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Cal Baseball 0, Arizona 3 - Game 1 of this Pac-12 series

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For the second consecutive Pac-12 game, the Golden Bears are held scoreless.

Ryan Mason should be the Friday night starter for the Bears once again, with Daulton Jefferies still out.
Ryan Mason should be the Friday night starter for the Bears once again, with Daulton Jefferies still out.
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Cal senior right hander Ryan Mason was skipped this week due to precaution, freshman RHP Tanner Dodson got the nod today in the series opener against the Arizona Wildcats on a rainy night from Berkeley. Despite a pretty good outing, Dodson took the loss thanks to the Cal offense not being to get key hits with runners in scoring position.

Bears were held scoreless for the second consecutive Pac-12 conference game (dating back to last Sunday, not counting the midweek non-conference win over Stanford). This was the first conference home loss on the year.

Bears and the Wildcats will play game 2 at 7 pm PT on Saturday night. That game will also be televised on ESPNU.

GO BEARS!

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California Golden Bears (22-11, 9-6 in Pac-12) vs. Arizona Wildcats (23-14, 7-8 in Pac-12)

Where: Evans Diamond (Berkeley, CA)

When: 7 pm

Radio: KALX

TV: none (Saturday's game is on ESPNU)

Probable Starters for this series:

Friday - RHP Ryan Mason (5-2, 2.91 ERA) vs. RHP Nathan Bannister (5-1, 2.92 ERA)

Saturday - RHP Jeff Bain (3-2, 3.35 ERA) vs. LHP JC Cloney (3-2, 2.76 ERA)

Sunday - LHP Matt Ladrech (3-3, 3.76 ERA) vs. RHP Bobby Dalbec (7-3, 2.96 ERA)

Pac-12 conference play resumes this weekend in Berkeley where the Golden Bears are a very impressive 13-3, including conference series sweeps of Oregon State and UCLA.

Cal senior RHP Ryan Mason (5-2, 2.91 ERA) will likely take the hill on Friday night to try to further improve his win total on the all time Cal list - he's currently tied for 6th with David Cash with 23 career wins. Mason is coming off a poor outing last Friday when he gave up 6 runs, 5 earned in just 4 innings at Arizona State.

Bears won their midweek rivalry game against Stanford by a 5-2 final score. Midseason Golden Spike finalist sophomore catcher Brett Cumberland went 2 for 5 with 3 RBI's (a homer and a double) to lead the Bear Raid (#drop5).

Bears went with a surprising different lineup where Mitchell "El Gaucho" Kranson was leading off on Tuesday. That was a game where the Bears also wasted two, two on, no out situations in the first two innings. It would be interesting to see what lineup head coach David Esquer goes with as he try to find consistent offense.

The Wildcats are coming off a weekend when they took 2 out of 3 from Stanford at home. They also won their midweek game against the visiting New Mexico State. Probable starter senior RHP Nathan Bannister threw a complete game last Friday, allowing 5 hits, 0 walks, 1 run, with 5 strikeouts. He is 5-1 with a 2.92 ERA in 9 starters. Bannister pitched out of the pen last season. He has become fitter and trimmer this season. While he is not a big strikeout guy with just 45 K's in 64.2 innings, he also does not offer many free passes - just 10 on the year.

Daulton Jefferies update:

After two weeks of this vague "calf" injury, Cal Baseball finally revealed that Jefferies suffered a more worrisome shoulder strain.

Thanks to this update from Ryan Gorcey:

When California starter Daulton Jefferies went down before the first game of the UCLAseries, the team stated that he had tightness in his right calf. The diagnosis is now that Jefferies has a strained subscapular muscle. He has started playing light catch again, but will miss another two weeks.

After Tuesday's 5-2 win over Stanford, head coach David Esquer opened up on how Jefferies's injury manifested itself. he said that the calf injury was first, but only just.

"[The shoulder] was pretty concurrent, with him trying to start up and get to that UCLA game on Friday," Esquer said. "We were more worried about the leg, and when he sat down to see if he could get back up, he felt a tightness, and then we called everything off ... It's sub-scapular, and he's cleared to throw, and if he could feel good and throw this weekend, he would. He's cleared to do that, but his progression is based on him."

Jefferies has thrown on flat ground, and will progress to playing catch this week. Esquer said Cal is on his timetable.

The two week timetable has Daulton back just in time for the Pac-12 series at Stanford. Given his bright future in the next level, Cal Baseball is understandably very cautious on Jefferies' recovery. It is still a relief to finally hear some concrete news on this.

GO BEARS!