May 3, 2012
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Coming off a series victory against the highest-ranked opponent defeated in program history, No. 7 UCF, the Tigers host UAB at FedExPark in the final home series of the season. First pitch is slated for 6:30 p.m. Friday, 2:00 p.m. Saturday and 1:00 p.m. on Sunday.
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.
Weekend Full of Special Events
The Tiger baseball program has several special events planned around this weekend’s series with UAB. Saturday will serve as Senior Day for Patrick Bailey, Tyler Farley, Eli Hynes, Chase Joiner, Adam McClain, T.J. Rich and Jacob Wilson. The seven seniors will be honored in a pre-game ceremony at approximately 1:30. Prior to Sunday’s game, Head Coach Daron Schoenrock and the program will retire the jersey of the late Charlie Lea. Also, former pitcher Mark Bowlan will throw out the ceremonial first pitch. Pouncer’s Pals and one parent will receive free admission to Friday’s game. On Saturday, youth (8th grade and younger) wearing their team jersey will receive free admission to FedExPark.
The Tigers carry a 189-189 record in games played in May since the 1977 season. Memphis has had one season above .500 under Coach Schoenrock, a 9-7 record in 2006. Including postseason tournaments, the Tigers have been .500 or better in three of Schoenrock’s seven previous seasons. Memphis is 37-59 under Schoenrock in May.
Quality Starting Pitching
Memphis has 29 quality starts from its pitching staff in 44 games, 12 more than the staff posted all of last season. The Tigers have a 16-13 record in the 29 quality starts. In C-USA play, Langfield, Moll and Joiner have a combined 3.12 ERA with 92 strikeouts in 121.1 innings. Moll has a 1.81 ERA in league games and he has allowed nine earned runs in 44.2 innings of league play.
The Series With UAB
Memphis and UAB meet for the 80th time on Friday. UAB holds a narrow 40-39 edge in the series and the Tigers carry a four-game win streak against the Blazers into the series. Memphis swept UAB at Young Memorial Field last season and defeated the Blazers 5-4 at the C-USA Tournament. In the Bluff City, the Tigers are 20-15 against UAB with three sweeps.
The Inside Edge - UAB
The Blazers are coming off a three-game sweep of Houston over the weekend and sit at 26-20, 7-8 in C-USA, on the season. Michael Busby equaled the effort of Memphis’ Chase Joiner on Sunday as he tossed a complete-game shutout as well. Busby and the Blazer pitching staff have a 4.23 ERA and a very respectable strikeout/walk ratio of 2.3 (308/133) in 415.1 innings. At the plate, UAB is led by Jeff Schalk and his .319 average. As a club, the Blazers hit .267 with 19 homers and 229 runs scored. Ryan Ussery has a team-high four home runs and Patrick Palmeiro has 25 RBI.
The Tigers have recorded 77 doubles this season, but after averaging over two doubles per game the first 32 games this year, the squad has seven in the last 12 games. Adam McClain leads the team with 11 doubles on the year and Eli Hynes and Jacob Wilson have added 10. Memphis has recorded two or more doubles in 24 of 44 games, including the first 10 in a row.
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 71-64 in the first three, but opponents have outscored the Tigers 101-97 after the fifth.
Two Complete-Game Shutouts
Chase Joiner became the sixth pitcher in program history to record two or more complete-game shutouts in one season when he shutout No. 7 UCF on April 29. Joiner also shutout Siena on March 17. Joiner’s complete-game shutout against Siena was the first by a Tiger pitcher since Jarrett Grube achieved the feat on April 9, 2004. Joiner is first U of M hurler to post two or more complete-game shutouts since Collins Day recorded two in 1994.
Jacob Wilson and Adam McClain are in pursuit of top-10 positions in the record books for career numbers. McClain (240-4th) and Wilson (232-8th) 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 (210-3rd) and McClain (206-5th) have eclipsed the top-five this season. Wilson recorded his 170th career RBI on April 28 to move to second place all time in career RBI. Wilson needs to score one more run to break the top-four in runs scored. Dan Langfield became the seventh pitcher with 200 career strikeouts and Langfield needs 38 punch outs to pass Lonnie Glass for second all-time.
