April 10, 2014
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- 24 Hawkeyes to Watch
|Iowa (18-12, 3-6) at Northwestern (5-22, 1-7)|
|Dates||April 11-13, 2014|
|Location||Evanston, Ill. | Rocky Miller Park|
|Statistics||Northwestern | IOWA|
|Radio||AM-800 KXIC (Friday)/Hawkeye All-Access (All Series)|
|Live Streaming||BTDN (Hawkeye All-Access)|
|Date | Time||Friday, April 11 | 3 p.m. (CT)|
|Pitching Matchup||IOWA: So., RHP, Calvin Mathews (3-2, 2.55 ERA) vs.
NU: So., LHP, Reed Mason (1-2, 4.29 ERA)
|Date | Time||Saturday, April 12 | 1 p.m. (CT)|
|Pitching Matchup||IOWA: Jr., LHP, Sasha Kuebel (3-3, 6.02 ERA) vs.
NU: Jr., RHP Brandon Magallones (0-4, 4.50 ERA)
|Date | Time||Sunday, April 13 | 1 p.m. (CT)|
|Pitching Matchup||IOWA: So., RHP, Tyler Peyton (3-0, 4.84 ERA) vs.
The University of Iowa baseball team returns to Big Ten play, facing Northwestern on April 11-13 at Rocky Miller Park in Evanston, Ill. Friday’s series opener is slated to begin at 3 p.m. (CT) followed by 1 p.m. starts Saturday and Sunday.
All three games of the Northwestern series will be streamed on the Big Ten Digital Network, which can be accessed via Hawkeye All-Access at hawkeyesports.com. Brent Balbinot will also call the play-by-play for the three-game series. Friday’s opener will be broadcast on AM-800 KXIC and all three games will be available on Hawkeye All-Access.
Fans can follow every game with live stats (GameTracker) on hawkeyesports.com. Click on the “GT” link found on both the front page and the baseball schedule page. Live game updates are also available on Twitter: @UIBaseball.
? The Wildcats snapped a seven-game losing streak when they downed Valparaiso, 12-5, Tuesday in Evanston. Northwestern is 5-22 overall and 1-7 in Big Ten play.
? Northwestern is in the midst of a nine-game homestand — its first home stretch this season. The Wildcats are 1-4 at Rocky Miller Park after being swept by Illinois and being outscored 20-2 in three games.
? Northwestern is hitting .270 as a team with Matt Hopfner leading the squad with a .353 batting average. The outfielder has a team-best 36 hits, 17 RBIs and is second with 13 runs. The Wildcats have been outscored, 183-121, this season.
? The Wildcats have a 5.04 team ERA, allowing 183 runs (135 earned) over 241 innings. Northwestern has 157 strikeouts against 133 walks and is allowing opposing hitters to bat .289.
? Northwestern will start LHP Reed Mason (1-2, 4.29 ERA) on Friday and RHP Brandon Magallones (0-4, 4.50 ERA) on Saturday. Sunday’s starter has yet to be announced.
? Northwestern has struggled defensively in 2014, committing 57 errors in 27 games for a .947 fielding percentage.
? Iowa leads the all-time series over Northwestern, 131-99-2. The Wildcats won 2-of-3 games last season in a series played in Carol Stream, Ill.
? Dating back to the 2007 season, the series has been relatively even with Iowa winning 9-of-17 games.
? Iowa finished with a season-high 18 hits in its 12-7 victory over Kansas on April 9. It was the team’s second-straight and 14th 10-hit game this season. The Hawkeyes had 28 hits in the two-game series sweep over the Jayhawks.
? Through 30 games, Iowa has surpassed its 2013 doubles total. The Hawkeyes have 55 doubles this season after finishing with 53 in 49 games a season ago. Iowa has 70 total extra base hits; the team had 63 the entire 2013 season.
? Junior Dan Potempa is currently leading the Big Ten with a .476 on-base percentage and is fourth with a .372 batting average.
? Junior Jake Yacinich has converted 16-of-18 stolen base attempts this season, which is second in the Big Ten and 22nd nationally.
? Iowa averages 6.5 runs per game — a figure that leads the Big Ten and ranks 30th nationally. The Hawkeyes rank in the top two in nine offensive categories.
