Fuld with a pair of big hits
In a game filled with lead changes, the Stanford Cardinal found themselves on top at the end in their 8-7 victory over the Cal State Fullerton Titans on Saturday afternoon. The Titans took a 6-4 advantage in this game, but a two-out rally in the bottom of the sixth inning produced four runs and Stanford never looked back. Read on for a complete recap.
It was a lot tougher today for Stanford, but the 6th
ranked Cardinal still managed to post another victory. On a
beautiful afternoon at Sunken Diamond, 2,437 fans witnessed an 8-7
Stanford victory over the 4th ranked Cal State Fullerton Titans.
The Cardinal erased a 6-4 deficit with a four-run sixth inning and then
held on for the win.
The Titans jumped on Cardinal starter Matt Manship for a run in the top
of the first inning. Ronnie Prettyman led off with a double to
deep left and scored three batters later when Kurt Suzuki singled him
After going down quietly in the bottom of the first against Titan
starter Ricky Romero, Stanford pushed across two scores in the second
inning. Danny Putnam walked to lead off and then advanced to
second on a Jed Lowrie single. Both runners moved up on a wild
pitch and then scored on Jonny Ash's one-out single to left.
Manship worked a quick second inning before running into some trouble
in the third. With one out, P.J. Pilittere drew a walk and then
Suzuki smoked a home run off the scoreboard to put the Titans back in
front, 3-2. That ended Manship's afternoon as Coach Marquess
brought in senior right hander Drew Ehrlich in to pitch. It was a
quick hook for Manship (2 1/3 IP, 4 H, 3 R), but if you recall from a
practice report this past week, the sophomore righty was roughed up in
his last outing so apparently Coach Marquess did not like what he was
seeing out of Manship.
Ehrlich came in and retired the side before the Cardinal offense went
back to work. In the bottom of the third, Chris Lewis led off by
reaching safely at second on a Neil Walton throwing error at
shortstop. Fuld then immediately drove him home with a single to
tie the game back up at 3-3. After a Brian Hall sacrifice bunt
and a John Mayberry, Jr. walk, Putnam delivered the clutch hit with a
single to right scoring Fuld which put Stanford back in front.
Ehrlich fired a perfect 1-2-3 fourth inning with a pair of strikeouts
before getting touched up for a run in the fifth. And
surprisingly for Ehrlich (a pitcher who usually throws a lot of
strikes), it was his control that failed him. A leadoff walk and
then three wild pitches brought home the tying run. Ehrlich
though did come back to strike out Brett Pill with two outs and the
go-ahead run at third base.
The Titans went back ahead with two more runs in the sixth
inning. Jake Mendrin led off with a single and was then advanced
to second on a sacrifice bunt. After Bobby Andrews walked, Coach
Marquess made the call to the bullpen bringing in freshman Matt Leva. Prettyman was first up and the Fullerton leadoff hitter
bounced a single through the right side to load the bases. Then
with Justin Turner at the plate, Andrews at second for some reason
broke for third in an attempt to steal. There was of course
already a runner at third base and he wasn't going anywhere, so the
Cardinal tagged out Andrews after a brief rundown. But Turner
would make up for the mistake as he grounded a ball right back up the
middle scoring two and putting Fullerton in front, 6-4. Leva then
retired Pilittere to end the inning.
However, the Stanford offense wasn't done. Still facing Romero,
Putnam drew a leadoff walk to start the bottom of the sixth.
Lowrie then ripped a single back up the middle to put two runners
on. It looked as if Romero would get out of it though as Carter
struck out and Ash popped out. But up stepped Donny Lucy and the
Cardinal catcher came through with his first hit of the season as he
singled sharply into left field plating Putnam with Stanford's fifth
run of the game. Fullerton coach George Horton then made a
pitching change bringing in righthander John Tucker to face
Lewis. Coach Marquess countered though by sending lefty Adam Sorgi to the plate. Marquess' move paid off as in his first
collegiate at-bat, Sorgi singled to right center field to score Lowrie
which tied the game at 6-6. But Stanford wasn't done. Up
came Fuld and the All-American leadoff hitter promptly doubled to deep
left scoring both runners to put Stanford back in the lead, 8-6.
Three straight two-out, run-scoring hits for Stanford in the bottom of
In the seventh, Leva walked the leadoff batter which forced another
pitching change. In came senior David O'Hagan and the veteran
righthander got out of the minor jam with a fly out and a double
play. O'Hagan then worked a quick 1-2-3 eighth inning on just
eight pitches. In the ninth, Turner led off with a double to
left. After Pilittere struck out, Suzuki continued his monster
day with a single which Turner to make the score 8-7. But O'Hagan
bore down as he struck out Felipe Garcia and pinch-hitter Danny Dorn -
both swinging - to end the game.
* Sam Fuld had a big day at the plate today going 2-for-4 with a double
and three RBI. Donny Lucy also went 2-for-4 with an RBI while Jed
Lowrie finished 3-for-4.
* The starting nine players in the lineup today were the same as last
night. The only changes concerning the batting order had Carter
moving up to the sixth spot, Ash to the seventh spot with Lucy dropping
down to the #8 position.
* It was a solid effort for Ehrlich out of the bullpen today even
though his numbers may not reflect it (3 IP, 2 ER). The senior
pitched very well in preseason practice this year (lowest ERA on the
team) and looks to have solidified himself on the Cardinal pitching
* O'Hagan gets the save with three excellent innings out of the
bullpen. He surrendered three hits and one run with no walks and
three K's. O'Hagan saved three games last year while finishing
with a 7-1 record.
* Kurt Suzuki led the Fullerton offensive charge today with a 3-for-4,
HR, 4 RBI effort.
* Stanford has now won 11 consecutive home games dating back to last
CS Fullerton 1 0
2 0 1 2 0 0 1 - 7
Stanford 0 2 2 0 0
4 0 0 x - 8 10 0
WP: Matt Leva (1-0)
LP: Ricky Romero (0-1)
S: David O'Hagan (1)
HR: Cal State Fullerton - Kurt Suzuki (1)
Records: #6 Stanford (2-0), #4 Cal State Fullerton (0-2)
* The teams will conclude this three-game series tomorrow afternoon at
1:00pm. In a surprise move, Stanford will start junior Mark Jecmen on the mound. Jecmen pitched very well his last two times
out during preseason intrasquad games and is being rewarded for
it. His control has been much better and he'll get a chance to
prove himself tomorrow. Fullerton is expected to start freshman
right hander Lauren Gagnier who will be making his collegiate debut.