A talented, tall lefty who has been bothered by various injuries over the last two seasons... received a medical hardship in 2002 and is a junior eligibility-wise... shown to be one of the team?s best pitchers when fully healthy... a former Freshman All-American who threw a no-hitter against UNC Greensboro in 2000... has worked very hard in rehab during the offseason and has lost 25 pounds... could be a major contributor.
2002: MEDICAL HARDSHIP
Made just four starts before having his season cut short because of a shoulder injury... went 2-1 with a 6.19 ERA, picking up wins against Elon and High Point in February... logged 16 innings and fanned 11... rated by Baseball America as the nation?s 74th best pro prospect prior to the season.
2001: SOPHOMORE SEASON
Owned a 4-1 record in limited action with just 10 starts... missed much of the second half with knee and shoulder problems but recovered in time to defeat Tennessee in the NCAA Tournament in Knoxville... struck out five Vols in five innings on his way to the win... pitched well at High Point on April 18, allowing one run on three hits in five innings but did not factor in the decision... allowed a season-high 10 hits which led to six runs in 4.2 innings pitched against Virginia... suffered his first loss in more than one year after getting touched up for six earned runs in five innings at Florida State... allowed eight hits and three walks and took the loss... pitched 6.1 strong innings against Clemson allowing just one run on three hits with four K?s but did not factor in the decision... picked up his third win of the year in the Friday game at UNC going 5.2 innings and giving up three runs... lasted 4.1 innings, his shortest outing of the season, against Duke, giving up six runs on nine hits... earned his second win of the year against New Orleans after yielding one run in five IP... threw seven innings against Virginia Tech giving up one run on five hits while striking out six... made his 2001 debut against Purdue and struck out six in five innings while allowing three runs.
2000: FRESHMAN SEASON
Freshman All-American (Collegiate Baseball)
Threw a no-hitter against UNC Greensboro on March 22... earned ACC Pitcher of the Week and Louisville Slugger National Player of the Week (March 27) honors for his performance... shutout nationally-ranked Rice for six innings in his collegiate debut... part of the regular starting rotation... ranked third in the ACC in strikeouts per nine innings (9.24)... finished the season with a 7-2 mark and a 4.52 ERA... started in 12 of his 19 games... fanned 66 batters in 63.2 innings... had a better than two-to-one strikeout to walk ratio... threw one of the team?s three complete game shutouts.
Bishop O?Dowd High School
A three-year starter posting a record of 22-7... had 32 starts and 11 complete games... recorded 202 strikeouts in 180 innings during his high school career... selected as the MVP in the Best of the West Tournament in Honolulu in the summer of 1998... named All-Conference his junior and senior seasons... earned a silver medal as part of his AAU Junior Olympic squad in 1997... named Pitcher of the Year in the Hayward Area Athletic League in 1997 and was named to the High Sierra Classic All-Tournament team... selected for the California Rookies team that participated in the Friendship Games held in Australia in 1996, and also played with the Alameda County squad in the World Games in the summer of 1996.
ODDS & ENDS
Baseball America?s 74th-best college prospect in 2001... full name is Benjamin Riggs Clayton... a communication major... parents are Susan and Neal Clayton.
Off the Field with Ben Clayton
Favorite Class: Introduction to Film
Favorite Movies: The Thomas Crowne Affair
My favorite Coach Greer phrase:
?Clayton! What are you doing!?!??
My favorite Coach Mabe phrase:
?Play the game!?
My Hobbies Include:
Cars, movies, golf, my dog
If I Have a Career Besides Pro Baseball, It Will Be: Teaching, coaching
The Most Impressive Person You Know:
If I Could Add Any Team to the Schedule, It Would Be: Any Northern California team
My Biggest Fear Is: Drowning
In the Movie of Your Life, Who Plays You: Kiefer Sutherland
Favorite Sport Besides Baseball:
My Best Non-Athletic Talent:
Career Highs Last Time It Happened
IP: 9 vs. UNCG (3-22-00) Win: vs. North Carolina (3-16-01)
K: 13 vs. UNCG (3-22-00) Loss: at Florida State (3-30-01)
BB: 4 four times Save: Never
YR G-GS W-L CG SH SV ERA IP H R ER BB SO
2000 19-12 7-2 1 1 0 4.52 63.2 55 32 31 31 66
2001 9-9 3-1 0 0 0 5.25 48.0 59 28 28 21 28
2002 4-4 2-1 0 0 0 6.19 16.0 24 15 11 5 11
Total 32-25 12-4 1 1 0 4.93 127.2 138 75 70 57 105