#12 Ole Miss (30-12, 10-8 SEC) at #17 Kentucky (27-14, 9-9 SEC)
Date: April 25-27, 2014 Location: Lexington, Ky. Venue: Cliff Hagan Stadium Capacity: 3,000 Surface: Grass Series: Ole Miss leads 44-31 Last Series Meeting: UK won series 2-1 in Oxford Radio: Ole Miss Baseball Network Television: CSS (Saturday) Announcers: Mike Morgan & Gabe Gross Live Stats: OleMissSports.com Live Video: www.OleMissSports.com Twitter Updates: @OleMissBSB
QUICK HITS • Ole Miss found itself in the top 25 of the national rankings for the ninth consecutive week, topping out at No. 12. • The Rebels are second in the SEC in batting (.300), third in home runs (27) and fourth in scoring (240 runs). • Ole Miss is second in ERA as a staff (2.25) and has posted 30 wins through the first 10 weeks of competition. • Three Rebels rank in the top six in the SEC in hits: Bousfield (1st - 62), Anderson (T6th-56) and Allen (T6th - 56). • Five Rebels consistently find themselves ranked throughout the SEC top 10 in offensive production this season. • Will Allen is second in the SEC in RBI (42) and is tied for sixth in the league in home runs (5) this season. • Sikes Orvis is second in the SEC in home runs (9) and has hit safely in 16 consecutive SEC games entering the week. • Bousfield leads the SEC in hits (61) and is in the top 10 in average (10th), runs (T8th) and second in total bases. • Ole Miss is now 8-5 in one-run games, 6-3 in walk-off wins and has posted 11 come-from-behind wins to date.
PROBABLE PITCHING MATCHUPS FRIDAY, 5:30 PM UK - A.J. Reed, Jr., LHP OLE MISS - Chris Ellis, Jr., RHP NOTING ELLIS: • Ellis has settled in as the anchor for the Rebels’ weekend, moving into the Friday role his junior season. • The RHP has eight quality starts on the year, including two shutouts and a complete-game vs. GSU. • Ellis has not allowed an earned run in 5-of-10 starts this season and holds a 1.81 ERA in nine starts. • The junior has allowed 19 walks with 41 strikeouts and holds opponents to a .248 batting average.
SATURDAY 12:00 PM (CSS) UK - Dylan Dwyer, So., LHP OLE MISS - Christian Trent, So., LHP NOTING TRENT: • Trent makes his 11th start of the season when he takes the mound against UK this Saturday. • The LHP has allowed only 10 walks through 66.0 innings of work and 10 starts this season. • Trent is 5-0 on the season with wins against Stetson, Georgia State, Missouri, Auburn and LSU. • The sophomore holds a .220 batting average against and his 54 strikeouts is eighth in the SEC. • Trent threw a complete-game shutout against Auburn with a career-high seven strikeouts.
SUNDAY, 12:00 PM UK - Andrew Nelson, Jr., RHP OLE MISS - Sam Smith, Jr., RHP NOTING SMITH: • Smith continues to anchor the final spot in the weekend rotation for the Rebels in his junior season. • The right-hander has allowed 18 runs in 10 starts while working 62.0 innings in those outings. • Smith has only taken five losses in his last 29 starts for the Rebels across the last three seasons. • The RHP has eight straight quality starts including four wins, three losses and a no decision.
A LOOK AT KENTUCKY The Kentucky Wildcats enter the weekend series with an overall record of 27-14 and are coming off a midweek win over Tennessee Tech and a series win over Texas A&M last weekend in Texas. • The Wildcats are batting at a .312 clip this season, leading the SEC in average and home runs (39). • A.J. Reed leads the Cats at the plate, batting .375 with 16 home runs and 55 RBI to lead the SEC. • Reed also leads the pitching staff with a 7-1 record and a 2.15 ERA through 10 starts this season. • As a staff, the Wildcats hold a 3.73 ERA with 111 walks and 254 strikeouts through 41 games. • Dylan Dwyer is second on the team with a 3.40 ERA and a 5-1 record through 10 outings.
REBELS vs. KENTUCKY The Rebels and Wildcats have faced each other 75 times in the history of the series with the Rebels holding a 44-31 lead in the series. • The teams first met in 1925 season with the Rebels winning both games by shutout 5-0 and 2-0. • Ole Miss has posted a 21-16 record against Kentucky in the Mike Bianco era the last 14 years. • The Rebels are 7-8 in Lexington in the Bianco era with five series played at Cliff Hagan Stadium. • Ole Miss swept the 2002 series and won the 2010 series; the Cats swept in ‘06, and won in ‘08, ‘12.