? Eleven different Iowa players have posted a multiple-hit game in 2014, which includes three players with double-digit efforts. Junior Eric Toole has a team-high 14 multi-hit games, while Jake Mangler and Jake Yacinich have 12 and 11 such games, respectively.
? Junior Nick Hibbing has allowed zero runs in eight of his 13 appearances. He has gone more than one inning in his last three appearances, allowing one run on three hits over 7 1/3 innings. He has a 1.23 ERA during the three games and four strikeouts against one walk.
? Junior Nick Day has scored a career-high 21 runs, including one run in each of the past eight games.
With runners in scoring position, junior Jake Mangler is hitting .447 (17-of-38) and he has a .769 (10-of-13) clip with runners on third with less than two outs with 10 RBIs. Mangler’s clutch hitting has resulted in a career-best 26 RBIs to go along with a team-high eight multi-RBI contests.
12 & COUNTING
Junior Eric Toole is currently riding a career-long 12-game hitting streak dating back to March 22, tying the team season-long streak with Tyler Peyton. Toole has five multi-hit games during the stretch, which includes a season-high four-hit (4-for-5, 5 RBI) performance April 9 against Kansas. The Council Bluffs, Iowa, native is hitting .373 (19-of-51) with nine RBIs and 10 runs during the streak.
YACINICH BATTLES THROUGH
After enduring a six-game stretch where he collected two hits in 23 at-bats, junior Jake Yacinich has battled back. The shortstop has seven hits in his last 11 at-bats during a three-game hit streak, which includes a 4-for-5, three run performance April 9 against Kansas. The four-hit day was Yacinich’s second of the season and his career. Yacinich’s average has gone up 34 points from .279 to .313 during the three games.
With starting catcher Trevor Kenyon expected to be sidelined 2-3 weeks with a strained PCL suffered April 5, the Hawkeyes will turn to sophomore Jimmy Frankos and junior Joe Tellez behind the plate. Frankos has tallied hits in 3-of-4 games since Kenyon went down, including a 2-for-4 performance April 6 against the Hoosiers for his first career multi-hit game. Tellez made his first career start April 9 against Kansas.
IN THE BIG TEN
? Junior Eric Toole is second in hits (42), third in runs (26), ninth in RBIs (20) and 11th in batting average (.331).
? Junior Jake Mangler is third in hits (41), RBIs (26) and doubles (9), fifth in runs (25), eighth in batting average (.342), ninth in total bases (53) and 11th in on-base percentage (.413).
? Junior Dan Potempa is first in on-base percentage (.476), fourth in batting average (.372) and sixth in slugging percentage (.488).
? Senior Taylor Zeutenhorst is tied for second in home runs (4), while sophomore Blake Hickman is tied for seventh (3).
? Junior Jake Yacinich is second in steals (16) and tied for fifth in runs (25).
FRIDAY NIGHT ACE
? Sophomore Calvin Mathews has allowed three or fewer earned runs in seven of his eight starts and he has pitched into at least the seventh inning four times. He has a team-best four quality starts this season.
? Mathews tossed his first career complete game, scattering six hits and allowing two runs in a 3-2 victory over Michigan on March 28. The right-hander tied a career-high with nine strikeouts against zero walks en route to being named the Big Ten Pitcher of the Week and Big Ten Player of the Week by College Sports Madness.
? It was Iowa’s first complete game since Matt Dermody accomplished the feat in a 2-1 victory at Northwestern on March 23, 2013.
? Mathews has pitched into the eighth inning in four starts and has at least eight strikeouts in three games.
? Mathews scattered three hits in a 13-1 win over Georgetown and struck out a career-high nine batters on March 15 before allowing one run six hits with five strikeouts in his first career Big Ten start against Nebraska.
? Mathews is leading the Big Ten in strikeouts (47), is tied for second in innings (53), ninth in opposing batting average (.225) and is 11th in ERA (2.55).
GIVING HIS TEAM A CHANCE TO WIN
? Sophomore Tyler Peyton has three quality starts, allowing three or fewer runs in four outings and pitching into the seventh inning four times. He has a 3-0 record with a 4.84 ERA in eight starts as the team’s Sunday starter.
