COLUMBUS, Ohio – Big Ten Conference baseball is coming to Columbus this weekend as No. 28 Ohio State, 23-7 on the season and 3-3 in the Big Ten Conference, hosts 11-18 and 3-3 Michigan State in the first conference series of the season at Bill Davis Stadium.
Ohio State’s 3-3 Big Ten mark has come on the road with a 2-1 series win at Penn State and a 2-1 road loss at Minnesota in the Metrodome last weekend. Michigan State has been on both ends of the only two sweeps in the Big Ten’s new three-game series format. The Spartans were swept by Illinois but came back last week to sweep Northwestern.
Game times are 6:35 p.m. Friday and 1:05 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, respectively.
THE PITCHING MATCHUPS
G1: RHP Alex Wimmers (5-1; 3.75) vs. RHP Nolan Moody (4-3; 2.94)
G2: RHP Dean Wolosiansky (6-1; 5.80) vs. RHP A.J. Achter (1-2; 3.35)
G3: Both team’s pitchers TBD
This Weekend in Ohio State Baseball
No. 28 Ohio State (23-7; 3-3 Big Ten Conference)
Game 31: vs. Michigan State (11-18; 3-3 Big Ten Conference)
Friday, April 10 – 6:35 p.m.
Bill Davis Stadium
Game 32: vs. Michigan State
Saturday, April 11 – 1:05 p.m.
Bill Davis Stadium
Game 33: vs. Michigan State
Sunday, April 12 – 1:05 p.m.
Bill Davis Stadium
103.9 WTDA Talk FM
INTERNET AUDIO & VIDEO
OHIO STATE’S 23-7 RECORD
Taking a quick peek at Ohio State’s 23-7 mark we find: the team is 15-2 on neutral fields, 6-4 in away games and 2-1 in home games. The team is 2-2 vs. ranked opponents (vs. Miami and Minnesota), 12-5 vs. right-handed starters and 11-2 vs. lefties. OSU is 4-4 when scoring five or fewer runs but 14-1 when holding opponents to five or fewer.
IT’S NOT THAT RARE
Ohio State’s 23-7 record is impressive, especially considering the team played 27 of its first 29 games on the road, but it’s not in “rare air.” The mark only ties for the fourth-best record after 30 games for an Ohio State team. It is the sixth time a Bob Todd team has won at least 23 by the 30-game mark. OSU’s best 30-game starts:
1. 1991, 1994 – 25-5
3. 1982 – 24-6-1
4. 2009, 2001, 1999, 1997 – 23-7
MICHIGAN STATE, MEANWHILE…
Michigan State is tied for fourth in the Big Ten with the Buckeyes and Michigan. Having swept Northwestern over the weekend, the Spartans come into Bill Davis Stadium with wins in four of their last five games. A few Spartan notes from their first two series:
MSU was outscored, 16-5, vs. Illinois.
MSU rebounded in dramatic fashion to sweep Northwestern. Nolan Moody no-hit the Wildcats last Friday and then the Spartans won game three with a walk-off single by Johnny Lee.
The Michigan State pitching staff leads the Big Ten (conference games only) in both opponents’ batting average (.222) and ERA (3.31).
The National League would be proud: the Spartans lead the Big Ten in both main “small ball” categories with five sacrifice bunts and six sacrifice flies.
STREAMING VIDEO AVAILABLE
All Ohio State home games will be video streamed to OhioStateBuckeyes.com through Buckeye Vision, a subscription-based package. Visit OhioStateBuckeyes.com for subscription package information.
RADIO BROADCAST INFO
The Michigan State series will be broadcast on 103.9 WTDA Talk FM. Outside the WTDA signal? Subscription-based packages to hear audio and watch video of home games are available at OhioStateBuckeyes.com.
TODD 22 WINS FROM 1,000
Coach Bob Todd is just 22 wins from 1,000 for his career. He is 978-524-2 in his 26th season.
Ohio State has been dropped from three of the four polls that it has been ranked in, but remains nationally ranked – at No. 28 – this week by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association. This marks the seventh consecutive week the team has been ranked in one or more of the baseball polls.
