UH is No. 24 in Baseball America
Strong finishes have helped Fresno State and Hawai'i jump into Baseball America's Top 25.
It is the first time this season the magazine has recognized two Western Athletic Conference teams at the same time. The rankings released yesterday had the WAC regular-season champion Bulldogs (39-16 overall, 18-6 WAC) at No. 21 with Hawai'i (40-13, 17-6) at No. 24.
Hawai'i moved up from No. 29 to No. 28 in Collegiate Baseball's rankings; Fresno State is not ranked by Collegiate Baseball.
Fresno State has an 11-game win streak and UH has won 15 of its last 17.
Fresno State is the top seed for the WAC tournament, which starts Thursday at Beiden Field at FSU. The Bulldogs play sixth-seeded Sacramento State, which FSU swept over the weekend to clinch the regular-season title.
Second-seeded Hawai'i opens with fifth-seeded Louisiana Tech at 8 a.m., Hawai'i time, Thursday.
The Rainbows will stick with their usual rotation of Steven Wright in the opener and Justin Costi on the second day. Ian Harrington would pitch the third game, if UH is not eliminated from the double-elimination tournament by then.
The tournament champion gets the league's automatic regional berth. If both UH and FSU get to the finals, the runner-up presumably will get an at-large berth. Their pseudo-Ratings Percentage Indexes are 34 for UH and 35 for FSU. It's called "pseudo" because they're not official and are from Boyd's World's Web site, which claims the formulas used for the ratings closely match the official ones, which aren't made public by the NCAA.
Meanwhile, besides the new ranking, Baseball America Online featured UH on its Web site's college page with a photo of Wright with a heading that read: "Hawaii Four-Oh" in reference to UH's 40th win. Hawai'i's ranking is its first in Baseball America since 1999.
Also, Wright is one of 30 semifinalists for the Brooks Wallace Award, which goes to the national player of the year, the College Baseball Foundation announced yesterday. He is the only WAC player on the list.
Rainbows' right-hander Justin Costi was named WAC Pitcher of the Week, the league announced yesterday. It was the third weekly award of his career.
Costi pitched a six-hitter in a 6-0 win at San Jose State on Saturday. He walked one and struck out four in his second complete game of the season, while improving to 8-1 with a 3.45 earned run average.
Nevada designated hitter Terry Walsh was named Hitter of the Week after batting .500 in a three-game sweep of New Mexico State.