Friday, March 12, 2010

San Diego Tournament Preview (USD)

By FullertonBaseballFan

Saturday – San Diego Toreros (8-7)

USD entered last season with high expectations but had their hopes derailed by several season ending injuries to key players and ended up going 29-25 and finishing in 5th place in the WCC at 11-10 after being the pre-season favorites to win the conference. The Toreros once again entered this season with high expectations as the conference favorites.

USD opened the season by winning their first three games against Indiana before losing the final game of the series. Starting with that loss to Indiana, the Toreros lost seven out of eight games including an 11-4 midweek loss at Fullerton and losses in two out of three games against cross-town rival San Diego State and bottomed out when they were shutout by Kentucky last weekend. Since then, USD has won four out of five games including the first two games of the tournament against San Francisco 15-7 and UAB 5-2.

USD expected to be carried by their pitching staff this season with several pitchers who are expected to be high draft picks on the roster. But, the Toreros have struggled on the mound and have allowed 5+ R’s in 9 of 15 games. The USD pitchers have started to right the ship in their last five games and have allowed 13 R’s in their four wins.

USD returns an experienced lineup that lost only one player from last season. After getting off to a hot start and scoring 34 runs in their first three games the Toreros bats went cold and they scored only 22 runs in their next eight games. USD has started to heat up again and they have scored 32 runs in their last four games. The Toreros have solid power with 14 HR’s and a .449 SLG % but do not have a patient approach at the plate and are walking just over three times per game. USD didn’t run much last season with 51 SB’s (19 by one player) but are running more this season and are 21-30 on SB attempts. Despite having so many experienced players USD has been playing poor defense and has committed 27 errors for a .951 FLD %.


C – SR Nick McCoy (RH). .260/.377/.360, 1-6-0. Baserunners are 15-19 on SB attempts. .270-6-28-3 in '09.

1B – JR Victor Sanchez (RH). .262/.326/.381, 1-4-0. .263-5-23-0 in 23 games before a season ending injury that he is struggling to return from (torn labrum). 12 HR's as a FR.

2B – JR Tony Strazzara (RH). .400/.472/.567, 1-10-1. .321-0-18-0 in ’09.

SS – Soph Bryan Haar (RH). .275/.356/.451, 2-9-5. Has already made 8 errors. .298-5-38-0 in '09.

3B – SR Steven Chatwood (RH). .311/.404/.533, 2-11-2. .327-1-20-0 in '09.

LF – FR Matt Moynihan (LH). 9-18 (all singles), 1 BB, 0 RBI.

CF – SR James Meador (RH). .321/.415/.500, 2-13-4. 2009 WCC Player of the Year. .376-6-45-7.

RF – FR Kalei Hanawahine (LH). .387/.412/.419, 0-7-1.

DH – JR Mike Ferraro (LH). .464/.500/.714, 1-5-0. Redshirted last season.


All three of these players have been regulars and have been in and out of the lineup due to minor injuries.

CF Kevin Muno (RH). .244/.352/.444, 2-4-5. Pre-season all-WCC selection. Hit .305 with 9 SB's in 17 games in ‘09 before a season ending injury. Hit .326 with 21 SB's in '08.

2B Chris Engell (RH). .231/.302/.333, 0-4-1. .358-3-37-3 in '09.

SS Zach Walters (LH). .281/.273/.469, 1-7-0. All-WCC in 2009. .377-1-24-4


Starting Pitcher

RHP Kyle Blair. 1-0, 3.12 ERA. Expected to be drafted in the first round and was drafted in the fifth round out of HS. Fastball sits in the low 90’s with one of the best sliders in the country. Only made 8 starts last season due to injuries (3-2, 3.12, 55 IP, 47 H, 18 BB, 62 K). Allowed 1 R on 4 H and 4 BB in 4 IP with 8 K against Indiana, 3 R on 3 H and 6 BB in 6 IP with 11 K against San Diego State and 2 R on 3 H and 1 BB in 7 IP with 5 K against Monmouth in his three starts.


All RHP's because the only LHP on the staff is SP Sammy Solis. The most likely relievers to see action are closer Matt Thompson (0-1, 2.61 ERA, 7 apps, 2 saves, 15 K's in 10 IP in 7 apps), Matt Hauser (1-0, 1.50 ERA, 2 saves, 12 IP in 6 apps), Andrew Walter (3.38 ERA, 5 IP in 4 apps) and Mike Dedrick (7.00 ERA, 9 IP in 7 apps). Hauser had a two inning save in Friday’s game against UAB. Thompson threw three innings against USF on Thursday.

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