OHIO STATE vs. MICHIGAN STATE
Ohio State and Michigan State have been meeting on the diamond since 1911. The Buckeyes lead the series 126-82-1. A few other series notes:
Bob Todd’s teams are 57-27 vs. MSU
During the four-game series format, the Buckeyes won 17 series vs. Michigan State while losing three with eight ties.
The Spartans have won the last two series at Bill Davis Stadium, 3-1, but prior to that, Ohio State had gone 8-1-2 at home.
THREE ONE-RUN GAMES LAST YEAR
The Buckeyes won a rain-shortened series, 2-1, last year at Oldsmobile Park. All three games were one-run affairs with just 17 runs being scored between the two teams. Pitcher Jake Hale won the first game by turning in a terrific, 10 inning performance and Ryan Dew led the Buckeyes at the plate, batting .429 with two RBI. He hit a dramatic 11th inning home run to win game one of the series. Dean Wolosiansky picked up the game two win, 5-4, on a cold, blustery day.
BIG TEN CONFERENCE TEAM STATS
Two Big Ten series in the books and the Buckeyes are second in the Big Ten in average (.309 in conference games only) first in on base pct. (.399) and hits (67) and third in slugging (.433). ERA (7.24) and opposing batting average (.294) rank ninth and seventh, respectively.
BUCKS 2-HIT AND 12-HIT MOREHEAD
Eric Best pitched shutout, one-hit baseball through four innings and the Buckeye bats provided support with 12 hits, six of them for extra bases, to lead No. 28 Ohio State to a 12-0 win over Morehead State Wednesday. Cory Kovanda had three hits, including a double, and four RBI, Justin Miller had a pair of hits and the first RBI of the game and Cory Rupert had two doubles to power the Buckeye offense. Tyler Engle scored three runs and Zach Hurley and Dan Burkhart scored two runs apiece. Burkhart also hit a home run in the fourth inning, his fifth of the year. Best, Ross Oltorik, Jared Strayer, Drew Rucinski and Jake Hale combined on the two-hit shutout.
THREATENING TRIPLES MARK
Ohio State’s 18 triples are tied for the seventh most in single season history with the school record of 25 – set in 1991 and tied in 2006 – in jeapordy. Seven Buckeyes have hit a triple this season, with Chris Griffin joining the club Wednesday vs. Morehead State.
EIGHT ISN’T ENOUGH
With two doubles vs. Morehead State, Cory Rupert joined seven other Buckeyes with 10 or more extra base hits. Ryan Dew, with seven, is knocking at the door, too. The list:
M. Stephens 15 off 6 2Bs, 2 3Bs, 7 HRs
Zach Hurley 14 off 5 2Bs, 5 3Bs, 4 HRs
Dan Burkhart 14 off 6 2Bs, 3 3Bs, 5 HRs
Matt Streng 12 off 4 2Bs, 3 3Bs, 5 HRs
Michael Arp 12 off 9 2Bs, 3 HRs
Cory Kovanda 12 off 8 2Bs, 3 3Bs, 1 HR
Justin Miller 10 off 5 2Bs, 5 HR
Cory Rupert – 10 off 7 2Bs, 1 3B, 3 HR
NEARING ANOTHER 10-GAME STREAK
Justin Miller has hit in nine consecutive games. A hit by the team captain Friday will give Ohio State five players with double-digit hitting streaks this season (Dan Burkhart and Zach Hurley had 16-game streaks; Michael Stephens 13 and Cory Kovanda 12). Miller’s career-long is 16 games.
HURLEY A HIT; FIRST TO 50
Zach Hurley’s season-long assault on opposing pitchers has enabled him to lead the Big Ten in hits (50) and triples (5) while also ranking second in runs (31) and fourth in RBI (35).
Click on the attached Ohio State vs. Michigan State release for more notes and stats and stuff about Ohio State and click on the Big Ten release for the latest Big Ten Conference stats and standings.