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SERIES CAPSULE: FAU @ #6 Florida | March 7th & 8th, 2023

What: FAU (7-4) vs. #6 Florida (10-3)

When: Tue, March 7th @ 6:00 PM
           Wed, March 8th @ 6:00 PM
Where: Condron Family Ballpark

Video: SEC Network+

Live Stats:Here

Florida Team Site: Here

Series: Gators lead 23-10 all-time against the Owls. First matchup since 2021 (3-2 FAU).

Projected Starting Pitchers:

Florida - RHP Yoel Tejeda (0-0, 4.05 ERA)
FAU - LHP Evan Waterbor (1-0, 1.80 ERA)

Florida - TBD
FAU - RHP Tyler Murphy (0-0, 0.00 ERA)

Owl Notables

FAU is starting to cool off after a hot 7-1 start to the season.

They lost in a three-game sweep, their first since 2021, to the UConn Huskies at home getting outscored 19-7 in the process. While Tuesday's upset win over #22 Miami will keep them from free-falling in the rankings, the Owls have to do a lot more to get back up.

Outfielder Nolan Schanuel is picking up the pace with his performances despite the team's struggles. He batted .462 against Miami and UCONN for six hits and eight RBI, including two spectacular home runs against the former. One could anticipate a big game from him taking on a tough opponent in Florida.

Mitchell Hartigan (pictured) is a potential name who can have a solid outing against the Gators. He was 2-of-3 in his at-bats against Miami and had 2 RBI in the first two games against UCONN, so it is possible he could step up during a key point in the series.

Evan Waterbor will have to pitch like he did in his previous starts against UCF and Miami. The senior held his ground against the Knights and Hurricanes by striking out nine batters combined, so the Owls will expect him to be at his best on the mound against the Gators.

This will also be a great challenge for Tyler Murphy, making his first start on Wednesday. Playing sparingly with three appearances, the freshman has been effective with nine strikeouts in 5.1 innings this season.

What the team has been elite with to start the year is their double plays. They are the third best in the country with 16, only trailing Southern Illinois and Texas Tech who are tied with 20. This could come in handy against a Gator offense that ranks 23rd nationally with a .438 on-base percentage.

Following this matchup, FAU will have a day of rest before hosting four games against Harvard.

Gator Notables

FAU and Florida have one thing in common this season: they both have Miami's number after beating the Hurricanes this past week.

The similarities end there due to the Gators having plenty of momentum with their 10-3 record which includes taking two out of three games in their series against Miami, outlasting them 30-22 in runs scored.

Their strong performances have garnered them votes from multiple outlets which have them in the top 10, placing the Gators from 8th to as high as 2nd.

  • Baseball America 2
  • NCBWA 6
  • Coaches Poll 6
  • D1 Baseball 6
  • Collegiate Baseball 7
  • Perfect Game 8

To maintain with what their sports information department is showcasing, we're putting Florida at #6 which is where D1 Baseball currently has them for this point of the season.

FAU pitchers will have their work cut out for them taking on one of the best batting units in the country. Florida has the second-most runs with 147 behind Wake Forest's 158, are fifth in runs per game with 11.3, and rank in the top 10 with a .350 average having five players hitting over that rate.

Florida has two of those batters going over .400: Cade Kurland (.449) and Wyatt Langford (.438). Kurland has the most hits on the team with 22, while Langford scored the most runs with 23. It would be a disservice to not mention Jac Caglianone, who stands alone at the top for the most home runs in the country with 10. Keeping these three in check will allow the Owls to keep both games close.

The Gators' bullpen are nothing to joke about either with their allowed batting average of .222. Yoel Tejeda Jr., Florida's starter for Tuesday, made three appearances this season but did most of his damage in a 10-8 defeat against Jacksonville on March 1 where he recorded 4 strikeouts in 2.2 innings. Getting him to commit mistakes early on will help the FAU offense come alive sooner rather than later.

Florida will get a day off before hosting a three-game series against Siena.

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