May 9, 2012
The Auburn baseball team traveled to Fayetteville, Ark., on Wednesday as the team prepared for its final Southeastern Conference road series of the regular season. Auburn faces Arkansas beginning Thursday at 6:30pm at Baum Stadium in a game that will air live on ESPNU.
Auburn goes into the series 26-22, 10-14 SEC while Arkansas is 34-15, 12-12 SEC.
THURSDAY, MAY 10 6:30PM CT BAUM STADIUM WKKR-FM 97.7 AUBURNTIGERS.COM LIVE AUDIO ESPNU
RHP Jon Luke Jacobs (5-2, 3.23) vs. RHP DJ Baxendale (6-3, 3.65)
FRIDAY, MAY 11 6:30PM CT BAUM STADIUM WKKR-FM 97.7 AUBURNTIGERS.COM LIVE AUDIO
LHP Daniel Koger (3-4, 2.74) vs. LHP Randall Fant (2-2, 4.04)
SATURDAY, MAY 12 2PM CT BAUM STADIUM WKKR-FM 97.7 AUBURNTIGERS.COM LIVE AUDIO
TBA vs. TBA
Auburn is currently in 10th place in the SEC standings, holding onto the final spot for the 10-team conference tournament that begins on Tuesday, May 22 at Regions Park at Hoover, Ala.
Auburn goes into the series as the top hitting team in the SEC with a .317 batting average. Auburn boasts seven regulars that all hit over .300, led by sophomore outfielder Ryan Tella (.368, third in the SEC.
AUBURN ALL-TIME VS. ARKANSAS
Auburn has won three of the last four series against Arkansas, including each of the last two at Baum Stadium in Fayetteville, Ark. ... Auburn's last sweep of Arkansas came in 2001 at Plainsman Park while the last time it was swept was 2009, also at Plainsman Park.
ARKANSAS (AU leads, 37-31)
at Auburn: AU leads, 18-12
at Fayetteville: UA leads, 16-14
at Neutral Sites: AU leads, 5-3
SEC Tournament: AU leads, 5-3
Extra Innings: AU leads, 6-0
John Pawlowski is 4-5 all-time against Arkansas, with all nine games coming since he has been the head coach at Auburn.
Ethan Wallen appeared in two of the three games in the series last year, taking a loss after a blown save on Friday night when he allowed a run in 4 2/3 innings and bouncing back to earn the win on Sunday, allowing a run in 1 2/3 innings as Auburn scored four times in the eighth to win 8-7 ... Wallen was on the mound when Justin Fradejas threw out the tying run at the plate to end the game.
Creede Simpson is the only player on the current roster to have better than a .000 batting average against Arkansas ... In four career games against Arkansas he is hitting .273 (3-for-11) ... Two of Simpson's three hits are doubles, both coming in 2011.
12 GAMES IN 17 DAYS
Auburn will play 12 games over the final 17 days of the regular season after adding a game against Florida A&M for Monday, May 14 ... Auburn has gone 1-3 to start the final stretch ... Of the 12 games, six are at home, where Auburn is 20-10 (.667), and six are on the road, where Auburn is 5-12 (.294).
WHERE WE STAND WITH TWO SERIES LEFT
Auburn enters the ninth weekend of SEC play 10th in the SEC, holding a three-game lead on Tennessee (by virtue of the tie-breaker) and Alabama and is just one game behind Ole Miss and two behind Missisippi State and Vanderbilt ... The top 10 teams in the SEC overall standings earn a spot in this year's SEC Tournament, which takes place at Hoover, Ala., May 22-27.
Auburn has gone 20-10 (.667) at home this season but is just 5-12 (.357) on the road ... The offense has hit .341 inside Plainsman Park, scoring 222 runs (7.4 runs per game) with 105 extra-base hits (72 doubles, 16 triples, 17 home runs) while the pitching staff has a 2.88 ERA in 269 innings, striking out 183 (6.12 K/9) ... When Auburn hits the road those numbers change to a .275 team batting average and 4.2 runs per game while the pitching staff has a 5.54 ERA, averaging just 4.29 strike outs per game.
HEADING TO HOOVER?
Auburn is attempting to earn a third straight trip to Hoover, Ala., for this year's SEC Tournament (May 22-27), something it hasn't done since going to seven straight tournaments from 1997-2003.
THE MATH DOESN'T ADD UP
Auburn is the top hitting (.301), slugging (.431) and on base percentage (.369) team in SEC games and is second in runs scored (127) but is four games under .500 on the year at 10-14 despite a staff ERA that is sixth (4.30) ... Auburn has allowed just one more run (128) in league games than it has scored.
AUBURN VS THE SEC WEST
Auburn opened its SEC season by playing four straight series against teams from the SEC West, winning three of the series and going 6-6 to start the year, holding tie-breakers over LSU, Ole Miss and Mississippi State ... Since the start of the 2010 season Auburn has gone a combined 27-19 (.587) against the West (5-7 vs. Alabama, 4-2 vs. Arkansas, 6-3 vs. LSU, 7-3 vs. Ole Miss and 5-4 vs. Mississippi State [SEC Tournament and non-conference games included]) and has finished in the top two in the division each of the last two years.
I HAVE THE NEED, THE NEED FOR SPEED
Auburn has stolen a SEC-best 92 bases (in 123 tries, 75 percent) and has had five players reach 10-or-more steals for the first time since the 2001 season ... Auburn's total, which is led by Jay Gonzalez' SEC-best 24, is the fifth-most in school history.
Auburn will be without the services of left fielder Cullen Wacker for a fourth straight game on Thursday (he did not make the trip to Arkansas) after he sprained a knee in an outfield collision with Ryan Tella on Friday at Georgia ... At the time of his injury he was hitting .355 with 11 doubles, five triples, a home run and 27 RBI ... His batting average was fourth in the SEC and his five triples were third ... He had hit safely in 16 of 18 games prior to his injury, including 10 multi-hit games.
CAPS AND GOWNS
Two current players and one undergraduate assistant coach received their diplomas this spring as current players Justin Bryant and Cory Luckie along with Wes Gilmer, who finished his eligibility in 2011, all graduated this past weekend.
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