May 8, 2014
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - The 8th ranked Indiana University baseball team (32-12, 16-2 Big Ten) plays its final road series of the Big Ten schedule this weekend with at trip to Penn State. The Hoosiers are 8-1 on the road in Big Ten play this season and have won 10-of-11 on the road in conference play dating back to the final series of the 2013 season. Indiana enters the final six games of Big Ten play with a three-game lead in the B1G standings.
After sweeping the series against Purdue over the weekend, Indiana sits at No. 4 in the NCAA RPI rankings. The Hoosiers are also firmly inside the Top 20 in most of the national polls this week as well, topping out at No. 8 in the Collegiate Baseball News poll.
Senior LHP Joey DeNato, who will be the starting pitcher for Friday night's game, was named Big Ten Pitcher of the Week on Monday. It is his third honor of the season and the fourth of his career. He tossed seven shutout innings last week against Purdue to improve to 10-1 on the season. He is the Indiana all-time leader in wins, innings pitched and strikeouts.
In Big Ten play, Indiana boasts the league's top team batting average (.331) as well as the top team ERA (1.71), nearly a full run better than Nebraska in second place. Dustin DeMuth (.422), Scott Donley (.408) and Sam Travis(.397) all rank in the top five in batting in Big Ten play as well.
Saturday's starting pitcher, Christian Morris, has Big Ten ERA of 1.56 (3rd) and DeNato's ERA is 2.18 in Big Ten play to rank in the top six among conference pitchers.
Probable Starting Pitchers
Friday, May 9 - 6:30 pm ET
Sr. LHP #23 Joey DeNato(10-1, 2,06) vs. Sr.., LHP #28 Tim Dunn (1-1, 4.50)
Saturday, May 10 - 2:00 pm ET
So. RHP #21 Christian Morris(3-3, 2.25) vs. r-Jr., RHP #15 T.J. Jann (1-6, 5.29)
Sunday, May 11 - 1:00 pm ET
Sr. LHP #27 Brian Korte(2-0, 2.08) vs. TBA
DID YOU KNOW?
• Senior Dustin DeMuthleads all NCAA active hitters - regardless of division - with 293 career hits.
• Senior LHP Joey DeNatoleads all NCAA Division I active pitchers with 34 career victories and ranks second in career innings pitched (339.0).
• Junior Sam Travisranks 14th among all NCAA active hitters with 153 career RBI.
• Junior Kyle Schwarberranks 11th among active Division I players with 161 runs scored.
• The Hoosiers' team ERA of 2.39 ranks 11th in the country this season
• Over the last 12 games, the IU bullpen has pitched a total of 39.0 innings, giving up five earned runs on 27 hits and 41 strikeouts.
CLINCHING SCENARIO THIS WEEKEND
Indiana holds a three-game lead over second-place Nebraska and Illinois heading into the weekend, and aims to clinch at least a share of the Big Ten Championship. The Hoosiers can clinch a share as early as Saturday with two victories, a Michigan State win over Nebraska on Saturday and an Iowa victory over the Illini on either Friday or Saturday. IU won the 2013 Big Ten regular season title and went on to win the Big Ten Tournament as well on the way to a place in the College World Series.
ROAD, SWEET B1G ROAD
After posting back-to-back series sweeps at Ohio State and at Iowa this season and then winning 2-fo-3 at Illinois, the Hoosiers have won their last 10 out of the last 11 Big Ten road games dating back to the end of the 2013 regular season (2 wins at Ohio State).
Senior LHP Joey DeNatohas etched his name firmly at the top of most pitching lists at Indiana. He is the career record holder for wins (34), strikeouts (274) and innings pitched (339.0). He is a Big Ten best 10-1 this season with an ERA of 2.06. In 12 starts this season, he has posted a quality start in 10 (6.0 IP and 3 ER or less). His most recent start vs. Purdue, he surrendered just five hits over seven shutouts innings to get the win.
TRAVIS TRUMPS ALL
Junior 1B Sam Travisis hitting a team-leading .372 overall this season and .397 in Big Ten play. He leads the Big Ten in hits (68) and RBI (46). In Big Ten games, he has registered four home runs and a team-best 19 RBI. The right-handed power hitter also has a pair of multi-home run games to his credit this season.
SCHWARBER IS SCHWINGIN' IT
Junior C/OF Kyle Schwarberhas continued to anchor the heart of the IU lineup, slotting into the No. 2 spot in the batting order after spending some time early in the year in the leadoff spot. He's hitting at a .345 clip with eight home runs to go with 230 RBI and a team-best 45 runs scored. Defensively, he has also committed just three errors in 290 chances (.990).
HOT CORNER ON A HOT STREAK
IU third baseman Dustin DeMuthis swinging a hot stick lately, despite seeing his 16-game hit streak come to an end in the series finale at Iowa. During the hit streak, he hit .452 with 12 RBI and 13 runs scored. In addition, DeMuth has reached base successfully in 41 consecutive contests entering the Penn State series. The senior, who was selected in the 8th round of the MLB draft last season and elected to return to Indiana, is second on the team with a .368 batting average in all games. In Big Ten play, that average increases to .422.
NOLDEN NAILS `EM
Outfielder Will Noldenhas earned his reputation as one of the best throwing arms in the Big Ten, and he showcased that right arm against Western Kentucky. In the seventh inning of a scoreless game, he rifled a perfect throw to the plate to cut down the go-ahead run. He has 16 career outfield assists. Later in the game, he would come around to score the winning run in the 10th inning after reaching on a single earlier in the frame.
In Big Ten play, Nolden is hitting .365 with seven RBI and nine runs scored.
Freshman relief pitcher Jake Kelzer has one of the biggest arms in the bullpen for the Hoosiers. In his last eight outings, he has registered 17 strikeouts in 9.1 innings while giving up just six hits. For the season, he has racked up 33 strikeouts in 19.1 innings of work.