Virginia's Nathan Kirby headlines Sunday's pitching duels, which features an old-fashioned Texas shootout between familiar foes TCU and Texas Tech
OMAHA — The matchups are set for Sunday's action in the College World Series.
In a the highly-anticipated Big 12 clash, Texas Tech will start junior Chris Sadberry against TCU's Preston Morrison in the 2 p.m. game (ESPN2).
A few hours later, Virginia's Nathan Kirby squares off against Ole Miss and Chris Ellis.
Let's take a quick look at the matchups:
Texas Tech's Sadberry (5-3, 3.17 ERA) is a first-team all-conference lefty who was a sixth-round pick of the Miami Marlins, the highest-drafted Red Raiders arm since 2006. He pitched against the Horned Frogs on March 23, winning his third game in a five-inning, four-hit, three-run day.
Sadberry went eight innings in his last outing against the College of Charleston, giving up just four hits (no runs) and striking out eight.
TCU's Morrison is a 6-foot-2 righty and the 2014 Big 12 Pitcher of the Year this season, thanks to a 9-4 record, 1.32 ERA and a 4.5 strikeout-to-walk ratio.
Morrison struggled against the Red Raiders in March, giving up four runs on six hits in two innings. Coach Jim Schlossnagle tabbed Morrison over lefty Brandon Finnegan, who yielded three hits to the Red Raiders on March 21 in seven innings.
Really at this level, they're really interchangeable and just feel right now that's the way we're going to go, with Preston," Schlossnagle said.
Virginia's Kirby, a lefty, was the ACC Co-Pitcher of the Year thanks to a 9-2 record and 1.73 ERA. He pitched a no-hitter on April 4 at Pittsburgh and struck out 18. This season Kirby had a streak of 26 consecutive innings without allowing an earned run.
Kirby struggled in a Super Regional against Maryland (five earned runs in 4 2/3 innings) but was splendid in regional games against Florida State and Arkansas: No earned runs and 11 strikeouts in a combined 14 innings.
The Rebels' Ellis went 10-2 and posted a 2.45 ERA. He's a big, 6-foot-5 lefty with 64 strikeouts. Opponents are hitting .259 against him.