Little Leaguers Invited to Watch Penn State Baseball Compete for Playoff Spot against Golden Gophers
May 13, 2009
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - The Penn State baseball team hosts No. 21 Minnesota in the final regular season series at Medlar Field at Lubrano Park this year. The series, which begins Thursday at 6 p.m., will feature two games that will be broadcast live on the Big Ten Network.
Little Leaguers can attend any of this week's games for an admission price of $1 with their uniform on. Friday's game is Dollar Dog Night at Medlar Field.
First pitch is set for Thursday at 6:35 p.m. Game two, which is the first of two games to be on the BTN, will begin at 6:35 p.m. on Friday, and the final regular season match for the Nittany Lions is scheduled for 2:05 p.m.
Fans can also follow the action at GoPSUsports.com. Loren Crispell and Seb Saraceno will be providing audio and video broadcast of all three games this weekend. It will also be available for listeners in the State College area on ESPN Radio 1450-AM.
Playoff implications are in effect for both the Nittany Lions and Golden Gophers. For Penn State, it would need to sweep Minnesota for any chance at a berth in the Big Ten Tournament in Columbus, Ohio. Along with three wins, Robbie Wine's squad would need help from Illinois, as it needs the Fightin' Illini to sweep Purdue in three games. Penn State also needs Michigan to lose at least one game to Northwestern in order to claim the final spot in the tournament. The Golden Gophers, which lead the Big Ten standings by a half game over Illinois and Ohio State, are competing for the top spot in the tournament with three teams.
Thursday MINN: RHP Chauncy Handran (7-2, 3.71 ERA, 77.2 IP, 45 Ks) PSU: RHP T.J. Macy (3-4, 4.60 ERA, 72.1 IP, 88 Ks)
MINN: RHP Tom Buske (8-3, 2.95 ERA, 76.1 65 Ks)
PSU: LHP Mike Lorentson (1-7, 6.39 ERA, 56.1 IP, 46 Ks)
Saturday MINN: RHP Seth Rosin (5-1, 4.20 ERA, 55.2 IP, 48 Ks) PSU: RHP Scott Kelley (4-5, 5.24 ERA, 56.2 IP, 39 Ks)
Scouting the Gophers
Minnesota comes into Medlar Field at Lubrano Park as one of the hottest teams in the Big Ten. The Golden Gophers have won 11 of their past 13 games. They have been stellar at the plate and at the mound, ranking among the top in the conference in many categories. Minnesota owns a .316 batting average and has pounded 43 home runs. It has shown the ability to swipe bases at will with 65 on the season. Opponents have been caught stealing at a rate of 43 percent.
The Minnesota pitching staff boasts an ERA of 4.44, more than a run less than Penn State's. Two of the three Gopher starting pitchers for this weekend own ERAs below the four-run mark. The Gopher staff has a K/9 rating of 6.7, similar to the Nittany Lions' K/9 mark of 6.74.