Issue date: 4/10/09
The Ohio State baseball team will start a very important Big Ten series this weekend as they look to keep pace with other top teams in the conference.
The No. 28 Buckeyes (22-7, 3-3 in the Big Ten) will face the Michigan State Spartans (11-17, 3-3 in the Big Ten) in a three-game series this weekend at Bill Davis Stadium.
"Michigan State is playing very good baseball right now," coach Bob Todd said. "We know that this weekend is going to be a big big weekend for us. It's going to be a huge test."
It will be an important three-game series if the Buckeyes want a shot at winning the Big Ten title. OSU is sitting in a tie for fifth place with three other teams (Michigan, Penn State and Michigan State) in the Big Ten Conference.
But as coach Todd explains, "we're only one game out of first place on the loss side. There is no reason to panic, we still got a lot of baseball to play in the conference. You just got to take it one game at a time."
After zero wins in 2008 as a freshman, sophomore Alex Wimmers has improved his game and has become a reliable option for the Buckeyes pitching staff. "I'm just going out there doing my thing, I just have all my pitches working," Wimmers said.
The right-handed Wimmers will get the call tonight against the Spartans.
"This is such a big weekend," Wimmers said. "We need to do really well this weekend in order to climb back in the [Big Ten] race."
He comes in with 48 innings pitched on the year, a 5-1 record and an ERA of 3.75. He also leads the Big Ten in strikeouts with 61 for the season.
Dean Wolosiansky will make his start Saturday afternoon. He comes in the game with a 6-1 record and a 5.80 ERA. The Sunday starter is unknown at this time.
The Spartans come into Friday's game winning four out of their last five games, including a three-game sweep against Northwestern. The Buckeyes come into Friday's game with a one-game win streak, winning their last game 12-0.
The Buckeyes will look to continue their heavy offensive numbers against Michigan State. Entering the game, the Buckeyes have 114 extra base hits on the season with a batting average of .332 for the team.
The Buckeyes went 2-1 in the series with Michigan State last season and are 126-82-1 all-time in the series.