The Orion

Wildcat of the Week: Andrew Lopez

Noah Andrews

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Andrew Lopez has been the definition of consistency in what has been a roller coaster of a season for Wildcats baseball. An anchor for the starting rotation, in 11 appearances for the ‘Cats, he owns a 1.60 ERA in 50 2/3 innings pitched. Soft-spoken and humble, Lopez likes to take the trash talk, superstition and ego out of pitching and let his play do his talking.

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Lopez has allowed just six extra-base hits and 18 walks in the 2019 season. Photo credit: Brian Luong

Is there any special significance behind the number 33 you wear?

No, it’s just the number I was given last year. I’m not a big fan of requiring a number to have special significance in order to wear it I guess. A number is just a number to me.

Who was your favorite player to watch growing up?

Growing up, I’d have to say, Pedro Marinez. I’m a Red Sox fan and I just always really respected his dedication, motivation and the way he never seemed to care about anything when he was up on the mound. I feel like I can really relate to that.

Andrew Lopez ranks 12th in CCAA in ERA with a 1.86 in 50 2/3 innings pitched and has the lowest ERA of pitchers in the league with at least 40 innings. He has limited batters to a .230 batting average. Photo credit: Brian Luong

Is he who you try and model your style of pitching after?

Not anymore. I usually try and model myself after Marcus Stroman cause he’s 5’10 and usually pitchers in the MLB are long lanky types. I relate a lot to him cause we’re about the same size and he always says, “height doesn’t measure heart.” Seeing as I’m not the biggest or tallest guy I’ve always tried to play with all my heart, so that really resonates with me.

What pitches do you like to throw? And what is your go-to pitch?

I throw a fastball, slider and changeup. Occasionally I’ll throw two-seams. I’d say my go-to would be my fastball, I’m pretty good at locating it and because I have such a solid defense behind me I’m able to relax and focus on throwing heat because I know they’ll cover me.

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Andrew Lopez has a fielding percentage of .818. He has allowed four stolen bases while catching two runners attempting to steal a base. Photo credit: Brian Luong

How do you battle when runners are in scoring position?

Every pitch I just kinda repeat in my head, “I’m not gonna let them score.” To me, that’s the worst thing I could possibly let happen. Letting even one run score is akin to the end of the world for me, so I just really focus up and do everything I can to prevent that from happening.

What’s been the most memorable moment from your Chico State career?

The regionals last year for sure. It was a fantastic environment, something I’d never really experienced before. Teams from all over California going toe-to-toe to try and prove they’re the best. It was a special moment getting to pitch too because not many people get to play in that tournament, so I consider myself quite blessed to have gotten the opportunity.

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Lopez has faced 189 batters this season and has the most innings pitched for a pitcher in the top 10 of the NCAA in ERA. Photo credit: Brian Luong

Anything you wanna say? Comments or statements?

I just wanna thank my defense and my team for my recent success. If it wasn’t for them I wouldn’t be pitching how I am right now. They’re a big part of what I do cause they allow me to throw with confidence, so yeah I’d like to give a shoutout to them.

 

Noah Andrews can be reached at sportsedito[email protected] or @SPORTSFROMNOAH on Twitter.

 

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Wildcat of the Week: Andrew Lopez