Clemson vs. Maryland
Clemson (14-10, 3-0 ACC), winners of five games in a row, will play host to Maryland (13-12, 2-4 ACC), winners of four games in a row, this weekend in a three-game series at Doug Kingsmore Stadium. Game times are 7:15 PM (Friday), 4:00 PM (Saturday), and 1:00 PM (Sunday). All three games will be broadcast live on the radio by the Clemson Tiger Sports Network and can be heard live via the internet at ClemsonTigers.com. Live stats will also be available on Clemson's website for all three games.
Saturday's game is "Family Day." An entire family can be admitted to the game for just $12. On Sunday, youngsters will be allowed on the field to stand next to their favorite Tiger during the National Anthem.
Clemson and Maryland have met 132 times on the baseball diamond, with the Tigers holding a 97-35 lead in the series dating back to the 1923 season. Last year in College Park, MD, the Terrapins won a doubleheader on April 19 by scores of 9-6 and 8-4. The Tigers took the series finale the next day by a score of 20-5, a game that saw the Tigers hit six home runs, including two by Brad McCann. Two years ago, Clemson swept the Terrapins at Doug Kingsmore Stadium.
The Tigers hold a 55-6 advantage over Maryland all-time in games played at Clemson and 45-1 in games played at Doug Kingsmore Stadium, including winning 15 in a row in the friendly confines. Clemson also holds an 84-32 advantage over the Terrapins in games played in the ACC regular season.
Tiger Head Coach Jack Leggett is 28-4 against the Terrapins as Clemson's head coach, including a 15-0 mark at Doug Kingsmore Stadium.
The Starting Pitchers
Maryland's starting rotation for the weekend series has not been made available.
Clemson will start sophomore righthander Jason Berken (4-1, 2.83 ERA) on the mound Friday. The De Pere, WI native has not allowed an earned run in his last two starts (13.0 innings pitched). In five starts overall, he has allowed just 18 hits (.176 opponents' batting average) in 28.2 innings pitched. He also has 28 strikeouts.
In game two Saturday, Clemson will send out junior lefthander Tyler Lumsden (1-1, 4.63 ERA). The Roanoke, VA native has started four games and allowed 23 hits in 23.1 innings pitched. He also has 25 strikeouts against only seven walks.
In game three Sunday, Clemson will start sophomore lefty Robert Rohrbaugh (1-1, 3.71 ERA) on the mound. The Littlestown, PA native earned his first career win last weekend against Wake Forest. In 17.0 innings pitched, he has allowed 16 hits. He has also yet to allow a homer this year.
Maryland, led by fourth-year Head Coach Terry Rupp, enters this weekend's series on a four-game winning streak, with wins over Duke and midweek victories over Virginia Commonwealth and at Delaware. The Terrapins are 13-12 overall, 2-4 in ACC play, and 4-9 on opponents' home fields.
Maryland is hitting .305 as a team, led by Matt Maropis' .433 batting average. Anthony Buffone (.381), Will Frazier (.378), and Kevin Hart (.364) are also hitting for a high average. Brian Jarosinski leads the team with 11 homers and 39 RBIs in 25 games.
The Terrapin pitching staff sports a 4.84 ERA, led by reliever Justin Hulse. Hulse has three saves and a 2.35 ERA in 11 relief appearances. Opponents are hitting .274 against Maryland, but its pitchers have struck out 222 in 219.1 innings pitched. The staff has also allowed just 10 home runs.
Clemson enters its second ACC series on a five-game winning streak, including two midweek wins over border-rival Georgia. The Tigers are 14-10 overall and lead the ACC with a 3-0 conference mark. The Tigers are hitting .369 and have a 3.00 ERA in their five-game winning streak.
The Tigers are hitting .305 as a team, led by Brad McCann's .450 batting average. The junior third baseman from Duluth, GA is 11-for-18 (.611) with six walks and a hit-by-pitch in the last five games. He also has six homers and 25 RBIs to go along with a .513 on-base percentage on the season. Herman Demmink, who has been Clemson's leadoff batter for the past five games, is 12-for-23 (.522) since moving into that spot. John Ingram also is riding a 10-game hitting streak. The Tigers have stolen 31 bases (led by Tony Sipp's nine) as well.
The Tiger pitching staff has a 4.26 ERA and .250 opponents' batting average. Clemson also has a .962 fielding percentage.
Tigers Take Two From Georgia
In a two-game, midweek, home-and-home series on March 30,31, Clemson won both games over Georgia by a combined score of 25-6. Clemson outhit the Bulldogs .384 to .235 and stole three bases to Georgia's none. Brad McCann was 7-for-8 against the Bulldogs, upping his career mark to 12-for-16 against them. Herman Demmink also had five hits in the series. It was the Tigers' first two-game sweep over Georgia since 1999.
Kris Harvey pitched 7.0 solid innings and Patrick Hogan closed out the last 2.0 innings in Clemson's 6-2 win at Foley Field in Athens on March 30. The Tigers' win broke a four-game losing streak at Foley Field. Harvey, who worked out of several jams, scattered seven hits and allowed two runs while striking out seven in the longest outing of his career. He improved to 5-0 with the victory. Hogan closed the door to record his fifth save of the year. Clemson scored in each of the first four innings to take a 5-2 lead and never looked back. McCann, a Georgia signee out of high school, paced the Tigers with three hits, including two doubles and two RBIs. Herman Demmink added two runs and two hits, while Ryan Hub hit his first home run of the year.
