April 11, 2013
| Date | Time
||Friday, April 12 | 3:05 p.m. ET
| Pitching Matchup
||MSU: Sr. RHP Andrew Waszak (3-2, 2.89 ERA) vs.
IU: Jr. LHP Joey DeNato (4-1, 3.10 ERA)
| Date | Time
||Saturday, April 13 | 1:05 p.m. ET
| Pitching Matchup
||MSU: Jr. RHP David Garner (4-2, 3.51 ERA) vs.
IU: So. LHP Kyle Hart (5-0, 2.12 ERA)
| Date | Time
|| Sunday, April 14 | 1:05 p.m. ET
| Pitching Matchup
||MSU: So. RHP Mick VanVossen (3-2, 3.33 ERA) vs.
IU: R-So. RHP Aaron Slegers (5-1, 1.41 ERA)
SPARTANS WELCOME BIG TEN-LEADING INDIANA TO EAST LANSING
Michigan State baseball hosts its second straight Big Ten series this weekend with No. 12 Indiana in town. The Spartans dropped three games to Michigan last weekend but picked up a midweek win over Western Michigan, 10-1. Indiana took two of three from Illinois last weekend and beat Evansville on Tuesday. The Hoosiers boast the top offensive team in the conference, leading the Big Ten in 13 different categories. Indiana is hitting a Big Ten-best .318, while the Spartans are holding opposing teams to a .227 average, good for second in the Big Ten.
The Spartans and Hoosiers open the series on Friday at McLane Stadium at 3:05 p.m. The second game will be on Saturday at 1:05 p.m. and the series finale will be at 1:05 p.m. on Sunday.
Michigan State leads the all-time series but fell to the Hoosiers in the Big Ten Tournament last season, 4-3. Indiana has won 19 of its last 20 games and lost its first conference game of the season to Illinois on Sunday, March 7. The Hoosiers are ranked No. 12 in the country according to Baseball America and are No. 7 in the latest NCAA RPI.
MSU senior right-hander Andrew Waszak will get the call for the Spartans on Friday in the series opener. Waszak took his second loss of the year against Michigan last weekend and earned his first conference win at Ohio State. He is tied for seventh in the Big Ten in strikeouts (38), fifth in innings pitched (53.0) and ninth in opponent batting average (.231).
Junior right-hander David Garner (4-2) gets the nod on Saturday. Garner took his second loss of the season at Michigan, allowing five runs in six innings pitched. He is tied for fourth in the Big Ten in strikeouts (39), tied for second in wins (4), and is tied for seventh in innings pitched (51.1).
On Sunday, sophomore RHP Mick VanVossen will get the start. He threw his first complete game against Ohio State on March 31, allowing just two runs on seven hits. He is seventh in the Big Ten with and opposing batting average of .216.
Live stats will be available on MSUSpartans.com and Friday's game will be streamed live on the Big Ten Digital Network.
1) SOMETHING HAS TO GIVE
Indiana leads the Big Ten in 13 offensive categories, including batting average (.318), slugging percentage (.465) and on-base percentage (.402). The Spartans are second in the conference in opposing batting average holding hitters to a .227 mark. Michigan State is also fifth in the Big Ten in ERA at 3.33.
2) CROSSTOWN SHOWDOWN POSTPONED
The seventh annual Crosstown Showdown between the Lansing Lugnuts and the Spartans originally scheduled for Thursday, April 11, has been postponed due to severe weather and field conditions, the Lansing Lugnuts announced. The Crosstown Showdown, presented by Auto-Owners Insurance, has been rescheduled for Wednesday, May 1, as a 7-inning game. All existing tickets will be honored for the rescheduled date.
3) RIHTARCHIK SHINES AGAIN
Redshirt junior Chase Rihtarchik earned his fourth straight win of the season against Western Michigan on Tuesday. Rihtarchik allowed just three hits in seven innings and gave up just one run. In four starts this season, he is 4-0 with a 1.72 ERA. Rihtarchik is first in the Big Ten in opponent batting average at .108 and is fifth in ERA. He has allowed just 11 hits in 31.1 innings pitched. The highlight of the season was a no-hitter against Oakland back on March 23. It was MSU's first no-hitter since Nolan Moody in 2009.
4) Anthony Cheky AND Cam Gibson
Head coach Jake Boss has made it a point this season to play both sophomore Anthony Cheky and freshman Cam Gibson at the same time, despite both playing center field. While one patrols the outfield, the other is usually penciled in as the team's designated hitter. The obvious reason is having speed at the top and bottom halves of the lineup. Cheky is second in the conference with 15 steals and Gibson has seven. Both boast an on-base percentage above .350.
5) CONSISTENT KEUR
Senior captain Jordan Keur has been the most consistent at the plate for the Spartans this season. Keur is batting .330 and leads the team with 20 RBIs. Keur has started all 29 games in left field and also leads the team with a .426 on-base percentage, good for ninth in the Big Ten. In the preseason, Keur was named one of the Big Ten Players to Watch.
6) MIDWEEK RECAP
The Spartans defeated the Broncos, 10-1, on Tuesday afternoon at McLane Stadium and had 13 hits in the game. Junior Joel Fisher had scored two runs and had three RBIs. Redshirt junior Chase Rihtarchik had another solid outing and notched his fourth consecutive win on the season after allowing just one run and three hits against Western Michigan. The Spartans answered by scoring five runs in the bottom of the first inning after giving up one in the top of the frame. Jordan Keur had a RBI-single down the left field line and Ryan Krill grounded into a double-play, scoring one Spartan run. Fisher came through with a two-RBI single and both PJ Nowak and Cam Gibson also notched RBIs for Michigan State.
7) MULTI-HIT GAMES AGAINST THE BRONCOS
After struggling at the plate against Michigan, seven different Spartans recorded a hit and five had multi-hit games against the Broncos. Junior Joel Fisher led the way, going 2-for-3 with two runs to go along with three RBIs. Cam Gibson, Jordan Keur, Jimmy Pickens and Ryan Richardson all had two hits on the day.
8) THREE SPARTANS IN THE TOP 10 IN OBA
Michigan State has three pitchers that rank in the top-10 in opponent batting average. Redshirt junior Chase Rihtarchik leads the team and the conference with a .108 mark. Sophomore Mick VanVossen checks in at seventh, holding hitters to a .216 average and senior Andrew Waszak is 10th with a .231 mark.
9) SUFFERING THE FIRST SWEEP OF THE SEASON
The Spartans suffered their first sweep of the season last weekend against Michigan. It was the first time that MSU was swept by Michigan since 2008.
CHECK US OUT ON BTN.COM
Michigan State will have 11 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.
SELECT GAMES ON SPARTAN SPORTS NETWORK
Michigan State will have six more games broadcast live on SpartansSportsNetwork.com and be carried on the SSN 24/7 app for tablets and smartphones this season. The next scheduled game is the Clash at Comerica against Central Michigan on April 17. Other games include Notre Dame on April 24, Purdue on April 27 and the Illinois series, May 3-5.
FISHER SECOND IN THE BIG TEN IN DOUBLES
Junior catcher and infielder Joel Fisher is second in the Big Ten in doubles with 10 and is eighth in slugging percentage with a .495 mark. In his last 10 games, Fisher is hitting .314 with 11 hits in 34 at-bats.