Senior day at Sunken Diamond went perfectly according to plan, as Stanford honored their four seniors in a pregame ceremony, got good pitching, played tremendous defense, and hit the baseball on route to a 8-4 victory. Stanford's regular season ended on a positive note, as the Cardinal swept Cal Poly and won 13 of the final 14 games of the season.
Stanford wasted no time today, scoring four runs in the first inning off Cal Poly starter Andrew McDaniel. Sam Fuld led off with a four pitch walk, and on 0-1 Jonny Ash ripped a triple to the wall in right-center, giving the Cardinal an early lead. On the next pitch, Carlos Quentin smoked a single to left-center, and Stanford led 2-0. The fourth consecutive player reached when Garko singled to left, putting runners on first and second. After a Danny Putnam strikeout and after Quentin was picked off 2nd, McDaniel lost the zone and walked Chris Carter on four pitches. After falling behind the next batter Jed Lowrie 1-0, Head Coach Larry Lee got McDaniel, brining in reliever Nolan Moser. Moser didn't fare much better, walking Lowrie to bring up Donny Lucy. Lucy singled over the second baseman's head, driving home two runs and giving Stanford a 4-0 lead.
Cal Poly responded in the second against Tim Cunningham, who escaped trouble in the first. A leadoff double by Josh Mayo, followed by two groundouts to Swope at SS, gave the Mustangs their first run in ten innings, and made the score 4-1.
While the Cardinal did not score in the second, Sam Fuld singled to extend his hitting streak to 14 games. In the third, Tim Cunningham gave up a one out single and a walk but struck out the final two batters of the inning to hold Cal Poly without a run in the third. That would be all for Cunningham, who would get the win on a predetermined pitch count: 3.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 2 K, 54 pitches.
Stanford got a run in the third on Chris Carter's fourth homer of the year, and two more in the fifth against Moser on an RBI double by Carter and a groundout by Lowrie. In the sixth, Stanford scored a run on a walk to Swope, single to Fuld, and Sac Fly by Jonny Ash. After six, the Cardinal led 8-1.
Meanwhile, Stanford's relief corps was dominating out of the bullpen. Jonny Dyer threw two perfect innings on just 18 pitches, and Kodiak Quick followed with two perfect innings of his own on 21 pitches.
David O'Hagan came on for the eighth and gave up a couple of runs on three hits and a walk, while Ryan McCally got the final out of the inning. In the ninth, Cal Poly got their final run after a Kyle Wilson single, Alex Chavarria double, and a Pat Breen RBI groundout. But McCally finished the job, getting a groundout to end the game, preserving a 8-4 Stanford win.
Cal Poly 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 2 1 - 4 7 0
Stanford 4 0 1 0 2 1 0 0 x - 8 10 0
WP: Tim Cunningham (3-3)
LP: Andrew McDaniel (4-6)
HR: Chris Carter (4)
Records (Final Regular Season): Cal Poly (27-28-1), Stanford (41-15)
-Before the game, Stanford was awarded an NCAA Regional and will find out the pairings Monday at 9:30 AM on ESPN2. See Joe's College Baseball Roundup for more speculation and college baseball talk.
-Stanford finishes the year with 13 wins in 14 games, and a record of 41-15.
-Since losing a series to Florida St. in February, the Cardinal have gone 38-10.
-Stanford is now 43-5 against Cal Poly all time.
-Ryan Garko went 2-3 and is now hitting .406.
-Sam Fuld extended his hit streak which now stands at 14.
-Cunningham went just three innings but because his pitch count was predetermined, he is credited with his third win of the year.
-Chris Carter went 2-3 today as well with a 2B and a HR, his fourth of the year.
-It doesn't show up in the boxscore, but Tobin Swope played a great game defensively today, making both the routine and spectacular plays.
Chad Goldberg is the voice of Stanford Baseball on KZSU, 90.1 FM.