An interesting week in the Pac-12 was highlighted by Arizona State taking two-of-three from Oregon State in Corvallis. The Devils needed something that like that to get them going, and they also take on a struggling Arizona team on Wednesday with an opportunity to build even more momentum.
Washington State was the other surprise, going 3-3 in a tough six-game stretch, including a two-game sweep over previously-ranked San Diego.
Even with their series loss, the Beavers will remain on top, and the rest of the top-four remain unchanged from last week.
1. Oregon State Beavers (19-5, 4-2)
Previous rank: 1
Last week: 1-2 vs. ASU
This week: vs. Seattle (Tues), @ Arizona (Fri-Sun)
The Beavers had the best resume far-and-away heading into last week, so losing a home series to ASU isn't enough to drop them out of the top spot. One of those losses was in ten innings, so we're not talking about the Devils destroying them by any means. Ben Wetzler is still getting it done, throwing seven more shutout innings on Friday. Pretty pumped to watch him in person Friday night.
2. Oregon Ducks (17-5, 5-1)
Previous rank: 2
Last week: 3-0 vs. Utah
This week: @ San Francisco (Tues & Wed), @ Stanford (Fri-Sun)
The Ducks are definitely closer to the top spot this week than they were last week, but their offense wasn't exactly impressive against the Utes. Oregon took the three games by a combined score of 8-2 over the weekend. Tommy Thorpe was the pitching star of the week, throwing eight innings of three-hit ball on Friday. Lots of games this week, and should OSU struggle at all in Tucson, expect to see Oregon take over the top spot.
3. UCLA Bruins (14-8, 5-1)
Previous rank: 3
Last week: 2-1 vs. Washington State
This week: vs. Long Beach State (Tues), vs. ASU (Fri-Sun)
The Bruins were in danger of dropping the series to the Cougars on Sunday, but Ty Moore came up with a walkoff single in the bottom of the 10th with UCLA trailing 7-6. Washington State has definitely improved, so getting the series win was big for UCLA to remain in the three-spot.
4. Washington Huskies (16-5-1, 5-1)
Previous rank: 4
Last week: 1-0 vs. Portland, 3-0 vs. Arizona
This week: vs. Gonzaga (DH Tues), @ USC (Fri-Sun)
Washington opened the doors on brand-new Husky Ballpark in impressive fashion, sweeping Arizona with each win being more dominating than the last. The Huskies have now won 13 of their last 14 games, and are on the verge of being ranked in the national polls. This is a very impressive team overall right now.
5. Arizona State Sun Devils (12-10, 3-3)
Previous rank: 7
Last week: 1-1 vs. Wichita State, 2-1 @ Oregon State
This week: vs. Arizona (Wed), @ UCLA (Fri-Sun)
Any time a team wins a series at Oregon State, they deserve to move up several spots. ASU's been on quite the roller coaster this year, so will they stay high this week against U of A and UCLA, or where they come back down to earth? That UCLA series could be key in their postseason aspirations.
6. USC Trojans (12-10, 3-3)
Previous rank: 5
Last week: 0-1 vs. Stony Brook, 2-1 @ Stanford
This week: @ Loyola Marymount (Tues), vs. Washington (Fri-Sun)
Going to Stanford is impressive, but I'm curious to see how this team does with that red-hot Washington team coming to town. I'm still not sure what to make of USC since they started the season 7-0, and have gone 5-10 since.
7. Washington State Cougars (9-12, 3-3)
Previous rank: 9
Last week: 2-0 @ San Diego, 1-2 @ UCLA, 0-1 @ Cal State Northridge
This week: Four games vs. San Jose State (Thurs-Sun)
The Cougars kept right on rolling through their tour of the Southwest with a two-game sweep of a really good San Diego team. If not for that extra-inning loss on Sunday to UCLA, we're talking about two huge series wins. Although they're 9-12, it looks like they've turned the corner and are starting to play how everyone expected they would before the season started.
8. Stanford Cardinal (8-10, 1-2)
Previous rank: 6
Last week: 1-2 vs. USC
This week: @ Saint Mary's (Tues), vs. Oregon (Fri-Sun)
This weekend is Stanford's chance to make a statement. Oregon's bats have been struggling, so a little offense from the Cardinal could go a long way. Right now, this season has been a disappointment, but a sweep over Oregon would change all of that.
9. California Golden Bears (11-11, 0-3)
Previous rank: 8
Last week: 0-1 @ Fresno State, 1-3 @ Cal Poly
This week: vs. Utah (Fri-Sun)
Playing Cal Poly is a tough way to use your non-conference weekend at this point of the season, and escaping with one win is good for this team. Should be able to get back up to .500 in conference play this week by playing Utah at home, but a Stanford game looms large next Tuesday.
10. Arizona Wildcats (11-15, 1-5)
Previous rank: 10
Last week: 0-1 vs. Grand Canyon, 0-3 @ Washington
This week: @ ASU (Wed), vs. Oregon State (Fri-Sun)
This team continues to struggle at the plate, and this weekend also saw struggles on the mound. Not getting any easier this week by having to go to Tempe and then seeing the Beavers come to Tucson. James Farris will need the best start of his life Friday to give the Wildcats any chance at winning a game.
11. Utah Utes (9-13, 0-6)
Previous rank: 11
Last week: 1-0 vs. Utah Valley, 0-3 @ Oregon
This week: vs. BYU (Tues), @ Cal (Fri-Sun)
0-6 vs. the Oregon schools is not exactly a surprise of any sorts. Utah plays Arizona next weekend, which could be the battle for last place assuming nothing crazy happens this weekend.
A lot of Pac-12 baseball is on the Pac-12 Networks this week.
LBSU @UCLA 6 PM Live
BYU @ Utah 1 AM Delayed
Arizona @ ASU 3 PM Live
Oregon State @ Arizona 7 PM Live
OSU @ UA 5 PM Live
Utah @ Cal 9 PM Live
OSU @ UA Noon Live