Fresh off the series win over Indiana last week, RU baseball took to the field against Fordham and St. Joe's and took away three wins.
The Knights picked up a home shutout over the Rams before taking on St. Joe's. Sandwiched around a rainout, the Knights swept the home-and-home series with the Hawks, winning at Bainton Field, 11-1 and then traveling to the Philly suburbs for the 6-4 road win. The two victories raised the Knights overall record to 14-16, with wins in six of their last eight games.
In the home opener of the rain-shortened series, the reigning Big Ten Pitcher of the Week, senior Howie Brey (3-3) delivered another ace performance with seven strikeouts over six shutout innings to collect his 15th career victory. The left-hander surrendered just three hits and registered eight outs in the air. He is now 9-2 in 20 career games at Bainton Field. At the plate, Rutgers racked up 14 hits, nine with runners on, to reach double digits for the 10th time this season. Junior Mike Carter notched a game-high three, including a double. Senior R.J. Devish, fifth-year senior Chris Suseck and fifth-year senior John Jennings all added a pair of hits to the offensive barrage. In addition, freshman Mike Martinez and Jennings blasted back-to-back home runs in the sixth inning.
The return game at the Hawks home field saw the Knights build a 6-2 lead going to the bottom of the eighth, but having to hold on for the win. Redshirt junior Max Herrmann recorded the final six outs, stranding the tying runs in scoring position with a strikeout in the bottom of the ninth. The trio of Herrmann, starter and winner Kyle Driscoll, and Ryan Fleming combined to punch out a season-high 11 batters.
The Knights open a home-and-home series against Seton Hall today in South Orange, returning to Bainton Field tomorrow for a 4:00 pm start. That leads into the weekend when they travel to Columbus for a three-game set against Ohio State. Like the Knights, OSU is only 2-4 in the Big Ten, although they have a 19-11-1 record overall. The Buckeyes are in a four game losing streak, including a three game sweep by Maryland. They play Morehead State twice this week as a tune up for the Rutgers series.
Against St. Joe's, Rutgers' offense reached double-digit hits for the 11th time and stole at least five bases for the fourth time this season.
Results and Upcoming Games
|4/06/16||vs. Fordham||Bainton Field||W, 5-0|
|4/08/16||vs. Saint Joseph's||Bainton Field||W, 11-1|
|4/09/16||vs. Saint Joseph's||Bainton Field||Cancelled|
|4/10/16||at Saint Joseph's||Merion Station, Pa.||W, 6-4|
|4/12/16||at Seton Hall||South Orange, N.J.||4:00 p.m. ET|
|4/13/16||vs. Seton Hall||Bainton Field||3:30 p.m. ET|
|4/15/16||at Ohio State *||Columbus, Ohio||6:35 p.m. ET|
|4/16/16||at Ohio State *||Columbus, Ohio||3:05 p.m. ET|
|04/17/16||at Ohio State *||Columbus, Ohio||1:05 p.m. ET|
Michigan State, which swept Rutgers in the opening conference series, sits in first place in the B1G with a 5-1 conference record. They're followed by Minnesota (4-1), Nebraska (7-2), and Indiana (4-2).