THROUGH 42 GAMES IN 2013 Through 42 games a year ago, the Rebels had posted a 30-12 record and were coming off a weekend midweek win over Arkansas State and heading into a weekend series with Kentucky. Ole Miss was hitting at a .273 clip with 14 home runs and 204 RBI, while going 35-of-64 in steal attempts. The Rebel pitching staff was holding to a 2.53 ERA and a .234 opponent’s batting average. Pitchers had allowed 150 walks with 304 strikeouts in 380.0 innings.
ALLEN’S PRODUCTION UP Senior Will Allen has been solid in his offensive production this season. Through 42 games this season, the catcher has tallied five home runs and 42 RBI, passing his total offensive production from his junior season when he hit four home runs and tallied 24 RBI.
BENCH AWARD WATCH LIST Will Allen was one of 60 players nationally to find himself on the watch list for the Johnny Bench Award when the Greater Wichita Sports Commission released the initial watch list for 2014. Allen took over catching duties this season after 2013 Johnny Bench Award winner Stuart Turner was drafted by the Minnesota Twins in the third round of the MLB Draft.
GOLDEN SPIKES AWARD WATCH LIST Junior right-hander Chris Ellis was named to the midseason watch list for the Golden Spikes Award by USA Baseball when the organization released the list of 50 candidates recently. He is the most recent Rebel to be a candidate for the award, joining previous candidates such as Drew Pomeranz, Stuart Turner, Alex Yarbrough and Stephen Head.
MULTIPLE-HIT, MULTIPLE-RBI GAMES Will Allen and Auston Bousfield have paced the Rebel offense through the season, leading the squad in multiple-hit games with 18 from Bousfield and 17 from Allen. All told, the Rebels have six players in double-digits when it comes to multiple-hit games as Austin Anderson (17) Braxton Lee (15), Sikes Orvis (13) and Preston Overbey (10) round out the group.
Allen leads the way in multiple-RBI games with 10, while Anderson (7), Orvis (7) and Bousfield (7) have all posted five or more multiple-RBI games as well.
HIT STREAKS HEADED INTO THE WEEK Two players hold significant hit streaks heading into the weekend with Auston Bousfield (13) and Will Jamison holding the longest hit streaks on the team heading into the series at Kentucky.
Sikes Orvis paces the team in Southeastern Conference games, having hit safely in 16 consecutive conference games heading into the Kentucky series this weekend. The junior first baseman saw his 15 game hit streak overall snapped Tuesday night at the Governor’s Cup game, though he did draw an HBP to extend his streak of reaching safely to 16 consecutive games.
FINDING A WAY ON BASE Orvis hold the longest streak of reaching base for the Rebs heading into the weekend series with Kentucky at 16 straight games. Auston Bousfield is right behind them with 13 straight games of reaching base.
Several Rebels saw a streak of reaching base snapped against the Golden Eagles on March 25. Austin Anderson had reached in 24 consecutive games, while Auston Bousfield had reached in 20 straight games. Will Allen also saw his 13-game streak of reaching base snapped. All were season longs.
REBELS BEST WHEN SCORING EARLY Ole Miss has been best when scoring early this season, posting a 22-6 record when scoring first and a 14-4 mark when scoring in the first inning. The Rebels have also been proficient at the plate while starting pitching holds opponents down. Ole Miss is outscoring opponents 73-to-31 through the first three innings. The Rebels have scored an impressive 39 runs in the first inning and 26 in the third.
SECOND TIME THROUGH THE LINEUP FEATURES EXPLOSIVE INNINGS Ole Miss has been even more efficient the second time through the lineup this season. In the middle innings of games, the Rebels have outscored opponents at a rate of 100-to-47 that includes explosions of 36 runs in the fifth inning, 33 runs in the fourth inning and 31 runs in the sixth inning through 42 games this season.
REBEL PITCHERS LIMIT OPPORTUNITIES Ole Miss’ pitching staff turned in a solid opening weekend, holding the Stetson Hatters to three runs on the weekend series and limiting offensive opportunities for the Hatters. Rebel pitchers allowed only 14 hits on the weekend and posted the first shutout of the season on opening day with a 7-0 victory. The Rebel pitching staff also struck out 24 batters through the three-game series with only seven walks.
Through 10 weeks of play, the Rebels have allowed 121 runs (fewer three runs a game) in 388.2 innings of work. In that time, the Rebels have posted four shutouts and 10 games with only one run allowed.
SOLID BULLPEN WORK LEADS TO SUCCESS Ole Miss’ bullpen has been incredibly efficient through the first six weeks of the season, continuing to hold teams in check down the stretch. Through 146.2 innings of relief work this season, the Rebel bullpen holds a 2.21 ERA as those pitchers have combined to allow only 36 earned runs in that time. The staff has kept runs from scoring, inheriting 98 runners and allowing only 20 to score this year.
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