Dominant start from the frosh Inman
Stanford appears to have found their ace. Freshman Jeffrey Inman, inserted into the top position of the starting rotation for this weekend, fired 7 2/3 dominant innings Friday night against the California Golden Bears. Inman allowed just three hits and struck out nine while David Stringer recorded the final outs for another save. The 1-0 win marked Stanford's sixth victory in a row.
The Stanford offense mustered season-low totals of one
run and five hits on Friday night. Defensively, the Cardinal
committed three errors to match their high total of the year.
None of it mattered. Jeffrey Inman and David Stringer combined on
a three-hit shutout as Stanford edged the California Golden Bears 1-0
Friday evening in the opener of a three-game, non-conference
Inman dazzled in his debut as the #1 starter in the Cardinal starting
rotation. The freshman went the first 7 2/3 innings surrendering
just three hits with three walks and nine strikeouts. Inman had
been starting on Saturday's for Stanford and compiled a 4.87 ERA in the
first four appearances of his collegiate career. With previous
Friday starter Nolan Gallagher off to a slow start (1-2, 6.87 ERA),
Mark Marquess made the move this weekend inserting the rookie into the
coveted #1 position in the weekend rotation.
Inman has perhaps the highest ceiling of any pitcher on the Cardinal
staff thanks to his low-to-mid 90's fastball and above-average
secondary pitches. That outstanding pure stuff was on full
display Friday night as Inman carved up the Cal hitters in picking-up
his second career victory.
In fact, Inman immediately showed the Bears and the crowd of 1,492 at
Sunken Diamond that he was headed for a big game with a dominant first
trip through the batting order. The freshman started the night
with a 92 M.P.H. fastball to leadoff hitter Stephen Carlson and never
looked back. The only hit allowed by Inman during Cal's first
trip through the order was a swinging bunt, infield single off the bat
of Jeff Kobernus in the top of the second inning.
In his first five innings of work, Inman allowed just that one
hit. Inman struck out two batters in each of the fourth and
fifth innings as the freshman picked-up momentum heading into the later
The Stanford offense scored their lone run of the evening in the bottom
of the third inning on a fielder's choice groundout from Joey August. One-out singles by Adam Gaylord and Brendan Domaracki put
runners on first and third as August stepped to the plate. The
sophomore left fielder than took a pitch from Bears starter Tyson Ross
and grounded it sharply back up the middle only to see shortstop Brett
Munster make a diving stop. From the ground, Munster flipped the
ball to second baseman Josh Satin to record the force out on Domaracki,
but August easily reached first safely as Gaylord crossed home plate
with the game's only run.
Michael Taylor was up next and he promptly singled into left - the
fourth well-struck ball of the inning off of Ross. But Sean Ratliff, who hit clean-up tonight, grounded out to end the
Through three innings, Stanford had notched four hits against Ross and
thus looked as if they'd have a chance for more runs against the Bears
ace later in the contest. But Ross, who was Baseball America's preseason pick
for Pac-10 Pitcher of the Year, fired five shutout innings with just
one hit allowed to end the game keeping the Cardinal bats in check.
Fortunately, Inman was on his game tonight matching Ross
pitch-for-pitch. Cal threatened in the sixth when Carlson led off
with a double into the left field corner while Ryan Hanlon was hit by a
pitch with two outs. But Inman came right back with a three-pitch
strikeout of Blake Smith to retire the side.
After a 1-2-3 seventh inning on a pair of strikeouts, Inman ran into
serious trouble in the eighth. Pinch-hitter Mike Van Winden led
off with a line drive toward the left field line that appeared ticketed
for a double. But August came racing over and made a
full-extension, diving catch to rob Van Winden of an extra-base hit.
After Carlson grounded out, Satin singled sharply up the middle to
bring the potential go-ahead run to the plate. The dangerous
David Cooper, the reigning Pac-10 Player of the Week, was up
next. Inman though looked as if he would retire Cooper when the
Cal first baseman hit a high-chopping ground ball to shortstop.
But Gaylord played back on the ball and when it deflected off of his
glove and into shallow left-center field, the Bears had runners on
first and second.
Inman quickly fell behind the next hitter, Hanlon, 2-and-0 which
signaled the end of his evening. Red-hot closer David Stringer
was brought into pitch and Stringer fired two straight pitches out of
the zone to Hanlon which loaded the bases.
