Pack Baseball vs Clemson – Weekend Preview

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After a 1-1 start to the week which saw the Pack get pounded 24-12 at Elon, but then bounce back for the 5-2 win at home vs Campbell, Wolfpack Baseball gets the ACC portion of its schedule kicked off this weekend when Clemson rolls into Raleigh for a three game set.

So, let’s have a look at ‘em.

clemsonpaw Clemson Tigers

7-4 (0-0) – (2012: 35-28, 3rd ACC Atlantic)

Batting

The Tigers have struggled to score runs at times this season so far.  They bat only .253 as a team and have averaged fewer than 5 runs per game this season, but don’t expect that to continue.  They haven’t demonstrated much power thus far, but they do like to make things happen on the basepaths to manufacture runs and make the most of their opportunities.

Jr. 2B Steve Wilkerson (#17) leads the team in avg (.366) as well as stolen bases (5/5 att), and is second in RBI (8).  Soph. 3B Jay Baum (#13), Sr CF Thomas Brittle (#4) and Jr. LF/DH Shane Kennedy (#11) are all also threats to run, each having swiped 3 bases on 5 attempts.  Kennedy also leads the team in RBI (12).

Though not a basestealing threat, Soph. C Garrett Boulware (#30) hits at a .321 clip, and Frosh. RF Steven Duggar (#9) has proven himself useful for the Tigers batting order as well, hitting .316 with 4 doubles (1st on team) and 7RBI (3rd).

Not surprisingly, those six guys have scored the bulk of Clemson’s runs also (41/51) so keeping them off the bases would serve Wolfpack pitchers well.

 

Pitching/Defense

Clemson might not have been an offensive juggernaut so far this season, but in most games they haven’t had to be.  They’ve held opponents to 3.4 rpg and their staff ERA is a paltry 2.16 on the season.  And the Pack’s big hitters better come prepared because opponents are batting only .228 against them.

The three starters the Pack is likely to face this weekend are at the top of the heap so far.  Soph. RHP Daniel Gossett (#23) (1-1, ERA 1.00) is likely the man the Pack will face on Friday.  Batters are hitting only .197 against him and he’s K’d 16 in his three starts.  It gets no easier after that as Clemson’s likely Saturday and Sunday starters, Frosh. RHP Clate Schmidt (#32) (2-0, 1.32) and Sr. RHP Scott Firth (#20) (2-1, 0.86), both have been just as effective.

And the Tigers have a bullpen too, with six guys at an ERA of 3.86 or below; and with four of them, Soph. RHP Kyle Schnell (#40), Soph. RHP Clay Bates (#42), Frosh. LHP Zack Erwin (#33) and Sr. LHP Joseph Moorefield (#51), still having yet to give up an earned run so far this season in 12.2 combined innings.

Clemson is above average in the field with a .975 fld. pct, with only Wilkerson at second base having booted more than one ball this season (he’s muffed 3 in 52 chances for a fld. pct. of .942).

Games Schedule – Pitching Probables

  • Friday, 3pm ** – LHP Carlos Rodon vs RHP Daniel Gossett
  • Saturday, 4pm** – RHP Ethan Ogburn vs RHP Clate Schmidt
  • Sunday, 1pm – LHP Brad Stone vs RHP Scott Firth

** Friday and Saturday game times moved up from original 6:30pm start.

All three weekend games are scheduled to be streamed live via ESPN3.

Clemson Tigers Baseball Home (ClemsonTigers.com)

Let’s Go Pack!  Get the conference slate started off right!

Be sure to head over the the SFN Forums and get in on the conversations going there about not only baseball, but also the discussion regarding the Pack’s likely post-season fortunes in basketball.

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About Wufpacker

A 2nd generation alumnus and raised since birth to be irrationally dedicated to all things NC State. Class of '88 and '92.

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13 Responses to Pack Baseball vs Clemson – Weekend Preview

  1. Dr. BadgerPack 03/08/2013 at 6:55 AM #

    I’d prefer Rodon pitching Saturday… BUT since Stone took the Sunday start, breaking up the lefties is an OK reason to not do so.

    Ogburn- if he remains in the Saturday spot- has to consistently go 6+ innings.

  2. vtpackfan 03/08/2013 at 7:59 AM #

    Clemson loaded up on lefties? Brad Stone?

  3. vtpackfan 03/08/2013 at 9:55 AM #

    I’ll just stop with the arm chair managing-it’s been kind of ridiculous on my part. I’ll assume Logan Jernigan is ailing a little and that is why he’s left off the weekend rotation. The box score from the last Sunday shows he only lasted 1/3 an inning so he must have tweaked something.

    Go Pack and keep improving with the team bats. It’s great to have great relief veterans like Wilkens, Zasser and Easley to hold down the fort late in games.

  4. elvislives 03/08/2013 at 11:04 AM #

    Great preview Wuf, thanks for the continued good work.

    Loaded question: What is the conventional wisdom regarding college pitching rotations? I understand that “weekend starters” are clearly known to be the best 3 starting pitchers on the team. But, match-ups and rest days aside, what day Rodon would “traditionally” go in terms of a 3 game weekend series?

    Saturday, right? Because you’re either going for a series win or a series tie in the 2nd of 3 weekend games. And you have the added luxury of knowing that Rodon typically pitches 6+ innings so that rests the bullpen in case you need to use more arms on Friday or Sunday. Isn’t this where the term “Saturday Starter” comes from?

  5. elvislives 03/08/2013 at 11:23 AM #

    I am excited to see Stone go on Sunday. I like that the Freshman gets the call in a huge opening conference series. Stone pitched great early against Villanova but got roughed up a bit against New Mexico and hammered by Elon on Tuesday. Might be on a short leash though, Avent has not been scared to pull pitchers early so far this season.

    If Ogburn and Rodon do their jobs on Friday and Saturday, State should have a lot of arms in the stable Sunday.

  6. PackerInRussia 03/08/2013 at 1:04 PM #

    “… and he’s K’d 16 in his three starts”

    What took him so long :)

    Hard to believe that conference baseball is here when it’s 14 degrees outside and everything’s under several feet of snow. I’ll just have to believe that spring is out there somewhere in the world. Hoping they kick off conference play with a series win (a sweep wouldn’t be too bad either). Also hoping I can find an online feed with some of the games. Go Pack! (and go baseball!)

  7. Wufpacker 03/08/2013 at 1:31 PM #

    “Hard to believe that conference baseball is here…”

    By “here”, I’ll presume you don’t mean Moscow there comrade.

    But yeah, does seem like the conference slate got here quickly. Of course it’s been pushing 80s here (and yes, by here I do mean the desert). Of course today it’s cold, windy and rainy. But it won’t last long…did I mention it’s a desert? Hell, I might even catch another spring training game this weekend if all goes well.

    Yeah, I’m done rubbing it in. Besides, this is the only time of year I actually don’t hate it here.

  8. Wufpacker 03/08/2013 at 3:13 PM #

    Heh heh….Pack sporting black jerseys this afternoon.

  9. Wufpacker 03/08/2013 at 3:30 PM #

    Pack draws first blood bottom 2nd on Will Nance 2 run HR to center, Pack up 2-0.

  10. Wufpacker 03/08/2013 at 3:50 PM #

    Rodon w/ 6Ks thru 3.

    Plunked Brittle on the elbow and the poor guy looked like he lost feeling in his arm.

    Actually, he probably did I suppose.

    Turner with a solo shot to lead off the Pack’s 3rd.

  11. vtpackfan 03/08/2013 at 6:13 PM #

    Rodon gives up 4-0 lead. We commit four errors Turner hurt at end of game. Total NC S**r ACC opener.

  12. Wufpacker 03/08/2013 at 10:21 PM #

    vt…I stopped following closely after the 7th and only just found out about the possible Turner injury. Any further info/insight you can provide? Not finding any chatter about it anywhere.

  13. vtpackfan 03/09/2013 at 2:01 AM #

    No further insight besides it happened on the last out and he threw his helmet into the dug out. That’s a good sign that a player isn’t agonizing an injury over agonizing a performance- I guess

    When I had my first real injury on the baseball diamond I didn’t get to upset because my team lost it and I was in the mix-I just thought immediately of how much pain I was in. That Trea was able to get up in disgust is a good sign by my ball park.

    Where is Cowdog- he knows this crap better then anyone. And while we’re at it, why is Rodon facing 17 batters in the 4 th and 5 th innings? That’s terrible no matter who you are playing.

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