Spartans Open Home Big Ten Season with Michigan
 
 
 
Junior Joel Fisher is seventh in the Big Ten in slugging percentage with a .513 mark.
 
Junior Joel Fisher is seventh in the Big Ten in slugging percentage with a .513 mark.
 
 

April 4, 2013

Games 26-28: Michigan State (17-8, 2-1) vs. Michigan (13-14, 1-2)
 Dates Friday, April 5 - Sunday, April 7
 Location East Lansing, Mich. (Friday and Sunday) | McLane Baseball Stadium (2,500)
Ann Arbor, Mich. (Saturday) | Ray Fisher Stadium (4,000)
 Live Stream Big Ten Digital Network on Spartan All-Access
 Live Audio Spartan Sports Network
 Statistics Michigan State | Michigan
 Notes Michigan State | Michigan
 Social Media Updates @statebaseball | Facebook

Game 1
 Date | Time Friday, April 5 | 3:05 p.m. ET
 Pitching Matchup MSU: Sr. RHP Andrew Waszak (3-1, 2.51 ERA) vs.
UM: So. LHP Trent Szkutnik (2-4, 3.97 ERA)

Game 2
 Date | Time Saturday, April 6 | 4:05 p.m. ET
 Pitching Matchup MSU: Jr. RHP David Garner (4-1, 3.38 ERA) vs.
UM: Fr. LHP Evan Hill (4-1, 2.06 ERA)

Game 3
 Date | Time Sunday, April 7 | 1:05 p.m. ET
 Pitching Matchup MSU: So. RHP Mick VanVossen (3-1, 3.03 ERA) vs.
UM: R-Jr. LHP Logan McAnallen (1-2, 3.34 ERA)

SPARTANS OPEN HOME BIG TEN SEASON WITH MICHIGAN
Michigan State has won 11 of its last 12 games and welcomes Michigan to McLane Baseball Stadium for the first home series of the season, starting Friday at 3:05 p.m. The Spartans are coming off a pair of midweek wins over Central Michigan and Eastern Michigan; MSU opened Big Ten play with a series win at Ohio State last weekend. The Spartan pitching staff is second in the conference in opposing batting average at .225 and first in hits allowed with 178 on the season.

MSU will travel to Ann Arbor on Saturday, game time is scheduled for 4:05 p.m., before hosting the series finale on Sunday at 1:05 p.m. on Kobs Field at McLane Stadium.

The Spartans trail the all-time series, but topped the Wolverines in a 13-inning game in their last meeting, 10-8 on April 8, 2012. Michigan has shutout its last two opponents, defeating Bowling Green on Tuesday, 2-0, and Central Michigan on Wednesday, 7-0. The Wolverines opened Big Ten play at Minnesota last weekend, taking one of three games from the Golden Gophers.

MSU senior right-hander Andrew Waszak will get the call for the Spartans on Friday in the series opener. Waszak took a no-decision in his first conference start at Ohio State. He is tied for fourth in the Big Ten in strikeouts (34), sixth in innings pitched (46.2), eighth in opponent batting average (.225), and 12th with a 2.51 ERA.

Junior right-hander David Garner (4-1) gets the nod on Saturday. Garner took his first loss of the season at Ohio State, allowing seven runs in 6 2/3 innings pitched. He is also tied for fourth in the Big Ten in strikeouts (34), tied for second in wins (4), and is seventh in innings pitched (45.1).

On Sunday, sophomore RHP Mick VanVossen will get the start. He threw his first complete game last weekend against Ohio State, allowing just two runs on seven hits. He is fourth in the Big Ten with and opposing batting average of .209.

Live stats and radio broadcast will be available for all three games with Scott Moore on the call for the Spartan Sports Network. Both home contests will also be streamed live on the Big Ten Digital Network.

STARTING NINE
1) STREAKING SPARTANS
Michigan State has won 11 of its last 12 games, including a series win at Ohio State last weekend. The Spartans were riding a season-best eight-game winning streak before falling to Ohio State on March 30. Michigan State heads into the weekend with a 17-8 record, the same mark through 25 games of the 2012 season, when the Spartans made it to the NCAA Tournament.

