RF/LHP Aaron Miller, who is scheduled to start Saturday's game, enters the series with a 10-game hitting streak.
April 16, 2009
GAMES 36-38 • APRIL 17-19 • ALLIE P. REYNOLDS STADIUM • STILLWATER, OKLA.
No. 7 BAYLOR (24-11, 9-6) at OKLAHOMA STATE (24-14, 4-8)
FRIDAY: 6:30 p.m. CDT
SATURDAY: 1:00 p.m. CDT — FSN-TV
SUNDAY: 1:00 p.m. CDT
Baylor returns to action this weekend, traveling to Stillwater, Okla., for a three-game Big 12 Conference series at Oklahoma State. The Bears and Cowboys meet Friday at 6:30 p.m. CDT, Saturday at 1 p.m. and Sunday at 1 p.m. Saturday’s game will be televised nationally on FSN. This is the sixth Big 12 series of the season for Baylor and the fifth conference series this season for Oklahoma State.
The Bears (24-11, 9-6) are 6-4 in their last 10 games. Baylor split a pair of midweek games, falling 5-4 Tuesday night at UT Arlington and defeating UTA 10-7 Wednesday night at Baylor Ballpark. The Bears won two of three against Missouri at home last weekend and have won four straight Big 12 series for the first time since 2005. Baylor is 6-5 away from home this season, including a 4-4 mark on opponents’ home fields and a 2-3 mark in Big 12 play. The Bears are ranked seventh nationally in this week’s Baseball America Top 25 and 13th in this week’s USA Today/ESPN Coaches’ Poll. The Bears also are ranked 13th in the NCBWA Top 30 and 14th in the Collegiate Baseball Top 30.
The Cowboys (24-14, 4-8) are 4-6 in their last 10 games. Missouri swept a two-day, three-game series at home against Arkansas-Pine Bluff Tuesday and Wednesday to snap a five-game losing streak. The Cowboys were swept at Kansas last weekeend and have lost two straight Big 12 series. Oklahoma State is 16-6 at home this season, including a 3-3 mark in Big 12 play. The Cowboys are unranked in this week’s Baseball America Top 25. Oklahoma State is ranked 28th nationally by the NCBWA and are among teams receiving votes in the USA Today/ESPN Coaches’ Poll.
Baylor and Oklahoma State have played two common opponents this season: Missouri and Kansas. Both the Bears and Cowboys took two of three at home against Missouri; both teams swept doubleheaders against the Tigers in order to win the series. Baylor won two of three at Kansas, while Oklahoma State was swept at Kansas.
All Baylor baseball games are broadcast live on Waco’s 1660 ESPN Radio. Live streaming audio and GameTracker also are available for all Baylor baseball games online at www.BaylorBears.com, the official website of Baylor Athletics and a member of the CBS College Sports Network.
Live streaming video also is available for the Oklahoma State series opener and finale at www.okstate.com.
PROBABLE PITCHING MATCHUPS
Baylor: RHP Kendal Volz, Jr. (2-3, 3.91 ERA, 50.2 IP, 25 BB, 45 K, .253 OBA)
OSU: RHP Tyler Blandford, Jr. (6-1, 4.18 ERA, 51.2 IP, 28 BB, 65 K, .173 OBA)
Baylor: LHP Aaron Miller, Jr. (3-0, 2.48 ERA, 32.2 IP, 16 BB, 40 K, .204 OBA)
OSU: LHP Tyler Lyons, Jr. (4-3, 3.78 ERA, 47.2 IP, 11 BB, 34 K, .266 OBA)
OSU: LHP Andrew Oliver, Jr. (4-4, 5.81 ERA, 52.2 IP, 23 BB, 62 K, .279 OBA)
Overall: Oklahoma State leads 34-25
Waco: Tied 12-12
Stillwater: Oklahoma State leads 14-10
Neutral Site: Oklahoma State leads 8-3
During Big 12 era: Oklahoma State leads 22-20
Smith vs. OSU: 20-21
First Meeting: at OSU 8, Baylor 7 [4/20/1925]
Last Meeting: at Baylor 8, OSU 5 [3/16/2008]
BAYLOR: Steve Smith
Alma Mater: Baylor, 1986
Career Record: 546-348-1 [15th season]
Record at Baylor: 546-348-1 [15th season]
OKLAHOMA STATE: Frank Anderson
Alma Mater: Emporia State, 1983
Career Record: 223-122 [6th season]
Record at OSU: 223-122 [6th season]
BAYLOR-ISP SPORTS NETWORK
1660 ESPN RADIO (Waco)
Tom Barfield, play-by-play
Lark Smith, color
FSN NATIONAL BROADCAST
Greg Lucas, play-by-play
Jack Lazorko, color
BAYLOR-OKLAHOMA STATE SERIES HISTORY
Baylor and Oklahoma State meet for the 60th, 61st and 62nd times this weekend. Oklahoma State holds a 34-25 advantage in the all-time series, which dates back to an 8-7 Cowboys’ victory April 20, 1925, at Stillwater. Baylor holds a 6-4 advantage in the last 10 meetings. The Bears are 16-12 against Oklahoma State since dropping the first game of the 2000 series at Baylor Ballpark.
