Cal Baseball Freshman Aaron Shortridge Pitches in Fall Ball

BERKELEY -- Fall ball has started for the Cal baseball team, and that means footage of some of the top freshmen. Today, we take a look at right-hander Aaron Shortridge.

BERKELEY -- The Cal baseball team has changed a bit since we last saw the Bears take Texas A&M to the brink in the College Station Regional.

Gone is third baseman Lucas Erceg, and pitching coach Mike Neu. With Erceg having left the program due to academics, the hero of the Regional -- Mitchell Kranson -- has taken up residence at third base, and changed his number from 30 to 20. The former No. 20 -- Robbie Tenerowicz -- is on the shelf with an injury, but he should return to fall ball soon. He's now sporting No. 1 on his back.

Also gone from the program is, of course, first baseman Chris Paul, who had a stellar Minor League season in the Minnesota Twins organization. In his stead is Nick Halamandaris, now sporting No. 51 instead of No. 19.

Infielder Max Dutto has also transferred out, leaving some room on the depth chart for freshman middle infielder Ripken Reyes. Relievers Jake Schulz and Collin Monsour are also gone, as is utility infielder John Soteropulos.

Returning from elbow surgery is Brenden Farney, who's expected to take up the designated hitter role, and play backup at first base.

On Friday night, Cal played its second intra-squad game, with the Blue and Gold squad battling to a 2-2 tie after six innings, and the big attraction was freshman righty Aaron Shortridge. The Napa (Calif.) Vintage hurler showed off an arm slot not all that dissimilar from Ryan Mason when he was a freshman, and had sharp, whip-like arm action reminiscent of Erceg when he took the mound. In high school, Shortridge sat in the high 80s with his fastball, and because of his arm action, his fastball has a lot of tailing action inside to right-handed hitters. He's a strikeout pitcher who can also beat up the bat, as he did on Friday. While the starting rotation will likely wind up with Daulton Jefferies leading things off, followed by Mason, lefty Matt Ladrech (who threw two scoreless innings, giving up one hit and not seeing any hard contact off of his fastball-change up mix) and then Jeff Bain, who looked very sharp in his work on Friday. Shortridge, along with Tanner Dodson and Joey Matulovich, could see some spot starts over the course of the season, and should also shore up the bullpen in long relief. Catching Shortridge on Friday was freshman Ty Greene, who threw out one base stealer. Top Stories