No. 9 Georgia Tech Set to Battle No. 23 Clemson
April 28, 2011
ATLANTA - The ninth-ranked Georgia Tech baseball team (30-12, 17-4 ACC) will continue Atlantic Coast Conference play with a three-game series at No. 23 Clemson (27-14, 11-10 ACC) this weekend at Doug Kingsmore Stadium. First pitch is at 6:30 p.m. Friday, 1 pm. Saturday and 1 p.m. Sunday.
Pitching Matchup (Georgia Tech vs. Clemson)
Friday: RHP Mark Pope (9-1, 1.01, 80.1 IP, 67 SO) vs. RHP Dominic Leone (2-1, 3.66, 32.0 IP, 35 SO)
Saturday: LHP Jed Bradley (4-2, 2.98, 60.1 IP, 78 SO) vs. RHP Jonathan Meyer (4-0, 2.66, 44.0 IP, 46 SO)
Sunday: RHP Buck Farmer (7-1, 3.27, 63.1 IP, 68 SO) vs. TBD
Saturday's game will air live on FS South with first pitch slated for 1:06 p.m. Mike Hogewood (play by play) and Dan Bonner (color) will have the call. The GT radio broadcast can be heard over the air on WREK (91.1), the flagship station of Georgia Tech baseball, and online at RamblinWreck.com.
Clemson holds a slim 100-99-3 edge in the all-time series ... Tech won three of the four meetings in 2010, including a sweep during the regular season a Russ Chandler Stadium ... The Tigers are 43-20-1 against Tech in games played in Clemson ... The Jackets are 30-35 against Clemson since head coach Danny Hall's arrival on the Flats in 1994.
Last Meeting: Clemson's Richie Shaffer scored three runs and drove in three, while freshman Will Lamb pitched 6 1/3 strong innings to lead the Tigers to a 9-3 win over sixth-ranked Georgia Tech at the 2010 Atlantic Coast Conference Baseball Championships on Mat 29, 2010 at NewBridge Bank Park.
The loss eliminated Georgia Tech from contention for the ACC title game.
YELLOW JACKETS IN THE RPI
Georgia Tech will take a week off for finals, before playing a non-conference weekend series at Illinois-Chicago next Saturday, Sunday and Monday.
LEFTOVERS FROM LAST WEEKEND
Georgia Tech picked up its fifth weekend series sweep of the season, winning three games against Boston College at Russ Chandler Stadium (2-0, 8-1 and 10-8). All three of Tech's weekend pitchers recorded wins, as the 1-2-3 punch moved its record to a combined 20-4 ... Pope (9-1) highlighted the weekend with his third complete-game shutout of the season in Friday's 2-0 win ... Junior Jed Bradley (7.0 IP, 6 H, 1 R, 6 SO) paced Saturday's attack with a quality start on the mound, while eight of the team's nine starter had a hit and six drove in runs for the sweep on Sunday.
WEEKEND THREE ARE KEY
Georgia Tech's weekend rotation of Mark Pope (Friday), Jed Bradley (Saturday) and Buck Farmer (Sunday) has keyed the team's success so far this season. The 1-2-3 punch is a combined 20-4, with a collective 2.29 ERA (53 earned runs in 204 innings). Pope leads the crew in wins (9) and ERA (1.01). Bradley leads the crew in strikeouts with 78, while Farmer is currently on a seven-game win streak.
QUALITY AND QUANTIY
Quality starts (six innings pitched, three or fewer runs allowed) are pretty much the norm for Georgia Tech starters. Heading into this weekend, Yellow Jackets hurlers have 21 quality starts in 30 appearances. Pope is almost a given, as he has nine and hasn't pitched fewer than seven innings since Feb. 25, against St. John's, when he left in the sixth inning with a 13-0 lead. Buck Farmer and Jed Bradley each have six quality starts, with five each over their last seven starts. That means a lot of innings pitched. Pope and Farmer both are in the top 10 in the ACC, as Pope leads the ACC with 80 1/3, while Farmer is six with 63 1/3.
HALL CLOSES IN ON 300 ACC VICTORIES
Georgia Tech Head Coach Danny Hall has a chance to reach 300 conference wins this weekend. He enters this series with Clemson with 297 ACC victories. He has nine conference games left to reach the milestone. Hall, who has never had a losing season in his 18 seasons on The Flats, has averaged 16.3 conference wins per season. He enters the weekend with a career record of 975-457-1, a career .670 win percentage.
This weekend's series will be a homecoming of sorts for freshman Daniel Palka. Palka's hometown of Lyman, S.C. is just 50 miles away from Clemson. Tech's designated hitter leads the team and ranks third in the ACC with eight home runs this season. He is batting .313 with 38 RBI and a .575 slugging percentage. Palka is coming off a 3-for-4 performance with a double and a home run against Georgia on Tuesday.
POPE SETS MODERN DAY RECORD FOR SHUTOUTS
Junior Mark Pope's complete-game shutout masterpiece against Boston College last Friday was his third this season, and the fourth of his career. It set a modern day record, surpassing four others that were tied at 3. Craig Day (1903-06) and Ed LaFitte (1906-07) each had six in the early 1900's.
EARNING EVERY BUCK
After beginning the season in a 0-1 hole (including a no-decision in his first start), sophomore pitcher Buck Farmer has gone on to win seven straight games on the mound.
Five of those have come against ACC opponents, giving him a perfect 9-0 record against conference foes in two years on the Flats.