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Sunday, December 5, 2021

Scouting Report: Stanford Regional

No. 1 STANFORD

Season in brief

Coming into the 2008 season, Stanford had hosted 13 regionals and had won an impressive 120 tournament games all-time.

The Cardinal has added to one of those numbers, and will look to advance the second starting today.

No. 15 Stanford (33-21-2, 14-10 Pacific-10) pieced together a season that the Palo Alto faithful have come to expect. The Cardinal (No. 20 RPI) has five regulars hitting over .300, and have seven pitchers with an ERA at 4.26 or below.

 

Names to know

Junior catcher Jason Castro is rated as the third-best catching prospect in the country by Baseball America, and the 21st-best prospect overall.

Hailing from Castro Valley, Calif, Castro has everything that pro scouts are looking fornot only is he a left-handed hitting catcher, he’s a left-handed power-hitting catcher. The 6-foot-3, 210-pounder holds an impressive .369/.418/.592 line this season.

Junior outfielder Sean Ratliff will be sure to bring his power stroke to the postseason. The 6-foot-3, 225-pound slugger leads the Cardinal with 18 homers and a .633 SLG.

Senior starter Erik Davis leads the way for Stanford on the hill. The 6-foot-4, 200-pounder is 7-2 with a 4.22 ERA. Opponents are hitting .241 off the righty, who holds a 1.27 WHIP.

 

No. 2 PEPPERDINE

Season in brief

The Pepperdine program has been making waves for years, and this season was no different.

After going 14-6 in West Coast Conference play and 36-19 overall, the No. 13 Waves have claimed the No. 2 seed in the Stanford Regional.

With its strong record and No. 34 RPI, No. 13 Pepperdine is expected to be a major player in the postseason tournament.

The Waves know how to get it done with the bats, sporting an impressive .308/.401/.454 team vital line this season. Their pitching staff hasn’t had the same success from top to bottom, but has its fair share of individuals worth watching.

 

Names to know

Pepperdine has a pair of prospects expected to go within the first three rounds in the upcoming draft.

Reliever Brett Hunter currently holds the No. 51 slot on Baseball America’s board, projecting him to go near the top of the second round. Opponents are hitting just .226 off the righty this season.

On the offensive side of things, outfielder Eric Thames has put up an unbelievable vital this season: .407/.513/.769, leading his team in each category. Thames also has 13 home runs and 11 steals, and is expected to be a third-round selection.

Infielders Bryce Mendonca and Matt Aidem have also put solid seasons together, hitting .335 and .322, respectively.

 

No. 3 ARKANSAS

Season in brief

When the Razorbacks 14-15 record in Southeastern Conference play kept them out of the conference tournament, they had a hard time imagining they’d find their way to the NCAA Tournament.

But they did.

Arkansas received an at-large bid to the postseason dancelike each of the four teams in the Stanford Regional.

While their conference record might not have impressed, the Razorbacks34-22 overall record and strong RPI (No. 33) proved to be enough to lock up a postseason berth.

 

Names to know

Arkansas is led by junior third baseman Logan Forsythe. A native of Memphis, Tenn., Forsythe currently projects to be a second-round pick in the upcoming Major League Baseball Draft (June 5 and 6). Baseball America ranks Forsythe as the No. 76 prospect in the country.

A 6-foot-1, 208-pounder, Forsythe had a breakout campaign as a sophomore last season. After hitting just .189 as a freshman, Forsythe improved to .347 as a sophomore. He leads his team with 11 steals and a .536 SLG this season.

Junior utility man Chase Leavitt is making a name for himself in his first season with the Razorbacks. A junior college transfer, Leavitt leads his team with a .360 batting average and .514 OBP.

While Arkansas appears to be led by its hitters (.293 team batting average vs. 4.94 team ERA), starter Cliff Springston has strung together a solid season. He’s 5-2 with a 3.83 ERA, and has walked just 24 batters in 82 1/3 innings this season.

 

Adam Loberstein

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