OSU leads the series 14-10 in games played at Stillwater. Baylor has lost each of its last four games at Allie P. Reynolds Stadium and six of its last seven. Each team has won three of the previous six Big 12 series at Stillwater. The Bears won the series in 1999, 2001 and 2003 but have never swept. The Cowboys won the series in 1997, 2005 and 2007, sweeping the Bears in 2007.
The Cowboys hold a 22-20 edge in the series since the inception of the Big 12 Conference in 1997; the series is tied 17-17 in Big 12 regular season games. The teams also have met five in the Big 12 Championship (OSU won in 1997, 2001 and 2008; Baylor won in 2005 and 2007) and three times in the 1999 NCAA Super Regional (OSU won two of three).
• Baylor has seven last-at-bat victories this season, the most by a Baylor team since the 2005 squad had 12.
• The Bears are 4-0 in extra-inning games this season. Baylor batters are 10-for-13 in extra innings.
• Baylor is 11-2 in one-run games. The Bears had a 10-game winning streak in one-run games snapped with their 5-4 loss Tuesday night at UT Arlington.
• Baylor is 9-2 following a loss this season and 2-0 following consecutive losses.
• The Bears are 14-3 when the temperature at first pitch is at least 70 degrees.
• Baylor ranks fourth in the Big 12 Conference in batting (.311), eighth in pitching (4.78) and eighth in fielding (.962) through games of April 15.
• Baylor is hitting .455 (15-for-33) with the bases loaded, including two grand slams. Meanwhile, the Bears are holding opponents to a .280 average (14-for-50) with the bases loaded.
• Baylor is hitting .357 (135-for-378) with runners in scoring position. The Bears are hitting .414 (46-for-111) with runners in scoring position over the last 10 games.
• Baylor has 91 two-out RBI this season, while holding its opponents to 46 two-out RBI. The Bears have produced 38 two-out RBI over the last 10 games.
• Baylor is hitting .322 (38-for-118) with two outs over the last 10 games.
• Baylor pinch hitters have tallied 17 hits this season. Kenton Gedwed leads the way with five hits in nine pinch-hit at bats.
• Baylor is hitting .405 (66-for-163) in the third inning and .326 (30-for-92) in the ninth inning.
• Baylor pitchers have a 1.565 groundout-to-flyout ratio (349 groundouts, 223 flyouts).
• 1B Dustin Dickerson ranks fifth in the league in batting average (.386), tied for fifth in hits (54), tied for first in hits per game (1.59), tied for ninth in runs (35), tied for ninth in home runs (8), seventh in total bases (87) and sixth in slugging percentage. ... In Big 12 games, Dickerson is tied for fourth in the league in hits (21), tied for first in runs (16), tied for fifth in home runs (4) and fourth in total bases (36).
• Dickerson has hit safely in 21 consecutive games, a career-long streak; it is the longest in the Big 12 this season and tied for the fourth-longest in Baylor history. He also has hit safely in 14 consecutive Big 12 games and in 20 of 21 league games dating back to last season.
• Dickerson’s next RBI will be the 100th of his career.
