Arizona baseball earns two top-25 rankings
TUCSON, Ariz. – The Arizona baseball team earned two preseason top 25 rankings this week after finishing the 2012 season ranked No. 1 thanks to a national championship in June.
The Wildcats were ranked 24th in the Baseball America top 25, which was released Thursday, and 22nd in the Perfect Game preseason rankings, which were announced Tuesday.
Five Pac-12 teams are included in the Baseball America Top 25. In addition to Arizona, Oregon State (No. 6), Stanford (No. 9), UCLA (No. 12) and Oregon (No. 15) represent the conference in that poll.
Perfect Game featured six Pac-12 teams in its preseason rankings, including four in the top 10. Stanford is the top Pac-12 team at No. 4, followed by No. 6 UCLA, No. 8 Oregon State and No. 10 Oregon. Arizona State rounds out the Pac-12 representatives with a ranking of No. 25.
The Wildcats return five key position players from the 2012 national championship team including reigning Pac-12 batting champion Johnny Field and freshman All-American catcher Riley Moore. On the mound, junior right-handers Konner Wade and James Farris headline a strong staff along with sophomores Mathew Troupe and Tyler Crawford, who bolstered the bullpen as freshmen a year ago.
Arizona plays host to 38 home games at Hi Corbett Field this season. Last year, the Wildcats led the West Coast in attendance, drawing over 105,000 fans for regular-season and postseason games combined.
The 2013 season will begin Friday, Feb. 15, with the opener of a three-game series against Coppin State. Opening night will feature recognition of the 2012 national championship team as well as a postgame fireworks display.