May 30, 2010
EUGENE, ORE. -Freshman right fielder Tony Renda was 3-for-4 and freshman designated hitter Devin Rodriguez hit a two-run homer, but the Cal baseball team fell just short of sweeping No. 21 Oregon, losing 6-5 Sunday in the final game of the three-game Pac-10 series at PK Park in Eugene. The Golden Bears (29-23, 13-14) had won the first two games of the key series against the ranked Ducks, 4-3 and 13-3, to help bolster their bid for an at-large berth into an NCAA Regional.
The selection show for the NCAA Division I Baseball Championship will be Monday, May 31 at 9:30 a.m. (PT) on ESPN.
Cal opened the day with a run in the top of the first inning. Renda led off with a single up the middle and was bunted to second base by junior second baseman Brian Guinn. Renda later advanced to third base on Duck starter Zack Thornton's (9-0, 6.0 innings, five hits, five runs, no walks, five strikeouts) balk and scored on junior first baseman Mark Canha's RBI ground out to second base. Canha's RBI was his 67th of the season, placing him alone in fourth on the Cal all-time single-season RBI list.
Oregon came back with a run in the bottom of the first inning on Shawn Peterson's RBI single to center field off Cal senior left-hander Chris Petrini (4.2 innings, seven hits, five runs, one walk, five strikeouts).
The Bears were able to up their lead to 3-1 in the fourth inning when sophomore catcher Chadd Krist was hit by a Thornton pitch, followed by Rodriguez's two-run homer to right-center field. It was Rodriguez's second two-run homer of the series. The Ducks countered with a run in the bottom of the fourth inning on Andrew Mendenhall's RBI groundout.
In the fifth inning Renda was also hit by a Thornton pitch and then scored on Guinn's RBI double to the right-center field gap. Guinn eventually scored on Krist's sacrifice fly to center field to give Cal a 5-2 advantage.
Unfortunately for the Bears, the Ducks came back to tie the game, 5-5, in the bottom of the fifth inning on Eddie Rodriguez's three-run homer to center field off Petrini. Oregon then took the lead in the bottom of the sixth inning off sophomore right-hander Erik Johnson (6-3, 1.0 inning, three hits, one run), who had come in and picked up the save in Friday night's game. Danny Pulfer led-off the inning against Johnson with a single and ended up scoring on pinch hitter Steven Packard's RBI single to left field.
Renda was impressive in the series against the Ducks, finishing 8-for-12 with three doubles and two RBI. The Bears had 11 hits for extra bases in the series, including a grand slam by Canha on Saturday, his third grand slam of the season.
Cal: Devin Rodriguez, two-run homer in the fourth inning.
Oregon: Eddie Rodriguez, three-run homer in the fifth inning.