• SS Shaver Hansen ranks 14th in the Big 12 in batting average (.350), tied for seventh in runs (36), first in home runs (13), tied for fifth in RBI (38), tied for first in total bases (96) and third in slugging percentage (.701). ... In league games, Hansen ranks 16th in the conference in batting average (.356), tied for fourth in hits (21), tied for first in runs (16), first in home runs (8), first in RBI (19), tied for second in doubles (five), first in total bases (50) and second in slugging percentage (.847).
• Hansen is the first Baylor infielder with 10-plus home runs in a season since Matt Williams (19) and Eric Nelson (17) accomplished the feat in 1999.
• Hansen’s 13 home runs are the most by a Baylor player since Josh Ford had 14 in 2004.
• Nine of Hansen’s 13 home runs have come while playing shortstop. That ties Beamer Weems’ 2007 single-season school record for homers by a shortstop.
• Hansen has hit safely in 14 of the last 17 games with 10 home runs, 27 RBI and eight multiple-hit games during that time.
• 3B Raynor Campbell is tied for ninth in the league in home runs (8) and tied for 10th in triples (2). ... In Big 12 games, Campbell is tied for fifth in home runs (4), tied for sixth in doubles (4) and tied for fifth in total bases (35).
• Campbell is hitting .333 (14-for-42) in the month of April with five home runs, 15 RBI, four doubles, one triple, 14 runs scored and a .833 slugging percentage over 11 games. Campbell hit .197 (15-for-76) over the season’s first two months.
• RHP Logan Verrett ranks 17th in the conference in ERA (3.70), second in wins (7) and 10th in strikeouts (52). He leads all Big 12 freshmen in wins and strikeouts. ... In league games, Verrett is tied for second in wins (3) and tied for fifth in strikeouts (32). He leads all Big 12 freshmen in both categories.
• Verrett is tied for fourth nationally in wins.
• RHP Kendal Volz ranks 20th in the league in ERA (3.91). ... In conference games, Volz is 19th in ERA (5.17), tied for sixth in innings (31.1) and tied for fifth in strikeouts (32).
• Volz needs five strikeouts to reach 200 for his career.
• RHP Willie Kempf is tied for ninth in the Big 12 in wins (4); he is one of six league pitchers with a shutout this season. ... In league games, Kempf is tied for second in wins (3) and is one of three pitchers with a shutout.
• In Big 12 games, RF/LHP Aaron Miller ranks fifth in the conference in ERA (2.01), tied for ninth in wins (2), tied for fifth in strikeouts (32) and sixth in opponents’ batting average (.208). ... Miller also is tied for sixth in the league in all games with a .458 on base percentage.
• CF/RHP Brooks Pinckard is tied for 10th in the league with eight stolen bases, most among Big 12 freshmen. Five of Pinckard’s steals have come in conference games, tied for third in the league.
• OF Adam Hornung is tied for sixth in the Big 12 in doubles (11). He has four doubles in league play, tied for sixth in the conference.
OKLAHOMA STATE 14, BAYLOR 3 (7 INNINGS) • MAY 23, 2008 • BRICKTOWN BALLPARK • OKLAHOMA CITY
Rebel Ridling was 3-for-6 with two home runs and six RBI as Oklahoma State defeated Baylor 14-3 in seven innings in pool-play action at the Big 12 Conference Championship at Bricktown Ballpark. The Bears saw their five-game winning streak in pool play at the event end, losing in pool play for the first time since 2006. The Cowboys snapped a nine-game losing streak in Big 12 Championship play, winning for the first time since 2005. Baylor both started and ended the streak.
Oklahoma State scored six runs on six hits in the third inning, breaking a 1-1 tie and taking control of the game. Matt Hague’s three-run homer started the scoring. After Dean Green’s double, Ridling laced the first of his two homers to right-center. Donnie Webb capped the inning with an RBI single as the Cowboys sent 11 batters to the plate in the frame.
After OSU added a run in the top of the fourth, Baylor answered with two runs on three hits in the bottom of the inning. Paul Miles plated the first run with an RBI double, and Raynor Campbell scored Miles with an RBI single on the very next pitch.
However, that was the end of the offense for the Bears. Oklahoma State pushed its lead to 10-3 on Luis Flores’ two-run double in the sixth. Ridling brought the game to an early end with a grand slam in the top of the seventh. That pushed the Cowboys’ lead to 11 runs and brought the league’s 10-run mercy rule into affect. Baylor put two runners on base with one out in the bottom of the seventh, but reliever Matt Peck’s first pitch of the game induced a game-ending double play from Aaron Miller.
