April 19, 2012
HATTIESBURG, Miss. - Memphis (17-20, 6-6) plays the first of two-straight Conference USA series on the road as the club travels to Southern Miss (20-16, 4-5) for a three-game set beginning Friday at 6 p.m. Game two is scheduled for noon on Saturday and the series finale is at 1 p.m. on Sunday.
Live stats are available on GoTigersGo.com and GoTigersGo.com provides live streaming audio. You can also listen to the game on WUMR 91.7 FM. Follow Tiger Baseball on Twitter (@UofMBaseball) for in-game updates. Saturday's game will air on Sport South in Memphis and you can CLICK HERE to find the channel and provider in your area.
The Tigers carry a 368-305-1 record in games played in April since the 1977 season. Memphis has had four seasons above the .500 mark under head coach Daron Schoenrock and last year's club posted a 12-8 record in April. Under Schoenrock the Tigers are 64-76.
Behind The "Eight" Ball
A 9.34 ERA haunts the Tigers in the eighth inning as the club has allowed 40 runs, 37 earned, on 57 hits. Opponents have 17 extra-base hits including 12 doubles in the eighth inning. On the season, Memphis has been outscored 40-18 in the eighth and in C-USA play, opponents hold a 17-10 edge. Opponents have five big innings (scoring three or more runs) in the eighth against Memphis.
Quality Starting Pitching
Memphis has 23 quality starts from its pitching staff in 37 games, five more than the staff posted all of last season. At Marshall, Memphis starters went 3-0 with a 1.21 ERA in 22.1 innings. In the 22.1 innings by starters at Marshall, the trio allowed 13 hits and posted 21 strikeouts and seven walks. In C-USA play, Langfield, Moll and Joiner have a combined 3.53 ERA with 58 strikeouts in 79 innings. Moll has a 0.87 ERA in league games and he allowed 16 hits and three earned runs in 31.0 innings of league play.
The Series With Southern Miss
The Tigers and Golden Eagles meet for the 97th time on Friday in Hattiesburg. Southern Miss carries a 53-43 advantage in the series that dates back to 1975. Memphis sports a 12-30 record in the 42 games played in Hattiesburg between the two clubs. Southern Miss took the last series at Pete Taylor Park between the two teams with 5-3 and 8-3 victories while the Tigers won the Saturday match-up 10-8. Of the 96 previous meetings, 50 have been decided by three runs or less and the Tigers are 26-24 in those games.
The Inside Edge - Southern Miss
Southern Miss has lost four-of-five heading into Friday's series opener. The Golden Eagles dropped an 8-7 decision at South Alabama on Wednesday and bring a 20-16 record into Friday's game. Mason Robbins leads the club with a .366 average and he is second on the team with 28 RBI. Blake Brown has six home runs, half of the Golden Eagles 12 homers this season, and a team-high 32 RBI. Five players hit above .300 for Southern Miss and the club sports a .287 average. On the mound. Southern Miss has a staff ERA of 4.09 with 244 strikeouts in 319 innings. In C-USA play, Southern Miss has an ERA of 4.83.
Numbers Against Southern Miss
Jacob Wilson has a .385 (15-for-39) average against Southern Miss in 10 games with 2 HR, 9 RBI, 13 R, 2 2B, 3B and 4 BB. Adam McClain bats .171 (6-for-35) in 10 games against the Golden Eagles with a HR, 4 RBI, 8 R and two walks. In three games against Southern Miss last season, T.J. Rich went .692 (9-for-13) with 2 HR, 8 RBI, 5 R and two walks. Dan Langfield is the lone pitcher with six or more innings on the mound against Southern Miss as he pitched seven innings and allowed four runs on three hits last season.
The Tigers have recorded 72 doubles already this season and are on pace to approach the single season record of 137 set in 2007. Eli Hynes, Jacob Wilson and Adam McClain lead the team with 10 doubles on the year. Memphis has recorded two or more doubles in 23 of 37 games, including the first 10 in a row, but Murray State, Tennessee and East Carolina (2) have held Memphis without a double.
Adam McClain On Pace To?
Adam McClain has 57 hits in 37 games this season and that puts him on pace to record the eighth-most hits in single-season history with 86. McClain leads C-USA with a .396 batting average.
Looking For Production
Memphis is hitting .284 on the season, but a .198 average from the 8-9 spots in the order appears to be hampering the offense. The last two spots in the lineup have 49 hits and 35 runs scored, while the five hole in the lineup has 50 hits and 25 runs alone.
Good Start, But What About Finish?
Last season, the Tigers pounced on opponents early, outscoring its opponents 156-81 in the first three innings. In the sixth through the final out, Memphis was outscored 156-115. So far in 2012, Memphis is outscoring opponents 70-57 in the first three, but opponents have outscored the Tigers 92-87 after the fifth.
