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Cal State Fullerton Baseball Preview

January 28, 1992

Coach--Augie Garrido, 17th year (1973-87 and '91-present).

1991 Records--34-22, 15-6 in the Big West Conference (tied for first).

Top returning regulars--Phil Nevin, 3B, Jr., preseason second-team All-American by Baseball America; Steve Sisco, 2B, Sr., led team with .350 average in 1991; Jason Moler, C, Sr., had 31 RBIs in 42 games as third baseman in '91; Frank Herman, CF, Sr., led team with nine homers and 19 stolen bases; Dan Naulty, RHP, Sr., ace of staff with 8-3 record, 3.38 ERA; Chris Powell, 1B, Sr., hit .345 as outfielder in '91; Craig Fairbrother, RF, Sr., started 42 games and hit .305; Bill Fitzgerald, RHP, Jr., will become full-time starter after relieving much of '91.

Top newcomers--Dante Powell, LF, Fr., great speed, rated second-best freshman in country by Baseball America; Brett Hemphill, C, So., expected to split time with Moler behind plate; Nate Rodriguez, SS, Jr., won starting job because of defensive abilities; D.C. Olsen, 1B, Fr., power hitter from Fullerton High pushing for starting spot; Derek Fahs, RHP, Fr., coaches have been impressed by the former Fountain Valley standout.

Outlook--Offensively and defensively, the Titans, ranked as high as fifth nationally in preseason polls, look very good. They'll have speed with Sisco, Dante Powell and Herman and power with Nevin, Moler, Fairbrother and Herman. All are good contact hitters, so Fullerton should keep strikeouts to a minimum. Nevin and Sisco are starting in the infield for the third consecutive season, Moler and Hemphill are solid catchers, and there is outstanding speed in the outfield. Garrido's only concern is pitching, which he says hasn't looked too good in recent weeks. "We'll have a quality defense and offense, so it gets back to that age-old adage," Garrido said. "We'll be OK if our pitching holds up."

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