Cal sophomore Nathan Manning leads the Pac-12 in batting average, and Golden Bears sophomore Dylan Beavers is tied for the conference lead in home runs. However, neither statistic paid off in team wins over the weekend as the Bears were swept in a three-game series at Oregon State.
Beavers hit his 10th home run of the season in Sunday's game in Corvallis, Oregon. That tied him with Stanford's Brock Jones for the top spot in the Pac-12, and it gave the Bears a 3-1 lead after three innings. But the Bears eventually lost 5-3.
In fact, the Bears had leads in all three games against the Beavers.
Manning, who had a home run taken away from him when he passed a teammate on the base paths against Arizona the previous weekend, officially hit his first collegiate home run in the series opener against Oregon State on Friday. His three-run blast gave the Bears an 8-4 lead after six innings, but Cal was unable to hold on in a 15-8 loss.
Manning, who went 2-for-4 Friday, was 1-for-4 on Saturday and his RBI single gave Cal a 1-0 lead after six innings in that second game. But Oregon State scored twice in the seventh to take a 2-1 victory.
Manning was 0-for-4 Sunday, but he is still batting .429, which leaves him nine points ahead of Oregon State's Jacob Melton for the top batting-average spot in the Pac-12.
It leaves Cal with an 18-16 overall record, including 5-7 in the Pac-12, so the Bears need to get hot down the stretch to get a berth in the 64-team postseason event. The Bears have 21 games left on their schedule so there is still time.
No Pac-12 teams are ranked among the top 10 in the D1Baseball, Baseball America or USA Today college baseball polls, although two Pac-12 teams (Oregon and Arizona) are among the top 10 in the RPI rankings.
Cover photo of Dylan Beavers by Robert Edwards, KLC Fotos
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