Hochstatter throws a five-hitter to earn his fourth straight win


Stanford junior left-hander John Hochstatter has been an ace-in-waiting all season. Since he's been added to the starting rotation, he's been nearly unbeatable.

Hochstatter pitched a five-hitter, Brant Whiting drove in three runs, and the Stanford baseball team bounced back from a series-opening loss to beat host UCLA, 5-0, in a Pac-12 Conference contest Saturday night at Jackie Robinson Stadium.

Hochstatter's second straight complete game gave him his fourth straight win and got the Cardinal back to .500 overall.

"He is a veteran on our staff and he has done a great job for us," Stanford coach Mark Marquess said. "He has been pitching this way. He throws strikes. He's around the plate with all three of his pitches."

Hochstatter induced 15 groundouts, while allowing nine base runners. He struck out three and extended his streak of consecutive scoreless innings to 17.

Whiting, who bats in the 9th spot, led the offensive attack with three hits, as Stanford's 7-8-9 hitters went 6 for 10. Jack Klein was 1-3 with a double and two runs scored in the seven spot and Dominic Jose went 2-3 out of the eight-hole.

Danny Diekroeger also had two hits for the second straight night. Alex Blandino and Austin Slater each drove in runs for the Cardinal.

Stanford (20-20, 8-12 Pac-12) grabbed an early lead for the second straight night when Whiting's grounder up the middle got through for two RBI. The Cardinal rallied to get two bases runners with two outs to set up Whiting's first hit of the day.

Slater made it 3-0 in the top of the fifth with another two-out single.

Hochstatter worked out of a jam in the bottom of the inning. UCLA had runners on second and third with two outs, but an ground out to second ended the threat.

The Bruins were hitless in six at bats with runners in scoring position. Stanford was 4 for 9 in those situations. The Cardinal hit safely six times with two outs, helping its cause.

The bottom of the order struck again in the sixth after Klein's double led things off. Jose bunted him to third and Whiting delivered his third RBI on a flare to center field.

Blandino plated an insurance run in the eighth and the Cardinal's fourth run with two outs in an inning. He singled through the left side to drive in Brett Michael Doran, who had reached on a throwing error.

Two Bruins reached base in the ninth, but the scoring chance was short-lived once again. Hochstatter completed the shutout by getting pinch hitter Darrell Miller, Jr. to bounce out to second base on the first pitch of his first at-bat of the season.

Stanford and UCLA play the deciding game of the series Sunday at 1 p.m.

— Palo Alto Online Sports/Stanford Athletics


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