Date: March 19, 2014 Location: Oxford, Miss. Venue: Oxford-University Stadium/Swayze Field Capacity: 10,323 Surface: Grass Series: Ole Miss leads 67-21 Last Series: Ole Miss won both games in `13 Radio: Ole Miss Baseball Network Television: None Live Stats: OleMissSports.com Live Video: www.WatchRebelVision.com Twitter Updates: @OleMissBSB
QUICK HITS Ole Miss continued to find itself ranked among the top 25 after opening SEC play, topping out at No. 14 in the polls. The Rebels will play four home games this week, including a three-game set against Missouri this weekend. Ole Miss ranks third in the SEC in offense, hitting at a .313 clip with the seventh-ranked scoring offense in the SEC. Auston Bousfield ranks in the top 10 in the SEC in average (6th), slug percent (5th), hits (2nd) and on base percentage (10th) Will Allen continues to rank in the top 10 in the SEC in RBI (2nd), hits (3rd), doubles (1st) and home runs (5th). Ole Miss ranks fifth in the SEC as a pitching staff with a 2.04 ERA through five weeks of play, allowing 45 earned runs. The Rebel bullpen has allowed only 15 earned runs in 70.2 innings of work for a 1.91 earned run average. Ole Miss' defense ranks among the league leaders, coming in third with a .980 fielding percentage and 16 errors. The Wednesday night contest against Arkansas State will be the first of two against the Red Wolves this season.
PROBABLE PITCHING MATCHUPS WEDNESDAY, 6:30 PM ASU - Tanner Gaines, Jr., RHP OLE MISS - Jeremy Massie, Sr., LHP NOTING MASSIE: Massie made his first start of his career against ULM (2/26) in game two of a midweek series. The southpaw worked 5.0 no-hit innings against the Warhawks, but took no decision in the outing. Massie has made 23 appearances in his Rebel career, including 19 relief outings as a junior. The LHP has allowed four runs on 10 hits with five walks and 11 strikeouts in 16.1 IP. The start against Arkansas State marks the fourth consecutive start for Massie this season.
A LOOK AT ARKANSAS STATE The Red Wolves of Arkansas State enter the midweek with an overall record of 11-8 and a five-game win streak that includes a sweep of UALR this past weekend in Jonesboro. The Red Wolves swept the Trojans by a combined score of 12-6 over the past weekend of play. ASU holds a 2-1 record in the midweek, falling to UA-Monticello and wins over SEMO, Murray State The Red Wolves hit at a .286 clip with four home runs and 103 RBI through the first 19 games. Austin Baker has 3-of-4 home runs for ASU, while Matt Burgess holds a team-leading 23 RBI. Tanner Gaines is 2-0 on the year with a 4.50 ERA, five walks, six strikeouts and has 14.0 IP.
REBELS vs. ARKANSAS STATE The Rebels and Red Wolves have faced off on the diamond 88 times in the history of the two programs with Ole Miss leading the series 67-21 all-time. The two teams first met in the 1951 season with the Rebels splitting the two games with ASU. Last season, the Rebels won both games against the Red Wolves by scores of 10-4 and 11-1. Under head coach Mike Bianco, the Rebels are 19-8 against ASU and have won 9 of the last 10. Ole Miss won six straight contests against Arkansas State in Oxford dating back to the 2008 season.
THROUGH 21 GAMES IN 2013 Through 21 games a year ago, the Rebels had posted a 19-2 record and had split the first two games in a weekend series at Arkansas. Ole Miss was hitting at a .306 clip with eight home runs and 127 RBI, while going 23-of-38 in steal attempts. The Rebel pitching staff was holding to a 2.39 ERA and a .228 opponent's batting average. Pitchers had allowed 73 walks with 175 strikeouts in 188.0 innings.
MULTIPLE-HIT, MULTIPLE-RBI GAMES Will Allen and Auston Bousfield have paced the Rebel offense through the early part of the season, leading the squad in both multiple-hit games and multiple-RBI games. Both players have posted multiple-hit games in the double digits with 11 each. Allen has tallied six multiple-RBI games and Bousfield has added four multiple-RBI games.
HIT STREAKS ON THE LINE The Rebels have several players with active hit streaks of more than two games heading into the game against Arkansas State, the longest held by senior Austin Anderson with an eight-game hit streak. Will Allen (7) and Braxton Lee (2) are the only other regular starters who have also hit safely in consecutive games.
FINDING A WAY ON BASE The Rebels also have several players who keep finding a way to get on base, no matter the method. Austin Anderson leads the way with a streak of 20 consecutive games reaching base, while Auston Bousfield is behind him with a streak of 16 games. Will Allen is approaching the double-digit mark, having reached base in nine consecutive games.
SOLID BULLPEN WORK LEADS TO SUCCESS Ole Miss' bullpen has been incredibly efficient through the first five weeks of the season, continuing to hold teams in check down the stretch. Through 70.2 innings of relief work this season, the Rebel bullpen holds a 1.91 ERA as those pitchers have combined to allow only 15 earned runs in that time.
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