Beavers to put talent on display in Medford
A pair of local boys are coming home, and they're bringing a few friends.
Sam Gaviglio and Rob Folsom, two of the area's renowned former baseball players, will be in Medford on Saturday when the Oregon State baseball team will play an intrasquad scrimmage.
Sponsored by the Medford Youth Baseball Society, the game is scheduled to start at noon and will be broadcast live on KMED 1440-AM.
"We're really looking forward to it," OSU coach Pat Casey says. "There's just such a great history in Medford. I think it's going to be a great fit.
"We have a lot of Northwest kids. They all know each other and it's really an opportunity for the fan base in the state."
The team will sign autographs prior to the game, which will be set up like a regular contest with nine innings, three outs per inning and an umpire crew. The players will be split into two different squads and the playing time will likely be shared fairly evenly.
Gaviglio, a 2008 graduate of Ashland High School, says he probably won't play on Saturday because of a "tired" pitching shoulder. The right-handed pitcher set an Oregon State freshman record last season going 10-1 with a 2.73 ERA.
"I just kinda got worn down, tired from throwing so much from high school ball all the way through the college season last year," Gaviglio says. "No reason to push it right now. Once the season starts, when it counts, I'm ready to go."
It will still be good to be home, says Gaviglio, who hasn't been able to return to the area very often in the past few months.
"Once fall ball ends you get the weekends off, so that'll give me a chance to come home," Gaviglio says.
Folsom, who graduated from North Medford High School in 2004, says he will likely play most of the game. The senior utility player also noted his excitement for playing in front of his home crowd.
"It's been awhile since I've played in Medford, but it should be fun," he says.
South Medford High graduate Logan Boyd is an undergraduate assistant for Oregon State this season and will also be at the game.
OSU has another player with Medford ties on its roster. Freshman Matt Boyd, a pitcher/first baseman, is the son of Kurt Boyd, a 1975 Medford High graduate.
The Beavers, who are allowed 33 practices in a 45-day span during fall practice, held their first intrasquad scrimmage in Bend on Oct. 3. It was the third consecutive year Oregon State has held one of its two scrimmages in Bend, Casey says. The Beavers have also played in Roseburg and Klamath Falls in recent seasons.
"It's a good opportunity to build a fan base, and it's good for the kids to get support from home-town fans," Folsom says. "I think it's beneficial in a lot of different areas.
"It gives the fans an opportunity to see us when it's easier for them, a little closer to their home."
Saturday's game is $5 for adults and free for children 12 and under. Tickets will be available at the gate.
Oregon State, the national champion in 2006 and 2007, was 37-19 last season, including 15-12 in the Pac-10. The Beavers, who tied for third place in the conference, lost twice to TCU in an NCAA regional to end the season.
Oregon State opens the 2010 campaign with a three-game series at USC beginning on April 1.
Reach reporter Shawn Miller at 776-4469, or e-mail email@example.com