Delaware Baseball Hosts Hofstra in Key CAA Weekend Series at Bob Hannah Stadium
April 27, 2012
NEWARK, Del. – The University of Delaware Blue Hens baseball team hosts the Hofstra University Pride for their first Colonial Athletic Association, weekend series of the month of April that will that will run through Sunday at Bob Hannah Stadium. The action begins on Friday, April 27, with first pitch set for 3 p.m. Saturday’s game will have a 1 p.m. start while Sunday’s finale of the series has a 1 p.m. game time.
The Blue Hens look to remain above .500 as the Blue Hens enter the weekend series losing their only mid-week game, Tuesday’s 6-4 loss at Rutgers. Hofstra defeated New York Tech in their only mid-week game and enters the series tied with Delaware for third place in the CAA with an 11-7 record.
The Pride (22-17, 11-7 CAA), who was ranked 10th in the Colonial Athletic Association’s preseason coach’s poll, enters the weekend series after an 19-6 victory over New York Tech on Tuesday. Hofstra is currently riding a two-game winning streak, but have lost five of their last nine games. The Pride did have a season-long, seven-game winning streak from March 31 through April 10.
Hofstra’s offense leads the CAA with a .336 (463-1378) team batting average and is the only school in the conference with .400-plus on base (.423) and slugging percentages (.485). Of the 463 hits that Hofstra has collected, 141 (104 doubles, 10 triples and 27 home runs) have been for extra-bases. The Pride have four of the CAA’s top five hitters in their starting lineup with Danny Poma (.451), Jared Hammer (.400), Matt Ford (.388) and Dalton Rouleau (.380). Poma, a preseason All-CAA selection, leads the CAA in hits (74), doubles (22), runs (55), stolen bases (24), total bases (114) and slugging percentage (.713). Hammer, a CAA Player of the Week winner, leads the CAA with 48 RBI and 31 walks.
Through 39 games, Hofstra’s pitching staff sits seventh in the CAA with a 5.50 (133 ER/323.0 IP) team earned-run average and has issued the second-most walks in the conference (186). They are the only pitching staff in the CAA to average over five walks per game. The Pride’s pitchers have also yielded the third-highest opponent batting average (.295) in the conference. Starter John Tiedemann ranks in the CAA top 10 with an 8.32 SO/9.0 IP ratio and held the opposition to a .246 batting average.
BEHIND THE BLUE HEN NUMBERS
The Blue Hens (20-19, 11-7 CAA) hosts their second CAA, weekend series of the month after enjoying their CAA bye weekend last week. UD enters the series splitting their last six games with a 3-3 record, but have won four of their last six CAA games. Delaware’s 6-4 los to Rutgers on Tuesday, April 24, was their only non-conference game this week.
Delaware’s pitching staff sits fifth in the CAA with a team ERA of 4.88 (182 ER/336.0 IP) and ranks fourth in the association with 287 strikeouts. The Blue Hens pitching staff sits atop the CAA leaderboard with 7.69 strikeouts per nine innings. Devon Pearson (6) and Stephen Richter (5) rank in the top five of the CAA in saves. Pearson also sits in the top five of the country in ERA at 0.76 (3 ER/35.2 IP). Friday starter, Eric, Young, sits in the CAA top 10 with 60.1 innings pitched.
Blue Hens have a team batting average of .276 (363-for-1312), which puts Delaware ninth in CAA. Nick Ferdinand (above right) has collected a hit in 14 of his last 16 games played where the outfielder has hit (20-for-66) during that span. Alex Maruri has ratcheted a multi-RBI game in each of the last two CAA weekend series. Jimmy Yezzo has been on an offensive tear over the last 13 games, where the sophomore has collected hits in 12 of the 13 games in that span, Yezzo has raised his average from .250 to .347 during this hot streak. The team has 84 multi-hit games with Tyler Powell leading the charge as the freshman has 12 multi-hit games on the season. Powell also leads the team with a .366 (41-for-112), which puts him seventh in the CAA in batting average.
