Waves Look to Keep Winning Ways Going as They Host Virginia Commonwealth
Rams come to Eddy D. Field for a midweek two-game series.
Feb. 20, 2012
Tuesday vs. VCU, Corey Miller, rhp (0-0) vs. Seth Cutler-Voltz, rhp (0-0)
Wednesday vs. VCU, Matt Maurer, lhp (0-0) vs.Ryan Morrison, rhp (0-0)
THIS WEEK FOR THE WAVES: The Waves (2-1) stay at home this week to host the Virginia Commonwealth Rams (1-2) for a two-game set on Tuesday and Wednesday. The team will stay at home and welcome Fresno State to Eddy D. Field Stadium to begin a three-game set on Friday. The Waves are riding high after a 2-1 series win over then-No. 14 Oklahoma. The team dropped game one of the series, 4-3 on Friday, but came back with a vengeance on Saturday behind the strong pitching effort of sophomore righty Scott Frazier. The offense came alive and helped the team to wins on both Saturday and Sunday.
LAST WEEK FOR THE WAVES: Pepperdine had a strong opening weekend as they took two-of-three from No. 14 Oklahoma. The Waves dropped a close game one, 4-3 on Friday, but came back to win game two, thanks in large part to the pitching performance of sophomore righty Scott Frazier. Frazier threw seven shutout innings to earn the win, and the Waves' bats came alive to drive in 10 runs. Freshman outfielder Aaron Brown had a day with the stick with a team-leading three RBI. On Sunday, despite a rocky start on the mound, freshman Andrew Alvarez entered in the first to stop the bleeding and kept the Waves in the game. Redshirt senior Matt Forgatch and redshirt freshman Bryan Langloishit the first home runs of the season for the Waves on Sunday. Brown took to the mound in the top of the eighth and preserved the 7-6 win in a shortened game due to the Sooners' travel curfew.
GETTING THE HONORS: For his outstanding performance on Saturday, sophomore right-hander Scott Frazierwas named WCC Rawlings Pitcher of the Week. The honor, the first of his career, came on the heels of his seven shutout innings of work in a 10-0 win on Saturday, where he allowed only five hits, one walk and struck out a career-high six Sooners.
SCOUTING THE RAMS: The Rams are opening their 2012 season with a lengthy swing through southern California, as the team played a three-game set against Long Beach State at Blair Field, avoiding the sweep by taking the third game. The team returns seven starters from a 2011 team that was 22-32 overall. Tuesday's starter, Seth Cutler-Voltz was 1-7 with a 5.12 ERA as a junior in 2011. On Wednesday the projected starter is Ryan Morrison, who was 1-1 with a 4.12 ERA last season. Both pitchers the Waves will be facing are righties.
EARLY STANDOUTS: Over the weekend, early standouts for the Waves included redshirt senior Matt Forgatch and freshman Aaron Brown, among others. Forgatch led the Waves with a .625 batting average, going 5-for-8, with two RBI, including the Waves' first home run of the season. Brown was 5-for-11 over the weekend from the plate, batting .455, collecting four RBI and scoring one run. He was also stellar in right field, making an impressive over-the-shoulder catch to prevent a run for the Sooners on Saturday. On Sunday he solidified the win for the Waves as he pitched a scoreless eighth inning to preserve his first career save. Junior shortstop Zach Vincejalso had five hits on the weekend, batting .385 and collecting two RBI.
TURNING THE OFFENSE ON: The bats got going for the Waves this weekend, with 10 of 11 batting starters collecting two or more hits and all but two had an RBI in the series. On Saturday the Waves had runners in scoring position in innings. Matt Forgatch and Bryan Langloisboth hit their first career home runs for the Waves in the bottom of the third inning on Sunday. Both were shots to left field.
ON THE MOUND: The Waves pitching staff looked strong over the weekend. Despite taking the loss on Friday, Jon Moscot put on a strong performance. Scott Frazier was lights out in seven innings of scoreless work on Saturday. On Sunday, the Waves bullpen came through in a big way, especially from Andrew Alvarez, who in his collegiate debut came in in a pressure situation in the first inning with no outs to minimize damage and throw 4.0 strong innings, allowing only two hits and striking out one.
ENTERING THE RANKINGS: The Waves have cracked the Perfect Game College Top 50 list, entering at No. 50 this week after their 2-1 series victory over Oklahoma, who is now ranked 29th, according to Perfect game.
THE 2012 PEPPERDINE WAVES: This season the Waves boast a strong mix of returners and new faces. The Waves return the entire infield, a strong pitching core led by junior right-hander Jon Moscot and sophomore righty Scott Frazier. The team now has a strong pen to close out games with freshman lefty Aaron Brown and sophomore Michael Swanner. The Waves are versatile in the outfield, as they can go with experience led by Tony Cooper, David DiPaola and Ryan Van Amburg, or youth with the likes of freshmen Brown and Matt Gelalich.
PRESEASON ALL-WCC: For the second-straight season junior infielder Joe Severwas named an All-WCC preseason selection. Sever is coming off a 2011 season where he was named All-WCC for the first time in his career. He started all 55 games for the Waves as a sophomore and batted .279, with 32 RBI and six home runs.
PRESEASON WCC POLL: The Waves garnered 30 points in a vote by the conference coaches and are picked to finish tied for fifth with Saint Mary's. San Diego 59 points and is picked to win the conference.
