Key member of 2003 Irish pitching staff who elevated his game in 2002 and will be expected to do the same again in his senior season ... likely will take on a greater role in 2003 as he continues to make strides ... turned in several clutch outings as a junior in 2002, most notably a gutsy seven-inning shutout appearance vs. Rutgers (after being hit in the head with a linedrive) that delivered Notre Dame its first BIG EAST Tournament title ... that win arguably was the most pivotal of Notre Dame's entire season, as it helped secure home-field hosting rights for the NCAA Regionals (the Irish then went on to win the Super Regional series at top-ranked Florida State, yielding the program's first trip to the College World Series in 45 years) ... was slated to start Notre Dame's potential fourth game at the CWS (vs. eventual champ Texas) if the Irish had rallied in the elimination game vs. Stanford ... filled limited role in his first two seasons with the Irish before making strides in 2002, due to his maturity as a pitcher and confidence that grew throughout that junior season ... heads into 2003 with 5-0 career record, 2.96 ERA, 46 Ks, 24 walks and 55 hits allowed in 54.2 IP (21 appearances, six starts) ... a valuable commodity who keeps hitters off balance due to a variety of pitches that he can throw for strikes and the ability to get big outs as either a power or finesse pitcher ... can touch high 80s with his fastball ... followed up strong 2001 summer season with his breakthrough performance the following spring ... has posted a 2.08 ERA, 2-0 record and 16 Ks in 21.2 career innings vs. BIG EAST teams (including a 1.04 ERA in 8.2 total IP vs. Rutgers) ... one of five senior pitchers on 2003 staff, including fellow starter Peter Ogilvie, closer J.P. Gagne and relievers Brandon Viloria and Matt Laird ... has a familiar name to Notre Dame fans, as the brother of recent Irish lefthander Tim Kalita ('97-'99), who was drafted in the seventh round by the Detroit Tigers (he was listed on Detroit's 40-man roster for 2002 spring training) ... had a solid five-inning outing as Blue team starter in Notre Dame 2001 Blue-Gold fall intrasquad series (2 R, 5 H, 3 BB, 3 Ks, 72 pitches) ... played alongside Irish teammates Mike Holba and Cody Wilkins in summer of 2001 as members of the Waynesboro (Va.) Generals in the wooden-bat Valley League ... led the Generals with a 1.47 ERA while pitching eight games (seven starts) and posting 41 strikeouts in 43 innings (0-3, 40 H, 27 BB) ... five other BIG EAST Conference players also were members of that Generals team, including Virginia Tech pitcher Seth Brandy, Georgetown pitcher Eric Sutton and three Seton Hall players (outfielder Casey Grimm, pitcher Chris Noonan and shortstop Chris Carter) ... pitched in 2002 with the Hays (Kan.) Larks, posting a 4.32 ERA and 1-2 record in three relief outings (16.2 IP, 10 BB, 12 Ks, 19 H) ... current Irish sophomore righthander Tyler Jones and junior catcher Javi Sanchez also were members of that Larks team, as was Dayton's Rory Thornton (ND faces UD in its 2003 opener, at Arizona State) ... his former Oak Park-River Forest High School teammate Sean O'Neill plays at Purdue ... 13th known Notre Dame baseball player to follow his brother (as letterwinners), with that list including current Irish junior second baseman Steve Sollmann and his brother Scott (all-conference centerfielder with Irish from '94-'96) ... one of four Chicagoland natives on Notre Dame's 2003 roster, with that group including two classmates ... first baseman Michael Holba (Lansing) and Ogilvie (Buffalo Grove) ... plus Johnson (Burr Ridge) and freshman outfielder Alex Nettey (Dolton) ... part of Notre Dame baseball program that has produced 142 letterwinners from Illinois, with 29 Illinois natives playing for the Irish during the nine-year tenure of head coach Paul Mainieri ... assumed the No. 32 jersey formerly worn by College World Series record-holding infielder Jim Morris ('57-'58) and 25-victory righthander Alex Shilliday (?96-?99).
