March 24, 2014
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - After dropping two of three games at Arkansas this past weekend, the Alabama Crimson Tide (15-8, 3-3 SEC) will play a non-conference game against the Troy Trojans (14-10, 3-2 Sun Belt) on Tuesday night. The game between the Crimson Tide on Trojans will begin at 6:37 p.m. CT at the Vince J. Whibbs Maritime Community Park in Pensacola, Fla. The neutral site game will also be televised on CST with Mike Morgan and Tommy Thrall providing the commentary.
After losing the SEC series to Arkansas, Alabama dropped out of the national rankings this week. The Tide is receiving votes in the NCBWA poll. Alabama has won 11 of its last 14 games while posting a season-long seven game winning streak during that stretch. Following last week's home midweek sweep of Alcorn State, Alabama is 12-3 at Sewell-Thomas Stadium. After defeating Alcorn State 17-3 and 12-0 last week, Alabama completed a season-long nine-game homestand with an 8-1 record. When playing away from The Joe, Alabama has a 3-5 record.
Alabama (15-8, 3-3 SEC) vs. Troy (14-10, 3-2 Sun Belt)
Vince J. Whibbs Maritime Community Park - Pensacola, Fla.
Schedule - Tuesday, 6:37 p.m. CT
Television - Cox Sports Television
Steaming - None
Radio - Tide 99.1 FM and CTSN
Livestats - Rolltide.com
Probable Pitching Matchups
Tuesday: UA-Nick Eicholtz (Fr., RHP, 1-0, 1.09 ERA) vs. Troy-William Shell (Sr., RHP, 3-1, 3.20 ERA)
Follow the Tide Live
All Alabama baseball games throughout the 2014 season will be broadcast by the Crimson Tide Sports Network (CTSN). The radio broadcast for all games of the 2014 season will be available on 99.1 FM in Tuscaloosa and available on the CTSN throughout the state. Chris Stewart will provide the call for the Troy game, which will be available on the CTSN, locally on 99.1 FM in Tuscaloosa and online at RollTide.com, through the subscription plan on TIDETV. Livestats will be available on RollTide.com.
About the Crimson Tide
The Crimson Tide is hitting .269 as a team, while averaging 5.8 runs and 9.3 hits per game. When the Tide scores three or more runs in a game they are 15-0. Alabama ranks fourth in the SEC with 15 home runs. The Tide hit 26 home runs in 63 games in 2013. In winning 11 of their last 14 games, the Tide is hitting .299 with 26 doubles, two triples and 11 home runs for a .429 slugging percentage, while averaging 7.3 runs and 10.3 hits per game during that stretch. The Alabama pitching staff has been outstanding this season, posting the fifth-best ERA at 2.08. In 208 innings, Alabama has given up 57 runs (48 earned) on 135 hits with 177 strikeouts and 75 walks. Opponents are hitting .191 against the Tide, which ranks second in the SEC. Alabama is second in the country, allowing 5.8 hits per game. In 88.2 innings, the Tide bullpen has allowed 24 runs (21 earned) for a 2.13 ERA, while allowing a .202 batting average.
After hitting .438 last week, Austen Smith continues to lead the team with a .356 average for the season. Smith, who ranks 12th in the SEC in average, also leads the team in home runs (3), RBI (21), slugging percentage (.548) and on-base percentage (.440). Georgie Salem leads the team with 32 hits and is second on the club with a .323 average while Wade Wass had a team-high nine doubles to rank sixth in the SEC. Kyle Overstreet hit .438 last week and has raised hit season average to .299.
Eicholtz will be making his fifth start and eighth appearance of the season and has a 1-0 record with a 1.09 in 24.2 innings pitched. He has allowed five runs (three earned) while recording 24 strikeouts. In his four starts, Eicholtz has a 1-0 record with a 1.42 ERA in 19.0 innings, allowing five runs (three earned) with 21 strikeouts while holding opponents to a .185 average.
About the Troy Trojans
Troy enters Tuesday's game with a 14-10 record after winning a Sun Belt Conference series over UL-Monroe this past weekend. After losing the first game to the Warhawks, 7-4, the Trojans posted 4-3 and 19-3 victories to win the series and improve to 3-2 in Sun Belt play. Troy has won four of its last five games overall, which includes back-to-back, 8-5, wins over Alabama State last week. As a team, the Trojans are hitting .254, while averaging 5.5 runs and 8.5 hits per game. The Troy pitching staff has a 3.20 ERA while allowing 3.8 runs and 7.8 hits per game.
David Hall leads the team in batting average (.377) hits (29), doubles (8), home runs (5) and RBI (17). Jo-El Bennett also had five home runs to go along with a .317 batting average and Trevin Hall is hitting .312 with five home runs and 16 RBI. On the mound, Marc Skinner leads the team with 12 appearances, all out of the bullpen. Skinner has a 2-1 record with a 2.70 ERA in 14.2 innings and leads the team with three saves. Austin Sullivan has a team-low 0.77 ERA, allowing two runs (one earned) in 11.2 innings pitched, while holding opponents to a .105 batting average. Jeremy McGowan has a 1-2 record with two saves in 11 bullpen appearances, totaling 19.2 innings with 21 strikeouts.
All-time Series against Troy
Tuesday's game will mark the 30th meeting all-time between Alabama and Troy, and the fourth meeting at a neutral site. Alabama is 19-10 all-time against Troy, and 1-2 in neutral site games. Troy defeated the Tide twice during the 2013 NCAA Tallahassee Regional in the most recent meetings between the two schools. In last year's regular season meeting between the two squads, Alabama posted an 11-2 victory in Tuscaloosa on May 8, when the Trojans were ranked No. 25 nationally.
On Deck for the Tide
After Tuesday's game against Troy in Pensacola, the Tide returns to Sewell-Thomas Stadium to host nationally ranked Ole Miss this weekend. The three-game SEC series begins on Friday night, with first pitch scheduled for 6:35 p.m. CT. Game two of the series, which will be televised on CSS, will begin at 2:05 p.m. CT and the series wraps up on Sunday with a 1:05 p.m. CT game. The series between Alabama and Ole Miss will mark games 342-344 between the two schools. Alabama is 199-141-1 all-time versus the Rebels, but has lost four of the last five in the series. After the Rebels swept the 2013 regular season series in Oxford, Miss., the Tide defeated Ole Miss 7-5 in the SEC Tournament.