Bob Drebin / isiphotos.com

Cardinal Hosts Huskies

STANFORD, Calif. – No. 5 Stanford continues Pac-12 conference play when it welcomes Washington to Sunken Diamond for a three-game series, starting Friday at 7 p.m.

The defending conference champion Cardinal (21-5-0, 7-2-0 Pac-12) most recently earned an 11-1 win at San Francisco on Tuesday after dropping a 2-1 series decision against No. 1 UCLA last weekend at Sunken Diamond. The Huskies (15-12-0, 5-7-0) snapped a seven-game losing streak on Monday with a 3-2 win over Cal Baptist.

All three games will air on Pac-12 Networks – Saturday's game is set for 7 p.m. and Sunday's finale will start at 2 p.m. Live statistics for all games will be available at GoStanford.com.

Weekend Opponent, Washington
• Stanford owns a 56-28-0 all-time record against Washington. Last season, the Huskies took the series, 2-1, in Seattle, but Stanford had the last word, coming from behind in Sunday's 6-5 win to clinch its first Pac-12 conference championship since 2004. Will Matthiessen's two-run home run in the top of the ninth tied the game, Nico Hoerner beat out an infield single later in the frame and Jack Little slammed the door shut with three strikeouts in the bottom of the ninth.
• Catcher Nick Kahle leads the Huskies in virtually every offensive category – batting average (.420), slugging percentage (.682), on-base percentage (.561), RBI (32), home runs (6) and walks (29). Braiden Ward leads the Pac-12 in stolen bases (18) and Washington enters the week with a 3.91 team earned-run average, which ranks fourth in the conference.

Tuesday's Opponent, UC Davis
• The Aggies enter the weekend with a 10-15-10 overall record and a 3-3-0 record in Big West play – Stanford's all-time record against UC Davis stands at 54-14-0 with the first matchup between the two programs taking place in 1960.
• Stanford went 2-0-0 against UC Davis last season with Brendan Beck earning the win in both games.

What's Next?
• Stanford returns to the road next week with a three-game series at Oregon, starting Thursday (April 18) at 7 p.m. and going through Saturday (April 20).
• Starting this week against Washington, 18 of Stanford's remaining 28 regular-season matchups will broadcast live on Pac-12 Networks.
• Stanford's annual Fireworks Night will take place following the Cardinal's matchup against Arizona on Saturday, April 27.
• Stanford's other remaining Pac-12 home opponents include Arizona (April 26-28) and No. 6 Oregon State (May 17-19). Midweek home opponents remaining include UC Davis (April 16), Gonzaga (April 22), San Jose State (April 23), Santa Clara (May 7), Cal Poly (May 14) and Pacific (May 21).

Cardinal in the Polls
• Stanford dropped to No. 5 in this week's D1 Baseball top 25. Stanford also ranked in the Baseball America (2), Collegiate Baseball Newspaper (3), NCBWA (4) and Perfect Game (6) polls.
• Four of Stanford's regular-season opponents ranked in the D1 Baseball poll – No. 1 UCLA, No. 4 Oregon State, No. 13 Arizona State and No. 14 Texas.
• Six of Stanford's 2019 opponents rank top-50 in the NCAA's ratings power index (RPI) – No. 1 UCLA, No. 3 Oregon State, No. 23 Texas, No. 24 Oregon, No. 30 Arizona State and No. 43 Gonzaga.

Pitching and Defense
• The Cardinal's 2.84 team earned-run average ranks seventh in the country and third in the Pac-12 – Stanford's .235 opposing batting average ranks fourth in the conference.
• Stanford pitchers have surrendered the fewest runs (84), earned runs (74), walks (80), doubles (33) and home runs (5) in the Pac-12.
• Brendan Beck was named Pac-12 Pitcher of the Week on Monday after tossing 7.1 shutout innings against No. 1 UCLA on Friday night.
• Jack Little's 22 career saves rank third in program history behind Colton Hock (25 – 2015-17) and Steve Chitren (26 –1986-89). Little ranks second in the Pac-12 this season with six saves.
• Stanford leads the Pac-12 in fewest errors (19) and fielding percentage (.980), a rate which ranks eighth out of 297 Division I programs.
• The Cardinal has played 10 games this season without an error and just two games with multiple errors – Stanford has made just four errors in its last eight games.
• Cardinal catchers lead the conference in fewest passed balls (2) and rank third in fewest stolen bases against (9).  

Quick Hitters
• Five Cardinal have started all 26 games this season – Will Matthiessen, Andrew Daschbach, Maverick Handley, Brandon Wulff and Tim Tawa.
• In Pac-12 play, Daschbach leads the Cardinal in batting average (.432), slugging percentage (.676), on-base percentage (.475) and total bases (25).
• Tawa has been on a tear since the start of Pac-12 play, carrying a .686 slugging percentage with four home runs and 11 RBI in conference play – Tawa has four home runs in his last seven games while ranking second on the team in total bases (24) in league action.
• Catcher Handley's reached-base streak came to an end on Saturday after 24 games. Teams have attempted just 12 stolen bases against Handley this season with seven of those being successful. Since his arrival on The Farm in 2017, Stanford's record stands at 77-18 with Handley starts behind home plate. A bioengineering major, Handley aspires to be an orthopedic surgeon following his baseball career.
• On the season, Matthiessen, who enters the weekend riding a 13-game reached-base streak, leads the Cardinal in batting average (.344), slugging percentage (.559), on-base percentage (.427), total bases (52), RBI (27) and doubles (8).
• 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. Stowers has started the last six games in centerfield after playing a majority of the season in left.
• Nick Bellafronto became the first Cardinal to register four hits in a game on March 31, going 4-for-4 with two doubles, two RBI and three runs – Pac-12 players have registered four hits in a game 14 times this season.
• Stanford's four home runs on Sunday against No. 1 UCLA were a season high and the most in a game since May 5, 2018.
• Stanford registered a season-high 12 walks in Tuesday's 11-1 win at San Francisco.
• Freshman Vincent Martinez registered his first career hit in Stanford's 11-1 win at San Francisco on Tuesday (April 9).
• Stanford is 15-1 in the month of February and 21-5 in March under the Clarke and Elizabeth Nelson Director of Baseball David Esquer.

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2019 Season Recap
• The Cardinal rebounded with an 11-1 win at San Francisco (April 9), its 25th consecutive midweek win. Kyle Stowers and Will Matthiessen homered and Alex Williams earned the win with 5.0 innings of one-run ball.
• In the first No. 1 vs. No. 2 matchup on The Farm since 2000, No. 2 Stanford dropped a 2-1 series decision to No. 1 UCLA (April 5-7). Stanford's lone win in the series came on Friday night behind 7.1 shutout innings from Brendan Beck and a walk-off single by Will Matthiessen in the bottom of the ninth inning.
• Stanford made it 10 in a row with a 2-0 triumph of Fresno State on Tuesday (April 2) – it was the Cardinal's 24th straight midweek win, a streak dating to April 26, 2017.
• Stanford improved to 6-0-0 in Pac-12 play with a 3-0 sweep at Washington State (March 29-31) – the Cardinal outscored the Cougars, 29-8, including a season-high 17 hits in Game 3.
• The Cardinal opened Pac-12 play with a 3-0 series sweep over Utah (March 22-24) with wins by the scores of 7-4, 7-6 and 7-3.
• 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 (March 1-3), 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).
• 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).
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.
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).
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.