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Thursday March 20, 2014Florida Baseball Visits Texas A&M For First SEC Road Trip

Gainesville, Fla.

After a mid-week victory over No. 1 Florida State, Florida (14-7/2-1 SEC) heads to Texas A&M (15-7/1-2 SEC) for a three-game series at Olsen Field at Blue Bell Park. This will be the first time that the Gators and Aggies have faced off on a weekend since Texas A&M joined the SEC.

 

The series be heard on the Gator IMG Sports Network with Jeff Cardozo and Steve Russell and will be streamed on GatorVision through GatorZone.com with Texas A&M’s announce team. Live stats for each game will be available on GatorZone.com and fans can also follow updates of each game on @GatorZoneBB, the official Twitter account of the Gator baseball team.

 

PITCHING PROBABLES

                                Florida (14-7/2-1 SEC)                                       Texas A&M (15-7/1-2 SEC)

Friday:                    Logan Shore, Fr., RHP (1-1, 0.68)                    Daniel Mengden, Jr., RHP (2-3, 3.12)

Saturday:               Eric Hanhold, So., RHP (3-1, 1.93)                 Grayson Long, So., RHP (2-0, 0.26)

Sunday:                 TBA                                                                        Tyler Stubblefield, Fr., LHP (3-1, 1.84)

 

QUICK HITS ABOUT THE GATORS

·         Florida kicked off the 30-game SEC schedule by taking two of three games from Western Division rival Arkansas at home. The Gators claimed a pair of one-run games, 2-1 and 1-0, to clinch the series but then saw their season-high seven-game winning streak end with a 9-3 setback on Sunday.

·         The Gators have claimed eight of their last nine outings since splitting their first 12 games of the season.

·         UF’s win over Florida State on Tuesday night was its first over a No. 1 ranked team since April 10, 2012 (6-3 over the Seminoles in Tallahassee).

·         Junior Braden Mattson batted .500 (5-for-10) in his first SEC action and enters the weekend on a 6-game hitting streak in which he is 9-for-21 (.429) with 4 RBI and 2 runs. On the year, he is 11-for-22 (.500) with RISP and 8 of his 13 RBI have come with 2 out.

·         Returning to the lineup on Sunday after missing the first 19 games of the season, sophomore OF Harrison Bader went 2-for-4 with a double and came through with the go-ahead RBI triple against Florida State. He has an 11-game hitting streak dating back to last season.

·         Friday’s UF starter, freshman RHP Logan Shore (1-1, 0.68), collected his first collegiate win in UF’s 2-1 decision over Arkansas on Friday and has given up just two ER in a team-high 26.1 innings, with 21 strikeouts and 4 walks.

·         After 10 relief appearances, sophomore RHP Eric Hanhold (3-1, 1.93) drew the Saturday night start against Arkansas and twirled five shutout innings to earn his first career SEC victory.

·         Junior RHP Ryan Harris (1-0, 0.73) has a team-leading 3 saves and has played a role in 3 of the Gators’ 4 shutouts this season.

·         During its recent 7-game winning streak, Florida’s pitchers compiled a 1.61 ERA, with 64 K in 67 IP and an opponent average of .211.

·         On the season, Gator relievers are 10-1 with 9 saves and a 2.91 ERA in 102 innings, with 92 K and 28 BB. 

·         Freshman Peter Alonso (.265), whose homer provided the winning margin in the second meeting with Arkansas, has reached base in 10-of-15 (.667) opportunities as a leadoff hitter.

·         After making 3 starts in the weekend rotation, junior LHP Bobby Poyner (3-2, 1.93, 20 K in 23.1 IP) has 7 scoreless relief outings in a row.

·         Freshman LHP Kirby Snead (0-0, 3.86) has made 11 appearances and has 5 strikeouts in 4.2 IP. Foes are 2-for-10 (.200) with runners on base.

·         After 6 innings this year, Florida is 8-0 (1.000) when leading, 1-7 (.125) when trailing and 5-0 (1.000) when tied.

·         The Gators are 6-1 (.857) in 1-run games already after going 7-10 (.412) in that category in 2013.

·         UF has 42 extra-bases hits this season - 32 doubles, 6 homers and 4 triples - and is 13-for-21 (.619) on stolen-base opportunities.

·         The duo of sophomore Richie Martin (SS) and Casey Turgeon (2B) has started all 21 games at their respective positions.

·         Martin (.314, 19 R) is hitting .343 (12-for-35) against lefties and .294 (15-for-51) against righties. He leads the Gators with 9 multi-hit            games.

 

SERIES NUGGETS

Texas A&M has captured seven of the eight previous encounters with Florida, including both ends of a home-and-home series in 2006 (2-1 in Gainesville) and 2007 (3-0 in College Station). The Aggies eliminated the Gators from the 2013 SEC Tournament last May in Hoover, Ala., 6-3. In the teams’ initial meeting, Texas A&M handed Florida a 6-5 defeat in NCAA East Regional held in Gainesville on May 23, 1992.

 

LAST MEETING BETWEEN GATORS & AGGIES

Texas A&M right-hander Daniel Mengden registered 11 strikeouts in a complete-game effort and Hunter Melton (2-for-4) drove in four runs, highlighted by a three-run homer, as the ninth-seeded Aggies dealt eighth-seeded Florida a 6-3 setback in the opening round of the 2013 SEC Tournament on May 21 at the Hoover Met.

 

Righty Johnny Magliozzi went 6.2 innings in his SEC Tourney debut and tied his career high of six strikeouts. UF was limited to five singles but did manage three stolen bases in three attempts. The Gators had taken a 2-0 lead in the second inning on an RBI grounder by Vickash Ramjit and an infield single by Cody Dent that scored Zack Powers.

 

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