AS A JUNIOR: Rose to the challenge in fine fashion, winning all five of his decisions while his 3.16 season ERA was just shy of Gagne's 3.14 as best among Irish pitchers with 25-plus innings ... made 12 of 16 appearances in relief, with 36 strikeouts, 14 walks and 45 hits allowed (.278 opponent batting avg.) in 42.2 innings ... ranked fourth on staff with 2.6 K-to-walk ratio ... allowed just .215 opponent batting with runners on base (third-best on staff) ... showed good control, with just one wild pitch and two hit batters ... helped secure two of season's biggest wins, matching Virginia Tech ace lefty Joe Saunders in 2-1 regular-season thriller before winning BIG EAST Tournament title game vs. Rutgers (3-2, in 11 innings) ... logged two shutout innings in 6-2 win over Creighton at Irish Baseball Classic in San Antonio (2 H, K) ... picked up relief win vs. Western Michigan (5-4; 3 IP, 2 H, 3 Ks) ... earned BIG EAST start due to Chris Niesel's illness and responded with six strong innings vs. Virginia Tech (6 H, UER, BB, 5 Ks, 89 pitches), setting up 2-1 win in seven-inning opener that extended to 11 (that game proved key in the final standings, with ND and VT tying for the regular-season title) ... won his next start vs. potent Bowling Green squad, in tight game that was called after six innings (3-2; 6 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 3 BB, 6 Ks) ... pitcher of record in planned rotation vs. Detroit (23-1; 3 IP, 3 H, R, BB, 5 Ks) ... improved to 4-0 with 10-6 relief win over Boston College (4 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 3 Ks) ... his 3-2 win over Rutgers in the BIG EAST title game was more noteworthy due to a 5th-inning comebacker (off the bat of Val Majewski) that glanced off his forehead ... shook off the noticeable welt and matched that goose-egg with seven shutout innings, as Irish won in the 10th (6 H, 3 BB, 6 Ks, 114 pitches) ... logged 1.2 shutout relief innings in 4-3 loss to Stanford at College World Series (H, BB, K).
AS A SOPHOMORE: Developed into solid midweek contributor, making four appearances and winning both starts ... posted 2.45 ERA in 11 innings, with nine strikeouts, eight walks, five wild pitches and 10 hits allowed (.238) ... won first career start in 9-2 game with Hillsdale, tossing three shutout innings in planned rotation (3 H, 2 BB, 2 Ks) ... added strong five-inning start in 9-8 win over Detroit, allowing one run on three hits (4 Ks, BB) ... tossed shutout inning to close 15-2 win over Villanova (K, 3 BB) ... did not appear in final 20 games.
AS A FRESHMAN: Made lone appearance in second game of April 9 doubleheader versus Boston College (11-1 loss), tossing shutout inning (2 BB, K, WP).
PREP & PERSONAL: Four-year member of baseball team at Oak Park-River Forest High School, playing alongside his brother Tim in 1996 ... led junior-year team to undefeated conference title and No. 7 national ranking ... posted 6-2 record as a senior (team-best 1.81 ERA) ... tossed three straight one-hitters ... helped '99 team earn No. 1 preseason state ranking ... pitched as a junior in state tournament loss to eventual champ Edwardsville, at Cane County Stadium ... hails from same high school as former Irish great Mike Amrhein, a versatile player who posted .361 career batting average (37 HR, 202 RBI) ... named academic all-conference and a cum laude graduate ... born Feb. 2, 1981, in Oak Park, Ill. ... son of Joseph and Nancy Kalita ... full name is Ryan Joseph Kalita ... a marketing major, enrolled in the Mendoza College of Business.
Kalita's Career Stats
Kalita?s Career Bests
7.0, vs. Rutgers (5/25/02, BET)
6.0, vs. Boston College (4/24/02)
6.0, vs. Virginia Tech (4/12/02)
6 vs. Rutgers (5/25/02), 7 IP
6 vs. Bowling Green (4/24/02), 6 IP
5 vs. Detroit (5/15/02), 3 IP
5 vs. Virginia Tech (4/12/02), 6 IP
Fewest Hits Allowed (min. 5 IP)
3, vs. Detroit (4/11/01), 5 IP
4, vs. Bowling Green (4/24/02), 6 IP