FRESHMEN PHENOMS: The Waves boast the 16th-best recruiting class according to Baseball America. The group of 12 incoming freshmen is highlighted by pitcher/outfielder Aaron Brown and infielder Austin Davidson. Both Brown and Davidson were drafted in the 17th and 21st rounds of the 2011 MLB draft, but chose to attend Pepperdine. Key freshmen also include catchers James Grandpre and Kolten Yamaguchi that will see significant playing time behind the dish. Matt Forgatch, a redshirt senior transfer from Division II Denison University will vie for a spot in the outfield and brings valuable experience to the Waves.
SUMMER BALL: The Waves spread out across the country to play for summer ball teams from the Cape Cod League to Hawai'i. Junior pitcher Jon Moscot led the Hyannis Harbor Hawks with 46 strikeouts, second-best in the league. Junior infielder Zach Vincej also played with Moscot in Hyannis and helped the team to the Western Division semifinals. Junior Joe Sever also played in the Cape, as he suited up for the Chatham Anglers. He was named a top prospect by Perfect Game USA. Freshman outfielder/pitcher Aaron Brown was named the No. 3 prospect out of the California Collegiate League and was also named the Best Athlete in the league by Perfect Game USA. He hit .303 with seven home runs, 10 doubles and 28 RBI for the Glendale Angelenos. He earned first team All-CCL honors and was named the CCL's Top MLB Hitting Prospect. Senior Miles Silversteinwas also named to the NBC All-Midwest Regional team as he played for the El Dorado (Kan.) Broncos in the Jayhawak League.
WAVES AMONG THE WCC LEADERS: In this young season the Waves lead the WCC with a .347 team batting average. Aaron Brown is tied for third with four RBIs. With players that appeared in two or more games over the weekend Matt Forgatchleads the with a .625 batting average.
THE 2011 PEPPERDINE WAVES: Finished the year with an overall mark of 22-34 (.393), setting the record for most losses in a single season ... Have lost in excess of 30 games the previous two seasons and four times since 2002 ... Placed seventh in the eight-team West Coast Conference with a record of 7-14 (.333) ... Had not finished as low as seventh place vs. the conference since 1969 and the 14 losses were their most since 1981 (14-14) ... Established a game record with seven sacrifice hits vs. BYU (3/31) and tied another game high with six stolen bases vs. Dayton (3/25) ... Played in a season high 10 extra-inning contests, finishing with a 4-6 record ... The previous record of eight had been in place since 1990 ... The Waves lost their last five extra-inning games dating back to March 31 ... Pepperdine's 15-inning affair at UC Santa Barbara on April 19 tied a program record for longest game (innings) ... Pepperdine also went 15 rounds with Cal State Northridge in 1992, Cal State Fullerton in 1997 and Portland in 2002 ... The Waves record book tracks extra-inning games back to 1981.
ALL-WCC HONOREES: Brian Humphries made the All-WCC Team for the third consecutive year ... Aaron Gates and Joe Sever were first-time honorees, however, Sever made both the WCC All-Freshman Team and was an honorable mention in 2010 ... Scott Frazier and Corey Millerwere honored with spots on the WCC All-Freshman Team.
THE HEAD COACH: Steve Rodriguezhas completed eight seasons as head coach of Pepperdine baseball and owns an all-time record of 265-201 (.569) ... Passed his former head coach Andy Lopez (241) for fourth place on the Waves' all-time coaching wins list following a three-game sweep of Eastern Kentucky (2/28-20) ... Moved ahead of Frank Sanchez (257) for third place with a 2-1 win vs. LMU on April 22 ... Enters the 2012 season tied with John Scolinos (263) for second place ... Served as an assistant coach under Sanchez from 2000 to 2003 ... Managed his 450th game as the Waves' head coach on April 23, 2011 vs. LMU ... Only Dave Gorrie (611) and Scolinos (482) have managed more games than Rodriguez (468) while wearing the Pepperdine uniform ... Guided his clubs to three WCC titles and five NCAA Regional appearances ... Voted Top Chef at the 2010 and 2011 Southern California Baseball Coaches Cooking Challenges hosted by ESPN Zone in Anaheim.
WAVES AT EDDY D. FIELD STADIUM IN 2011 (18-16, .529): Lost two of three to Saint Mary's during the final weekend of the season, which was the Waves fifth series loss at home this season (Louisville, BYU, Santa Clara, Gonzaga) ... With 18 wins through 34 games, however, Pepperdine extended their streak of non-losing (.500 or better) seasons to a 38th year ... Have not experienced a losing season at home since 1973 -- their inaugural year on the Malibu Campus ... Their stretch includes 31 seasons of posting a winning percentage of .600 or better ... 12 years above .700 ... 7 seasons above .800, including the 1992 campaign in which the Waves finished 24-1-1 (.942) ... The Waves are in their 40th season at Eddy D. Field Stadium in 2012, where they are 829-333-12 (.712).
WAVES IN THE MLB DRAFT: Jacob Anderson (1st round - supplemental), Toronto Blue Jays ... Brian Humphries (14), Colorado Rockies ... Aaron Brown (17), Pittsburgh Pirates ... Austin Davidson(21), Boston Red Sox.
PEPPERDINE AMONG THE NCAA LEADERS: Pepperdine's 76 sacrifice bunts ranked eighth nationally ... The Waves 70 double plays ranked fourth and their 1.25 twin killings per game ranked them fifth.
ABOUT PEPPERDINE: Pepperdine boasts a one-of-a-kind athletic department with unprecedented success for a school of its size. The Waves have won a total of nine NCAA championships in five different men's sports -- one of just 14 schools to have accomplished this feat. Of the 14, Pepperdine is the only non-BCS school and has by far the smallest enrollment. The majority of Pepperdine's teams are ranked nationally year after year and compete for conference and national titles.