Pac 10 coaches pick ASU baseball #1


Didn't see this posted anywhere...


Just barely #1 over UCLA.  I wish I knew more about this year's team but it's so hard to keep up with all the new players every year.


Despite losing 15 players from the 2008 team to professional baseball, Arizona State has been tabbed as the preseason favorite to win the Pac-10 baseball title in a vote of the 10 conference coaches.

The Sun Devils, ranked as high as sixth in national preseason polls, received three first-place votes and 69 total points in the Pac-10 voting, barely edging UCLA (three first-place votes and 67 overall points) for the top spot. Stanford was picked third with one first-place vote and 64 points, Oregon State fourth with two first-place votes and 58 points and Arizona fifth, garnering one first-place vote and 56 points.

"There is no question that this projection is a sign of respect for the past success of Sun Devil baseball since we only return four players with any significant Pac-10 experience," said ASU coach Pat Murphy. "We are very aware of the challenge ahead of us."

ASU, which has won the last two Pac-10 championships, has 17 newcomers on its 2009 roster but has the top-ranked recruiting class in the nation as well as returning All-Americans Mike Leake and Raoul Torrez.

The Sun Devils are coming off their ninth straight trip to the NCAA tournament after finishing 49-13, including a 16-8 mark in Pac-10 play.

The Sun Devils open the 2009 season on Feb. 20 when they host Wisconsin-Milwaukee at Packard Stadium.

Results of the poll are as follows. Nine points are awarded for a first-place vote, eight points for a second-place vote, and so on. Coaches are not allowed to vote for their own team.

School (first-place votes) Points

1. Arizona State (3) 69

2. UCLA (3) 67

3. Stanford (1) 64

4. Oregon State (2) 58

5. Arizona (1) 56

6. California 42

7. USC 38

8. Washington State 24

9. Washington 23

10. Oregon 9

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