Sunday, February 05, 2006


Welcome to the great outdoors where it really is shaping up to be a super Sunday and that beats time served in the old barcalounger. This optimistic report comes courtesy of Dirtbag baseball who worked over Southern Cal pitchers for 15 hits yesterday, two of them home runs, a 9-6 win and a perfect two zip start to 2006.

Friday night the wise guys around Blair were cautiously optimistic praising Ian Kennedy and Jared Hughes (“they are better than good”), admiring the shortstopping of freshmen Danny Espinosa, and discussing the Weather report, both the climate (foggy) and the coach (Mike). Today the Beach nuts are giddy, unbeaten out of the chute, impressed with Troy Buckley’s mound men (just four earned runs in the first 18 innings) and this offensive effort against a team that was this close to Omaha last year. The slugging skippers of the Good Ship Dirtbag are Evan Longoria (4-7 in games one and two) and of course the Popeye that bats behind him, Sean Boatright (4 RBIs). Boats, on the DL until Wednesday, delivered the go-ahead runs Saturday with a two-run homer in the 8th off SC’s ace closer Paul Koss in a trading-leads contest before a mere 1066 at Dedeaux. LB got two in the first, fell behind 5-3 in the third, tied it up 5-5, fell behind 6-5 and then put up two runs in each of the 8th and 9th to win a series (after the 4-2 Friday W).

That raises the possibilities of a broom game today featuring LB’s true freshman Vance Worley who was the top pitching draft prospect in northern California in 2005 and would likely have been drafted in the first couple rounds if not for an elbow strain his HS senior year. USC is TBA, sorting through a couple of their own freshman arms. The Trojan’s Saturday problem started with two outs in the top of the eighth, when Evan Longoria was plunked and Boats, with a 1-2 count, blasted a fly ball off the top of the center field fence. Shayne Peterson, Mike Malott (who got the W) and Brett Andrade (his first save) kept the Boys of Troy quiet after the fifth. The surprise offense came from unlikely sources, journeyman catcher Tito Cruz (3-for-5) and spindly soph Jose Hernandez (2-3 and a RBI).

SUNDAY MY DUST WILL COME—The other LB entries had a rotten day yesterday, giving the new King of the Beach (President Alexander) a does or reality…in ladies hoops Fullerton’s Andrea Adams scored a season-high 19 points and the Titans survived a shot at the buzzer for a 62-61 upset of league-leading LBSU at Titan Gym…at Stockton four Pacific players scored in double figures to lead the Tigers to an 87-78 win over the Niner gents…and at Penn State the Nits used a big blocking advantage to upset our No. 3-ranked MVB team 30-22, 21-30, 30-20, 30-27…the only cheery note is that both CSUF baseball (#5) and Texas (#1) both got whipped and are 0-2 to start their road to Omaha…CSUF reliever Bryan Harris balked in the winning run for the Cardinal as the up-Titans were downed 6-5 in game two of their series at Sunken Diamond…in San Diego three fielding errors and a nine-strikeout effort by USD pitchers Matt Couch and Josh Romanski handed Texas a 6-0 shutout loss…by the way I am hosting an all you can eat Super Bowl pizza party for the contest between the Ospreys and the Steelers--BYO B and P…that MPSF volleyball race will go to the wire…Pepperdine and BYU split in Provo and LB split at Penn State...with the record crowd Friday night this is a great series for the Beach in the cash box and the box score…it may be that SC has issues at third, and second…at second how good of a traffic controller is Blake Sharpe, could he have directed the traffic for rightfielder Roberto Lopez on those foggy popups…and at third big stick Matt Cusick is a tad slow covering bunts…Niner coach Tim McDonnell getting bonus commercials on the web casts sponsoring the KWRM “call to the bullpen”…the two teams used seven pitchers on Friday night and 9 yesterday afternoon…early season arms control I guess…Tim is pumping his book “The Process” , an excellent read for young players…Saturday scoreboarding--Pacific 14, Santa Clara 6; UC Irvine 10, California 4 (series at 1-1); CSUN 14, Nevada 0 (2-0 CSUN); Stanford 6, CSUF 5 ((10)) (series 0-2 for Titans; Cal Poly 3,San Jose State 2 (series 1-1); UC Riverside 7, San Francisco 0 (series 2-0 UCR); UC Davis 3, Sac State 1…asked Troy Tulowitzki if he felt that after Bobby Crosby and himself is the Beach becoming Shortstop U with the nice early play of Espinosa….”he’s very solid, very relaxed”…same compliment from the Weatherman who said he “stays under control”…and the fog fuss has some merit since UCLA suspended their game but the time to do it was after the fifth before the Beach got those three runs—DR. DAN


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