? Peyton shut down No. 24/28 Indiana on April 7, limiting the Hoosiers’ potent offense to five hits and one run in seven innings. IU rallied against Iowa’s bullpen and Peyton wasn’t factored in the decision.
? Peyton had a 10-strikeout game March 16 against Saint Joseph’s in just 5 2/3 innings. The 10 strikeouts are tied for the Big Ten single game high this season and are the most by a Hawkeye pitcher since Brock Alberts struck out 10 against Xavier on Feb. 29, 2008.
? Peyton is tied for ninth in the Big Ten in strikeouts (34), tied for 11th in innings (48.1) and 11th in opposing batting average (.231).
? After being roughed up for five earned runs on seven hits in 1/3 of an inning against No. 24/28 Indiana, junior Sasha Kuebel rebounded with a strong 5 2/3 inning outing in relief in Iowa’s 5-3 win over Kansas on April 8. The southpaw allowed one run on eight hits against the Jayhawks and struck out six.
? Kuebel has two quality starts this season, the latest coming in a 4-2 loss at Michigan on March 29. He scattered seven hits over seven innings, allowing four runs (one earned) and finishing with a season-high eight strikeouts.
IOWA QUALITY STARTS LOG (10)
2/22 — Hedrick vs. St. Bonav. (6.2 IP, 0 ER, 7 K)
2/23 – Peyton vs. Omaha (8 IP, 1 ER, 6K)
2/28 – Mathews at Stetson (7.1 IP, 0 ER, 2 K)
3/2 – Peyton vs. Furman (7 IP, 2 ER, 4 K)
3/15 – Mathews vs. G’town (8 IP, 0 ER, 9 K)
3/17 – Kuebel vs. Otterbein (7 IP, 3 ER, 3 K)
3/21 – Mathews vs. Nebraska (8 IP, 1 ER, 5 K)
3/28 – Mathews at Michigan (9 IP, 2 ER, 9 K)
3/29 – Kuebel at Michigan (7 IP, 1 ER, 8 K)
4/7 – Peyton vs. Indiana (7 IP, 1 ER, 4 K)
PEYTON DOES IT BOTH WAYS
Sophomore Tyler Peyton is producing as a two-way player for the Hawkeyes this season. The Grimes, Iowa, native starts the opening two games as Iowa’s first baseman, where he is hitting .310 with 11 RBIs and 12 runs scored. He hit safely in his first 12 games — a season-long streak for the team. As Iowa’s Sunday starter, the right-hander is 3-0 with a 4.84 ERA in eight starts.
The Hawkeyes have posted a pair of walkoff victories in 2014, coming from behind to defeat Maine (March 1) and Nebraska (March 21).
? Iowa trailed 12-11 entering its final at-bat against the Black Bears before the Hawkeyes scored two runs in the bottom of the ninth inning to post a 13-12 victory. With the bases loaded, junior Jake Mangler laced an opposite field game-winning RBI single to right center field.
? Iowa trailed Nebraska 1-0 heading into its final at-bat before the Hawkeyes used a one-out walk and three-straight singles to win the game. Junior Taylor Kaufman delivered a pinch-hit RBI single to tie the game and senior Trevor Kenyon singled home the winning run with a single to left field.
CLOSING IT OUT
Junior Nick Hibbing has a team-high three saves this season converting three of his four save opportunities. The right-hander has a team-high 13 appearances, where he has struck out 17 batters in 18.1 innings. Hibbing has nine career saves.
EXPERIENCE PAYS OFF
After being mainstays in the lineup the last 2-3 seasons, several Hawkeye upperclassmen are enjoying breakout seasons.
? Junior Jake Mangler is hitting a career-best .342 with 26 RBIs and 25 runs scored. Both the RBI and run totals are career-bests. Mangler also has a career-high nine doubles and one home run.
? Senior Taylor Zeutenhorst has posted career bests in runs (21), doubles (5), home runs (4), total bases (52) and RBIs (24) in 2014.
? Junior Nick Day has surpassed his 2013 hit total (30) and has a career-high 11 RBIs. He is hitting .319 after entering the season with a .203 career average.
