April 23, 2012
|Tuesday 6:30 p.m.
|MEMPHIS PROBABLE STARTER
|LHP Michael Wills
2-1, 4.60 ERA
|OLE MISS PROBABLE STARTER
|RHP Tanner Bailey
1-0, 3.77 ERA
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - The University of Memphis baseball team returns to the Bluff City to host No. 18 Ole Miss at AutoZone Park on Tuesday night. First pitch is scheduled for 6:30 p.m.
Live stats are available on GoTigersGo.com and GoTigersGo.com provides live streaming video. You can also listen to the game on WUMR 91.7 FM. Follow Tiger Baseball on Twitter (@UofMBaseball) for in-game updates.
In The `Zone'
Memphis will play its 43rd game at AutoZone Park on Tuesday night. The U of M has struggled at "The Zone" since its first game in 2001, carrying a 15-27 record into the park on Tuesday. Last season, the Tigers used a six-run second inning to top Ole Miss 9-2 in April at the Triple-A park of the Memphis Redbirds. The Tigers were 1-2 at AutoZone Park last season with the win over Ole Miss and losses against Arkansas and Mississippi State. Memphis is 2-7 against Ole Miss at AutoZone Park.
The Tigers carry a 368-308-1 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 64-79.
Behind The "Eight" Ball
An 8.84 ERA haunts the Tigers in the eighth inning as the club has allowed 41 runs, 38 earned, on 59 hits. Opponents have 17 extra-base hits including 12 doubles in the eighth inning. On the season, Memphis has been outscored 41-18 in the eighth and in C-USA play, opponents hold an 18-10 edge. Opponents have five big innings (scoring three or more runs) in the eighth against Memphis.
Quality Starting Pitching
Memphis has 26 quality starts from its pitching staff in 40 games, nine 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 3.26 ERA with 74 strikeouts in 99.1 innings. Moll has a 1.19 ERA in league games and he has allowed five earned runs in 37.2 innings of league play.
The Series With Ole Miss
The Memphis-Ole Miss series dates back to the 1915 season and the Rebels hold a 95-54-1 advantage in the series. The Tigers have split the home-and-home series with Ole Miss the last two seasons after the Rebels had won 17 of 18 dating back to the 2001 season. Ole Miss took the first meeting between the two clubs this season by a score of 7-2. The Tigers allowed five runs in the eighth to set the final margin.
The Inside Edge - Ole Miss
The Rebels won the series against No. 17 Arkansas over the weekend to improve to 27-13 on the season. Ole Miss is hitting .315 as a club with Alex Yarbrough pacing the squad with a .433 average. Yarbrough is one of three players on the team with 30-plus RBI as he has collected 38. Matt Snyder has nine homers and 45 RBI while Zach Kirksey has 10 home runs and 39 RBI. On the mound, Ole Miss sports a 3.42 staff ERA in 349.2 innings of work. The Rebels have struck out 343 batters to just 90 walks.
The Tigers have recorded 74 doubles already this season. Eli Hynes, Jacob Wilson and Adam McClain lead the team with 10 doubles on the year and Derrick Thomas has added nine. Memphis has recorded two or more doubles in 23 of 40 games, including the first 10 in a row, but Murray State, Tennessee Southern Miss (2) and East Carolina (2) have held Memphis without a double.
Looking For Production
Memphis is hitting .280 on the season, but a .196 average from the 8-9 spots in the order appears to be hampering the offense. The last two spots in the lineup have 52 hits and 36 runs scored, while the five hole in the lineup has 51 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 71-59 in the first three, but opponents have outscored the Tigers 94-88 after the fifth.
Where's The Offense?
Last weekend, Memphis scored two runs in the three game series at Southern Miss. For the Tigers, it was the lowest scoring weekend since joining C-USA (1996) and the fifth time that the club has scored five or fewer runs in a series, but first since the three-game series at UAB in 2001 (2-1, 0-2, 2-4). The Tigers have scored 10 or fewer runs in a C-USA series 30 times, including against Rice (10) and East Carolina (8) last season. On the flip side, Memphis pitching allowed six runs in the series, tied for the fewest in a C-USA series. It marked the 12th time the Tiger pitching staff held opponents below 10 runs in a league series.
Jacob Wilson and Adam McClain are in pursuit of top-10 positions in the record books for career numbers. McClain (234-7th) 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 (206) and McClain (202) 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 nine punch outs to pass Chad Harville for third all-time.
Take Them How You Can Get Them
Memphis has scored 220 runs this season and the Tigers have produced those runs in 18 different ways. Singles (61), home runs (55) and doubles (35) 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 (3), 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 16-105 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 1-15 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 0-16 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 40 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 2-10, 0-4 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 40 games this year, Hynes has hit .325 with 10 home runs and 35 RBI. Currently, Hynes is on pace (calculated for 56 game schedule) for 14 home runs, 49 RBI.
Memphis is hitting .251 (105-418) with two outs this season compared to .299 (132-441) at this point last season. The Tigers had 102 two out RBI and 274 runs scored through 40 games last year, but the U of M has mustered 61 two-out RBI so far this year with 220 runs scored.
The Tigers opened the 2012 schedule with nine of their first 11 games at FedExPark and went 4-5. The U of M carries a 49-36 home record since the stadium became FedExPark in 2010. Coach Daron Schoenrock has guided the Tigers to a 110-111 record at home since taking over the program in 2005. After a rough 4-20 home record in 2005, Memphis has a 106-91 mark at home.
Memphis vs. Ranked Opponents
A five-run eighth inning by No. 16 Ole Miss was the difference in the Tigers first game against a ranked foe this season. The Tigers dropped a doubleheader to No. 21 Baylor on March 11 to fall to 0-3 on the season against ranked foes. Memphis is 82-233 against ranked foes all-time and the last win versus a ranked team came on April 14 with the 5-2 win over No. 24 East Carolina. Memphis defeated No. 7 Rice on March 25 for the first win over a top-10 team since March 27, 2009.
Memphis is 95-143 under head coach Daron Schoenrock following a loss. After a 9-32 record in the 2005 season following a loss, the Tigers are 86-111 since. In the last three seasons, the U of M is 41-36 following a loss. This season, the Tigers are 11-11 following a loss.
Head Coach Daron Schoenrock has penned a lineup 40 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 31 games.
Mixing It Up
Head Coach Daron Schoenrock has penned 34 different lineup combinations in 40 games this season. Twelve different players have 16 or more starts on the season. Memphis freshmen have started a combined 83 games in the field this season with Keaton Aldridge leading the freshmen with 25 starts behind the plate.
The Tigers travel to Orlando, Fla., to take on No.7 UCF. First pitch is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Friday, 3:00 p.m. Saturday and 12 p.m. on Sunday.