While many will be there for the game, a significant portion will be in attendance for dinner, the cheapest in town to be exact. Tuesday night is Zeigler 25-cent hot dog night at Plainsman Park, a promotion that has been a big hit.
Last season on two dates, the 25-cent hot dog night drew in 6,502 fans who consumed 17,200 hot dogs. This season could be even bigger because of improved attendance all season and expected perfect weather for Tuesday night's game. Vendors have also set up 15 different hot dog dispensing locations to alleviate overcrowding.
The Blazers enter the game with a record of 21-13 overall and 6-8 in Conference USA following a home sweep at the hands of TCU. UAB is led at the plate by Kyle Leon, who is hitting .393 with eight home runs and 39 runs batted in. Not far behind is Daniel Hill with a .376 average and six home runs. The duo has accounted for 14 of UAB's 28 home runs this season.
The Blazers have a team batting average of .282 and are scoring just over six runs per game. UAB's strength is in the pitching staff with a team ERA of just 3.61. The group has allowed opponents to hit just .234 this season with 18 home runs.
Daniel Forrer is expected to get the start against UAB Tuesday night.
Auburn enters on a roll after winning a series on the road at Mississippi State. The Tigers used a big offensive weekend to beat the Bulldogs and they have improved greatly since struggling to score runs against Georgia and Alabama. Leading the way is sophomore Tug Hulett. Hitting .390 with one home run, 27 runs batted in and a team leading 17 doubles, Hulett has established himself as one of the premier players in the SEC this season.
Second on the team is third baseman Scott Schade. The only regular without a home run this season, he is hitting .336 with 22 runs batted in and enters Tuesday's game with a 13-game hitting streak. Center fielder Javon Moran is third on the team with a .325 average and has three home runs and 30 runs batted in while adding a team-high 16 stolen bases in 20 attempts.
Auburn's success comes from a lineup that is strong from leadoff hitter Sean Gamble all the way to number-nine hitter Chuck Jeroloman. While his average is just .246, Jeroloman has two home runs and 25 runs batted in this season with an on-base percentage of .343. In fact, every member of Auburn's starting lineup has more than 20 runs batted in and five of the nine have at least 10 doubles.
The balance in the order has given the Tigers a better chance to score runs in any inning, unlike in years past when the middle of the order was counted on to drive in the majority of the runs scored by the team.
On the mound the Tigers continue to be led by a strong bullpen. What was once a trio of Levale Speigner, Cory Dueitt and Steven Register is now a quartet with the strong pitching of true freshman Chris Dennis. In 14 appearances this season he has a 2-1 record with an ERA of 3.29. Showing poise and character beyond his years, Dennis has been a key figure in SEC games.
This game will test Auburn's depth in the bullpen as true freshman left-hander Daniel Forrer is expected to get the start against the Blazers. With a record of 1-0 on the season and an ERA of 8.38, he has shown improvement his last few outings and will be looking to show consistency in order to break into the bullpen rotation for the stretch run in SEC play. In his last outing, a 13-2 victory over Troy State, he pitched six innings and allowed just three hits and two runs.
Auburn returns to SEC action Friday night when the Tigers are hosts to the first of three games against Arkansas at Plainsman Park. The Razorbacks are one of the hottest teams in the league and come in after scoring 29 runs in three games against Vanderbilt last weekend. Game times for the weekend are 6:30 p.m. on Friday, 3 p.m. on Saturday and 1:30 p.m. on Sunday.