (4/19) have managed to keep Anderson from collecting a hit. He has hitting streaks of 26, 13 and eight games this season.
Anderson's Hitting Streaks
Jan. 30-Mar. 21 (26 Games*) .375 (39 for 104), 27 runs, 7 2B, 6 3B, 7 HR, 23 RBI
Mar. 23-Apr. 18 (13 Games) .456 (26 for 57), 15 runs, 5 2B, 1 3B, 3 HR, 19 RBI
Apr. 22-May 4 (8 Games**) .382 (13 for 34), 10 runs, 0 2B, 1 3B, 4 HR, 16 RBI
* Set Arizona's Single-Season Record
One-Two Punch: Arizona's junior tandem of Richie Gardner and Sean Rierson have provided the Wildcats with a potent one-two punch on the mound this season. The classmates are a combined 16-2 (.889) in 28 appearances. They have 138 strikeouts against just 46 walks in 177 2/3 innings pitched and opponents are hitting only .274 against them. Should both of the them win their final two starts in the regular season, they would become the first duo of 10-plus game winners in the same season for Arizona since Craig Lefferts and Ron Sismondo went 10-3 and 11-6, respectively, in 1979. Should either of the right-handers reach the double-digit win plateau they would be just the 12th pitcher in the last 25 years to win 10 or more games in a season at Arizona.
10-Plus Game Winners Since 1978
1978 Craig Chamberlain - 10-1
1978 David Crutcher - 11-5
1979 Craig Lefferts - 10-3
1979 Ron Sismondo - 11-6
1980 Ron Sismondo - 10-5
1983 Ed Vosberg - 10-2
1985 Joe Magrane - 13-8
1986 Gil Heredia - 16-3
1987 Gil Heredia - 10-8
1989 Scott Erickson - 18-3
2000 Ben Diggins - 10-4
Working Late: Junior right-hander Richie Gardner has taken the ball deep into the game for Arizona all season long. The junior college transfer is averaging around 6 2/3 innings pitched per start this season. He has worked seven or more innings in eight of his 13 starts (62 percent) and has failed to last more than five innings just once (not surprisingly it was his only loss of the year). Twice he has pitched nine innings, but has not recieved credit for a complete game either time as both nine-inning starts went extra innings.
Gardner's Innings Pitched Per Start
IP # Gardner's Record Arizona's Record
9.0 2 0-0 0-2 (Both Losses Were In Extra Innings)
8.0 + 2 2-0 2-0
7.0 + 4 4-0 4-0
6.0 + 2 1-0 2-0
5.0 + 2 1-0 2-0
4.0 + 1 0-1 0-1
Rierson Moves Up In Career Numbers: While his record-tying 30 hit batters probably isn't the highlight of his career, junior Sean Rierson is also climbing up the career record books in both games started and innings pitched. With 47 career starts, Rierson is firmly entrenched in the No. 3 spot on Arizona's career list behind all-time leader Ed Vosberg (60) and No. 2 Joe Magrane (53). His 305 1/3 career innings pitched places him just outside the all-time top 10 at Arizona. A seven inning outing against the Beavers this weekend would tie him with Jim Ward (1958-60) for 10th on the list at 312 1/3.
Seven's Up: If recent starts are any indication, junior Sean Rierson should move into the No. 10 slot on the afore mentioned career innings pitched list. The right-hander has worked seven or more innings in each of his last five starts.
Hitting His Spots: Junior Sean Rierson has always shown impressive control in his pitching, but never so much as this year. If the season ended today, Rierson would own Arizona's single season record for the fewest walks per nine innings. Rierson's 15 walks this season in 88 innings pitched gives him an average of 1.53 BB/9 IP. Mike Crawford, Arizona's current single-season record holder, walked just 1.54 batters per nine innings pitched in 1999. For his career, Rierson has not allowed a free pass in 12 of his 47 starts (26 percent) and his game-high for walks is just four.
