May 8, 2012
|Wednesday 6:30 p.m.
|MEMPHIS PROBABLE STARTER
|LHP Michael Wills
3-1, 4.07 ERA
|TENNESSEE PROBABLE STARTER
|LHP Brandon Zajac
0-1, 12.27 ERA
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Winners of five-straight and six-of-the last seven games, Memphis (23-24) plays host to Tennessee (23-24) at FedExPark on Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. The first meeting between the in-state rivals in the Bluff City since 1993 will be televised on Fox Sports South.
Live stats are available on GoTigersGo.com. You can also listen to the game on WUMR 91.7 FM. Follow Tiger Baseball on Twitter (@UofMBaseball) for in-game updates.The game will air on Fox Sport South in Memphis and you can CLICK HERE to find the channel and provider in your area.
The Tigers carry a 192-189 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 40-59 under Schoenrock in May.
Behind The "Eight" Ball
An 7.69 ERA haunts the Tigers in the eighth inning as the club has allowed 42 runs, 39 earned, on 64 hits. Opponents have 19 extra-base hits including 14 doubles in the eighth inning. On the season, Memphis has been outscored 42-31 in the eighth and in C-USA play, Memphis holds a 21-19 edge. Opponents have five big innings (scoring three or more runs) in the eighth against Memphis. In the last 20 games, Memphis has outscored the opposition 20-5 in the eighth.
Quality Starting Pitching
Memphis has 31 quality starts from its pitching staff in 47 games, 14 more than the staff posted all of last season. The Tigers have a 18-13 record in the 31 quality starts. In C-USA play, Langfield, Moll and Joiner have a combined 3.10 ERA with 112 strikeouts in 142.1 innings. Moll has a 1.89 ERA in league games and he has allowed 11 earned runs in 52.1 innings of league play.
The Series With Tennessee
Memphis and Tennessee meet on the diamond in the Bluff City for the first time since 1993 on Wednesday. The Tigers carry a 20-10 advantage in the series dating back to the first meeting in 1919. The Vols defeated the Tigers 6-3 in Knoxville on April 4. Memphis carries an impressive 13-0 record against Tennessee in games played in the Bluff City dating back to 1980.
The Inside Edge - Tennessee
Tennessee carries a 23-24 record into FedExPark for Wednesday's matchup with the Tigers. The Vols dropped the SEC series against Vanderbilt over the weekend, but pounded out 29 hits and scored 18 runs in the series. As a team, Tennessee hits .254 on the year with 16 homers and 176 RBI. Will Maddox paces the club with a .300 average. Drew Steckenrider has a team-best five home runs while Chris Fitts leads the squad with 26 RBI. On the mound, Tennessee sports a 4.26 ERA with 307 strikeouts in 425 innings.
The Tigers have recorded 83 doubles this season, but after averaging over two doubles per game the first 32 games this year, the squad has 13 in the last 15 games. Eli Hynes leads the club with 12 doubles and Adam McClain and Derrick Thomas each have 11. Memphis has recorded two or more doubles in 25 of 47 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 83-65 in the first three and the Tigers have outscored opponents 109-105 after the fifth.
Been A Long Road Back
The Tigers have a .500 record within reach for the first time since March 6 when they take the field against Tennessee on Wednesday. In the last attempt to reach .500, the Tigers lost 7-5 at UL-Monroe. On the season, Memphis has a 4-1 record when one game below .500 as the Tigers wavered around the .500 mark for the first 12 games.
On A Roll
Memphis has won five-straight C-USA games for the first time since 2007 and only seventh time since joining the league in 1996. The Tigers have outscored the opposition 29-14 in the last five games.
Jacob Wilson and Adam McClain are in pursuit of top-10 positions in the record books for career numbers. McClain (246-4th) and Wilson (240-5th) 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 (213-3rd) and McClain (209-4th) have eclipsed the top-five this season. Wilson recorded his 175th career RBI on May 6 to move to second place all time in career RBI. Wilson needs to score five more runs to tie Tim Dulin for second all-time 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 256 runs this season and the Tigers have produced those runs in 18 different ways. Singles (72), home runs (63) and doubles (42) account for most of the run producers this season. Sacrifice flies (14), fielding errors (10), triples (8), passed balls (8), throwing errors (8), groundouts (5), fielder's choice (4), infield single (4), safety squeeze (3), bases loaded walk (3), double plays (3), wild pitches (3), hit batter (2), 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 .279 on the season, but a .209 average from the 8-9 spots in the order appears to be hampering the offense. The last two spots in the lineup have 65 hits and 42 runs scored, while the five hole in the lineup has 57 hits and 27 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.
Off The Beaten Path
Memphis carries a 19-8 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 4-16 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 32-12 in the first inning this season. Memphis has scored in the first inning 15 out of 47 games and carries a 10-5 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.
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 eight-straight outings without allowing a run (10.2 innings). Van Eaton has four saves in that span, two wins and he's allowed just three hit and struck out nine. In the last 10 games, the Tiger bullpen has a respectable 1.26 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.
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 6-11, 3-5 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 73-80 record.
Memphis is hitting .250 (122-488) with two outs this season compared to .293 (153-522) at this point last season. The Tigers had 118 two out RBI and 316 runs scored through 47 games last year, but the U of M has mustered 77 two-out RBI so far this year with 256 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 52-36 home record since the stadium became FedExPark in 2010. Coach Daron Schoenrock has guided the Tigers to a 114-111 record at home since taking over the program in 2005. After a rough 4-20 home record in 2005, Memphis has a 110-91 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 47 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 38 games.
The Tigers travel to Columbia, Mo., for a non-conference series with Missouri. First pitch is slated for 6:30 p.m. on Friday.