Diamond Dawgs Head To UC Davis For 2013 Openers
Feb. 13, 2013
THIS WEEK: The 111th season of Washington baseball gets underway this Friday, Feb. 15, when the UW travels to UC Davis for a three-day, four-game series against the Aggies. The season starts Friday with a 2:00 p.m. PT game as Husky junior Austin Voth takes the mound for the Dawgs. On Saturday, the teams will play a doubleheader starting at 11:00 a.m. PT. Sophomore Tyler Davis will start game one of the twinbill and junior Nick Palewicz will take the mound in the second. The series wraps up Sunday with a 1:00 p.m. game. Washington's starter for that one has yet to be determined.
As it stands now, the only live coverage of this weekend's games will be via live "Gametracker" stats, the links for which you'll find above. While UC Davis' website lists links for live audio, it's actually unlikely there will be audio coverage (you can always click and find out for certain when the games begin).
FIRST TIME vs. DAVIS: Remarkably enough for two teams from the West Coast, this weekend's series will mark the first time ever at that Washington has faced UC Davis on the baseball diamond. That's a little less surprising with the knowledge that the Aggies only began playing baseball in 1961 and didn't move into Division I until 1999. Still, Washington has faced 33 different opponents from the state of California, including many non-Division I programs, but have never squared off vs. the Aggies before this season. UC Davis is the only current Division I program in California (and, for that matter, the entire West Coast, including Washington, Oregon, as well as Idaho, Arizona, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah and Hawai'i), that the UW has never faced.
TEAM BREAKDOWN: Washington's 2013 roster includes 13 players who had an at bat for the UW last season and eight pitchers who made at least one appearance on the mound (that total does not include Jeff Brigham and Joshua Fredendall, who will miss this season due to injury but should return in 2014). Those 13 returning position players accounted for 1,256 at bats (69.1 percent of the UW's total of 1,818 last season) and for 346 of the Huskies' 518 hits (66.8 percent). On the mound, returning pitchers made a total of 24 starts in 55 games last season (43.6 percent) and accounted for 251.3 of the 485.0 innings pitched (51.8 percent). Returning pitchers combined for a 20-11 won-lost record in 2012.
HUSKY HOMECOMING: While there aren't any Husky baseball players from Davis itself, or Yolo County, the UW baseball roster does include a bunch of players from Northern California. Of the 12 Californians on the team this year, eight are from the Northern part of the Golden State: Will Ballowe (Danville), Braden Bishop (San Carlos), Josh Cushing (Moraga), Tyler Davis (Mountain View), Matt Jackson (Morgan Hill), Jayce Ray (Sonoma), Austin Rei (Moraga) and Will Sparks (Saratoga)
NEXT UP: Washington will return to the road for a second straight weekend Feb. 22-24 when the Dawgs travel to Beaumont, Texas, for a three-team tournament. Washington will face host Lamar and Creighton two times each. The Huskies open the 2013 home schedule March 1 with the first of three games against Cal Poly at Husky Ballpark.
ANOTHER STRONG SCHEDULE: Well-known college baseball website BoydsWorld.com released its strength of schedule numbers for the coming baseball season and, as usual, Washington's ranked very high. In fact, the 2013 Husky baseball schedule ranks as the third-hardest in the nation, behind only USC and California. Of course, the top nine on the list are all Pac-12 programs with only Washington State (24th) and Arizona (49th) ranking outside of the top nine. The rankings list all 298 Division I programs.
GAME PREVIEWS: GoHuskies.com has done away with the old, traditional "weekly notes" for many sports this academic year, so for the coming baseball season, this will be the manner in which each week's games will be previewed. The hope is that, with all of the links provided (particularly to the team's roster and bios), that fans will have much more information at their fingertips via this page than they ever had via old-style notes. If you have any thoughts on other links or information that might be included, please click on the "feedback" link at the very bottom of this page and let us know.