Monday, March 30, 2009

Aztecs jump into Baseball America Top 25

San Diego State made its debut in the Baseball America Top 25 this morning, checking in at No. 21 following a series win at TCU.

The Aztecs (18-9), who are off to their best start in seven years, took two of three games against the defending Mountain West Conference champions. SDSU beat the Horned Frogs 11-5 behind Stephen Strasburg's 14-strikeout performance. The Aztecs rallied for two runs in the ninth inning yesterday to conclude the series with a 2-1 victory.

SDSU appeared briefly in the top 25 last year after opening the 2008 season by taking three of four games against USD, gaining the No. 22 spot in the poll before falling back out of the rankings the following week.

The Aztecs are one of three MWC teams ranked in this week's Baseball America Top 25. New Mexico (24-4) is ranked No. 18. TCU (15-9) is one spot behind the Aztecs at No. 22.

Cal State Fullerton (18-4) is the nation's top-ranked team. LSU (21-6), Arizona State (19-4), Rice (17-7) and North Carolina (20-6) round out the top five. Here is the complete poll.

USD (19-10), ranked No. 11 to open the season, failed to return to the top 25 despite a three-game sweep of Pepperdine, which had been ranked No. 17, in the opening weekend of West Coast Conference play. Pepperdine dropped out of the rankings.

SDSU is off from conference play this week (the MWC has only seven teams, so one team is off each week). The Aztecs play at UC Santa Barbara on Tuesday and host UCSB on Wednesday before hosting a four-game series this weekend against UC Davis. The first game of that series is to be played Friday at Petco Park. Game time is 2:30 p.m. and Strasburg is the scheduled starting pitcher.

Also today, Strasburg was selected MWC Pitcher of the Week for the fourth time this season. SDSU pitchers have earned the award each of the season's six weeks.

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