Spartans Continue Homestand by Hosting CMU and WMU This Week
April 7, 2014
Midweek Quick Hitters
Michigan State brings a Big Ten-best seven-game winning streak into Tuesday's game ... The Spartans' streak is their longest since they won eight straight last season from March 15-29.
Jimmy Pickens got on base in all three games on the weekend and now has reached safely in a team-best 16 consecutive contests ... Pickens' career-high 13-game hitting streak came to an end in the opener vs. Siena, but he drew a walk in the game and then picked up hits in each of the next two.
The pitching staff combined to hold Siena to just two runs (one earned) in the three-game series vs. Siena, good for a 0.33 ERA on the weekend ... In surrendering only 11 hits - 10 of which were singles - in 27.0 innings, the Spartan staff held the Saints to a .117 batting average.
MSU pitchers have lowered the team ERA to 2.90 - its lowest since the fourth game of the season ... The staff has issued two or fewer walks in seven of the last 10 games, while it has given up a total of just three extra-base hits in the last six games.
Michigan State leads the Big Ten in opponent batting average at .245 and has given up the fewest hits - 222 - of any team in the league.
Michigan State has slowly been improving its team batting average and enters play on Tuesday with a .256 average, which is its best mark since Feb. 22 when it was hitting .258.
The Spartans have held opponents to three runs or fewer in 14 games this season, going 13-1 in such contests.
MSU has had is most success driving in runs in the middle innings, outscoring opponents by a margin of 51-16 in the fifth through seventh frames.
The Spartans are 12-1 when scoring first and 6-0 when they score in the first inning.
About Central Michigan
Central Michigan is 19-12 on the season and is first in the West Division of the MAC with a record of 8-1 in the conference ... CMU is coming off a weekend where it defeated Buffalo twice before falling in the series finale, 11-3 ... CMU leads the MAC in pitching with a 2.88 ERA and is holding opponents to a .242 batting average ... Cody Leichman leads the team with a .344 batting average and his 30 RBIs are second-best in the MAC.
About Western Michigan
Western is 13-14 on the season and 4-5 in the MAC ... WMU is coming off a weekend where it dropped two of three games against Bowling Green ... Brett Sunde leads the Broncos with 23 RBIs and Kurt Hoekstra leads the team with a .344 batting average ... As a team, WMU is hitting .265, while its pitching staff has a 4.08 ERA and an opponent batting average of .288.
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