Baseball Travels to Samford on Tuesday

ROLLTIDEDOTCOM After throwing 5.0 scoreless innings against MVSU last week, Case Nixon gets the start against Samford in Tuesday.
ROLLTIDEDOTCOM
After throwing 5.0 scoreless innings against MVSU last week, Case Nixon gets the start against Samford in Tuesday.
ROLLTIDEDOTCOM

April 23, 2012

UA Game Notes_Samford

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - Alabama travels to Birmingham on Tuesday to take on the Samford Bulldogs in a 6 p.m. CT, game from Joe Lee Griffin Field.  After winning two of three games against Vanderbilt, the Crimson Tide is 16-25 this season. Samford enters the mid-week showdown with a 25-15 overall record, following a sweep of Western Carolina in a Southern Conference series.

All games for the 2012 season will be broadcast on the Crimson Tide Sports Network. Tuesday's game against Samford can be heard on WFFN-FM 95.3. Chris Stewart and Lee Tracey will provide the radio commentary for the game at Samford. The audio broadcast along with live stats will be available at RollTide.com.

For the second time this season, Alabama freshman outfielder/catcher Ben Moore was named the Southeastern Conference Freshman of the Week, which was announced by the conference office on Monday afternoon. Moore finished the five-game week with a .579 (11-for-19) batting average, which included an 8-for-11 (.727) performance in the three-game SEC series against Vanderbilt. Additionally, Moore scored five runs, drove in five, had three doubles, hit his second home run of the season, and had 17 total bases for an .895 slugging percentage last week.

Probable Pitching Match-up
TUESDAY                      W-L  ERA   G/GS  IP    H   R  ER  BB  SO
UA-Case Nixon (Soph., RHP)   1-1  2.78  8/2   16.1  11  6  5   10  15
SAM-Gil Walker (Sr., RHP)    1-1  1.53  10/0  17.2  22  6  3   6   16

Alabama posted a 3-2 record last week that included a split of a doubleheader with Mississippi Valley State and winning two of three games against Vanderbilt. Ben Moore collected 11 hits last week for a .529 (11-19) average, and continues to lead the Crimson Tide with a .362 batting average and is fourth in the SEC with a .406 average. Moore leads the team with 55 hits, is tied for the team lead with 10 doubles, is second with 25 runs scored and is third with two home runs and 23 RBI.

Taylor Dugas is second on the team with a .331 average, and he leads the team with 19 walks and 16 HBP for a team-high .453 on-base percentage. Dugas five triples this season, and holds the school record with 16 career triples. With his 10th double of the season on Wednesday, he has 65 career doubles to surpass Dave Magadan for the school record.

Jared Reaves is tied with Brett Booth for the team lead with four home runs. Booth leads the team with 28 RBI and Reaves is second on the squad with 26 RBI. Reaves is hitting .321 for the year, which is third best for the Tide. James Tullidge has his average up to .308 after starting the last 15 games. In those 15 games, Tullidge is batting .316 (12-38), which is the fourth best on the team during that time.

Samford comes into Tuesday's game with a 25-15 overall record and is riding a four-game win streak following a Southern Conference sweep of Western Carolina. The Bulldogs are 1-4 in their last five games and 5-5 in their last 10 games overall. Samford is hitting .298 as a team, while averaging 6.8 runs and 10.4 hits per game. Samford ranks ninth in the country with 42 total home runs and the team's .453 slugging percentage is 20th in the nation. The Bulldog pitching staff has a 3.73 ERA in 357.1 innings pitched, while allowing a .251 opponent's batting average.

C.K. Irby leads the team with a .353 batting average, in addition to having a 1.69 ERA and a 3-1 record as a pitcher. Saxon Butler is hitting .346 for the season, is second on the team with seven home runs and is fourth on the club with 32 RBI. Right fielder Brandon Miller leads the team with 16 home runs and 45 RBI. Miller is third in the country in home runs and 11th nationally in RBI. Phillip Ervin is second on the club in home runs (7) and RBI (34), and is fourth overall with a .331 batting average. Brad Moss is hitting .333 for the year and is tied with Ervin for second on the team with 34 RBI.

Samford will start right-handed pitcher Gil Walker on Tuesday night. Walker has a 1-1 record with a 1.53 ERA in 10 appearances out of the bullpen this season. Tuesday's game will be Walker's first start of the season. Walker has allowed 22 hits, six runs (three earned) with six walks and 16 strikeouts in 17.2 innings.

In a series that began in 1894, Tuesday's game between Alabama and Samford will mark the 104th meeting all-time between the two clubs. Following a dramatic, 6-5, come-from-behind win on March 14, where UA scored five runs in the ninth, Alabama leads the all-time series 88-15. Alabama scored five runs in the bottom of the ninth inning to beat the Bulldogs earlier this season. UA and Samford split the two games last season, with each team winning on the road. Head coach Mitch Gaspard is 2-3 all-time against Samford, will all five games coming in his three seasons at the Capstone.

Following their mid-week game against Samford on Tuesday, the Crimson Tide will travel to Columbia, S.C., for three games against No. 5 South Carolina.  The first game of the series will be on Thursday night, as part of the Thursday Night SEC Baseball package. First pitch for game one of the series is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. CT and will be televised on ESPNU and ESPN3.com. Game two of the series is scheduled for 6 p.m. CT on Friday, and the series wraps up with a 12:30 p.m. CT game on Saturday.

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