? Junior Jake Yacinich has a career-bests in runs (25) and steals (16).
Junior Eric Toole put on 10 pounds in the offseason to improve his gap power. The move is paying off as the outfielder has eight extra base hits in 30 games this spring. Toole entered the 2014 season with seven extra base hits in his Hawkeye career.
After hitting two home runs the entire 2013 season, Iowa has 11 home runs in 30 games this season — the most for the program since 2010 when it had 28 jacks. The Hawkeyes surpassed their 2013 home run total in the season-opening weekend, connecting on three home runs. Junior Dan Potempa became the fifth player to hit a home run, connecting on a solo shot March 17 against Otterbein — a game where Iowa hit three home runs for the first time since March 21, 2012.
RUNS, RUNS & MORE RUNS
? Iowa has scored 10 or more runs seven times this season, including a season-high 17 in victory over Otterbein on March 17. All 17 runs came over a four-inning stretch. The Hawkeyes hit the 10-run barrier three times the entire 2013 season.
? Iowa has the most 10-run games since 2011 when it also had seven such contests.
? The Hawkeyes are 7-0 when scoring 10 or more runs this season.
? Iowa scored 11 and 15 runs in consecutive victories at Austin Peay on the opening weekend of the 2014 season. It was the first time scoring 10 or more runs in two-straight games since April 20 and April 23, 2011, putting 14 and 13 runs on the board in victories over Western Illinois and Michigan.
? Iowa has scored 10 runs in a single inning in two games this season (at Austin Peay (2/15), vs. Otterbein (3/17). The Hawkeyes last had a double-digit inning on April 3, 2011, in a 19-7 victory over Michigan State.
Twelve different Hawkeyes have swiped at least one base during the 2014 season. Iowa’s 47 steals are tied for second in the Big Ten with Michigan. Three different Hawkeyes have at least five steals, which includes 16 by junior Jake Yacinich (16-of-18) and eight by Eric Toole (8-of-13) and Taylor Zeutenhorst (8-of-9). Iowa has stolen home twice this season — Blake Hickman vat Austin Peay (2/15) and Tyler Peyton vs. Georgetown (3/15).
HELLER REACHES 700
First-year head coach Rick Heller earned his 700th career victory in Iowa’s 13-1 victory over Georgetown on March 15 in Port Charlotte, Fla. Heller is 39th among winningest active head coaches in the NCAA.
TURNING AROUND A PROGRAM
? Under first-year head coach Rick Heller, the Hawkeyes started the season with a 9-1 record — the program’s best start since 1940.
? After starting 9-1, Iowa received votes in the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) rankings on March 3.
? The Hawkeyes won 2-of-3 games in the Big Ten series opener against Nebraska. It was the team’s first conference-opening series win since 1998.
? Iowa’s series win over Nebraska was the first for the Hawkeyes since the Huskers joined the Big Ten.
? Senior Taylor Zeutenhorst has tabbed as the Big Ten Player of the Week on Feb. 21 after hitting .412, slugging .765 and reaching at a .500 clip. The outfielder tied a career-high with four hits, going 4-of-6, which included a two-run home run in Iowa’s 16-6 win over Ball State. Zeutenhorst is Iowa’s first Player of the Week honoree since 2012.
? Junior Dan Potempa was tabbed as the Big Ten Co-Player of the Week on March 24 after posting multiple hits in each of Iowa’s three games against Nebraska. He finished with weekend with a .727 batting average (8-of-11) and a 1.568 OPS. The Tinley Park, Ill., native had two hits in the opener and three hits in games two and three. He drove in a pair of runs in Iowa’s four-run eighth inning to send the Hawkeyes to a Big Ten-opening series win.
? Sophomore Calvin Mathews was named the Big Ten Pitcher of the Week on March 31 and Big Ten Player of the Week by College Sports Madness a day later. The right-hander went the distance for his first career complete game, leading Iowa to a 3-2 win at Michigan. He scattered six hits and had nine strikeouts against zero walks in the game.
The Hawkeyes return to Iowa City for a Tuesday night matchup against Western Illinois beginning at 6:30 p.m. (CT). Iowa then hosts Minnesota for a three-game series at Banks Field on April 18-20.