Trevor Bauer: Part Doc Brown, Part Doc Halladay

Trevor Bauer is an enigma, hard to figure out but forthcoming with his opinions.

A sportswriter’s dream.

I enjoyed writing this story on Bauer because he is not only a fascinating character study, but a ruthless competitor, never satisfied with his play and always hungry for the next bit of intel. He is a truly mad scientist, as his study habits and attention to detail bely a voracious appetite for victory.

He moved to 12-2 with a 7-0 win over Arizona State on Saturday, a 14-strikeout, five-hit masterpiece that gave UCLA at least a share of the Pac-10 championship. It was Bauer’s eighth straight complete game and third shutout of the season, and he now has a nation-leading 189 strikeouts and a 1.27 ERA.

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UCLA baseball to host NCAA playoff regional

The UCLA baseball team was just announced as one of 16 hosts for the upcoming NCAA Division I Baseball Championship regionals. The Bruins also hosted a regional, and subsequent super-regional, on their way to a College World Series runner-up finish.

The Bruins are surging at the right time, having won six-of-eight after dropping three straight, including consecutive wins over Arizona State. Coupled with four straight Oregon State losses, that has propelled UCLA to the top of the Pac-10 with at least a share of the conference title, the team’s first since 2000.

The fact that the Bruins, who have the lowest win-loss record among the 16 regional hosts, were selected to host along with the Sun Devils and Beavers and nearby rival Cal State Fullerton, speaks to the strength of the conference. It doesn’t hurt that the Bruins have perhaps the toughest 1-2 punch in the nation in Gerrit Cole and Trevor Bauer.

UCLA clinches share of Pac-10 title with back-to-back wins at ASU

In a season of ups and downs, the UCLA baseball team is going up, up, up at just the right time.

Behind Gerrit Cole on Friday night and Trevor Bauer on Saturday, the Bruins have won two straight at Arizona State, guaranteeing at least a share of the Pac-10 title, the team’s first since 2000.

Tonight, Bauer – who I feature in tomorrow’s Daily News in an 95-inch feature (Yay for newsprint! Yay for space!) – was masterful once more, moving to 12-2 with his eighth straight complete game, a 14-strikeout, five-hit, one-walk demolition of the Sun Devils. It was Bauer’s third shutout of the year in his 14th career complete game, as the Bruins became the first team since April 2008 to take a series in Tempe from ASU, which had won four straight conference titles.

Fabulous freshman Adam Plutko takes the mound tomorrow with a chance to win the conference title outright, though the Bruins can do no worse than a tie for first. Plutko is 6-3 with a 1.70 ERA and 83 strikeouts in 95 1/3 innings.

Pac-10(12) launches online logo poll for Pac-12 championship

From UCLA:

The Pac-10 has launched Make Your Pick, an online logo poll that is literally giving college football fans a chance to leave their mark on the 2011 Pac-12 Football Championship Game, it was announced today.

With polling beginning Friday, May 27 at, fans will choose between four logos to determine which mark the Conference uses for its inaugural Football Championship Game December 2 on Fox. The four-day contest ends Monday, May 30 at 5:00 p.m. PT and the logo with the most votes will become the official mark for the game and will be seen on the field, on television and on championship game merchandise. The winning logo will be revealed Tuesday, May 31.

“With our championship game being played on one of our campuses, we already know the fans are going to have a huge impact on the game come December,” Pac-10 Chief Marketing Officer Danette Leighton said. “We are very thankful to the fans and alumni that make up the Pac-12 and we thought this would be a fun way to get them involved early and help influence the first-ever Pac-12 Football Championship game.”

With the addition of the University of Colorado and the University of Utah, the Pac-10 officially becomes the Pac-12 on July 1, 2011 and will host its inaugural football championship game December 2 on the home field of the top team in the conference standings. Fox will televise the game. The 2011 season kicks off Thursday, September 1.