DELAWARE VS. HOFSTRA SERIES HISTORY
Entering this weekend’s series Delaware and Hofstra have played 75 times with the Blue Hens owning a 61-14 record over the Pride. Last year, UD took two-of-three games against Hofstra in New York. The first time the Blue Hens and Pride played was in 1951.
Game One – Friday, 3:00 p.m. (Live Stats)
UD – Eric Young, Sr. RHP [4-3, 4.03 ERA (27 ER/60.1 IP), 45 SO]
Young takes the ball in the series opener for the Blue Hens on the heels of his fourth victory of the season on April 13 versus VCU. The right-hander held the Rams to one earned run on seven hits, two walks and five strikeouts in eight innings pitched. Young has the lowest ERA among Delaware starters with a 4.03 average and leads the staff with 60.1 innings pitched. During the week of 2/28 he was named CAA Pitcher of the Week, after he tossed eight scoreless innings and held The Citadel on February 24, to three hits, two walks and six strikeouts for his first win of the season.
HU – Joe Burg, Jr., LHP [3-0, 5.61 ERA (16 ER/25.2 IP), 19 SO]
Makes his second start of the season in Friday’s opener against Delaware. In his only start on the season he threw a season-high five innings on the mound on April 10, against NYIT where he held the Bears to one earned run on four hits, three walks and one strikeout. In his 14 other appearances out of the bullpen, Burg has a 6.68 ERA (15 ER/20.2 IP) and 17 strikeouts.
Game Two – Saturday, 1:00 p.m. (Live Stats)
UD – Corey Crispell, Sr.-r, RHP [4-2, 4.40 ERA (28 ER/57.2 IP), 36 SO]
Crispell enters weekend with making his ninth start (11th appearance) for the Blue Hens this season. Suffered a loss in his last start against VCU on April 14, where the right-hander was charged with eight runs (six earned) on nine hits, three walks and five strikeouts in 6.2 innings pitched. In Crispell’s eight starts this year, the Blue Hens have posted a 6-2 record.
HU – John Tiedemann, Jr., RHP [4-3, 5.60 ERA (33 ER/53.0 IP), 49 SO]
Tiedemann has been the workhorse for the Pride’s starting staff as the right-hander has made 10 starts and leads the team with 53.0 innings pitched. In his last start on April 20 versus James Madison he received a no-decision after the Dukes scored eight runs on six hits and five walks in 3.2 innings on the mound. Tiedemann has shown brilliance on the mound in CAA play, as the right-hander threw back-to-back starts of eight-plus innings of work while holding Georgia State and UNCW to two runs or less.
Game Three – Sunday, 1:00 p.m. (Live Stats)
UD – Chad Kuhl, So., RHP [2-4, 4.81 ERA (30 ER/48.2 IP), 47 SO]
Kuhl takes the ball for the 10th time this the season after earned his second win of the season on April 15, against VCU. The right-hander tossed six innings on the mound and yielded two earned runs on five hits, two walks and six strikeouts. He leads UD’s staff with 47 strikeouts. In five CAA starts, Kuhl has averaged 8.70 (35 SO/36.2 IP) strikeouts per nine innings and tallied the Blue Hens only 10-strikeout game (March 18 vs. UNCW). The right-hander has reached the sixth inning in every one of his CAA starts.
HU – David Jesch, Fr., RHP [4-0, 3.49 ERA (19 ER/49.0 IP), 42 SO]
Hofstra looks to build on their 8-0 record when Jesch takes the mound in the CAA finale against Delaware. In his last start on April 21 against JMU, Jesch was handed a no-decision after he yielded nine runs (six earned) on seven hits, three walks and two strikeouts in three innings on the mound. Excluding his last start, Jesch has averaged over five innings on the mound and less than two runs a start in CAA action.