Baseball Takes First Loss

The Cardinal Baseball team suffered their first loss at the hands of a very good Cal St. Fullerton team. Facing one of the best pitchers in the country, Stanford was up against a tough challenge. While Stanford proved up to the challenge, they couldn't hang on in the end, falling victim to their own mistakes and the Titan's clutch hitting. Read on for details…

Cal St. Fullerton 7, Stanford 3
January 31, 2003

Coming into tonight's game, Stanford seemed to hold an advantage over the Titans. After all, tonight was Fullerton's opening night, while the Card already had two good wins under their belt. Playing great defense, hitting the ball hard, and pitching well against Santa Clara, Stanford was in midseason form last weekend. However, today against Cal St. Fullerton, the Cardinal looked like the young baseball team that they are, playing some of their first games of the season.

The pitching matchup was one that brought out fans and scouts alike. In front of a good number of scouts who camped out starting at 4 PM and a regular season record crowd at Goodwin Field in Fullerton, Wes Littleton and John Hudgins both had up and down outings. Both ended up with a no-decision, as the bullpen, not the starters, proved pivotal tonight.

After Stanford managed only a walk off Littleton in the 1st, the Titans took their hacks against John Hudgins, Stanford's early season ace. Hudgins retired the first two batters before giving up a two strike single to Shane Costa, Fullerton's All-American who hit .365 in 2002. On a 3-1 count, Costa took off for second as Fullerton's #4 hitter Richie Burgos singled to right, putting runners at the corners. Pitching to Kyle Boyer, Hudgins checked Burgos at first, balking in the process and giving the Titans a 1-0 lead. Hudgins seemed rattled, giving up three more hits to Boyer, Danny Dorn, and Justin Turner, making it 3-0 in the 1st.

Spotting Wes Littleton a 3-0 would be the end of many teams, but Stanford immediately fought back. Danny Putnam, who was 5-7 with 2 HR in his first two games, led off with a walk and was balked to second. John Mayberry, Jr. moved him up with a groundout to the right side, a nice display of fundamental baseball by the freshman. With one out and a runner at third, Donny Lucy struck out looking. Tonight was a terrible night for Lucy: 0-3 with 3 K before being replaced in the 8th with Jed Lowrie. However, Brian Hall picked up Lucy by singling up the middle, the first hit off Littleton. For Brian Hall, it was the first of four hits tonight, tying a career high. With great speed, Hall drew a number of throws over to first, one of which got by the first baseman Burgos, advancing Hall to 3rd. Hall scored on a wild pitch, and Stanford trailed only 3-2.

Neither team did anything in the 3rd. In the fourth, Putnam led off with his 6th hit of the season, and went to third on John Mayberry's double, his third extra base hit this season. Lucy again failed to move the runners up, striking out swinging. Stanford then caught a huge break. Hall popped a ball up to second, but Justin Turner, CSF's 2B, fell down and the ball dropped, allowing Putnam to score. Stanford would leave the bases loaded in the inning, as Sam Fuld lined to third, keeping the score at 3-3 after 4.

Hudgins and Littleton both battled in and out of trouble all night. Littleton would finish with 5.1 IP, leaving in the 6th after 105 pitches, giving way to John Tucker, who would pitch 2.2 innings of scoreless baseball. Hudgins, after allowing three in the first, settled down. The Titans hit balls hard, but right at people. In the 6th inning, Hudgins gave up 2 hits and hit a batter to start the inning. However, he struck out Sergio Pedroza, Justin Smyres, and Ronnie Prettyman in order to escape the 6th unscathed. The strikeouts were Hudgins' only Ks of the night. Hudgins would depart after 6.0 IP, 10 H, 3 R/ER, 0 BB, 3 K.

Fresh off 3.1 innings of one-hit baseball, Matt Manship entered a tie game in the 7th. Facing the 3-4-5 batters, Manship went full on Shane Costa before walking him. He did the same with Richie Burgos, putting runners on 1st and 2nd. Kyle Boyer bunted a ball back to Manship, which he bobbled, loading the bases. With a 0-1 count, Danny Dorn, who in his first game already had two hits, ripped a Manship pitch to right center. By the time the ball got back in the infield, three runs crossed home and Dorn ended up at 3rd, and the Titans led 6-3. Following Dorn, Justin Turner, another freshman, scorched a ball up the middle off of Manship's arm. Garko threw Turner out at first, but that would be all for Manship. The training staff checked out the young freshman, and he looked to be ok as he left the field. David O'Hagan came on and gave up a sac fly to PJ Pilittere, scoring Danny Dorn and putting Fullerton ahead for good, 7-3.

Jonny Dyer pitched a scoreless 8th for Stanford, allowing one hit.

In the ninth, John Tucker gave up a hit to Brian Hall to lead off the inning, and was replaced by All-American closer Chad Cordero, who retired three of the four batters he faced, striking out Carlos Quentin looking to end the game. While it wasn't a save, Cordero looked dominating with his fastball, and Fullerton had its first win on opening day since 1999, and only its third win against Stanford in the last 15 games.

          1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9  R  H  E  LOB

Stanford  0 2 0 1 0 0 0 0 0  3  11 3  9

Fullerton 3 0 0 0 0 0 4 0 X  7  12 2  10

Linescore: STAN- Hudgins, Manship (7), O'Hagan (7), Dyer (8), and Garko. CSF- Littleton, Tucker (6), Cordero (9), and Pilittere. Errors- Littleton (1), Hall (1), Hudgins (1), Manship (1), Prettyman (1). 2B: Mayberry (2). 3B: Ash (1), Dorn (1). HR: None. WP: Littleton (1). HBP: Quentin (2, by Littleton). Pilittere (1, by Hudgins). BK: Hudgins, Littleton.

Notes:

  • Sam Fuld went 0-5, bringing his hitless streak to 14. It's the longest at Stanford since Arik Van Zant went 0-14 in 2001.
  • Fullerton's Justin Turner and Danny Dorn, in their first games, went a combined 5-8, 3B, 4 RBI.
  • John Hudgins did not walk a batter. He has walked only 1 in 12 innings this season.
  • Brian Hall went 4-4, 2 RBI. He also had 4 hits against Oregon St. in 2001. Some of Hall's best moments have come again Fullerton. He homered against CSF in 2001 at the CWS, he drove in 6 against the Titans in Game 2 last season, and now has four hits today.
  • Saturday's Starters: Stanford – LHP Tim Cunningham (1-0, 0.00 ERA)
    Fullerton – LHP Ryan Schreppel (Freshman, first start)
  • The game will be broadcast on KZSU, 90.1 FM and at kzsulive.stanford.edu. Chad Goldberg and Joe Ritzo will have the call.

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