Smith was up next looking to bounce back from his sixth-inning
strikeout, but Stringer never gave the Bears right fielder a
chance. The reliever, in the biggest at-bat of the night, came
through with a four-pitch swinging strikeout of Smith ending the rally
and keeping Stanford in front.
In the ninth, Stringer set down the Bears 1-2-3 with some help from
Jason Castro as the first baseman made a diving catch moving to his
right on Brett Munster's line drive. The play saved a hit as
Stringer came back with a strikeout of Jordan Karnofsky to end the game.
0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 - 0
Stanford 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0
X - 1 5 3
POS AB R H RBI BB SO
Stephen Carlson 3B
4 0 1 0
2B 4 0 1
0 0 1
David Cooper 1B
4 0 0 0
PR 0 0 0
0 0 0
Taylor Grigsby CF
0 0 0 0
LF 1 0 0
0 2 0
RF 3 0 0
0 1 2
Jeff Kobernus DH
4 0 1 0
Brett Munster SS
4 0 0 0
Charlie Cutler C
3 0 0 0
Jordan Karnofsky PH 1
0 0 0 0 1
Brett Jackson CF
2 0 0 0
Mike Van Winden PH/1B 1 0
0 0 0 0
IP H R ER BB SO
Tyson Ross (L)
8.0 5 1 1 1
POS AB R H RBI BB
Brendan Domaracki DH 4
0 1 0 0 2
LF 4 0 1
1 0 0 .286
Michael Taylor RF
4 0 1 0
0 2 .231
Sean Ratliff CF
3 0 0 0
0 1 .264
Jason Castro 1B
3 0 0 0
0 0 .105
C 3 0 1
0 0 1 .350
Ryan Seawell 3B
2 0 0 0
0 1 .344
J.J. Jelmini 2B
1 0 0 0
0 1 .000
Cord Phelps 2B/3B
2 0 0 0
1 0 .286
Adam Gaylord SS
3 1 1 0
0 0 .349
E: Seawell 2, Gaylord
IP H R ER BB SO
Jeffrey Inman (W) 7.2
3 0 0 3 9 3.54
David Stringer (S) 1.1
0 0 0 0 2 2.03
WP: Jeffrey Inman (2-1)
LP: Tyson Ross (1-3)
S: David Stringer (6)
Records: Stanford (8-5), California (7-8)
* This was Stanford's sixth win a row while the team also
remained perfect this season at Sunken Diamond (7-0).
* This was the first time since 1995 that a freshman pitcher started
the opening game of a weekend series for the Cardinal. In 1995,
eventual first round draft pick and future major leaguer Kyle Peterson
quickly stepped into the role of Friday ace and finished with a 14-1
* Inman threw 110 pitches on the night as the 7 2/3 innings and nine
strikeouts were both season-high totals for a Stanford pitcher.
Inman lowered his ERA to 3.54.
* Stringer has now saved the last five Stanford games. The junior
right-hander has six saves on the season which is just one shy of
cracking the Stanford single-season Top 10. The single-season
record for saves is 13 held by Steve Chitren (1987) and Jeff Bruksch
(2000). Of note, there are 42 games remaining in the regular
* Marquess shook up the lineup this evening with Stanford facing their
first right-handed starting pitcher since February 20th (USF).
Seawell, who had been hitting leadoff against the lefties, dropped down
to the #7 spot. Domaracki and August, two left-handed swingers,
occupied the #1 and #2 positions in the lineup respectively.
Meanwhile, Ratliff hit clean-up for the first time in his Stanford
* Seawell, who continues to adjust to his new position of third base,
had his first rough game defensively at the hot corner. The
senior committed two errors on routine plays - a fielding mishap on a
first-inning ground ball and a throwing error in the second on a toss
to second base. Seawell was removed from the game for defensive
purposes to begin the sixth.
* This was Stanford's first 1-0 game since March, 2000 when they edged
the Santa Clara Broncos at Sunken Diamond.
* Ross was a tough-luck loser tonight for the Golden Bears. The
Cal ace is just 1-3 in his first five starts this year, but the
sophomore owns a spectacular 2.02 ERA in 35 2/3 innings pitched.
These teams will continue this three-game, non-conference series
tomorrow afternoon at 1:00 P.M. Jeremy Bleich (1-1, 5.82 ERA) is
scheduled to start on the mound for the Cardinal while California has
yet to officially announce a starting pitcher.