In the rematch on March 31, Clemson won for the 10th straight time over Georgia at Doug Kingsmore Stadium by a convincing score of 19-4. McCann went 4-for-4 with a homer and three RBIs, and Lou Santangelo hit a grand slam and triple, and drove in six runs. Demmink and Harvey each had 3-for-4 nights with three runs scored and three RBIs. The Tigers totaled 17 runs and 16 hits in the first four innings and never looked back. Stephen Faris pitched 6.0 innings and allowed just two runs on five hits to earn his first career win.
Tigers Tough to Beat at Home Under Leggett
In over 10 seasons, Head Coach Jack Leggett has a 487-204 overall record at Clemson, including a 189-94 mark against ACC teams. He has been especially tough in home ACC series, where he has a 97-24 (.802) record. The conference team with the most success has been Florida State, who has only won five games in 15 tries at Doug Kingsmore Stadium.
Even when an opposing ACC team is victorious at Clemson, it usually means that team only won one of three contests. In 41 ACC home series under Leggett, Clemson has lost only two series, losing two of three to N.C. State in 1996 and getting swept by Florida State in 2002. Georgia Tech also split a pair of games in a rain-shortened season in 1997.
Tickets Available Online
Tiger baseball fans can purchase tickets online for upcoming Tiger home games at Clemson's official athletic website, ClemsonTigers.com. Tickets for each weekend series will go on sale each Monday and fans can purchase reserved bleacher seats for a single game or an entire series. Tiger fans can also purchase advanced seats for the South Carolina home game on April 7 at Doug Kingsmore Stadium.
Santangelo Solid Behind the Plate
Junior catcher Lou Santangelo (Colts Neck, NJ) transferred from Seton Hall prior to this season and has made an immediate impact. In two seasons as the Seton Hall starter behind the plate, he totaled just three home runs. He already has a team-high seven homers and 26 RBIs in 23 games in 2004. Five of his seven homers have scored at least three runs, as he has been the Tiger cleanup hitter almost every game. He has also been solid behind the plate. He has dramatically improved Clemson's run defense and has been a big factor in the development of the Tigers' pitching staff. Baseball America lists the aggressive hitter and outspoken player as a top-100 prospect for this year's draft as well.
Santangelo is the only Tiger to drive in at least five runs in a single game this year. In fact, he has driven in six runs on two different occasions, including in a 15-4 win at College of Charleston on March 5 and against Georgia on March 31. He has been especially hot over the last nine games as well, going 18-for-33 (.545) with two homers and 13 RBIs. Thanks to his recent success, he has raised his season batting average to .374. He also is hitting .500 (14-for-28) with runners in scoring position.
McCann Leading Team With .450 Average
In 24 games this year, Brad McCann has 45 hits and leads the team with a .450 batting average along with six homers and 25 RBIs. He also has a team-best 27 runs scored and 10 doubles.
The 2003 Second-Team All-ACC selection had eight RBIs in three games against #7 Auburn from March 12-14. Then against Georgia in two games on March 30,31, he was 7-for-8 with a homer and five RBIs. In four career games against the team he signed with out of high school, McCann is 12-for-16.
McCann, whose brother is a rising star in the Braves' organization, has batted in the #3 spot in the lineup all season. He also has an .800 on-base percentage when leading off an inning. McCann has a career batting average of .376 (132-for-351) in two seasons as well.
The one word Head Coach Jack Leggett likes to use when talking about sophomore righthander Jason Berken (De Pere, WI) is "battler." Clemson's Friday starter has done just that this year, as he has a 4-1 record and 2.83 ERA in five starts. He has been especially good in his last two starts, wins at Texas Tech and against Wake Forest. In a combined 13.0 innings pitched, he did not allow an earned run in those two contests. On the season, he has allowed just 18 hits in 28.2 innings pitched while striking out 28. Opponents are hitting only .176 overall and righthanded batters are hitting only .129 off Berken as well.
Harvey Producing On Mound and At Plate
Sophomore righthander Kris Harvey (Catawba, NC) was hampered most of last season with shoulder problems, but has regained the form in 2004 that made him a fifth-round draft pick out of high school. The son of former Major League pitcher Bryan Harvey has made a team-high seven starts and has a 5-0 record along with a 3.13 ERA. In 31.2 innings pitched (22.0 of which have come away from home), he has allowed just 26 hits while striking out 31. He was 4-1 in 2003 as a freshman, therefore is 9-1 in his two-year career as a Tiger.
Harvey has also been a producer at the plate this year. In 11 starts in the field, he is hitting .364 with three doubles, two homers, and 14 RBIs. Against Wake Forest from March 26-28, he shined, going 7-for-13 (.538) with three doubles, a homer, and seven RBIs in just three games.
He was also a thorn in the side of Georgia in two games from March 30-31. He pitched 7.0 innings, allowing just two runs while striking out seven to earn the win at Athens. Then the next day, he went 3-for-4 with three runs scored and three RBIs as the starting right fielder.
Tigers Face Maryland This Weekend
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