Link and the Crimson look to get to at least .500 in Ivy League play this weekend with Red Rolfe Division foe Brown on the docket. (Gil Talbot)
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – On the heels of a 4-1 week, the Harvard baseball team hopes to keep up its momentum with an important Ivy League showdown this weekend. The Crimson (14-13, 3-5 Ivy) will open up Red Rolfe Division play on Saturday and Sunday with a four-game series at Brown (6-18, 2-6 Ivy).
Keeping up with the Crimson
To catch all the latest news and notes on the baseball team, follow @HarvardBaseball on Twitter and @OfficialHarvardBaseball on Instagram. Be sure to use the hashtag #GoCrimson to see what fans are saying about Crimson athletics.
Ivy League Digital Network
After an incredibly successful inaugural year that saw over 1,000 events streamed live, The Ivy League Digital Network has returned for 2014-15, providing fans with unprecedented coverage of the Ivy League. Multiple subscription options are available to fans including school-specific and league-wide passes. To learn more about the Ivy League Digital Network or to sign-up today, click here.
Weather permitting, every Harvard home game during the 2015 season will be streamed live and in HD from O'Donnell Field.
A Glance at the Crimson
Last week, Harvard took down Holy Cross in the home opener, 5-3, before sweeping Princeton and splitting the series with Cornell. The sweep of the Tigers was the Crimson's first Ivy League sweep in five seasons.
The Crimson, which hits .295 as a club, has six batters above .300, led by Ivy League Player and Rookie of the Week John Fallon and his .483 average (14-for-29). Senior Ethan Ferreira is perhaps the most consistent producer for Harvard, however, as the co-captain enters Wednesday riding a 19-game hit streak and owns a .378 average. Ferreira has 18 RBI and 19 runs scored this season, both second to classmate Jake McGuiggan. McGuiggan bats .363 with a team-best 22 RBI and 22 runs scored, generally hitting at the top of the lineup. Other DJ Link (.362) and Mitch Klug (.302) have been solid at the plate as well, while Mike Martin (.267), has been a solid run presence as the leadoff hitter, scoring 21 times and adding 15 stolen bases, the latter of which leads the team.
On the hill, the Crimson has a good mix of both front-end and back-end pitching. Four hurlers – Sean Poppen (3-2, 6.23 ERA), Nick Gruener (3-1, 5.13 ERA), Matt Timoney (4-1, 3.69 ERA) and Tanner Anderson (0-3, 3.31 ERA) – have made up the rotation this season. Poppen, the opening day starter, has struggled at times, but has been a solid presence and a strikeout machine of late, fanning 34 batters while ushering just five walks; he struck out seven in a complete game (7.0IP) win over Cornell on Sunday. Gruener has 25 punchouts, and Timoney owns 21; all three starters have pitched greater than 26 innings of work this season thus far.
In relief, both Kevin Rex (2-0, 0.69 ERA) and Ian Miller (2-0, 5.40 ERA) have done well to keep Harvard in the thick of things. Rex has pitched 13.0 innings, striking out eight and giving up just one earned run, while Miller has gone 15.0 innings with six strikeouts. Nick Scahill often finds himself in the mix as well, tossing 17 strikeouts in 11.2 innings of work for an 0-2 record and 6.17 ERA.
A Look at Brown
The Bears (6-18, 2-6 Ivy) are riding a five-game losing streak after going 5-2 in the middle of the season to this point. Brown has wins over Northeastern, Georgetown, George Mason, Princeton and Cornell this season.
As a team, Brown is hitting .262, with sophomore Robert Henry stepping up with his .371 average. Henry has 36 hits, 12 of which are extra base hits, 13 RBI and a team-high 20 runs scored. Noah Shulman (.250) has the team lead with 14 RBI in 100 at bats, including three home runs. Jake Levine (.316) is another offensive threat for the Bears, with 24 hits, 10 RBI and 11 runs scored.
On the hill, Taylor Wright and Eddie Fitzpatrick will each earn a start on Saturday, with Sunday's hurlers to be decided. Wright is 0-2 with a 5.70 ERA in two starts. He's struck out 18 over 23.2 innings of work, yielding 12 walks while allowing 17 runs. Fitzpatrick has started all six games he's seen time in, earning a 1-4 record with an 8.68 ERA on the year. In 28 full innings, Fitzpatrick has punched out 24 batters, tied for the staff lead, but has given up 33 runs.
Harvard will travel to UMass on Monday after the Beanpot First Round game was postponed from Wednesday afternoon. The Crimson and Minutemen will do battle in Amherst starting at 4 p.m.