Q&A With Redshirt Junior Right-Hander Blaine Jarvis
Fourth-year right-handed relief pitcher Blaine Jarvis has made 38 appearances out of the UC San Diego bullpen over the last two seasons after redshirting as a true freshman in 2016. That includes two scoreless stints already in the new campaign, most recently with two frames in the first game of Monday's doubleheader as he earned the winning decision on his 22nd birthday. A native of Walnut Creek in Northern California, he is a communication major at Muir College. Heading toward the Tritons' 2019 California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) openers at home against Cal State Monterey Bay, Blaine is our latest Q&A guest.
Q: You're one of seven Tritons who were both in Grand Prairie, Texas, two years ago, and Cary, N.C., last season. After redshirting in 2016, how incredible has it been to take the mound in a CCAA Tournament, NCAA West Regional and NCAA Championship in back-to-back years?
JARVIS: I was just happy to be getting innings during the 2017 season while playing with guys like (Kyle) Goodbrand, (Adrian) Orozco and (Troy) Cruz. Pitching in playoff games for two consecutive seasons following my redshirt year is unbelievably rewarding. There is an atmosphere during a playoff game that is unlike anything during the regular season, and I am grateful that the coaching staff trusts me to pitch late in the game with runners on.
Q: What has been the one memory that has stood out to you the most from these two runs?
JARVIS: The championship game of the 2018 regional against Azusa Pacific stands out most in my mind. We trailed most of the game but the energy in the dugout kept us in it. I remember hanging over the railing with Jonah (Dipoto) and Tom Simpson screaming at the top of our lungs rooting guys on and partying in the dugout. The dogpile after (Michael) Palos' walk-off is by far my best memory.
Q: How is your role different on this year's team, as a veteran leader now of this pitching staff?
JARVIS: I think it's important to share knowledge with the younger guys on the staff, and we benefit as a group from each guy bringing their experiences to the table. As a fourth year, I just want to share what I have learned with the younger guys who have the skills to play after college.
Q: How has it been so far adjusting to Matt Harvey as your new pitching coach?
JARVIS: There was a learning curve for everyone involved at the beginning of the year, but it has been a smooth transition overall. Coach Harvey is unbelievably dedicated to the pitching staff and the program as a whole. I wouldn't be surprised if he sleeps at the field on occasion.
Q: As a two-sport athlete in high school, you had a decision to make between baseball and water polo. How hard was that choice for you, and why did baseball ultimately win out?
JARVIS: Honestly, having to get into the water for morning practice was a big factor in choosing baseball over water polo. Haha. I loved the physicality of water polo, but it had always been my dream to play collegiate baseball.
Q: What can you say about jumping right into the tough CCAA schedule at home against another league heavyweight in Cal State Monterey Bay, with whom you tied for first last season?
JARVIS: I'm looking forward to opening conference play against Monterey Bay. They always have a super-competitive team, and I guess we will see if the bit of rivalry carried over from last year.
Q: It certainly seems like you guys have a number of routines going, particularly among the bullpen group. Do you have a favorite one?
JARVIS: Gotta say my favorite bullpen routine is the late-inning preset. I can't say much more about it, but shoutout to my guy Noah Conlon for keeping the tradition alive.
Q: What are some of your individual goals for this season, as well as for your team?
JARVIS: My goal for this season is to help get this team back to the World Series and win it. It would be sweet to send off all the guys from my recruiting class with a World Series win.
Q: With a year of eligibility left, how close are you to completing your degree in communication? What are your future plans?
JARVIS: I will be graduating after the end of next season and I am planning to work in an outside sales job in San Diego. The weather and the beach are too amazing for me to leave.
Q: Did you enjoy your summer job as a kayak tour guide down at La Jolla Shores? Any interesting anecdote to share?
JARVIS: Yes I worked for Hike Bike Kayak down on Avenida de la Playa and it was an awesome job. The water temperature reached a record-breaking 78.6 degrees Fahrenheit, which made conditions for kayaking and snorkeling pretty epic. We saw seals, sea lions, sea turtles, leopard sharks and dolphins on a regular basis.
Previous 2019 Triton Baseball Q&A Features
About UC San Diego Athletics
With 30 national team championships, nearly 150 individual titles and the top student-athlete graduation rate among Division II institutions in the United States, the UC San Diego intercollegiate athletics program annually ranks as one of the most successful in the country. The Tritons sponsor 23 intercollegiate sport programs that compete on the NCAA Division I and II levels and, in summer 2020, will transition into full Division I status as a member of the Big West Conference. UC San Diego student-athletes exemplify the academic ideals of one of the world's preeminent institutions, graduating at an average rate of 91 percent. A total of 80 Tritons have earned Academic All-America honors, while 36 have earned prestigious NCAA Postgraduate Scholarships. In competition, more than 1,300 UC San Diego student-athletes have earned All-America honors.
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