The University of Louisville (34-10) remained among the nation's top five after a week that saw them finish 4-1, including a weekend series sweep over visiting Bethune-Cookman.
The sweep was the sixth of the season for the Cardinals, who will welcome rival Kentucky to Jim Patterson Stadium on Tuesday night. First pitch is scheduled for 6:00p.m. and general admission tickets remain available. Tickets purchased for the previously scheduled date (April 8) will be honored on Tuesday night and the purchased ticket for the April 8 game will be required for re-entry.
Freshman righthander Sean Leland (3-0) will get the start for the Cardinals.
Dan McDonnell previews Kentucky:
Kentucky (25-17) has won seven of its last eight outings, including taking two of three at No.5 Florida over the weekend.
Sutton Whiting on facing the Wildcats:
Josh Rogers on the rivalry:
Top 25 / ACC Standings
A number of ACC teams are present in the major polls. On the strength of taking two of three from Miami over the weekend, Florida State surged into the top ten of three polls:
The coming week is light in conference games, with many programs having the weekend off or stepping out of ACC play. The key series this weekend is Louisville at Clemson.
With the postseason drawing closer, here's a look at the top ACC teams in the latest NCAA RPI:
No.6 Florida State
No.15 North Carolina
No.28 Georgia Tech
No.38 Notre Dame
Solak Remains Hot
Sophomore Nick Solak is one of three players on the roster to play in all 44 games this season and for good reason. The Illinois native has extended his club and best hitting streak to 19 games.
He went 5 for 12 at the plate over the weekend, with four RBI and four runs, to improve his season average to .341, which is second highest on the team. He leads the team with 12 doubles, is second with 30 RBI and 17 stolen bases.
"That's why he's been in our two hole," said McDonnell, calling Solak a "very consistent hitter."
Nick Solak on playing Kentucky and his hitting streak:
Head coach Dan McDonnell made a change in the Cardinals infield in Sunday's finale against Bethune-Cookman, moving senior Sutton Whiting from shortstop, where he has started all season, to second base. Freshman Devin Hairston has moved into the shortstop role.
It's a move that both player and coach believe will prove beneficial, both for the remainder of the season and into Whiting's likely pro career.
Stolen Bases Race
It's not secret that Dan McDonnell likes to takes risks on the base paths, always looking for the right opportunity to create scoring chances by calling stolen bases. It's expected that many guys on the roster will have double digit steal totals, with a few going for 20 or more, as has been the case.
It was also expected that Sutton Whiting would be the team leader in the category. After finishing fifth in the nation with 37 thefts last season, the senior was the easy favorite to collect the most stolen bases. However, a roster full of speedsters who often have the green light to run, has created a bit of competition amongst teammates.
"It's fun, but I'm a little ticked that I'm fourth," Whiting said on Monday afternoon. "I'll catch them. It's a blast that we have so many guys in the lineup that can steal and do so many things. It's fun to play with guys like that and have McDonnell coach that style is a fun system to be in."
Matt Baldwin ALS Benefit
In an effort to help one of their own, the University of Louisville baseball program will use Tuesday's night game against Kentucky as an opportunity to help raise awareness and money for former Cardinal Matt Baldwin.
Baldwin, a product of Louisville Male and a member of U of L baseball team from 1998-99, has been diagnosed with a rare form of ALS and is in need of assistance to help cover the continuing medical costs.
Baldwin will throw out the ceremonial first pitch for what is another wonderful L1C4 moment.
Head coach Dan McDonnell has agreed to match up to $1,000 gift from Tuesday's nights efforts.
You can learn more and donate by clicking here.
- Through 44 games this season, the Louisville bullpen has a 1.31 ERA with a 14-0 record, 173 strikeouts to just 54 walks in 151.2 innings and opposing batters are hitting just .165.
- The Cardinals have won 129 straight games when entering the ninth inning with a lead dating back to May 2012, including a 31-0 mark this season.
- As a pitching staff, the Cardinals have a 2.33 ERA with 426 strikeouts in 402.0 innings pitched.
- In the three-game series against Bethune-Cookman, Zach Lucas was 6-for-11 (.545 average) with three RBI, four runs scored and two stolen bases.
- Corey Ray leads Louisville with nine home runs, 42 RBI, four triples, 35 runs scored and 24 stolen bases in 28 attempts.