Pitchers Pave the Way

STANFORD, Calif. – ­­Stanford's pitching staff scattered three San Diego hits over nine innings and the Cardinal picked up its seventh straight win on Tuesday night at Sunken Diamond.

"These midweek games are always tough when you have another big Pac-12 series coming up," said Clarke and Elizabeth Nelson Director of Baseball David Esquer. "I credit our pitching and defense tonight, and that's how we're going to win a lot of ball games this season."

The Cardinal (18-2 overall, 3-0 Pac-12) is off to its best start since 1998 when it started 18-1-1. Stanford's back-to-back shutouts are the first February 24-25 of 2017 – the Cardinal has won seven in a row since an 8-6 loss at Texas, outscoring opponents 64-6 in that span.

Brendan Beck (3-0) earned the win, completing 5.0 innings while allowing two hits and no walks. Tim Tawa, Nico Hoerner and Will Matthiessen finished with two-hit nights – Tawa hit his third home run of the season in the sixth inning, a towering shot that cleared the trees beyond the left-field fence.

Jesse Kuet was responsible for Stanford's other two runs, driving in Matthiessen and Bryce Carter in the fourth inning to make it 2-0. Jack Little earned his seventh save, pitching a perfect ninth inning – the sophomore has yet to allow a run 17.0 innings of work.

"We love where our pitching is at right now," added Esquer, who replaced Mark Marquess in June after 41 years at the helm. "Our hitting is starting to come around, but at the end of the day pitching defense are going to win us most of our games."

Jacob Palisch made his first appearance since March 11, replacing Beck to go 2.0 innings with two strikeouts while allowing one hit. Matthiessen made his first appearance on the mound this season, pitching a scoreless eighth. Matthiessen needed just seven pitches to retire the side in order after making 20 relief appearances as a freshman in 2017.

Stanford returns to action on Thursday when it opens a three-game series against Oregon. First pitch is set for 6 p.m. PT, with live streaming and statistics available at

Cardinal Notes

  • Beck, the younger brother of Friday-night starter Tristan Beck, lowered his season ERA to 1.25 over 21.2 innings pitched.
  • Palisch's ERA dropped to 0.54 – he has not allowed an earned run since his first appearance of the season.
  • Brandon Wulff upped his reached-base streak to 20 games to start the season.
  • Tawa's three home runs tie for second on the team with Wulff.
  • It was the fifth time this season Stanford has surrendered three hits or less.
  • A season-high 23 outs were recorded via putout.