P.J. Pilittere is a fifth-year senior catcher at Cal State Fullerton. He capped an outstanding 2003 season with a spot on the College World Series all-tournament team by hitting .500 (6-12) with three extra-base hits and three RBI in four games. A native of Walnut, Calif., Pilittere is a broadcast journalism major and hopes to pursue a career in television broadcasting. He will provide weekly insight on the Titans' program.




Feb. 18, 2004

On the Road Again


Fresh off a sweep of UNLV, we prepared for the Arizona Wildcats. I was especially excited because this would be my first experience playing against Arizona. 


When we travel, we are forced to cut the roster down to 25 players, which is difficult because we are very deep at each position, and every Titan deserves to go. Making the so-called travel squad certainly lifted the intensity level of practice this past week.


On Thursday, we loaded the bus for a grueling 7½-hour bus ride to Tucson. For a long ride such as this one, a player must have the necessities: movies, music, magazines and lots of junk food. As we inhaled our Philly cheese steak sandwiches, we watched Radio and Bruce Almighty.


We had a little surprise once we finally arrived in Tucson. It was cold!  It was 43 degrees with stifling winds. We thought to ourselves: “Aren’t we in the desert?” Most of the team was tired after the long bus ride, so many turned in for bed rather early.  Even after all the snacks, juniors Joe Turgeon, Kurt Suzuki and I were still hungry. We had an outstanding dinner at Macaroni Grill, which was followed by some intense Tiger Woods Golf on Play Station 2 back at the hotel.


The excitement level was mounting as we pulled into Frank Sancet Field Friday afternoon. The facility was beautiful, but it was an extremely offensive ballpark. The wind blew out to all fields, and the infield was the fastest I’d ever seen in my college career.


We picked up right where we left off last weekend and built a 7-0 lead after 1½  innings.  The Cats exploited many free bases allowed from sophomore Ryan Schreppel and answered back with a five-spot.  Jason Windsor entered the game and silenced the Wildcats’ offense for four innings, but was forced to come out due to a 50-pitch count.  Once Windsor was gone, the Arizona attack was re-awakened, and the Wildcats held on for an 11-8 series opening win. This was the first time in my career that we lost a game in which we were winning by seven runs.


Saturday did not fare much better for the Titans, as the Wildcat bats came out swinging.  Sophomore lefty Ricky Romero pounded strikes, but got hit hard. The Cats took a 9-1 lead into the eighth, the lone Titan run coming on a solo blast in the first by yours truly.  In the top of the eighth the Titan offensive attack was on the prowl as we punched back with five runs, cutting the lead to 9-6. It was not enough to overtake Arizona as it added an insurance run and took Game 2 10-6.


In my previous journal, I stated that Sunday games are definite attitude days. Well this past Sunday was even more magnified as such. The Titans were on the verge of getting swept in their first two road series of 2004. This game could be classified as a heavyweight title fight as both teams got up off the ground and punched back the entire afternoon.  Over the last four innings we began to find our team personality, which was amazing to be a part of.  Mike Martinez nailed down the win as we salvaged the third game 12-10.


I was really proud of the way my teammates battled while staring adversity in the face on Sunday.  If we can carry the mentality from the last four innings of Sunday’s ballgame to the rest of our games, it will be a very special season.


This weekend, we hit the road again as we travel to the University of Houston for a three-game set. We are looking to improve on our 1-5 record on the road.


P.J. Pilittere


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Silence is Golden (2/10/04)


(photo courtesy of Cal State Fullerton Media Relations Office)