Date: Feb. 15-17, 2013 (4 p.m./1:30 p.m./Noon) Location: Oxford, Miss. Venue: Oxford-University Stadium/Swayze Field Capacity: 10,323 Surface: Grass Series: Ole Miss trails 5-8 In Oxford: Ole Miss leads 2-1 Radio: Ole Miss Radio Network Television: None Live Stats: OleMissSports.com Live Video:Rebelvision Live Blog: OleMissSports.com Twitter Updates: @OleMissBSB
QUICK HITS • Ole Miss enters the 2013 season ranked in the preseason for the 10th time in the Mike Bianco era. The Rebels are ranked as high as 13th (Baseball America) and are also ranked by Perfect Game (19), Collegiate Baseball (25), USAToday Coaches Poll (25) and the NCBWA (25). • The Rebels return 6-of-9 position starters from 2013 and two weekend starters in juniors Wahl and Mayer. • Ole Miss is 11-1 in season-openers under head coach Mike Bianco with the lone loss coming to UL-Monroe in the 2010 season by a score of 6-5. Ole Miss has won 30 of its last 31 season openers dating back to 1981. • The Rebels and TCU opened the season against each other in Fort Worth last season, splitting the two games with the Saturday game being rained out. • The returning Rebel pitchers account for 29 of the team’s 37 wins in 2012 and 11 of the 15 saves. • Ole Miss has picked up the series win in all five of its three-game series in opening weekends under Bianco. The Rebels have posted a sweep in three of those five series played in opening weekends since 2001. • Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco and TCU head coach Jim Scholssnagle will both work together as part of the USA Baseball Collegiate National Team this summer. Schlossnagle is head coach, while Bianco will be pitching coach.
PROBABLE PITCHING MATCHUPS FRIDAY, 4:00 PM TCU - Brandon Finnegan, Soph., LHP Ole Miss - Bobby Wahl, Jr., RHP NOTING WAHL: • Wahl is making his 19th career start and opens his second season as the Friday night starter for the Rebels. • Started the season-opener at TCU last year, picking up the win in 5.0 innings of work allowing only two runs • He struck out 104 batters as a sophomore through 99.0 innings of work for 130 and 129.0 IP in his career • Wahl faced TCU three times last season, going 2-1 against the Horned Frogs. Wahl picked up wins in the season-opener and the NCAA Regional opener, but fell in the regional championship game on two days rest. • In those three meetings, Wahl struck out 16 and pitched 16.1 innings combined against the Horned Frogs.
SATURDAY, 1:30 PM TCU - Preston Morrison, Soph., RHP Ole Miss - Mike Mayers, Jr., RHP NOTING MEYERS: • Mayers is making his 17th career start but his first start against TCU after two relief outings in 2012 • He struck out 8 in 4.0 innings of work in the opening weekend at TCU and worked 2.0 innings in the regional • Moved into the role of weekend starter as a sophomore, striking out 71 through 92.2 innings of work • Mayers posted a pair of shutouts on the year, blanking the nationally-ranked Razorbacks in both outings
SUNDAY, NOON TCU - Stefan Crichton, Jr., RHP Ole Miss - Chris Ellis, Soph., RHP NOTING ELLIS: • Ellis will be making his first weekend start, and second ever, against the Horned Frogs on Sunday • The right-hander made 19 appearances with one start as a freshman, starting against Jackson State (3/27) • He picked up the win in a pre-determined start, striking out 6 and allowing one hit through 4.0 scoreless innings • Ellis also picked up three wins in relief and posted 29 strikeouts and only eight walks through 31.2 innings
REBELS vs. TCU Ole Miss opens the season against the TCU Horned Frogs who are ranked as high as 14th nationally (Baseball America) heading into the 2013 season. The two teams played five times in 2012 and it will be the eighth time the two teams have met in the last 12 months by the end of the weekend series.
• TCU posted a 40-22 record in 2012, advancing to an NCAA Super Regional at UCLA after defeating the Rebels twice in elimination games at the NCAA Regional hosted by Texas A&M. • Kevin Cron returns to lead the Horned Frogs after hitting .338 with six home runs and 34 RBI as a freshman • Preston Morrison returns to anchor the pitching staff after a 9-2 record with 72 strikeouts in 112.2 IP
PROMOTIONS ABOUND AT SWAYZE FIELD IN 2013 Visitors to Oxford-University Stadium this season will have plenty to look forward to besides just some of the most exciting baseball in the country. Ole Miss Marketing has gameday promotions lined up throughout the course of the season that are sure to please the crowds. This weekend is Tanner Mathis poster day on Friday afternoon with Tanner Mathis schedule posters being given out to the fans. Saturday will feature “I Love Ole Miss” T-Shirts as a part of “I Love Ole Miss” Week, while Sunday night will have Ole Miss drink koozies given out to fans in attendance.
REBELS ENJOY HOMEFIELD ADVANTAGE UNDER BIANCO Ole Miss has enjoyed success on the home field under head coach Mike Bianco over the course of 13 seasons. The excitement and energy generated by Rebel fans has helped the squad post a record of 308-116-1 at Swayze Field for a .726 winning percentage in that time.
ALL-SEC PERFORMER RETURNS Ole Miss returns an All-SEC performer from a year ago when junior right-hander Bobby Wahl takes the mound this season. Wahl posted a 7-4 record a year ago and started the season strong, going to 5-0 on the year before suffering his first loss of the season at Mississippi State. Wahl struck out 104 batters, leading all returning pitchers in the SEC this season, and finished in the top 10 of five categories last season in the SEC (ERA, Opposing Batting Average, Innings Pitched, Strikeouts and Wins).
WAHL TABBED PRESEASON ALL-AMERICA Wahl picked up where he left off his sophomore campaign when he was tabbed as a preseason All-America selection heading into this year. Both Collegiate Baseball and Perfect Game named Wahl to their preseason All-America teams earlier this year.
HUBER ON NCBWA STOPPER OF THE YEAR WATCH LIST Senior right-hander Brett Huber joined Wahl in pulling in preseason attention as he was named to the Stopper of the Year watch list by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association. The award is presented annually to the top closer in college baseball by the NCBWA at the end of the year.
WAHL NAMED TO GOLDEN SPIKES AWARD WATCH LIST Junior Bobby Wahl became the most recent Rebel to find himself as a candidate for the Golden Spikes Award Watch List when he was announced as one of the 50 preseason members of the list by USA Baseball. He joins recent Rebels Alex Yarbrough (semifinalist, 2012) and Drew Pomeranz (finalist, 2010) as part of a long line of Rebel players on the watch list for the nation’s top collegiate player.
NEW REBELS Ole Miss welcomes 13 newcomers to the squad for the 2013 campaign. The new faces on the squad belong to a group of five junior college transfers and eight true freshmen. That group of newcomers also includes six pitchers (3 LHP, 3 RHP), a trio of catchers, three infielders and one outfielder.
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