University of Portland Baseball Team Preview

Mississippi State baseball plays the University of Portland this coming weekend in a four-game series. Enclosed is information about Portland's baseball team.

Gametimes: Friday - 4 pm| Saturday - 2 pm | Sunday (Doubleheader) - Begins at 1 pm

Portland Road Record (2012 Record) - Portland was 10-17 on the road last season.

Portland Starting Pitching (stats are from the 2012 season) - Portland returns just one of their three weekend starters from last season, sophomore LHP Travis Radke (7-4, 2.09 ERA). Other pitchers who started games last season are sophomore RHP Kody Watts (2-3, 4.97), senior RHP Matt McCallister (3-3, 3.86) and senior RHP Jeremy Burright (0-1, 10.61).

Travis Radke (6-foot-4, 200 lbs), who was voted the 9th best pro prospect among classes 2013 and 2014 in the West Coast Conference and the 42 best prospect in the class of 2014 overall by Baseball America, is an outstanding pitcher who was selected the WCC's freshman of the year and a Freshman All-American selection last season.

He gave up 57 hits in 86 innings, striking out 85 while walking 29. He did show a little bit of a control issue, throwing 10 wild pitches and hitting 11 batters.

In his fourteen starts last season he only gave up more than 3 runs in three of them, giving up 5 runs to Gonzaga and 3 runs each to Pepperdine and Loyola Marymount. He gave up 2 runs in four games, 1 run in 4 games and 0 runs in 3 games. He gave up no more than 4 hits in just 3 of his outings, giving up 8 hits each to Pepperdine, Loyola Marymount and Gonzaga.

While his home ERA was 1.42, he wasn't quite as effective on the road, showing a 3.00 ERA. In 39.2 innings on the road, he gave up 13 earned runs, while allowing 33 hits, 13 walks and striking out 36.

Kody Watts (6-foot-3, 185 lbs), who was voted the 15th best pro prospect among classes 2013 and 2014 in the West Coast Conference, is another outstanding young pitcher for the Pilots.

Teams hit .250 against him. In 29 innings, he allowed 16 earned runs on 26 hits and 17 walks while striking out 19. He showed significant wildness, throwing 3 wild pitches and hitting 11 batters in the 29 innings.

He earned 4 starts last season, 2 home and 2 road. In his two road starts he threw a total of 5.1 innings, giving up 9 runs (8 earned) on 8 hits and 5 walks, while striking out 2. His road ERA was 13.51.

Matt McCallister (6-foot-3, 190 lbs) threw 25.2 innings last season, giving up 13 runs (11 earned) on 29 hits and 3 walks, while striking out 12. Teams hit .302 against him.

Of his 4 starts last season, 3 were on the road. In those starts he threw 10.2 innings, giving up 10 runs (8 earned) on 18 hits and 1 walks while striking out 4. His road ERA was 7.20. In his defense, he faced Oregon State, Washington State and Washington, all of whom are very solid Pac-12 teams, on the road.

Jeremy Burright (6-foot-5, 205 lbs) is a little-used senior who pitched in 7 games last season, 1 of which was a start. In 9.1 innings, he gave up 11 runs on 12 hits and 7 walks while striking out 10. Teams hit .333 against him.

Portland Relief Pitching (stats are from the 2012 season) - With Watts probably moving to a starting role and the graduation of their closer (Owen Jones, 1-2, 16 saves, 1.24 ERA) and main setup man (Keeler Brynteson, 1-0, 1.35 ERA), the primary relievers coming back are senior RHP J.R. Bunda (1-0, 0 S, 3.24) and redshirt-sophomore LHP Brandon Snyder (1-2, 0 S, 3.00).

J.R. Bunda (6-foot-1, 200) threw 25 innings last season, giving up 10 runs (9 earned) on 18 hits and 11 walks while striking out 13. Teams hit .220 against him.

He was used primarily in middle and long relief but also closed a couple of games. He threw anywhere from 1 out to two innings. He also threw 4 or more innings a couple of times. He was fairly successful in his relief role, giving up no runs in 12 of his 19 outings.

Brandon Snyder (6-foot-0, 200) threw 18 innings last season, giving up 7 runs (6 earned) on 17 hits and 7 walks while striking out 9. Teams hit .258 against him.

Brandon was primarily used as a late inning reliever, setting up for closer Owen Jones. He normally came in and got an out or threw 1 inning, giving way to Jones. He was very successful in that role, only giving up runs in 6 of his 20 outings. During the middle of the season, he had a streak of 9 games in which he gave up no runs. However, he ended the season giving up runs in 3 of his last 4 appearences.

Three other relievers from last year's team could play a more significant roles this season, including redshirt-junior RHP Colin Feldtman (0-0, 2.57 ERA), sophomore RHP Kurt Yinger (0-0, 7.88), and junior RHP Chad Kjemhus (0-0, 8.10).

Portland Hitting - Portland, as a team, hit .239 last season. They averaged 3.6 runs per game. Like MSU, they play in a big ball park with dimensions of 350 to left field, 390 to center and 340 to right. Partly due to that, they only hit 18 home runs last season.

The positive for them is they only lost two position players from last year's team. The key returner, among the hitters, is junior lefthanded hitter Turner Gill, a preseason All-Conference selection this season. Gill led the team in hitting last season with a .314 batting average, home runs with 5 and RBI with 30.

Others that return who played significant roles in the lineup last season are redshirt-junior Nick Armenta (.267, 0 HR, 7 RBI), senior Brian Frattali (.261, 1-15), sophomore Caleb Whalen (.254, 5-28), redshirt-senior Beau Fraser (.234, 1-12), junior Zack McCoy (.207, 0-4), sophomore Michael Lucarelli (.200, 0-9), sophomore Cody Lenahan (.196, 0-11), redshirt-junior Chet Thompson (.189, 0-7), junior Bo Cornish (.169, 0-6) and senior Jeff Melby (.232, 0-5). 7 of the 10 are righthanders, 2 are lefties and 1 is a switch-hitter.

How Portland and MSU Matchup
Portland Category Mississippi State
27-25 Record 40-24
.239 Batting Average .250
186 (3.6 pg) Runs 287 (4.5 pg)
18 Home Runs 21
.313 OB % .358
18-36 Stolen Bases-Attempts 45-72
146 (2.8 pg) Walks 261 (4.1 pg)
328 (6.3 pg) Strikeouts 443 (6.9 pg)
382 (7.3 pg) LOB 544 (8.5 pg)
2.89 Team ERA 2.58
16 Saves 21
132 (2.5 pg) Walks 181 (2.8 pg)
338 (6.5 pg) Strikeouts 536 (8.4 pg)
.251 Batting Average Against .240
.971 Fielding % .969

Gene Swindoll is the publisher of the website, the source for Mississippi State sports on the sports network. You can contact him by emailing

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