WSU Sports Information

Baseball: A series win would give Cougs more Pac-12 wins than in ‘15

HEADED INTO its final baseball series of the season with Cal in town, Washington State has a chance to better its Pac-12 record of a year ago.

The Cougars were 11-19 in Pac-12 play last year.  Headed into the final three games vs. the Bears, WSU has a 10-17 mark in conference play in Marty Lees’ first season at the helm, including series wins over Oregon State and Washington.

All three games vs. Cal in Pullman will be televised by the Pac-12 Networks. Thursday’s and Friday’s games get underway at 4 p.m., Sunday’s finale is scheduled for 2 p.m.

All season long, Lees has talked about playing aggressively with his young ball club. Sometimes that has worked and sometimes it hasn't, but it's worth noting WSU enters the week leading the Pac-12 with 60 stolen bases.

Trek Stemp is tied for the conference lead in steals with 12, Dugan Shirer has 11 (t-3rd) and Derek Chapman is tied for 5th in the conference with 10. And speaking of WSU utility man Stemp, he’s fifth in the Pac-12 in hitting (.355) and ninth in hits (65).

The fourth-year junior has posted three different hitting streaks of 10-plus games (11, 12, 11) this season and has at least one hit in 39 of the 43 games he’s played.

Washington State’s top priority moving forward is pitching and in recent nonconference games, WSU has turned to the youth more in order to develop its pitching depth. But for the final Pac-12 series of the season, WSU’s probable starters are about what you would expect -- third-year sophomore lefty Damon Jones, junior righty Ian Hamilton and sophomore southpaw Scotty Sunitsch.

Hamilton’s appearance Sunday will be No. 70 of his WSU career, tying him for ninth in program history with Adam Conley.

Closer Ryan Walker is tied for fifth in the Pac-12 in ERA (2.55) and seventh in batting average against (.208). In Pac-12 play, Walker is seventh in ERA (2.90) and fifth in batting average against (.210), Sunitsch is 9th (.227).

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