UIC is a member of the Horizon League. The Flames are coached by veteran head coach Mike Dee who has over 500 wins and several Horizon championships. Last weekend the Flames opened their season with a four-game series at Texas Southern. The Flames lost the first game 8-5 but then proceeded to thrash Southern in the final three games by a combined score of 60-16.
Based on their first series of the season, the Flames are an explosive batting team. UIC pounded out 55 hits including 18 home runs in its opening series. First baseman Richardo Ramirez earned all-league honors last week after getting eight hits, 14 RBIs and four homers. Connor Philbin also notched eight hits in the opening series. Four other players are hitting .400 or higher.
Looking at the UIC pitching staff, they are less impressive than the batters but it's still early in the season. Lefty Jake Dahlberg is set to start on Friday. Last week he gave up nine hits and eight earned runs in the opener. Righty, Ian Lewandowski will start on Saturday while another righty, Mitchell Schulewitz, with gets the nod on Sunday.
Looking at the Vandy-UIC stat comparison, the two teams are fairly equal in batting prowess although UIC has three times as many home runs as Vandy. Vandy pitchers have allowed a significantly lower ERA and opponent batting average.
Friday's game will be another early contest, starting at 4 pm. Saturday and Sunday's game will each start at noon. Friday and Sunday's games will be on the SEC Network Plus. Listen on the radio at 560 AM WNSR on online at VUCommodores.com.
For VandyMania.com and Scout, this is Don Yates.