Rierson's Control In 47 Career Starts
0 Walks 12 Starts (3 in 2003)
1 Walk 14 Starts (5 in 2003)
2 Walks 16 Starts (5 in 2003)
3 Walks 4 Starts (0 in 2003)
4 Walks 1 Start (0 in 2003)
Freshmen Phenoms: Offensively Arizona knew it was going to have to rely on its youth to produce this season, and so far it has. As a class, the seven freshmen that have played this season have 230 hits, 174 runs, 50 doubles, 15 triples, 15 home runs, 147 RBIs and 50 stolen bases. Brad Boyer is currently fourth on the team with a .370 average and leads all players with 23 stolen bases and 67 runs scored. Classmates Nick Hundley and Derek Decater are fifth and sixth in average (.346, .327) and Trevor Crowe is second on the team with 14 doubles.
2003 Arizona Freshmen Numbers (Boyer, Brown, Crowe, Decater, Franklin, Frey, Hundley)
Category Combined Total Percent of Team Total
AB 700 38%
Runs 174 37%
Hits 230 38% (The freshmen have class .329 BA)
2B 50 44%
3B 15 30%
HR 15 23%
RBIs 147 35%
SB 50 38%
Freshman Record Book: As far as freshmen Wildcats are concerned, first-year starter Brad Boyer is posting numbers that rival some of the best in school history. Boyer already owns three freshman records at UA and is on pacce to break several more in Arizona's final six regular season games:
Stat Freshman Record Boyer's Numbers/Rank
Runs Keoni DeRenne (1999) - 68 67/2nd
Hits Keoni DeRenne (1999) - 81 77/3rd
Doubles Brad Boyer (2003) - 16 16/1st
Triples Brad Boyer (2003) - 8 8/1st
Stolen Bases Brad Boyer (2003) - 23 23/1st
Extra Base Hits Shelley Duncan (1999) - 33 29/t2nd
Total Bases Shelley Duncan (1999) - 135 124/3rd
Batting Average Dave Page (1981) - .374 .370/t3rd
Slugging % Shelley Duncan (1999) - .640 .596/2nd
On-Base % Dave Page (1981) - .457 .429/5th
More Freshman Records: Boyer, Trevor Crowe, Derek Decater and Nick Hundley are all on pace to finish in the top 10 for freshmen in batting average ... Decater and Hundley are currently ranked among the top 10 Arizona freshmen in slugging percentage ... Freshman right-hander John Meloan is currently tied for fourth on the first-year saves list with two.
Speed Kills: Along the lines of improved team speed is the ability to take extra bases. Arizona has already surpassed 2002's totals in both doubles (113 this season, 89 in 2002) and triples (45 this season, 25 in 2002). Including Jeff Van Houten and Brian Anderson's inside-the park home runs, the Wildcats have 160 hits that have gone for extra bases and are not traditional over the fence homers (113 doubles, 45 triples, two inside-the-park home runs) which accounts for over 26-percent of all of Arizona's hits for the season. Toss in the 64 traditional home runs and 37-percent of UA's hits are for extra bases.
Double Digits: The Wildcats have found success this season when scoring double digit runs. Arizona is 17-3 (.850) when scoring 10 or more runs in a game this season.
Open Up The Record Books: With 99 years of baseball in the history books, it hasn't been easy to match single game records set in Arizona's illustrious past. However, the 2003 team is doing just that. After April 28's record-setting game against Sac State, this year's team has set or equaled a number of records:
2003 Single Game Mark School Record
At Bats (9 inn. game) 61 - vs. BYU 2/1 61 - vs. New Mexico 5/7/65
Hits 32 - vs. BYU 2/1 32 - vs. New Mexico 5/7/65
Triples 5 - vs. Wagner 3/14 5 - Seven times
Home Runs 7 - vs. Sac State 4/28 7 - at Wash St. 4/8/01
Fewest Left On Base 0 - vs. Sac State 4/28 1 - Three Times
Hits (Player) 6 - Richard Mercado vs. BYU 2/1 6 - Five Times
Runs (Player) 6 - Brad Boyer at Sac St. 4/28 6 - Cliff Myrick vs. Colo. 3/19/51
Doubles (Player) 3 - Brad Boyer at Sac St. 4/28 3 - 24 Times
Most Grand: In addition to the numerous single game records this season, junior Moises Duran also etched his name in the record books for a career mark. The third-year starter hit his fourth career grand slam at Sac State on Monday to tie him with 1986 College World Series hero Dave Shermet for the most bases loaded home runs in school history. Duran hit two last season and has one at UC Irvine and Monday's blast this year. Duran's two slams this season ties him with himself and eight others for the second-most grand slams in a single season. Only former Wildcat Jason Thompson, who had three GS in 1993, has hit more in a single year in an Arizona uniform.
