Bob Drebin /

Pac-12 Play Begins

STANFORD, Calif. – No. 3 Stanford opens Pac-12 conference play this week when it plays host to Utah for a three-game series at Sunken Diamond, starting Friday at 6 p.m.
The Cardinal (12-3-0, 0-0-0 Pac-12) is in the midst of an 11-day break from competition in observance of dead week and finals week. Game 2 of the series is set for 2 p.m. on Saturday with Sunday's finale starting at 1 p.m. Live streaming and live statistics for all games will be available at
With the expectation of rain in the forecast at times during the weekend, follow @StanfordBSB on Twitter for immediate updates.
Weekend Opponent, Utah
• Stanford owns a 16-6 all-time record against Utah. Most recently, the Cardinal earned a 3-0 sweep of the Utes at Smith's Ballpark during the 2018 season. Stanford outscored Utah, 43-10, on the week, including a program-record 28 hits in a 25-5 win for Game 2 of the series.
• The Utes (7-9-0, 1-2-0 Pac-12) have lost three games in a row after opening Pac-12 play with a 21-10 win at Arizona on March 15. Utah lost the series, 2-1, after dropping 8-0 and 18-7 decisions, followed by an 11-2 loss at Grand Canyon on Monday.
• Oliver Dunn leads the team in runs (20), hits (23), doubles (12) and total bases (40). Zack Moeller owns a team-high three home runs and 21 RBI, and Rykker Tom's .375 batting average leads the club. The Utes' pitching staff carries a 6.39 earned-run average across 139.1 innings pitched.
What's Next?
• Stanford continues Pac-12 play March 29-31 with a three-game series at Washington State in Pullman, Washington.
• The Cardinal's next home series is against No. 1 UCLA on April 5-7. Stanford's other Pac-12 home opponents include Washington (April 12-14), Arizona (April 26-28) and No. 7 Oregon State (May 17-19).
• Midweek home opponents remaining include Fresno State (April 2), UC Davis (April 16), Gonzaga (April 22), San Jose State (April 23), Santa Clara (May 7), Cal Poly (May 14) and Pacific (May 21).

Defending the Crown
• Stanford captured its first conference championship since 2004 in dramatic fashion last season, coming from behind on the road during the final day of the regular season.
• After losing Games 1-2 at Washington, Stanford trailed, 5-3, entering the ninth inning of Game 3 (May 26). Will Matthiessen's two-run home run in the ninth inning tied the game at 5-5 before Nico Hoerner beat out an infield single to score Alec Wilson. Jack Little struck out the side in the bottom of the ninth to secure the Cardinal's 18th conference championship.
Cardinal in the Polls
• Stanford moved up to No. 3 in the latest D1 Baseball top-25. Stanford also ranked in the Baseball America (3), Collegiate Baseball Newspaper (8), NCBWA (3), Perfect Game (3) and USA Today Coaches' (T-2) polls.
• Four of Stanford's 2019 opponents ranked top-15 in the D1 Baseball poll – No. 1 UCLA, No. 7 Oregon State, No. 9 Texas and No. 15 Arizona State.
• Stanford ranks No. 5 in the NCAA's first ratings power index (RPI) of the season. Nine of the Cardinal's 2019 opponents ranked in the top 50 – No. 1 Oregon State, No. 2 UCLA, No. 7 Oregon, No. 17 Arizona State, No. 19 Pepperdine, No. 23 Texas, No. 40 Gonzaga, No. 44 Cal State Fullerton and No. 48 Washington.

Staff Leading the Way
• Stanford's 2.31 earned-run average ranks fifth, nationally, and second in the Pac-12.
• The Cardinal's weekend rotation of Brendan Beck, Jacob Palisch and Erik Miller have each enjoyed strong starts to the season.
• Beck, Stanford's Friday-night starter, has set his career high in pitches in all four of his starts, most recently tossing a career-high 8.0 innings with 104 pitches against Texas (March 7). Beck struck out a career-high 11 in Stanford's season-opening win against Ball State (Feb. 15).
• Palisch, who joined Beck as a freshman All-American in 2018, has allowed one earned run in each of his last three starts, including setting career highs in pitches (98) and innings pitched (6.0) in a win over Texas (March 8).
• Miller, one of the top prospects for the 2019 MLB Draft, has twice tied his career high in strikeouts (9) this season. Miller threw a career-high 101 pitches in a win over Texas (March 10), allowing one hit with nine strikeouts over 6.0 innings.
• Stanford's bullpen, led by All-American Jack Little, owns a 1.94 ERA in 51.0 innings pitched.
• Little leads the pen in appearances (7), innings pitched (10.1), strikeouts (16) and saves (1). Last season, Little tied a program record with 16 saves while carrying a 0.60 ERA.

