SERIES THREAD: MTSU vs #19 FAU - Mar 20th -22nd, 2015
What: MTSU (11-7, 3-0 C-USA) at Florida Atlantic (19-3, 3-0 C-USA)
When: Fri, Mar 20th at 6:30 PM
Sat, Mar 21st at 4:00 PM
Sun, Mar 22nd at 12:00 PM
Where: FAU Baseball Stadium
The Owls lead 14-12 and last took 2-of-3 from the Blue Raiders at FAU Baseball Stadium in 2013.
Projected Starting Pitchers
Fri: MTSU - LHP Johnathan Frebis (3-1, 2.97 ERA)
FAU - RHP Kyle Miller (3-1, 3.29 ERA)
Sat: MTSU - RHP Nate Hoffmann (1-1, 2.91 ERA)
FAU - RHP Drew Jackson (4-0, 0.30 ERA)
Sun: MTSU - RHP Garrett Ring (0-0, 1.32 ERA)
FAU - LHP Brandon Rhodes (0-0, 3.60 ERA)
FAU went 4-0 this past week, securing a delayed 3-0 sweep of Charlotte in the 2015 C-USA series opener before later pounding Sunshine State foe Bethune Cookman 15-0 on Wednesday night to improve to 59-15 overall against the Wildcats.
The victory marked the fifth time that they have posted double digit efforts in run production, a feat which occurred only six times in all of 2014's contests.
In a topic that had been discussed prior to the season LHP Brandon Rhodes moves to the Sunday starting spot for the Owls against Middle, replacing Robbie Coursel who is now slated for midweek and middle relief action.
Red shirt Sophomore OF Esteban Puerta (pictured) currently leads regular rotational team players in on base percentage, safely having reached in 47.6% of of his 68 plate appearances - a mark good enough for 2nd in C-USA.
He is also 2nd on the squad in hitting (.353), and one of eight regulars sporting a mark of .300 or better at the plate. Catcher Kevin Abraham is the lone aside with a .197 showing in the box. Brendon Sanger's 3-of-4 showing against BCC edged him into a team leading .356 average (11th C-USA).
The Blue Raiders were also perfect in their league debut last weekend, taking three road contests from UAB (8-0, 3-0, 3-2). Friday night starter Johnathan Feebis registered a career high eight strikeouts in the win.
However immediately afterwards, they experienced a set back against midweek opponent Belmont, who dropped them by a final score of 8-2 off of just four hits. Aiding the run tally was six hit by pitch, and five walks, registered by the Blue Raider's staff.
If MTSU can muster a win in this weekend's series, it would be their first against a ranked opponent in over 10 years and just the second time in the last 41 seasons of play.
The Blue Raiders sit towards the middle of most offensive categories and are hitting .275 as a team, although they have the potential to belt the long ball with 11 homers on the season. Leading the way in that category is 2014 All C-USA team member senior OF Jared Allen, who has four in 2015, and a little over a third of last year's tally.
Defensively, MTSU has committed only 22 errors on the year - second to only UAB (18) in Conference USA.
Rain may have delayed the start of last weekend's action, but won't be a factor this time around. However, temps are hovering well above normal for March and Sunday looks to be a scorcher at 90' with the breeze expected to be blowing in.
FAU baseball is ready to kick off a weekend series against conference foe Middle Tennessee. First pitch is set for 6:30 PM.
MTSU: 2b Delgado, RF Jarreau, CF Jebavy, LF Allen, C Adkins, 3b Ingold, ss Bryant, DH King, 1b Dupree. LHP Frebis starting for the Blue Raiders.
FAU: 2b Kerr, 1b Lashley, RF Sanger, 3b Santiago, CF Collins, DH Puerta, LF Dicks, ss Chatham, C R. Miller. RHP K. Miller will start for the Owls.
Mid 2: Miller brings his K total to 5 as he strikes out 3 of the 4 batters faced in the inning. 0-0 game.— FAU Owl's Nest (@TheOwlsNest_ITB) March 20, 2015