2) CHECK US OUT ON BTN.COM
Both home games this weekend will be streamed live on the Big Ten Digital Network as part of Michigan State Student-U. Michigan State will have 11 other games streamed live this season and three games live on the Big Ten Network. The Crosstown Showdown against the Lansing Lugnuts will be the first game to air live on the Big Ten Network on April 11. MSU's contests against Purdue on April 26 and 28 will also be live on BTN.

3) MICHIGAN SERIES ON SPARTAN SPORTS NETWORK
The entire Michigan series will be broadcast live on SpartansSportsNetwork.com and be carried on the SSN 24/7 app for tablets and smartphones. Play-by-play announcer Scott Moore will be on the call for all three games this weekend as the Spartans take on the Wolverines.

4) MARK DANTONIO TO THROW OUT THE FIRST PITCH
Head football coach Mark Dantonio will be throwing out the first pitch on Friday at 2:55 p.m. as the Spartans open the home Big Ten season against the Michigan Wolverines at McLane Baseball Stadium. Game time is set for 3:05 p.m. on Friday and MSU will also host Michigan on Sunday at 1:05 p.m.

5) BASEBALL AMERICA PROJECTIONS
Halfway through the regular season, Baseball America released its midseason projection on the NCAA field of 64. The Spartans are listed as a No. 3 seed in the Louisville region. Indiana is the only other Big Ten team in the projected field and three other non-conference opponents are also made the list: Austin Peay, Notre Dame and Kentucky.

6) CROSSTOWN SHOWDOWN APPROACHES
The seventh annual Crosstown Showdown is just around the corner as the Spartans will face the Lugnuts on Thursday, April 11 at 7:05 p.m. Tickets are on sale now at both MSUSpartans.com and LansingLugnuts.com. All tickets for the game are priced at $10. The Spartan Ticket Office (517-355-1610), located at Jenison Field House, will also take phone and walkup sales.

The event has drawn record crowds to Cooley Law School Stadium, including a stadium-record 12,997 fans for the 2012 game. Crowds of more than 12,000 also attended the 2008 and 2009 contests. In the six years of the Crosstown Showdown, the game has attracted nearly 60,000 fans for an average of 9,844

7) A GLANCE AT THE RPI
The Spartans check in at No. 26 in the latest Rating Percentage Index (RPI) by the NCAA and are No. 23 according to both WarrenNolan.com and Boyd's World. Michigan State has upcoming games with Indiana and Notre Dame on the schedule and both are ranked in the top-10.

8) MIDWEEK RECAP
The Spartans opened the home season on Tuesday afternoon with a 4-2 over Central Michigan at McLane Stadium. In his first start following the no-hitter, Chase Rihtarchik allowed the only three hits in the contest and earned his third win of the season. Against Eastern Michigan, MSU busted open a 2-2 tie with a seven-run eighth inning to cruise to a 9-3 win. Anthony Cheky, Blaise Salter and Jordan Keur each recorded RBI singles and Ryan Richardson added a 2-RBI single in the eighth inning.

9) SPARTANS STACKING UP AGAINST THE BIG TEN
As a team, Michigan State ranks third in the conference in both home runs (9) and doubles (48), while also holding the fifth spot in slugging percentage (.366) and sixth in batting average (.274). The Spartans boast the second best fielding percentage in the Big Ten (.977) and have committed only 22 errors all season.

Individually, Joel Fisher is second in the Big Ten in doubles with nine and seventh in slugging percentage with a .513 mark. Sophomore Anthony Cheky tops the conference in stolen bases with 15 and Ryan Krill is tied for the lead in sac flies with four.

SCOUTING THE OPPONENTS
Michigan (13-14, 1-2)
• Is riding a 20 inning shutout streak after beating Bowling Green, 2-0, and Central Michigan, 7-0.
• Took one of three from Minnesota to open Big Ten play.
• Sophomore Zach Zott, who is hitting .350 (21-for-60), was 2-for-4 with a run-scoring triple in the first inning to extend his career-best hitting streak to nine games.
• Freshman Jacob Cronenworth, who leads the team with 20 RBI, is second of the team with nine multi-hit games.
Junior Michael O'Neill leads the team with a .381 average and has hits in 24 of the 27 games this season and 28 of his last 31 games.
• Michigan's five-pitcher shutout over Central Michigan Wednesday was the second straight for the Wolverines and the third of the season.

Series History vs. Michigan
MSU trails, 102-194-2
Last meeting: MSU 10, UM 8 (13) (April 8, 2012)