Man, we have had some week here on BN. This time last Friday the mood was different as all of us were experience an unreal concoction of emotions as Coach was preparing for his eternal date Nell. His departure left us in melancholy and reflective mood all week. Yet one could just sense how we were collectively lifting each other's spirits through posts after posts sharing comments, reflections, videos, pictures and memories about the Coach. Then the baseball team cruised through the Regionals disposing of a great program like LSU, a solid one in UCI and just destroying Kent State. The vibe kept building with the softball's magic carpet ride, which seemed directly driven by Coach upstairs.
Now here we are a week later, the mood is different as the baseball team (46-13) gets ready to take on their biggest challenge to date. Cal State Fullerton has always had our number. They have had our number this season too. Yet I would think the UCLA baseball team should play with no sense of pressure and expectations. They have already had an incredible season and in my book, shattering all kinds of team records. In my book they have lived up to Coach's ideals in the way they have embraced team first mindset and also battled through adversity after their much hyped 22-0 start came to an end. So they just need to relax and keep having fun like they have done the entire season.
So here we go. Gerrit Cole (10-2, 3.11) gets the start tonight against Noe Ramirez, RHP, So. (11-1, 2.63). The first pitch is scheduled for this evening at 7:30 pm PST. The game is going to be live across the nation on ESPN2. You can also follow along with GameTracker or get updates on Ryan's UCLA baseball twitter. So might as well thread this as our game thread with updates, thoughts, analysis and anything else.