Jacob Wilson and Adam McClain are in pursuit of top-10 positions in the record books for career numbers. McClain (232-7th) and Wilson (229-9th) are neck-and-neck as they ascend up the career hits list. Wilson has 57 career doubles which is third all-time. The two seniors are also climbing the charts in games played as Wilson (203) and McClain (199) could each eclipse the top-five with 35 games played this season. Wilson recorded his 156th career RBI on April 1 to move to third place all time in career RBI. Wilson needs five runs scored to break the top-five in runs scored. Dan Langfield became the seventh pitcher with 200 career strikeouts and Langfield needs four punch outs to pass Collins Day for fourth all-time.
Take Them How You Can Get Them
Memphis has scored 218 runs this season and the Tigers have produced those runs in 18 different ways. Singles (61), home runs (55) and doubles (34) account for most of the run producers this season. Sacrifice flies (14), triples (8), fielding errors (8), passed balls (7), groundout (5), throwing errors (6), fielder's choice (3), safety squeeze (3), infield single (3), bases loaded walk (3), double plays (3), wild pitches (2), hit batter (1), catcher's interference (1) and balk (1) are the additional ways Memphis has put runs on the board.
Jacob Wilson hit a walk-off single with two outs in the ninth inning to give Memphis a 3-2 win over Austin Peay on March 13. The win was Memphis' 15th when scoring three or fewer runs and first since March 26, 2011. Since 2006, Memphis is 16-102 in games where they score three runs or less. Last season, the Tigers were 1-15 with three or fewer runs scored. This season, Memphis is 1-12 when scoring three or fewer runs.
Off The Beaten Path
Memphis carries a 17-7 record when holding a plus margin when combining walks, hit batters and opponent errors. When Memphis combines for more walks issued, batters hit and errors committed, the Tigers are 0-13 on the season. For example, Memphis walked eight times and Tulane committed one error while the Tigers issued six walks giving the U of M a plus-three margin in the 10-0 win on March 30.
The Tigers have pounced on opponents early as the U of M has outscored the opposition 24-12 in the first inning this season. Memphis has scored in the first inning 13 out of 37 games and carries a 8-5 record in those games. The Tigers ended an 11-game drought without scoring in the first with the help of a two-run homer by Jacob Wilson at Murray State on April 18.
The Tigers played several nail bitters last season and in games decided by two runs or less, Memphis finished 9-14, 7-6 in league play. The Tigers had five come-from-behind wins and nine one run losses. The Tigers are 2-7, 0-1 in league play, in games decided by two runs or less this season.
Hynes Breakout Season
Eli Hynes hit .246 with seven home runs and 30 RBI in his first season at the U of M. In 36 games this year, Hynes has hit .331 with 10 home runs and 35 RBI. Currently, Hynes is on pace (calculated for 56 game schedule) for 15 home runs, 53 RBI.
Memphis is hitting .254 (99-390) with two outs this season compared to .310 (129-416) at this point last season. The Tigers had 101 two out RBI and 261 runs scored through 37 games last year, but the U of M has mustered 60 two-out RBI so far this year with 218 runs scored.
Memphis is 95-141 under head coach Daron Schoenrock following a loss. After a 9-32 record in the 2005 season following a loss, the Tigers are 86-109 since. In the last three seasons, the U of M is 41-34 following a loss. This season, the Tigers are 11-9 following a loss.
Head Coach Daron Schoenrock has penned a lineup 37 times this season and each game has seen five or more underclassmen making starts. Memphis has had six underclassmen in the lineup in nine games and five underclassmen in 28 games.
Friday Night Lights
Memphis has struggled this season under the Friday night lights as the Tigers are 2-6 on Friday's. Memphis is hitting .244 compared to .296 in the other 29 games. The Tigers average 4.38 runs per game on Friday and 6.31 in other games. On the mound, the Tigers have a 3.00 ERA on Friday, but a 4.72 ERA in other games.
Since the 2005 season, the Tigers are 62-94 in road games. The last time Memphis had a winning record on the road came back in the 2006 season when the Tigers were 13-11.
Mixing It Up
Head Coach Daron Schoenrock has penned 31 different lineup combinations in 37 games this season. Twelve different players have 13 or more starts on the season. Memphis freshmen have started a combined 76 games in the field this season with Keaton Aldridge leading the freshmen with 22 starts behind the plate.
C-USA Nail Biters
The Tigers lost to No. 7 Rice 1-0 on March 23 in the league opener and that dropped the Tigers to 46-47 all time in C-USA games decided by one run. In C-USA games decided by two or fewer runs, the Tigers sport a 70-77 record.
The Tigers host No. 22 Ole Miss at AutoZone Park on Tuesday at 6:30 p.m.