Terps Play Host To #19 Virginia
May 16, 2012
#19 Virginia (34-15-1, 16-11 ACC) at Maryland (31-22, 9-18 ACC)
Thursday, May 17 (6 p.m.) | Friday, May 18 (6 p.m.) | Saturday, May 19 (1 p.m.)
Probable Pitching Matchups
Maryland won two in a row last week, including an 8-5 win over No. 1 Florida State, before taking a seven-day break for finals. After this weekend's series, Maryland will have played 20 of its 56 games against ranked teams; the Terps have gone 9-8 against the top 25 so far, while playing the 17th most difficult schedule in the nation according to WarrenNolan.com and ranking 26th in the NCAAs official RPI.
The Terps wrapped up the non-conference portion of their schedule last Wednesday with a 7-3 win over Penn State. In non-league games Maryland went 22-4, including a 14-1 mark inside the friendly confines of Bob "Turtle" Smith Stadium. Pitching led the way in that 26-game slate, as the Terps accumulated a 1.27 ERA, allowing just 31 earned runs in 219 innings. The defense committed just 22 errors for a .977 fielding percentage.
Maryland's pitching rotation is in flux this weekend; Brett Harman will start Thursday night's contest, while Friday and Saturday's starters have yet to be determined. Harman was scratched from his last scheduled start after coming down with food poisoning, but came on to pitch five innings of relief in the 8-5 win over FSU on May 7. On the year, Harman has a 6-3 record with a 2.72 ERA that ranks ninth in the ACC. He needs six strikeouts to take sole possession of second on the Maryland career strikeout list, while a win would move him into a tie for third on that career list.
Offensively, Jordan Hagel leads the team in hitting (.311), doubles (17), slugging (.468) and on-base percentage (.403), while Alfredo Rodriguez is hitting .299 with a team-high 33 RBIs. Since April, Rodriguez has been Maryland's best hitter, having accumulated a .378 average in 24 games, along with a .449 on-base percentage.
Senior Day Set For Saturday...
The Cavaliers lead the ACC with a .300 team batting average. Third baseman Stephen Bruno leads the team and ranks fifth in the league with a .365 average, and also has a team-high 47 RBIs, 17 doubles and is second with six home runs.
The Virginia pitching staff has a 3.31 ERA which ranks fifth in the league. Thursday-night starter Branden Kline is fifth in the conference with 9.36 strikeouts/9 innings, while four relievers have accumulated at least 30 innings pitched with ERAs under 2.30. The Cavaliers also have a .973 fielding percentage which is tied with Maryland for best in the ACC.
Series history: Virginia leads the all-time series, 97-74-1. The Cavaliers have won seven straight in the series dating back to 2009, and 13 in a row in College Park. Maryland's last win at home came on April 6, 2002.
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