FSU/Duke Baseball Preview

The top ranked Florida State baseball team returns to Dick Howser Stadium on Friday for a three game series against ACC rival Duke. The (22-2) Seminoles have won 14 straight games at home against the (8-18) Blue Devils and leads the overall series 56-17. It is the second longest winning streak against an ACC opponent. The only team with longer losing streak in Tallahassee is Virginia Tech, who defeated a visiting FSU last Saturday but has not won at Dick Howser since 1989.

Last season Florida State won two out of three games against Duke. The only loss, which was the first in Durham since 2001, came in game 3 by the score of 8-7. This series is most remembered by Seminoles fans for Shane Robinson setting a school record the most consecutive games with a hit.

On Friday, Bryan Henry, who has been the most impressive pitcher for the Seminoles, will take the mound on Friday for Game one. So far this season Henry is 6-0 with a 1.41 ERA including 48 strikeouts and only seven walks. Opponents have struggled against Henry all year and are hitting only .224 against him and have only seven unearned runs in nearly 45 innings pitched. In fact the last time Henry lost pitching at home also happened to be his first home start of his career.

If he continues the success he has had, he will have a chance to break the record for K: BB of 6:1 in a single season. The record holder is Jeff Hill who in 1969 became the only FSU pitcher in history to have a ratio of six strikeouts per walk.

Tyler Chambliss will lead the Seminoles on Saturday after dominating opponents in his last two starts. He became the first pitcher at Florida State to have double digit strikeouts in back-to-back games since 1999. This happened after he became the first pitcher to have 15 or more strikeouts since 1997 against Maryland. Then in his next start he struck out 10 batters against Virginia Tech. Overall at home this season, Chambliss is 3-0 with a 1.40 ERA and 35 strikeouts. If he can reach double digit strikeouts against Duke, he will become only the third Seminole to record at least 10 strikeouts in three straight games.

Game three will give Michael Hyde a chance to return to form after a poor performance against Virginia Tech where he lasted only 2 1/3 and surrendered three runs. Prior to that game, Hyde was had showed potential with a 3-0 record and a 2.81 ERA and 10 strikeouts. Overall the starting pitchers for the Seminoles have had an incredible start to the season with a record of 21-0 with a combined 2.34 ERA.


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