Take Them How You Can Get Them
Memphis has scored 234 runs this season and the Tigers have produced those runs in 18 different ways. Singles (67), home runs (57) and doubles (35) account for most of the run producers this season. Sacrifice flies (14), triples (8), fielding errors (8), passed balls (8), throwing errors (8), groundout (5) , fielder’s choice (4), 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 18-106 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 2-15 when scoring three or fewer runs.
Looking For Production
Memphis is hitting .277 on the season, but a .202 average from the 8-9 spots in the order appears to be hampering the offense. The last two spots in the lineup have 59 hits and 39 runs scored, while the five hole in the lineup has 54 hits and 26 runs alone. In the three game set at No. 7 UCF, the 8-9 spots had seven hits and three runs scored to help Memphis to the series win.
No Need For Bullpen Today
Memphis starting pitching has combined to record five complete-game efforts this season. The five complete games are the most since the 1999 club posted six. This year’s pitching staff has the most complete-game shutouts since the 1999 season when Craig House and Josh Padgett each had complete-game gems.
Out of the Pen
Jonathan Van Eaton has six-straight outings without allowing a run (7.1 innings). Van Eaton has four saves in that span, allowed just one hit and struck out seven. In the last eight games, the Tiger bullpen has a respectable 2.61 ERA with Van Eaton, Patrick Bailey and Dylan Toscano not allowing an earned run in that span. Van Eaton’s six saves this season have him three saves away from the single-season record set by Matt Yokley in 2007.
Memphis vs. Ranked Opponents
Memphis has played 13 games against rank opponents this season. The Tigers are 5-8 in those games with wins over then-No. 7 Rice, then-No. 7 UCF (2), then-No. 18 Ole Miss and No. 24 East Carolina. Memphis has played 101 games against top-10 teams and the Tigers are 18-82-2 in those contests. Overall, Memphis is 80-232-2 against ranked opponents.
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 5-11, 2-5 in league play, in games decided by two runs or less this season. The Tigers are 48-48 all time in C-USA games decided by one run. In C-USA games decided by two or fewer runs, the Tigers sport a 72-80 record.
Strikeouts Adding Up For Langfield
Dan Langfield has ascended up the record books for career strikeouts he enters the weekend with 229 career strikeouts, third all-time. In just three seasons, Langfield has soared up the record books and if he continues his pace this season, he could finish in the top five for strikeouts in a season. Leading C-USA with 88 punch outs this season, Langfield is on pace for 111 strikeouts this season, which would put him fourth for single season strikeouts.
Memphis is hitting .248 (114-459) with two outs this season compared to .302 (148-490) at this point last season. The Tigers had 115 two out RBI and 304 runs scored through 44 games last year, but the U of M has mustered 67 two-out RBI so far this year with 234 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 111-111 record at home since taking over the program in 2005. After a rough 4-20 home record in 2005, Memphis has a 107-91 mark at home.
Memphis is 97-143 under head coach Daron Schoenrock following a loss. After a 9-32 record in the 2005 season following a loss, the Tigers are 88-111 since. In the last three seasons, the U of M is 43-36 following a loss. This season, the Tigers are 13-11 following a loss.
Head Coach Daron Schoenrock has penned a lineup 44 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 35 games.
Friday Night Lights
Memphis has struggled this season under the Friday night lights as the Tigers are 2-8 on Friday’s. Memphis is hitting .246 compared to .286 in the other 34 games. The Tigers average 3.90 runs per game on Friday and 5.74 in other games. On the mound, the Tigers have a 2.86 ERA on Friday, but a 4.31 ERA in other games.
The Tigers host Tennessee at FedExPark, the first visit the Volunteers will make to the Bluff City since the 1993 season. First pitch is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday.