Cruising into the weekend with a spotless 8-0 record, No. 21 Maryland will face three different teams in Greenville, North Carolina. Matchups include Michigan (6-3) on Friday, Indiana State (5-2) on Saturday, and East Carolina (3-5) on Sunday. The games are part of the LeClair Classic and will be played at Clark-LeClair Stadium.
The Terps rattled off a season-high 14 runs in their destruction of Delaware on Tuesday. Troy Schreffler Jr. continued his blazing start with his first home run of the season and had a four-hit day. Nick Lorusso pitched the seventh and eighth innings while also managing to get two hits. Maxwell Costes smashed a two-run shot to eventually blow the game wide open.
While the offense is coming off a monstrous couple games, the pitching has held up its end, as well. Logan Ott got three strikeouts, one walk, and three earned runs through 4.2 innings in his start against the Blue Hens while Will Glock slammed the door shut. Maryland was able to limit Delaware to four runs as they capped off a blowout at Bob “Turtle” Smith Stadium.
Maryland’s three studs are expected to pitch this weekend in Nick Dean, Ryan Ramsey, and Jason Savacool. The three have given up a combined six earned runs and have fanned 40 batters in 42 innings of dominant baseball. All three starters have a 2-0 record after getting wins against Baylor and Campbell.
Michigan Wolverines (6-3)
The Wolverines finished the 2021 season one game behind the Terps with a 27-17 record. The most at-bats they faced of any team was Maryland, so the two have plenty of experience facing each other from last season’s all-Big Ten play. Michigan had the upper edge over Maryland, taking the season series 3-2.
Michigan has had a potent offense so far this year. In 326 combined plate appearances, the team has 96 hits, 27 doubles, and 11 home runs. They have come out on top in five of their last six games entering the weekend.
Hitters to Watch
The Wolverines have six players hitting over .300 and five of them have an OPS over .900. Elliott Clark and Joe Stewart lead the team in these categories, as well as home runs, while Ted Burton and Matt Frey trail right behind them.
Pitchers to Watch
Cameron Weston is scheduled to take the mound against the Terps. He has a 4.50 ERA and has allowed 15 hits through 10 innings so far this season, but his numbers were much better last season where posted a 2.81 ERA through 83.1 innings. The 6-2 junior pitched against Texas Tech and Seton Hall in February, getting a no decision in the former and the win in the latter.
Indiana State Sycamores (5-2)
Indiana State finished in second place in the Missouri Valley Conference last season after going 31-21. The Sycamores did not face the Terrapins at all, nor any of the other Big Ten teams. After a strong regular season, they would eventually fall to the No. 2 Georgia Tech twice to exit the NCAA Tournament.
The Sycamores are riding a three-game winning streak into this weekend with two blowout victories against Minnesota and one against Merrimack. They have gotten a fair share of Big Ten play so far with not only two games against Minnesota, but also two against Ohio State in which they lost both.
Hitters to Watch
Jordan Schaffer has been leading the way for the Indiana State offense. The redshirt senior has a slash line of .414/.528/.586 so far and has 12 hits in 29 plate appearances. He is also on a 19-game hitting streak dating back to last season. Diego Gines, redshirt sophomore, has also been consistently getting on base with 11 hits and five walks in 27 at-bats.
Pitchers to Watch
Matt Jachec has been one of the best pitchers for Indiana State, notching a 1.35 ERA in 13.1 innings pitched. He also has an impressive 13 strikeouts and no walks to his name in his two wins. Aside from Jachec, pitching has somewhat struggled – every other pitcher that has tossed at least six innings has an ERA well over the 4.00 mark.
East Carolina Pirates (3-5)
East Carolina had a terrific 2021 season as they boasted a 44-17 record. Their 20-8 performance in the American Athletic Conference allowed them to secure a first place finish. They beat Maryland in the Greenville Regional last June by a final score of 9-6, but would eventually lose to Vandervilt twice in the Nashville Super Regional.
Unlike last season’s record, the Pirates have gotten the short end of the stick so far, entering the weekend with a 3-5 record. They got swept by Bryant University to kick off the year, but are 3-2 since then. They defeated Campbell 10-3, a team that Maryland swept in a three-game set and outscored 16-3.
Hitters to Watch
The Pirates have quite a few players that are clicking offensively in Lane Hoover, Justin Wilcoxen, Cowart Jenkins, and Alec Makarewicz. All of whom have above-average batting averages, on-base percentages, and slugging percentages. The team as a whole is coming off 17 runs in their last two games.
Pitchers to Watch
Josh Grosz has been lighting it up in the bullpen with 12 strikeouts and a 1.12 ERA in eight innings of work. He has only given up four hits in 28 batters faced. Jake Hunter has started both Sunday matchups for East Carolina this season, so if he goes again this Sunday, the Terps can expect a strong starting pitcher. He has given up only one run in 7.1 innings in his two starts, but has not gotten a win yet this year.
Probable Starting pitching matchups:
Friday, 12:00 p.m. ET
Jr. RHP Nick Dean (2-0, 0.00 ERA) vs Jr. RHP Cameron Weston (1-0, 4.50 ERA)
Nick Dean has delivered seven shutout frames against Baylor and Campbell, giving up just seven hits across those 14 innings. Dean has yet to give up a run this season and opposing hitters are only faring a .146 batting average against him.
Cameron Weston has not been particularly fantastic in his first two starts. He gave up three earned runs to Texas Tech and two to Seton Hall, but was able to sneak out wins in both of tose games. He has five walks and 13 strikeouts in ten innings of work so far this year.
Saturday, 12:00 p.m. ET
Jr. LHP Ryan Ramsey (2-0, 2.08 ERA) vs TBD
Ryan Ramsey pitched very effectively in his first start to the season against Baylor, but was even more impressive the following week against Campbell. Through his two starts, the New Jersey native has allowed just nine hits and three earned runs in 13 innings.
Sunday, 3:30 p.m. ET
So. RHP Jason Savacool (2-0, 1.80 ERA) vs Fr. RHP Jake Hunter (0-0, 1.23 ERA)
Jason Savacool dominated against Baylor to begin his sophomore season by easing through eight innings of three-run ball (two earned). He continued his incredible performance against Campbell as he gave up his four hits and earned his second victory of the season.
Jake Hunter has been very serviceable for East Carolina in his two starts. He has a 1.23 ERA in a combined 7.1 innings and has given up four hits in those two games. He did not receive a win or loss in either of his starts, though the team won one of them and lost the other.