The Gaucho baseball team is set to face #24 Stanford in a three-game series at Sunken Diamond Field in Palo Alto, slated to begin today at 5:30 p.m. pending cooperative weather. UCSB (3-2 overall) has not faced Stanford since 1997 when the team took two out of three against the Cardinal — then the top-ranked team in the nation — on its home field at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium. Stanford will be the first-ranked opponent to play the Gauchos this season.
“Our confidence is pretty high [right now],” Hollands said. “We know we should have, or could have, won the games that we lost.”
In their last game on Tuesday, the Gauchos beat Loyola Marymount 4-1 in Los Angeles, improving to 3-2 while dropping LMU’s record to 1-7. Gaucho junior right-hander Jesse Meaux tossed seven scoreless innings and moved to 2-0 with a 1.71 ERA. Senior catcher Marty Mullins contributed three of the Gauchos’ 11 hits in the win.
The left-handed Hollands will start the first game of the series against Stanford sophomore right-hander Jordan Pries. On Saturday, the Gauchos will send junior right-hander Nick Loredo to the mound up against sophomore left-hander Scott Snodgress, while junior left-hander Nick Capito will round out the weekend rotation against Cardinal sophomore southpaw Brett Mooneyham on Sunday. Mooneyham earned freshman All-American honors in 2009.
Gaucho sophomore third baseman Ryan Palermo leads all starters with a .385 batting average. Hitting .353, senior designated hitter Shane Arslan leads the team with five RBI.
“I’m very pleased with how we’ve played,” Head Coach Bob Brontsema said. “We’ve pitched extremely well; we’ve played extremely well defensively. Our hits haven’t been as timely as our opponents’, which is why we’re 3-2 instead of 5-0. If we can play like this all year, that would be great.”