It hasn't been a particularly great out-of-conference season for the Bruins, and they'll look to get something out of a weekend that hasn't gone their way today against Southern Cal. But it could be worse: UCLA probably isn't going to repeat as national champions this year, but hey, at least they've won it all. Plus, the program is led by a head coach who not only knows how to get past the first round of the playoffs, but isn't a detestable scumbag. So, sure UCLA baseball lost the past two in a row, but at least they didn't get Ken Bone'd in a televised game to the worst team in the conference like the Hoosier Loser's hoops team did last night in Pullman. It's bad enough that he's a total sleazeball, but he's also a joke as a hoops coach - oh, did you see that Gregg Marshall's #2-ranked Wichita State is now 33-0? Heckuva job there Danny boy, heckuva job.
But I digress: our #13-ranked Bruins came oh-so-close once again last night, losing to Houston, 4-3. Grant Watson (6.0 IP, 1 ER, 1 K) handed a one-run lead to the bullpen after six, but the bullpen couldn't close the door on the Cougars, with Max Schuh picking up the loss. The late-inning loss wasted an otherwise decent hitting night for UCLA, who went 10-31 (.322) as a team, led by Pat Gallagher (3-4, 1 RBI) and Luke Persico (2-3, 1 R, 1 RBI).
Today, Savage will send sophomore right-hander Cody Poteet (1-1, 2.81 ERA) out to the hill to square off against Southern Cal's senior southpaw Bob Wheatley (2-0, 0.47 ERA) who has been dealing so far on the year. Wheatley has been vulnerable in issuing walks, so patience at the plate for UCLA will be key if they want to generate enough offense to be on the winning side of a one-run game. It's the Bruins' last chance to avoid a weekend sweep, and it's against Southern Cal, who Savage has had a pretty strong record against.
The game will get started at 1 p.m. at Southern Cal's Dedeaux Field. You can listen in John Ramey calling the game live, or track it on Ryan's excellent UCLA baseball Twitter feed, or follow along on the official athletics' site's Gametracker. It feels like this should be on the Pac-12 Network, but hey, you don't get everything you want. This is your Sunday afternoon baseball open thread, so fire away with your updates, thoughts, and whatever else you can think of as our Bruins look to drop the cross-town Southern Cal Trojans to salvage an otherwise lost weekend.