Alabama Baseball Travels to Samford on Tuesday

ROLLTIDEDOTCOM Tucker Hawley will make his second start of the season on Tuesday at Samford.
Tucker Hawley will make his second start of the season on Tuesday at Samford.

March 18, 2013

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TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - After winning two of three games over Tennessee to open Southeastern Conference play last weekend, the Alabama Crimson Tide (11-9, 2-1 SEC) will play a pair of mid-week non-conference games this week. Alabama will travel to Birmingham, Ala., for a Tuesday night game at Samford, with first pitch at 6 p.m. CST from Joe Lee Griffin Field. The Tide returns home for a Wednesday night game against Jacksonville State, with first pitch at 6:05 p.m. CST from Sewell-Thomas Stadium.

All Alabama baseball games throughout the 2013 season will be broadcast by the Crimson Tide Sports Network (CTSN). The game against Samford will be broadcast on WTSK 790 AM in Tuscaloosa, due to conflicts with the men's basketball NIT game. Wednesday's game will be carried on the CTSN network, and will be broadcast live on 95.3 FM The Bear in Tuscaloosa. Lee Tracey will provide the commentary for the Samford game and he will be joined on Wednesday night by Chris Stewart. Livestats will also be available on A live webcast of all three games of the series will be available through the Alabama website at, as part of the school's subscription package.

Alabama is coming off a 15-1 victory over Tennessee on Sunday, which capped the opening weekend of SEC play as the Tide posted a 2-1 record against the Vols.  Samford (12-9, 2-4 SoCon) dropped two of three games in Southern Conference play to Georgia Southern this past weekend. After winning game one, 6-2, the Bulldogs lost game two 18-14 and game three 6-3. Jacksonville State (11-10, 5-1 OVC) comes into the week riding a three-game winning streak after sweeping an Ohio Valley Conference series against SIU-Edwardsville, and has won five of its last six games overall. Alabama is slated to start RHP Tucker Hawley (3-1, 3.09) on Tuesday at Samford and LHP Taylor Guilbeau (1-1, 3.20) on Wednesday against JSU. The Bulldogs will start LHP Patrick McGavin (0-2, 4.76). The Gamecocks, who are scheduled to play Troy on Tuesday night, have not named a starter yet.

Probable Starting Pitcher Match-ups
Tuesday                           W-L  ERA   G/GS  IP    H   R  ER  BB  SO
UA-Tucker Hawley (Jr., RHP)       3-1  3.09  5/1   11.2  9   6  4   4   7
SAM-Patrick McGavin (Soph., RHP)  0-2  4.76  5/2   11.1  14  9  6   8   10

Wednesday                         W-L  ERA   G/GS  IP    H   R  ER  BB  SO
UA-Taylor Guilbeau (Soph., LHP)   1-1  3.20  6/4   19.2  19  8  7   16  16

Samford enters the week with a 12-9 overall record and is 2-4 in Southern Conference play after losing two of three games to Georgia Southern last weekend. Samford enters the week with a .299 team batting average with 22 total home runs, and average 7.3 runs and 10.2 hits per game. The Bulldogs pitching staff has a 4.53 ERA, while holding opponents to a .269 batting average. Phillip Ervin leads the team with seven home runs, while his .378 batting average is second on the club. Tommy Corbin leads the team with a .408 average. C.K. Irby has team highs with 23 RBIs and seven doubles, to go along with a .364 average and three home runs. Christiaan Durdaller chips in with a .339 average, five home runs and 18 RBI. Samford will open Tuesday's game with LHP Patrick McGavin on the mound. McGavin, who is 0-2 with a 4.76 ERA, will make his sixth appearance and third start of the season. McGavin has thrown a total of 11.1 innings this season, with 10 strikeouts and eight walks. 

Tuesday will mark the 106th meeting all-time between Alabama and Samford. After posting a 5-4 win over the Bulldogs in Tuscaloosa on Feb. 26, Alabama is 90-15 all-time versus Samford. With its win over Samford earlier this year, Alabama has won the last four games in the series and is 6-4 in the last 10 games overall. The Tide has won the last two games played at Joe Lee Griffin Field, posting a 7-5 win in 2011 and a 5-4 win on April 24, 2012, in the most recent game in Birmingham.

Jacksonville State enters the week with an 11-10 overall record and is 5-1 in Ohio Valley Conference play after sweeping SIU-Edwardsville.  The Gamecocks have won five of their last six games and will host Troy on Tuesday, before making the trip to Tuscaloosa on Wednesday. JSU enters the week with a .245 team batting average, while averaging 5.4 runs and 8.2 hits per game. The Gamecocks pitching staff has a 3.89 ERA, while holding opponents to a .266 batting average. Griff Gordon leads the team in average (.387), runs (17) and hits (29). Adam Miller is hitting .357 and Michael Bishop has a .310 average with two home runs and a team-high six doubles. Coty Blanchard leads the team with three home runs and 17 RBI. Jacksonville State has not named a starter for Wednesday's game in Tuscaloosa.

Wednesday's game between Alabama and Jacksonville State will mark the 33rd game all-time between the two schools. Alabama holds a 25-7 record against the Gamecocks all-time, after the Tide posted a 9-5 win over JSU on March 23, 2011. Alabama is 8-2 in the last 10 meetings against JSU, is riding an eight-game winning streak over the Gamecocks and the Tide is 22-4 all-time at home against JSU.

Alabama Quick Hitters
• Alabama has won three of its last four games after winning two of three games over Tennessee this weekend.
• Alabama opened the season with a 6-0 start, then dropped eight of its next 10 games.
• Alabama snapped a season-long five-game losing streak with a 4-2 win over Memphis on March 13.
• The Crimson Tide is 9-0 when leading after six, 10-0 when leading after seven and 11-0 when leading after eight innings. 
• The Alabama pitching staff has a 3.30 ERA with 155 strikeouts to rank eighth in the SEC. Of its 155 strikeouts, 59 have been looking, which ranks fourth in the conference.
• Alabama pitchers are averaging 7.8 strikeouts per game.
• The Tide is 29-for-35 (.829) in stolen base attempts and ranks fifth in the SEC in stolen bases.
• Alabama is outscoring its opponents 13-4 in the sixth inning and 20-8 in the eighth inning. However, Bama is being outscored 8-2 in the third, 16-8 in the seventh and 7-0 in the ninth innings.
• Alabama has converted all six of its save opportunities and is fifth in the SEC with six saves.
Brett Booth, who had 10 walks in 55 games last season, leads the team with 14 this year to rank 11th in the SEC. Defensively, Booth has thrown out 16 would-be base stealers, which are the most in the SEC.
Ben Moore is riding a season-long six-game hitting streak and is hitting .500 (11-for-22) with a home run four doubles, seven RBI and five runs scored over the last six games.
Brett Booth currently has a team season-high seven game hitting streak and leadoff man Georgie Salem is riding a five-game hitting streak, entering the week.

Following the two non-conference mid-week games against Samford and Jacksonville State, Alabama will travel to Athens, Ga., for three games against Georgia this weekend. The series between Alabama and Georgia begins on Friday night, with first pitch slated for 6 p.m. CST, from Foley Field. Game two will begin at 3 p.m. CST and will be televised on CSS, and game three will start at 1 p.m. CST on Sunday. When Alabama and Georgia played in Tuscaloosa to wrap up the 2012 season, the Crimson Tide posted victories in two of the three games to win the series.

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