OSU starter Andrew Oliver lasted 6.1 innings and earned the victory, allowing three runs on nine hits and three walks with 11 strikeouts. Baylor starter Craig Fritsch was saddled with the loss; he was touched for eight runs on 11 hits and two walks with one strikeout over 4.0 innings.
Miles and Dustin Dickerson both had two-hit games for the Bears. All nine starters had at least one hit for the Cowboys, led by Webb’s four-hit night.
DICKERSON NAMED BIG 12 PLAYER OF THE WEEK
1B Dustin Dickerson was named Big 12 Conference Player of the Week, the league office announced Monday. Dickerson is the third Baylor player so honored this season, joining Aaron Miller (March 9) and Shaver Hansen (last week).
Dickerson earned Big 12 Player of the Week honors for the first time in his career. He did so after going 12-for-20 in five games last week with four multiple-hit outings. He had three doubles, a home run, three RBI and eight runs scored on the week. His biggest hit was a bases-loaded, walk-off single in the bottom of the 11th in the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader against Missouri. Dickerson followed that with a 4-for-4 outing in the nightcap; he had a double, a homer and four runs scored in that game. He was 8-for-13 in the Missouri series.
Dickerson’s game-winning hit against Missouri was his second walk-off hit of the season. He also had a game-winning, two-run single in the top of the ninth two weeks ago at Kansas. The McGregor, Texas, native leads the Bears and ranks fifth in the Big 12 with a .379 batting average. Dickerson has not seen his batting average drop below .339 since his fourth at bat of the season.
A product of Waco’s Midway High School, Dickerson is the 17th Baylor player so honored in the league’s 13-year history, joining Mike Huggins (three times), Jon Topolski (twice), Charley Carter (twice), Chris Durbin (twice), Josh Ford (twice), Jaime Bubela, Matt Williams, Ross Bennett, Tim Hartshorn, Michael Griffin, Paul Witt, Chase Gerdes, Beamer Weems, Ben Booker, Miller and Hansen.
BAYLOR ON TELEVISION
Baylor is 29-33 all-time in televised games since 1988. The Bears were 1-4 in such games last season. Saturday is the first of three scheduled television games for Baylor this season. The Bears are 4-11 all-time in games carried by the Fox Sports Network, including a 4-9 mark in FSN national broadcasts.
BEARS COMING THROUGH IN LATE INNINGS
Baylor has seven wins this season in its last at bat, including six walk-off victories. Four times the Bears have produced extra-inning, walk-off hits; 1B Dustin Dickerson produced two of those four hits. Dickerson also had a game-winning, two-run single in the top of the ninth in the Kansas series opener; the hit snapped a 6-6 tie and the Bears held on for an 8-6 win.
DICKERSON CONTINUES STREAK
1B Dustin Dickerson was 3-for-5 with two home runs, a double and five RBI Wednesday night against UT Arlington, pushing his career-long hitting streak to 21 games. That is the longest streak in the Big 12 this season and tied for the fourth-longest streak in Baylor history. His streak is the Bears’ longset since David Murphy’s 21-game run in 2003. Dickerson is hitting .438 (35-for-80) during the streak.
Dickerson also has hit safely in 14 consecutive Big 12 games after going 0-for-4 in the Bears’ league opener at Texas A&M. He has hit safely in 20 of 21 league games dating back to last season. His 14-game league hitting streak is the sixth-longest in Baylor history and the longest in the Big 12 this season.
Here is a look at the longest hitting streaks in the Big 12 this season (through games of April 15):
21 — Dustin Dickerson, Baylor *
17 — Aaron Miller, Baylor
15 — Garrett Buechele, Oklahoma
15 — Chris Richburg, Texas Tech
14 — Tony Thompson, Kansas **
13 — Adam Bailey, Nebraska
13 — Bryant Hernandez, Oklahoma
13 — Neil Medchill, Oklahoma State
13 — Tony Thompson, Kansas *
12 — Michael Dabbs, Oklahoma State
12 — David Narodowski, Kansas
* - active; ** - Thompson also hit safely in the final nine games of the 2008 season.
