COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio State and Michigan will play three games this weekend at Bill Davis Stadium with all three games being televised on the Big Ten Network. Expect Ohio State to throw RHP Alex Wimmers Friday, RHP Dean Wolosiansky Saturday and LHP Eric Best Sunday. Michigan indicated that it would choose its starters on a day-by-day basis this weekend. Wolverine student-athletes were in the midst of their finals week this week.
PROMOTIONS & PARROTHEADS
Fans will be decked out in scarlet Friday for Scarlet Fever night. Saturday is “Parrothead” day. The music of Jimmy Buffett will be playing all game, plus there is a pregame karaoke contest with the winner receiving two tickets to the Jimmy Buffett concert Aug. 6 in Cincinnati. Second- and third-place prizes, too. Funday Sunday gets fans a ticket, hot dog and a soda for $7.
THIS WEEKEND IN OHIO STATE BASEBALL
No. 27 Ohio State (32-10; 11-4 Big Ten Conference)
Game 43 vs. Michigan (23-19; 6-9 Big Ten Conference)
Friday, May 1, 7:05 p.m.
Game 44 vs. Michigan
Saturday, May 2, 1:05 p.m.
Game 45 vs. Michigan
Sunday, May 3, 1:05 p.m.
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INTERNET AUDIO & LIVE STATS
Big Ten Network (all three games)
Looking at stats in Big Ten games only, here is how the two teams match up this weekend (No. in parenthesis is Big Ten Top 5 rank):
Batting avg.: OSU .309 (3); UM .267;
Slugging pct.: OSU .449 (3); UM .391 (5);
ERA: UM 4.28 (3); OSU 4.91 (5);
Opp. batting avg.: OSU .269 (2); UM .279 (4).
A CHANGE OF SEASONS
The series offers a number of striking differences from the series the two teams played just one year ago in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Consider:
Ohio State is 32-10 this season and on top of the Big Ten standings.
Michigan, meanwhile, was 31-10 at this point last year and leading the Big Ten.
Last year Ohio State was 23-18 heading into this series and in a fight just to make the Big Ten tournament.
This year the Wolverines are 23-19 and competing to secure a spot in the Big Ten tournament.
SOON TO BE OLDEST RIVALRY
Michigan leads the all-time series, by Ohio State’s count, 157-90-2. The series began in 1895. At the conclusion of this series, the 252 games played will top the 251 games Ohio State has played against Indiana, making Michigan Ohio State’s oldest baseball rival, as it should be. The two teams have met for a series every year since 1981, the first year of the Big Ten’s four-game series format.
OHIO STATE vs. MICHIGAN NOTES
Between 1988 and 2002, Bob Todd’s Ohio State teams won or tied 13 of the 15 series with Michigan (nine series wins; four ties; two series losses). Included were back-to-back-to-back sweeps in 1994-95-96. Since that 2002 series tie, Michigan has won six consecutive series, including 4-0 series sweeps in 2006 and 2007 (at Bill Davis Stadium). The 2005 series was just one game due to bad weather. Michigan has won 22 of the last 30 games between the teams. Prior to that run by UM, Ohio State had won 33 of 44 games in the series between 1990-99.
The dedication game for Ohio Stadium was Oct. 21, 1922 vs. Michigan (a 19-0 UM win). The dedication game for Michigan Stadium was Oct. 22, 1927 vs. OSU (a 21-0 UM win). Ohio State’s first hockey game in the Schottenstein Center was Jan. 2, 1999 vs. Michigan (a 1-0 Ohio State win).
RANKINGS and RPI
Ohio State is ranked in one or more of the major polls for a tenth consecutive week, coming in this week with a high ranking of No. 27 by Collegiate Baseball. In the NCAA RPI ranking, Ohio State is ranked 30th.
ALL-TIME RECORD AT BILL DAVIS STADIUM
Ohio State is 216-100 all-time at Bill Davis Stadium for a fine .682 winning percentage. The team is 8-4 at home in 2009.
TODD 13 WINS FROM 1,000
Coach Bob Todd is just 13 wins from 1,000 for
his career. He is 987-527-2 in his 26th season.
PITCHER OF THE YEAR WATCH LIST
Senior relief ace Jake Hale and emerging sophomore starter Alex Wimmers have each been named to the National Pitcher of the Year Watch List. Hale is also in the running for the fifth annual National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Stopper of the Year Award.
OHIO STATE UPDATE
Ohio State is coming off a 7-3 win over Akron Wednesday and has won seven of its last 10 games. … Coach Bob Todd’s teams have won 30 or more games for 24 consecutive seasons, including all 22 of his Ohio State teams . … Ohio State is 12-3 in 1- and 2-run games and 13-1 in games it scores 10 or more runs. … The team is also 27-2 when leading after the sixth inning and 27-0 when leading after the seventh. … However, the team is 2-7 when trailing after the sixth and just 1-10 when trailing after the seventh.
FOREST THRU THE BUCKEYE TREES
The 2009 Buckeyes have no egos. The players say so themselves. They all do the little things like sacrificing (46 combined sac flies and bunts rank second in the Big Ten), and they all contribute offensively and defensively. Consider:
Seven players have scored 30 or more runs and eight have driven in 20 or more runs;
Ten have homered, nine have multiple HRs and nine have tripled;
The team has 125 two-out RBI (vs. 78 for the opponents) with seven players at 10 or more;
Weekend starting pitchers are 9-3 in the Big Ten games and 22-4 overall;
Jake Hale and Drew Rucinski have combined for a 7-2 record, 12 saves and 99 strikeouts in 90.1 innings pitched in relief;
The team’s fielding pct. in the Big Ten is .976.
26 STARTS OF 5.0 OR MORE INNINGS
When Ohio State starting pitchers pitch 5.0 innings or more, the Buckeyes are 22-4. Alex Wimmers leads with nine such starts (and with three complete games) and is followed by Dean Wolosiansky with seven, 5.0-plus inning starts.
SEVEN AVERAGE .325 OR BETTER
DH Ryan Dew, C Dan Burkhart and outfielders Zach Hurley and Michael Stephens are leading the team with averages of .387, .383, .348 and .347, respectively. 1B Matt Streng is next at .336 with Cory Kovanda (.331) and Michael Arp (.325) giving the Buckeyes seven every day players with averages at .325 or better.
Justin Miller and Jake Hale are climbing Ohio State’s career records charts. Four hits for Miller will move him into third-place in all-time hits, passing the 250 hits of Steve Caravati, Jason Trott and Brian Mannino. Miller is T3rd with 48 doubles, T5th with 163 RBI and 4th with 746 at-bats. Hale is second all-time in saves (21; and second in single season saves with 10) and T4th with 79 appearances.
AHEAD FOR THE BUCKEYES
Five difficult road games loom after this tough weekend series with Michigan. The Buckeyes travel to Louisville Tuesday for two games (Tuesday night and Wednesday afternoon). Then it heads to Champaign-Urbana Thursday for a series at Big Ten co-leader Illinois.
Click on the attached PDF for more notes and stats on the Ohio State vs. Michigan series this weekend at Bill Davis Stadium.