Friday, May 23, 2008


For fans of the Big West it is a clash of the titans. Both teams have won eight of their last nine and #6 Fullerton (36-17, 15-6 Big West) is one game up on #18 Long Beach (35-18, 14-7 Big West). If only it was that simple. For the foam-fueled fandom at Blair tonight while the temperatures may be cool, the conversation in the concourses is usually hot. So many notes, so little time so buckle up while we empty the in-box with another session of Dr. Dan’s Notes on My Napkin.

It is almost eerie that a college baseball season that began for the Beach on a surprisingly high note, morphed in mid season to a gang that couldn’t hit, field, or pitch straight, is now on the top step of another potential Big West Championship with all the rights and privileges. The Dirtbags (RPI now down to 28) got to this hopeful place with an impressive couple of weeks bookended by 10-0 shut outs over San Diego State and Oregon State. In between there was a sweep at Cal Poly and suddenly the Niner resume is pretty enough that they seem a cinch for another NCAA invite and a win tonight might just be enough to host a regional next weekend. The NCAA selection committee, who will have their work done before Saturday’s game, announces 16 regional hosts on Sunday. The conference tourneys are too crazy to calculate but the Nutwood Nine are already doing the math on becoming a top eight national seed and the right to host two regional rounds, hopefully playing the sisters of the poor (like they did last year) for a CWS trip…insert my Petty Sexton Annual CSUF Slam here…“Titans just have to host, can you imagine the fussing and fighting in the mobile home parks deciding who gets to use the hot pink Miss Kitty luggage?”, DMB, 2001…the Dirtbag numbers got up as the season wound down despite injuries to pitcher Jake Thompson (leg), outfielder Jonathan Jones (back) and slugger Jason Corder (finger) all three are off the DL this weekend…while Jones was MIA Mike Weathers found a shining sub “When he went out we found our ‘Wally Pipp’ out there in Jordan Casas, so what do I do now?”…play four outfielders, you know the Blair lights are a little dim, so it will be our secret…Casas had three hits and his .357 average is second behind Shane Peterson’s amazing .401 while the unknown soldiers of the pitching staff, Tyler Topp, Dustin Rasco, Anthony Carrillo, Brett Lorin, Jason Markovitz and David Brown back up aces Liebel, Worley and Thompson.

In the paralysis through analysis dept. neither team has what the CSTV crew likes to call, “the ability to set more tables than Martha Stewart” but both coaches love to sac…the 2008 Titans have 69 sacs on the year, second in the conference and fourth in the nation…the Niners have 65 sacs not including the 59 HBPs which is another kind of sacrificing…two legends on the diamond tonight living and dead…Century Club President Bill Baca (living) throwing out one of the first pitches and handing over the full scholarship the club donates each year…and as web whiz Ditka reminds us even in death, super fan Ski Demski will be there...Ski’s 95 by 130-foot American super-flag gets a pre-game salute….LB and the F hats have won 17 of the last 19 Big West titles and this annual regular season finale has decided seven of the last 10 loop crowns…give the catching edge to the Beach who are #2 in the BWC blocking pitches and first in fewest stolen bases allowed…interesting because the Titans are accomplished stealers...Titan Coach Dave Serrano "It's always a great atmosphere at the end of the season and it benefits both teams to play in that kind of environment going into the postseason”...visitors who love that short Goodwin field porch must adjust to big Blair…it’s 330 down their lines and 348 at Blair…Bob K has calculated that LB had a 7-4 Pac Ten record…reminder to the Titan broadcast booth that name is pronounced LEE-bull... Andrew is a semifinalist for the Clemens Award and is on that list of 50 names for the Golden Spikes award Jered Weaver won in 2004 (and every other POY except the Johnny Bench)…the new hit men for the Nutwood nine is JUCO Erik Komatsu (.367) and D-Bag Shane Peterson checks in at .401…their Friday guy is Jeff Kaplan but Cory Arbiso has owned Sunday’s winning ten in a row...his glove work straightened out, Espy hit .341 with 19 RBI’s in BWC games...LB is 21-6 at home this season… talented OC writer Randy Youngman built one of those Dodger/Angels all star teams and had Buzzie Bavasi as general manager of both sides...working on my LB/CSUF notes and I guess the Titans and the Dirtbags will have Ken Ravizza as the sports psycher for both teams and Matt Brown as the photog since both fellas work both places capturing broken batters and broken bats—DR. DAN


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