Quick Hitters
• Five Cardinal have started all 15 games – Andrew DaschbachMaverick HandleyWill MatthiessenTim Tawa and Brandon Wulff.
• Teams have attempted just two stolen bases, both unsuccessfully, against catcher Handley. Handley (bioengineering) aspires to be an orthopedic surgeon following his baseball career.
• Stanford is batting .281 against opposing bullpens in 52.2 innings – opposing bullpens are carrying a 5.81 earned-run average against the Cardinal.
• Kyle Stowers switched numbers to 37 prior to the season to honor teammate and close friend Jason Lyon, who died of brain cancer when the pair were teammates in high school.
• Duke Kinamon made his first appearance in 630 days when Stanford played host to UNLV on Feb. 23. Kinamon scored three runs and stole four bases on four attempts against Texas.
• Stanford is 15-1 in the month of February and 17-5 in March under the Clarke and Elizabeth Nelson Director of Baseball David Esquer.
• Stanford will host its first annual Youth Baseball Day on April 6 when the Cardinal plays host to UCLA. For more information, visit
2019 Season Recap
• Stanford emphatically wrapped up pre-Pac-12 play with a 3-1 series win over No. 12 Texas at Sunken Diamond (March 7-10). After dropping the series opener, despite a career performance from starting pitcher Brendan Beck, the Cardinal outscored the Longhorns 21-3 over the final three games to clinch the series win.
• After sweeping a doubleheader, 2-0, to clinch the series win at No. 24 Cal State Fullerton, Stanford dropped the series finale, 4-3, on a walk-off single at Goodwin Field in Fullerton, California.
• Stanford's streak of midweek wins stretched to 23 games with an 8-3 win over San Francisco (Feb. 27). Stanford has not lost a midweek clash since April 26, 2017.
• The Cardinal came from behind to earn a 2-1 series win over UNLV in Stanford's first home action of the season (Feb. 22-24).
• Stanford opened the season with a 4-0 showing at the Angels College Classic in Phoenix, Arizona (Feb. 15-18). The Cardinal earned wins over Ball State (2-1), Wichita State (5-4), Pepperdine (6-1) and Grand Canyon (14-4).
Firepower Returning
• A significant portion of Stanford's offensive production returns for 2019, including 95 percent of the team's home runs, 79 percent of RBI and 74 percent of total bases from 2018.
• Three players who started all 58 games return – Tim Tawa, Andrew Daschbach and Kyle Stowers.
• Daschbach led the team in home runs (17), RBI (63) and total bases (125). Daschbach's 17 big flies were the most in a season since Sean Ratliff hit 22 home runs during the 2008 season.
• Stowers ranked second on the team in home runs (10) and RBI (42) while leading the team in walks (30).
• Tawa, who split time between center field and third base, earned freshman All-America honors from Collegiate Baseball Newspaper and Perfect Game after hitting seven home runs with 41 RBI, 44 runs and a team-high 18 doubles in 2018.
• Led by Little, Stanford returns most of its pitching staff from 2018, which ranked second in the nation with a 2.83 earned-run average.
• Brendan Beck finished his freshman season with an 8-0 record and 2.43 ERA across 66.2 innings pitched.
• Erik Miller, a preseason All-American and Stanford's Sunday starter in 2018, is one of the top prospects for the 2019 MLB Draft – Miller went 4-4 with a 4.07 ERA in 48.2 IP.
• Other key arms returning include Will Matthiessen (2.00 ERA in 13 relief appearances), Zach Grech (2.65 ERA in team-high 28 appearances) and Austin Weiermiller (5-1, 3.29 ERA in 38.1 IP across 23 appearances).
Welcome to The Farm
5 • Austin Kretzschmar • INF • 6-0 • 175 • La Mesa, Calif. (Helix Charter)
7 • Brandon Dieter • INF/RHP • 6-0 • 175 • Covina, Calif. (South Hills)
13 • Justin Moore • INF/RHP • 6-5 • 215 • Austin, Texas (Vandegrift)
15 • Grant Burton • OF • 6-2 • 195 • San Juan Capistrano, Calif. (Mater Dei)
16 • Vincent Martinez • C • 6-2 • 220 • San Marcos, Calif. (San Marcos)
18 • Cody Jensen • RHP • 6-3 • 185 • Roseville, Calif. (Jesuit)
28 • Alex Williams • RHP • 6-3 • 205 • Castro Valley, Calif. (Redwood Christian)
40 • Nicolas Lopez • LHP • 6-4 • 190 • Redwood City, Calif. (Serra)
Esquer Era Underway
• 2019 marks the second season under the Clarke and Elizabeth Nelson Director of Baseball David Esquer.
• Esquer, a 1987 graduate of Stanford and starting shortstop on the 1987 College World Series-winning team, returned to The Farm after serving the previous 18 seasons as the head coach at Cal.
• Pitching coach Thomas Eager, assistant coach Tommy Nicholson, assistant coach Jack Marder and director of operations Jeanette Morganti each enter their second season with the Cardinal. Video coordinator Sky Valenzuela is Stanford's lone addition to the 2019 coaching staff.