OU’s Rocha Named Big 12 Pitcher of the Week

Thursday, May 26th 2011, 12:19 pm
By: News On 6

Originally Published: Apr 5, 2011 9:38 AM CDT

Oklahoma Sports Staff

NORMAN, Okla. – Oklahoma senior Michael Rocha was named the Big 12 Pitcher of the Week Monday, his third such career conference honor, and the second of this season.

Rocha had another great week on the mound tossing a complete game, just like he did on March 7 when he also received the pitcher of the week honor. In that game against Texas Tech, Rocha improved to 7-0 on the season and he leads the nation in victories.

Then on Friday, Rocha allowed a run in the first, but then blanked the Red Raiders in the final eight frames with five strikeouts. After giving up all three hits in the first three frames and a leadoff single in the third, he retired 14 straight up until the seventh inning. The hit batter in the seventh was the only base runner he allowed past the leadoff hitter in the third frame.

In all seven starts this season, Rocha has lasted at least seven innings and thrown five or more strikeouts in each outing. Rocha has also limited the opposition to three hits or less in four of his starts.

Rocha is tied for the Big 12 lead with two complete games and ranks second with 55.2 innings pitched and a .154 opponent batting average, third with a 0.97 ERA and fifth with 47 strikeouts.

The only other time a Sooner has collected the Big 12 Pitcher of the Week honor twice in the same season was back in 2006 when Daniel McCutchen, now with the Pittsburgh Pirates, was honored on March 7 and May 22.

This week’s honor also represents the fifth time a Sooner has been recognized by the Big 12 this season after Garrett Buechele has twice been named the player of the week and Jordan John was tabbed the newcomer of the week.

Last week, Rocha tossed his second complete game of 2011 (third of career) with nine innings of three-hit baseball on Friday against Texas Tech. Rocha improved to 7-0 on the season and leads the nation in victories.

Next up, the Sooners host Bedlam Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. in anon-conference clash.
Over the weekend, OU returns to conference play with a three-game series at Kansas State held on April 8-10.