No More Non-Conference: Arizona closed out its non-conference schedule last Monday at Sac State. The Wildcats finished their non-Pac-10 schedule with a 22-10 (.688) record. As a team, Arizona hit .348 in 32 games with 324 runs scored (10.1 runs per game), 289 RBIs, 93 stolen bases, 43 home runs, 83 doubles and 29 triples. Individually, sophomore Jeff Van Houten finished the non-conference slate with a .431 batting average and 47 RBIs, both team-highs. Junior Brian Anderson hit nine of his 13 home runs against non-conference opponents, while freshman Brad Boyer led all Arizona players with 45 runs scored and 16 stolen bases. The Arizona pitching staff tallied a 4.08 ERA away from the Pac-10 with an impressive 256 strikeouts against just 98 walks. Non-conference foes hit just .279 against UA pitchers. Juniors Richie Gardner and Sean Rierson combined to go a perfect 10-0 with a 3.23 ERA. The pair walked just 21 batters in 97 2/3 innings, while striking out 81.
Stringing Them Together: Junior Brian Anderson snapped former Wildcat Ernie Durazo's longest single-season hitting streak in school history on March 21 against USC. The third-year starter hit safely in the first 26 games he played this season to break Durazo's 2-year-old 2001 mark. His streak ended a day later with an 0 for 3 performance, but he then went on to hit safely in Arizona's next 13 games for at least one hit in 39 of the first 40 games he played this year.
Single-Season Hitting Streaks All-Time Hitting Streaks
26 Brian Anderson (2003) 28 Jack Daugherty (1981-82)
25 Ernie Durazo (2001) 28 Ernie Durazo (2000-01)
23 Todd Trafton (1985) 26 Brian Anderson (2003)
Putting Up Zeros: The Wildcat pitching staff already has five shutouts to its credit in 29 games played this season. The 2003 tally has already surpassed the season totals for the past five years and is tied for the most for an Arizona staff since the 1997 club also shutout five opponents during the season. The school record for shutouts in a season is 14 by the 1974 team. In Arizona's shutout wins this season, the Wildcat pitching staff has limited their opponents to under four hits per game, including a pair of two-hitters, and a combined .121 batting average.
Tread Lightly: Arizona's battery of pitchers and catchers have made running on the Wildcats dangerous proposition for their opponents this year. Wildcat pitchers and catchers have caught 34 of 76 would-be base stealers this season for a 45-percent throw out rate. Arizona has also picked off six base runners.
Touchin' 'Em All In A Hurry: Sophomore Jeff Van Houten hit his fifth home run of the season against Wagner on March 14, but didn't have much of an opportunity to savor it. The outfielder became the first Arizona player in over 10 years to circle the bases on an inside-the-park home run. Van Houten smacked a ball down the right field line, circled the bases in a dead sprint and crossed home plate standing up for a home run. Jason Thompson was the last Arizona player to circle the bases with the ball still in play on Feb. 1, 1992 against New Mexico.
Touchin' 'Em All In Hurry II: Brian Anderson one-upped his outfield teammate Van Houten in Arizona's April 26 game at Stanford. The junior hit a line drive off the wall in left field with the bases loaded at Sunken Diamond for an inside-the-park grand slam, the only one of its kind in school history
What A Difference A Year Makes: Through 50 games this season, Arizona's offense has surpassed the 2002 team's numbers by a considerable margin. At this point a year ago Arizona was batting .293 with 512 hits, 407 runs scored, 85 doubles, 23 triples, 55 home runs and 355 RBIs. This year the Wildcats are batting .328 with 605 hits, 469 runs scored, 113 doubles, 45 triples, 66 home runs and 422 RBIs. Individually, Arizona had six players batting .300 or better through the first 50 games last season, while the Wildcats have a player hitting better than .400 this season and nine at .300 or better.
