The 2017 College World Series bracket is filled with starpower and experienced programs that have been on the sport’s biggest stage before. Oregon State is no exception. The No. 1 Beavers return to Omaha after a three-year absence and on the 10th year anniversary of becoming college baseball’s last repeat champs.
Here’s everything you need to know about the Oregon State Beavers.
Team nickname: Beavers
School mascot: Benny Beaver
Conference affiliation: Pac-12
Home field: Goss Stadium at Coleman Field (capacity 3,248)
Notable baseball alumni: Steve Lyons (1979-81), Jacoby Ellsbury (2003-05), Darwin Barney (2005-07), Michael Conforto (2013-14)
Number of NCAA tournament appearances: 17
College World Series appearances: 1952, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2013, 2017
CWS championships: 2006, 2007
Season record: 54-4 (27-3 Pac-12)
Coach: Pat Casey (23 seasons)
Coaching record: 843-444-5
Notable pre-NCAA tournament wins: Indiana (Feb. 17, 20), Nebraska (Feb. 23, 25), Arizona (March 24-26), at Stanford (March 31-April 2)
How they got here: 3-0 in regionals (beat Holy Cross, Yale twice); 2-0 in Super Regionals (beat Vanderbilt)
Next up: Cal State Fullerton (39-22) in first stage of CWS
How the Beavers rank
Final D1baseball.com ranking: No. 1
NCAA tournament national seed: No. 1
RPI: No. 1
Team batting average: .296 (T-39th)
Team ERA: 1.80 (first)
Players to watch
Top hitter: Oregon State won’t rely on the long ball to outpower opponents. Instead, it looks toward Steven Kwan and Nick Madrigal to get on the basepaths at the top of the order. Madrigal leads the Beavers with a .383 average, 85 hits and 52 runs scored. The Dustin Pedroia comparison is suitable for more than just the second baseman’s 5-8 frame — he also shares the same hard-nosed approach to the game, all-conference defense and sneaky power (19 doubles this year). Madrigal’s recorded at least one hit in five of Oregon State’s six games this tournament.
Top starter: Righty Jake Thompson is one big piece in the nation’s only pitching staff with a sub-2.00 ERA for the year. The 2017 Dick Howser Award finalist leads the country in victories (14-0) to go along with a 1.52 ERA (fifth) and 113 strikeouts. Thompson is 2-0 this postseason with five runs allowed in 15.1 innings. Vanderbilt touched him up for four of those runs in his Super Regionals appearance.
— Oregon St. Baseball (@BeaverBaseball) June 12, 2017
Top reliever: The Beavers have used freshman Jake Mulholland more than anyone else in their bullpen, and the southpaw has delivered in his first year. Mulholland has pitched 2.2 innings this tournament without an earned run, adding to a season where he’s led Oregon State with six saves — to go along with six wins and a 1.31 ERA. Mulholland is comfortable eating up multiple innings, setting up or closing, which makes him a valuable asset out of the bullpen.