HANSEN HOMERUN TALLY AMONG BAYLOR BESTS
With 13 home runs on the season, SS Shaver Hansen leads Big 12 lead in round-trippers; he also leads the conference with eight homers in league games. Hansen ranked 11th nationally in home runs through games of April 12; his 0.39 per-game average ranked 13th nationally.
Hansen is the first Baylor infielder with 10-plus home runs in a season since Michael Griffin had 10 in 2004. Hansen’s 13 homers are the most by a Baylor player since Josh Ford had 14 in 2004 and the most by a Baylor infielder since 1999 when Matt Williams had 19 and Eric Nelson had 17. Nine of Hansen’s homers have come while playing shortstop, tying Beamer Weems’ 2007 single-season school record.
A product of Grand Junction, Colo., Hansen has 10 home runs in the last 17 games, homering in eight of those 17 games. He is hitting .400 (26-for-65) in that time with 27 RBI, three doubles, 21 runs, 59 total bases and a .908 slugging percentage.
BOOKER CONTINUES WARMING TREND
In what has been a trend throughout his career, LF Ben Booker has pulled out of his early season slump over the past month. Booker has a career batting average of .229 (43-for-188) prior to March 17 and a .321 career batting average (152-for-473) after March 17.
This has happened each season of his career. As a freshman in 2006, he hit .212 (7-for-33) through March 16 and .282 (37-for-131) the rest of the season. In 2007, he hit .254 (17-for-67) through March 16 and .327 (54-for-165) the rest of the season. Last year, he hit .239 (16-for-67) through March 16 and .309 (43-for-139) the rest of the season.
The 2009 season has been no different. Booker limped to a 3-for-21 start with nine strikeouts, but he is hitting .474 (18-for-38) in 16 games since March 17. In that time, he has one home run, 10 RBI, 16 runs, three doubles, 24 total bases and an .632 slugging percentage. Furthermore, Booker has struck out only five times since March 17 and is 5-for-6 in stolen bases.
Baylor is 19-7 in extra-inning games since the start of the 2003 season. After limping to a 1-3 record last season, the Bears already are 4-0 in extra frames this year. The Bears’ 10-inning, 2-1 victory over Pacific in the 2009 season opener snapped a three-game losing streak in such games.
Five of the 19 wins over the past six-plus seasons have come on an opponent’s home field (Arizona twice, Arizona State, Texas and Vanderbilt). Three of the 15 wins were either neutral-site games or games at Baylor Ballpark in which the Bears were the visitor. Four of the 15 wins have come in postseason play, including two at the Big 12 Tournament and one at the College World Series.
Baylor’s luck was not as good in 2002 when the Bears were 1-5 in extra-inning games, including a span of three consecutive games lost in extra innings in mid-May.
VERRETT AMONG ELITE CLUB
RHP Logan Verrett is the 11th Baylor freshman to post at least six wins. Furthermore, he is only the fifth to accomplish the feat during head coach Steve Smith’s tenure, joining Ryan LaMotta (2003), Abe Woody (2003), Kendal Volz (2007) and Shawn Tolleson (2008). Aaron Lineweaver established Baylor’s record for wins by a freshman with nine in 1993.
Verrett, who is tied for fourth nationally in wins, is the fifth Baylor freshman to win at least seven games and the first to win accomplish the feat since LaMotta was 7-3 in 2003. Verrett’s 7-0 start tied the school record for consecutive wins to start a career by a freshman; Ted Richardson finished the 1985 season at 7-0.
Baylor again plays five games next week, including four home games. The Bears travel to Huntsville, Texas, for a 6:30 p.m. CDT first pitch Tuesday at Sam Houston State; the game originally was scheduled for March 24 but was postponed due to inclement weather. Baylor hosts Texas State at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday; the game originally was scheduled for April 21 but was moved back one day in order to accomodate the rescheduled Sam Houston State game.
Next weekend, the Bears host Oklahoma for a three-game Big 12 Conference series at Baylor Ballpark. The Bears and Sooners meet Friday at 6:30 p.m., Saturday at 1 p.m. and Sunday at 1:30 p.m. Saturday’s game will be televised nationally on FSN.