Baseball 3-1 vs. Long Beach, SJ St.; WSU next

Stanford beat Long Beach State 3-2 on Friday and 4-3 in 10 innings on Saturday, before falling 10-5 Sunday. The Card rebounded to drub San Jose State 8-3 this week, and now face Washington State in their penultimate Pac-10 series. Stanford is tied for second in the conference with UCLA, four games behind Arizona State. Is a miracle run to a pennant in the works?

Friday
Stanford 3, Long Beach State 2

Strong pitching performances by Brett Mooneyham and Brian Busick, along with a Jonathan Kaskow RBI single in the fifth, allowed the Cardinal to win the opener. Mooneyham went six innings and allowed two earned runs on five hits while striking out nine and walking five. He had a pretty good groundball-to-flyball ratio of 5-to-4 on 122 pitches overall. Busick earned his first save after allowing one hit in the final three innings.

A Mooneyham walk in the second inning led to an RBI single from TJ Mittelstaedt to cut the deficit to one run for Long Beach State. Then in the third, Mooneyham allowed a single to Kirk Singer, who was driven in later in the inning by Derek Legg, on a 3-1 pitch.

For the Dirtbags, Andrew Gagnon got the loss after pitching six innings and allowing three runs on eight hits and 104 pitches. Four other pitchers for Long Beach State threw a scoreless three innings, Two errors by Dirtbags second baseman Kirk Singer helped Stanford to take a quick 2-0 lead in the first inning.

For Stanford, Colin Walsh and Stephen Piscotty had two and three hits, respectively, while Kaskow and Kenny Diekroeger had the team's two RBIs. For the Dirtbags, six players registered a hit, while the team struck out 12 times.

Saturday
Stanford 4, Long Beach State 3 (10)

Freshman Eric Smith hit an RBI double to right-center field with two outs in the top of the 10th to drive in Jake Stewart for the series-clinching run. Smith, who pinch hit for Tyler Gaffney, drove in fellow freshman Stewart, who reached base on a two-out walk.

With the Cardinal down by one entering the ninth, Kenny Diekroger hit a two-out, two-run homer to left-center field on a 2-1 fastball. In the previous at-bat, Jonathan Kaskow battled starter Jake Thompson in a long sequence before finally earning the walk.

However, closer Alex Pracher allowed a single and two walks to start the bottom of the ninth. Scott Snodgress was brought in to relieve Pracher. He struck out Jordan Casas, but TJ Mittelstaedt delivered with a RBI, infield single to second base to tie the game. Dean McArdle pitched a perfect 10th to earn the save.

Stanford's Jordan Pries allowed two earned runs on nine hits in eight innings, while striking out nine and walking two on 127 pitches. Long Beach State's Jake Thompson pitched 8.2 innings and allowed three earned runs on six hits while fanning eight and walking two on 121 pitches.

Gaffney had two hits while "Deke" had two hits and two RBIs. For the Dirtbags, Casas and Joey Terdoslavich each had three hits.

Stanford improved to 10-2 in one-run games.

Sunday
Long Beach State 10, Stanford 5

The Dirtbags (21-23) salvaged one game in the series by jumping out to an early five-run lead in the second inning and withstanding Stanford's run the fourth and fifth innings. Stanford freshman Mark Appel, in his second career start, struggled, going 1.2 innings and allowing five earned runs on four hits and walking three. After retiring the first four batters of the game, the next seven of eight batters reached base by way of three walks, three singles, and one double. Righty Brian Busick, working on only three days of rest, pitched 3.2 innings and allowed two earned runs on four hits. Chris Reed allowed three runs, one earned, on two hits in the final 2.2 innings.

Stanford scored one in the third inning on a Colin Walsh sacrifice fly, then scored three more in the fourth on a Jake Stewart walk and Tyler Gaffney's two-RBI single. In the fifth, the Cardinal cut the deficit to one on Kenny Diekroeger's home run to left-center on a 1-0 pitch.

But Long Beach State continued to add runs, as they scored one in the fifth, two in the seventh, and one in the eighth. Brennan Metzger, Jonathan Jones, and Kirk Singer each had home runs during a windy day at the hitter-friendly Blair Field. Starting pitcher Braden Pinder allowed five runs, four earned, on eight hits in six innings. Eddie Magallon pitched the final three innings, allowing only one hit and striking out five.

Monday
Stanford vs. Santa Clara was postponed due to rain, with no makeup game rescheduled.

Wednesday

Stanford 8, San Jose State 3

Dave Giuliani, who has raised his average to .309, had four hits, while Zach Jones drove in three runs as the Cardinal (26-18) won both games against Spartans (18-30) this season. Every Stanford starter had at least one hit. Two San Jose State errors, one by shortstop Richie Johnson and another by catcher Corey Valine (catcher's interference), allowed the Cardinal to take a 5-1 lead by the third inning.

Mark Appel struggled in his third start of the season, allowing two earned runs on three hits in 2.1 innings. Dean McArdle picked up the victory in 2.2 scoreless innings in relief. Danny Sandbrink pitched a scoreless three innings, while Alex Pracher allowed one earned run on two hits in the final inning. The Spartans sent nine pitchers to the mound, each of whom pitched one inning. Richie Johnson and Tim Quiery had two and three hits, respectively.

Kenny Diekroeger extended his hitting streak to 18 games with a single in the ninth inning. Jake Schlander, who went 1-for-5, was back in the lineup for the first time in six games.

This Weekend

The Cardinal start a three-game Pac-10 series versus Washington State starting on Friday. Stanford is tied for second place in the conference with UCLA, four games behind Arizona State, with two more Pac-10 series to go.


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