World-Herald staff writer Jon Nyatawa compiled schedules, team stats and everything Bluejay fans need to know about the Corvallis regional.
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At Goss Stadium
No. 3 seed Michigan (41-18) vs. No. 2 Creighton (38-11), 3 p.m.
No. 1 Oregon State (36-18-1) vs. No. 4 Cincinnati (30-29), 9 p.m.
Game 3: UM-CU loser vs. Cincinnati-OSU loser, 3 p.m.
Game 4: UM-CU winner vs. Cincinnati-OSU winner, 9 p.m.
Game 5: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 loser, 2 p.m.
Championship: Game 4 winner vs. Game 5 winner, 8 p.m.
Second championship, if needed, 9 p.m. on Monday
No. 1 seed Oregon State
Pac-12 finish: Third
Record vs. 2019 regional teams: 13-5-1
NCAA tournament appearances: 19
Hitting stats: .264 batting average, 5.7 runs per game, 45 home runs, .394 slugging percentage
Pitching stats: 2.98 ERA, 9.0 strikeouts per nine innings, .227 opponent batting average, 14 saves
Outlook: The reigning national champions are under new leadership after veteran coach Pat Casey announced in the offseason that he’d be stepping down. Pat Bailey took over — and the Beavers haven’t really missed a beat. They’re the No. 16 overall seed. It helps to have the best player in college baseball behind the plate. Adley Rutschman (.419 batting average, 17 home runs) is likely going to be the No. 1 MLB draft pick this summer. Alex McGarry (eight home runs, .404 on-base percentage) and Beau Philip (.322 batting average, 14 doubles) can swing it, too. But Oregon State’s built around its pitchers. Bryce Fehmel (3.34 ERA, 1.04 WHIP) and Grant Gambrell (2.74 ERA, 1.16 WHIP) have been in the starting rotation all year, and Jake Mulholland (1.81 ERA, 26 appearances) has been a workhorse out of the bullpen.
No. 2 seed Creighton
Big East finish: First (first in tourney)
Record vs. 2019 regional teams: 8-1
NCAA tournament appearances: 11
Hitting stats: .293 batting average, 7.2 runs per game, 60 home runs, .480 slugging percentage
Pitching stats: 4.23 ERA, 7.9 strikeouts per nine innings, .230 opponent batting average, 13 saves
Outlook: The Jays are playing their best baseball at the right time. They’ve won eight games in a row — clinching the Big East’s regular-season and tournament championships during that span. Now, they’ll try to carry the momentum into a regional. They’ll ask ace Mitch Ragan (8-2, 3.97 ERA) to set the tone for a pitching staff that’s had different contributors deliver at crucial times. On offense, Isaac Collins (.303 batting average, 44 runs) and Parker Upton (.495 on-base percentage, 62 runs) are the table-setters. Jake Holton (.726 slugging percentage, 14 home runs) and Will Robertson (13 home runs, 62 RBIs) are the mashers.
No. 3 seed Michigan
Big Ten finish: Second (third in tourney)
Record vs. 2019 regional teams: 7-13
NCAA tournament appearances: 24
Hitting stats: .283 batting average, 6.8 runs per game, 60 home runs, .448 slugging percentage
Pitching stats: 3.49 ERA, 8.8 strikeouts per nine innings, .226 opponent batting average, 14 saves
Outlook: The Wolverines lost five of their final seven regular-season games. Then they dropped their Big Ten tournament opener. But they recovered just in time, winning three elimination games and putting themselves on the right side of the NCAA bubble. They’ve been a relatively balanced ballclub for much of the year. Guys like Jordan Brewer (.342 batting average, 12 home runs) and Jordan Nwogu (.338 batting average, 10 home runs) are capable of making pitchers pay in multiple ways. Tommy Henry (3.61 ERA, 104 strikeouts in 921⁄3 innings) leads a trio of talented starting pitchers, and Willie Weiss (2.97 ERA, nine saves) has been a shutdown option at the back of the bullpen.
No. 4 seed Cincinnati
AAC finish: Second (first in tourney)
Record vs. 2019 regional teams: 5-12
NCAA tournament appearances: 6
Hitting stats: .257 batting average, 5.2 runs per game, 33 home runs, .365 slugging percentage
Pitching stats: 5.47 ERA, 8.1 strikeouts per nine innings, .257 opponent batting average, 16 saves
Outlook: The Bearcats got hot — really hot — at just the right time. They won all four of their games at the AAC tournament and earned the league’s automatic bid. Their defense was particularly impressive last weekend — they committed just two errors in four games. They rank 21st nationally in fielding percentage (.978) and they’ve recorded the seventh-most double plays in the country. The offense lacks punch, but Cincinnati will run often. Three players rank in the top 100 nationally in steals. A.J. Bumpass (seven homers, 41 RBIs) and Joey Wiemer (six homers, 27 RBIs) are the two heaviest hitters. Closer Korren Thompson (3.86 ERA, 12 saves) and reliever Nathan Moore headline a versatile Bearcat pitching staff.