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A Season in Review for No. 23 UCSB

Photo by Zachary BonDurant
Photo by Zachary BonDurant

2021 Season Accolades
All Americans: Rodney Boone, Michael McGreevy, Jordan Sprinkle
Freshman All-Americans: Jordan Sprinkle, Carter Benbrook, Zach Rodriguez
All-West Region: Rodney Boone, Michael McGreevy, Marcos Castanon
All-Tucson Regional: Rondey Boone and Marcos Castanon
Big West Co-Pitcher of the Year: Rodney Boone
Big West Co-Freshman Field Player of the Year: Jordan Sprinkle
All-Big West First Team: Jordan Sprinkle, Cole Cummings, Zach Rodriguez, Rodney Boone, Michael McGreevy, Carter Benbrook
All-Big West Second Team: Christian Kirtley and Broc Mortensen
All-Big West Honorable Mention: Marcos Castanon, Cory Lewis, Jason Willow
Big West Players of the Week: Rodney Boone (3x), Michael McGreevy (2x), Marcos Castanon, McClain O'Conner, Broc Mortensen

The Postseason
The Gauchos posted a 39-18 record during the regular season which earned them an at-large bid to the 2021 Tucson Regional. They have now reached the postseason two years in a row, four in the last six, and five total in the Andrew Checketts era (2012-2021). UCSB is just one of two Big West schools to be invited to an NCAA Regional four times in the past six full seasons. 

In the Rankings
UCSB finished the year with an overall record of 41-20, eclipsing the 40-win mark for fourth time in the last six seasons. The Gauchos were named No. 23 by Collegiate Baseball in the publication's final ranking and were ranked in the Top 25 in at least one major poll in 12 different weeks. They received votes every week. 

In the Record Book
The 2021 Gauchos etched their names into the all-time records on several occasions this past season on both the individual and team level.

619 strikeouts – Most all-time in a single season
Six shutouts – Tied for 3rd all-time in a single season
Five All-Americans – Most all-time
11 All-Conference Honors – Ties for 2nd most all-time
Six First Team All-Conference Honors – Ties for 2nd most all-time

Rodney Boone: 128 strikeouts – Most all-time in a single season
Rodney Boone: 239 strikeouts – 2nd all-time in a career
Rodney Boone: 21 wins– Tied for 6th all-time in a career
Michael McGreevy: 115 strikeouts – 3rd all-time in a single season
Zach Rodriguez: 20 HBP – 3rd all-time in a single season
Broc Mortensen: 19 HBP – Tied for 3rd all-time in a single season
Broc Mortensen: 15 home runs- Tied for 6th all-time in a single season
Cole Cummings: 47 walks – Tied for 6th all-time in a single season
Cole Cummings: 19 doubles – Tied for 9th all-time in a single season

Jordan Sprinkle: 12 total bases – Tied for most all-time in a single game
Cole Cummings: Five walks – Most all-time in a single game
Michael McGreevy: 15 strikeouts – Fourth most all-time in a single game

In the Conference
The Gauchos got it done on both sides of the ball in the 2021 season.

At the plate they led the Big West in several major offensive categories. This includes home runs (62), slugging (.445), stolen bases (92), sac flies (35) and total bases (957). They also ranked second in hits (613), runs (430), doubles (120), triples (17), and RBI (399). On the defensive end they led the Big West with 619 strikeouts and ranked second with a .240 opposing batting average and a 3.86 team ERA. 

Rodney Boone nearly notched the pitching triple crown leading the league with 11 wins and 128 strikeouts, followed closely behind by Michael McGreevy who ranked second with 115 strikeouts and third with nine wins. Broc Mortensen's 15 homers made him the co-home run champ of the season and Jordan Sprinkle led the conference by a wide margain with 26 stolen bases. Jason Willow ranked second with 16 steals of his own.

In the Nation
UCSB was nationally ranked in a handful of stats this year: 

5th – 35 Sacrifice Flies
5th – 102 Hit-by-Pitch
8th – 613 Hits
12th – 19 Triples
13th – 92 Stolen Bases
14th – 120 Doubles
15th – Six Shutouts
18th – 430 Runs
22nd – 46 Double Plays
22nd – 10.3 Strikeouts per Nine Innings 

2ndMichael McGreevy, 10.45 Strikeout-to-Walk Ratio
2ndMichael McGreevy, 0.97 Walks Allowed per Nine Innings
6thRodney Boone, 11 wins
10thRodney Boone, 5.09 Hits Allowed per Nine Innings
12thZach Rodriguez, 20 Hit-by-Pitch
13thJordan Sprinkle, 26 Stolen Bases
13thCole Cummings, 66 Runs Scored
13thBroc Mortensen, 19 Hit-by-Pitch

Full Ranking Summary

The Draft
With the 2021 MLB Draft less than a week away, we look back on UCSB's success since head coach Andrew Checketts took the reins:

49 players drafted since 2012 – Most in the Big West, 2nd most on the West Coast, Tied for 14th most in the nation

37 players drafted since 2015 – Most in the Big West, Most on the West Coast, 5th most in the nation

No. 300
Head coach Andrew Checketts earned his 300th career win in the team's 11-4 win over Cal State Fullerton on Saturday, March 20, 2021. He became the fourth Gaucho head coach to reach the milestone and still stands as the coach with the highest winning percentage in program history with a 330-200-4 record for a .618 mark.