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Fowble Returns as Arizona Visits UCLA in Baseball

February 25, 1988|GARY KLEIN

Greg Fowble never had problems handling the plays at shortstop during his career at Granada Hills High. But last season, as a freshman at the University of Arizona, the usually sure-handed Fowble committed 32 errors--the fourth-highest total in school history.

"I think coming out of high school into a major college program, you make a few errors and it gets to be psychological," said Fowble, who returns home Friday with the Wildcats for a three-game, Pacific 10 Conference Southern Division-opening series against UCLA.

Those who venture to Jackie Robinson Stadium to see Fowble might not recognize the guy playing shortstop for Arizona (15-4). That is because it will be freshman Rick Lanthrip.

Fowble, who batted .295 last season, has moved to second base.

"It wasn't a very big adjustment," said Fowble, who was drafted by the Cleveland Indians in the eighth round of the 1986 draft. "The throw is a lot easier, but the turn on the double play is pretty tough. I like it. I think my future in pro ball is at second base."

Fowble, 5-11, 160 pounds, is batting .352 with 17 runs batted in and has 5 stolen bases.

"The one year under the belt really gives you the confidence," Fowble said. "You've been around the block and you know what to expect."

Arizona Coach Jerry Kindall, whose teams have won three national championships (1976, 1980 and 1986) is expecting a lot from Fowble and Frank Halcovich, a senior designated-hitter and pitcher from Granada Hills High and College of the Canyons.

Halcovich (6-2, 200) is batting .435 with 1 home run and 12 RBIs. He is also 1-1 with a 5.88 earned-run average.

"It's always a lot of fun to play in front of your family and friends," Fowble said. "It's a little more pressure, but you learn to handle it."

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