The Ducks of Oregon and the Cougars of Washington State have one massive commonality…a shared Husky Hatred known by no other schools. While that does bind us, I still want to win every game this weekend in the Baseball series held at PK Park. No, I want to thrash them as I would any other opponent. I was able to pull myself away from NFL Draft Odds for a bit to consider the importance of these games, and the impact on Oregon’s quest to win the Pac-12 regular season title.
First of all, my apologies, and yet a-tip-of-the-hat to Kim Hastings, who originated the primary part of the title above. I have just loved it over the years when we prepared to play the Cougars in all sports, and I had to “recycle” the title for this surprising Ducks Baseball team (26-11) that has been the shock of the conference in this 2022 season.
We cannot look at the the record of Washington State, (14-22) as they have begun to catch fire in the final third of the season. They stunned the Pac-12 two weeks ago when they went to Tucson and won the series from the Arizona Wildcats who have consistently been in the top 20 in the nation. Last year, Our Beloved Ducks went to the Palouse, and got kicked in the caboose due to the extraordinary hitting from the men in red, losing that series of which turned out to be a killer loss in our attempt last year at taking the conference.
I urge you to attend the game, or watch it on Oregon Live Stream, as this team is hitting like no other Oregon club ever in our history. Look at the batting averages going into the weekend:
- .318 1B Jacob Walsh
- .301 2B Gavin Grant
- .317 SS Josh Kasevich
- .438 3B Drew Cowley
- .323 LF Tanner Smith
- .344 CF Colby Shade
- .318 RF Anthony Hall
- .322 DH Brennan Milone
- .289 C Josiah Cromwick (Eight of nine over .300? That is unbelievable!)
Hard to imagine, but Washington State leads the all-time series 156-133-1, including a 41-24 edge in games played in Eugene. Time to turn this around…now! If the Ducks can do well this weekend, then they can stay tied with Oregon State for the conference lead, but our hitting needs to come through, and our starting pitchers need to last longer into the game. What has been comforting is how Oregon has managed to win a number of very tight, close games recently, and did not let the three one-run losses at UCLA mess with their head.
It strengthened their resolve and made them Fighting Ducks!
Being at the top of the standings in the Pac-12 is no fluke as Oregon is No. 3 in the nation in RPI, and No. 7 in the nation for strength-of-schedule, of which should help us when it comes to our position in the NCAA Baseball Playoffs at the end of the season. Oregon leads the Pac-12 in six major statistical categories heading into the Washington State series. The Ducks are first in batting average, double plays, double plays per game, home runs, home runs per game and slugging percentage. Whew!
Watch the Oregon Spring Football Game, and then the conference-leading Baseball team? It doesn’t get any better as….
“Oh, how we love to ponder about Our Beloved Ducks!”
Charles Fischer (Mr. FishDuck)
Top Photo by Eric Evans of Oregon Baseball Twitter
Charles Fischer has been an intense fan of the Ducks, a season ticket holder at Autzen Stadium for 35 years and has written reports on football boards for over 23 years. Known as “FishDuck” on those boards, he is acknowledged for providing intense detail in his scrimmage reports and in his Xs and Os play analyses. He and his wife Lois, have a daughter Christine, reside in Eugene Oregon, where he was a Financial Advisor for 36 years and now focuses full-time on Charitable Planned Giving Workshops for churches and non-profit organizations.
He does not profess to be a coach or analyst, but simply a “hack” that enjoys sharing what he has learned and invites others to correct or add to this body of Oregon Football! See More…
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