Average .293 .328
Hits 512 605 *
Runs 407 469 *
Doubles 85 113 *
Triples 23 45 *
Home Runs 55 66 *
RBIs 355 422 *
Slugging Pct. .463 .545
Players Batting .300+ 6 9
Players Batting .400+ 0 1
Stolen Bases 70 of 103 132 of 168 *
* Denotes 2003 numbers have already surpassed Arizona's final 2002 marks
Sean Rierson - National, Pac-10 Pitcher of the Week: Junior Sean Rierson's complete game 2-hitter against UC Irvine on Feb. 15 earned the right-hander Collegiate Baseball/Louisville Slugger National and Pac-10 Conference Pitcher of the Week honors. His national recognition was the seventh all-time at UA and the first for an Arizona pitcher since former Wildcat Ben Diggins was honored the week of Feb. 28, 2000. The conference honor was the 25th all-time for a Wildcat pitcher and the first in Rierson's career. Rierson became the first Arizona pitcher to toss a complete game 2-hitter in nearly 20 years. Former Major Leaguer Joe Magrane was the last Arizona pitcher to go the distance on the strength of a 2-hitter in a 10-1 win over UNLV on Feb. 4, 1984. Rierson's 2-hitter also had the added bonus of being a shutout which was last done by David Carley, James McDonald and Jeff Hird in a combined 1-0 shutout of Pepperdine on two hits on Feb. 6, 1986. Interestingly, the Wildcats got only one hit in that game, which was Todd Trafton's game-winning solo home run in the seventh inning.
Sean Rierson - Pac-10 Pitcher of the Week Part II: Rierson was named the conference pitcher of the week for the second time in 2003 after a dominating performance at Texas in which he limited the defending national champion Longhorns to just one run on seven hits in a complete game performance. He struck out nine and walked two in his fourth win of the year.
Jeff Van Houten - Pac-10 Player of the Week: Sophomore Jeff Van Houten was named the March 18 Pac-10 Player of the Week for his dominating performance at the plate against Portland and Wagner. The outfielder finished Arizona's 5-0 week 10 for 14 (.714) with three home runs (including two in one game and an inside-the-park HR), two triples, a double, seven runs scored, a 1.714 slugging percentage and a .700 on-base percentage. The player of the week honor is the first in his career and the 38th all-time at Arizona. Former Wildcat All-American Shelley Duncan was Arizona's last conference player of the week in 2001.
Richie Gardner - Pac-10 Pitcher of the Week: Junior Richie Gardner was named the March 25 Pac-10 Pitcher of the Week. The right-hander went 2-0 in a pair of starts against New Mexico and USC with 17 strike outs and a 1.80 ERA. The week improved Gardner to a team-best 6-0 for the season.
Jeff Van Houten - Pac-10 Player of the Week Part II: Arizona sophomore Jeff Van Houten was named the April 8 Pac-10 Player of the week. The honor was the second of the season for Van Houten and the fifth weekly award for an Arizona player/pitcher this season. Van Houten garnered his second recognition of the year for his 9 for 13-weekend against Miami (Ohio). The second-year starter batted .692 with two triples, his seventh home run of the season, five runs scored and a team-high eight RBIs. He posted a .714 on-base percentage and tallied a 1.231 slugging percentage in helping Arizona win its final non-conference series of the season. In Sunday's 9-4 win he finished 3 for 4 with a career-high-tying six RBIs and needed just a double to hit for the cycle. He was recognized by the Pac-10 previously this season for the week of March 10-17. The Player of the Week honor is 39th all-time for an Arizona player and the second in Van Houten's career. UA's five weekly award winners this season (three pitchers, two players) are the most for a Wildcat team since the 1992 club also had five members (four pitchers, one player) recognized. The 1991 Arizona team tallied a school record eight Player/Pitcher of the Week honorees.
100 Years Of Arizona Baseball: This year will mark the 100th year of Arizona baseball. Since beginning with a 6-1 record in 1904 under head coach B.L. Cosgrove, the Wildcat program has found enormous success in its first 99 seasons. Arizona has recorded 2,248 victories (seventh all-time among Division I teams), won three national championships, finished second three other times, appeared in 14 College World Series, made 29 NCAA regional appearances, had 128 players get drafted and sign professional contracts (of which 52 reached the Major Leagues) and placed 73 players on 54 different All-America teams.