UC Irvine pitcher Andrew Thurman is a returning first-team All-Big West Conference selection.

UC Irvine pitcher Andrew Thurman is a returning first-team All-Big West Conference selection. (Steven Georges / December 20, 2012)

UC Irvine baseball is ranked No. 30 in the Collegiate Baseball preseason poll released Thursday.

The Anteaters are coming off a 31-25 season in which they did not earn a spot in an NCAA Regional for the first time since 2006.

UCI, which opens its season Feb. 15 with the first of a three-game home series against Baylor, return first-team All-Big West Conference pitcher Andrew Thurman to anchor a staff that will include Evan Brock, Matt Whitehouse, Kyle Hooper, Chase Parmenter, Jimmy Litchfield and Phil Ferragamo.

Senior catcher Ronnie Schaeffer is among the veteran position players returning for Coach Mike Gillespie.

Sophomores Connor Spencer and Taylor Sparks, as well as senior Jeff Stephens are additional returners expected to fortify the lineup.

— From staff reports