COLLEGE STATION, TX -- Renewing one of college baseball’s most long-standing and heated rivalries, the No. 9 Texas A&M baseball team will take on arch-rival No. 20 Texas in a three-game series this weekend.
The opening contest of the set will take place at 6:35 p.m. on Olsen Field at Blue Bell Park and will be televised by Fox College Sports before the series shifts to Austin’s UFCU Disch-Falk Field for the final two contests. Saturday’s game will be shown on FSN and is slated for a 2:30 p.m. first pitch before the series concludes on Sunday at 2:00 p.m.
The Aggies (29-12, 9-6 Big 12) enter the series in third place in the Big 12 standings and are looking to gain ground on the second-place Longhorns (24-14, 11-4 Big 12).
PROBABLE PITCHING MATCHUPS
FRIDAY (APRIL 27) – COLLEGE STATION, TEXAS – 6:35 p.m.
Texas A&M - #38 Michael Wacha (Jr., RHP, 5-0, 2.48)
Texas - #36 Nathan Thornhill (So., RHP, 4-3, 3.73)
SATURDAY (APRIL 28) – AUSTIN, TEXAS – 2:30 p.m.
Texas A&M - #36 Ross Stripling (Sr., RHP, 6-2, 2.65)
Texas - #24 Parker French (Fr., RHP, 5-1, 2.91)
SUNDAY (APRIL 29) – AUSTIN, TEXAS – 2:00 p.m.
Texas A&M - #55 Rafael Pineda (R-So., RHP, 5-1, 2.87)
Texas - #10 Ricky Jacquez (Fr., RHP, 2-1, 5.92) OR #32 Dillon Peters (Fr., LHP, 3-0, 2.60)
FOLLOWING THE ACTION
• TV — All three games of the series will be televised ... Friday’s game will be on Fox College Sports, Saturday’s game will be show on FSN and Sunday’s series finale will be shown on the Longhorn Network.
• RADIO — Fans can listen locally on WTAW-AM 1620 ... Dave South (play-by-play), along with selected color commentators, will call the action ... pregame show begins 30 minutes prior to first pitch.
• INTERNET — aggieathletics.com will offer live play-by-play and statistics.
• MOBILE PHONE — listen to the game on your iPhone, Blackberry or PDA free of charge ... log on to radioaggieland.com for more information.
TEXAS SEASON STATS
TEXAS A&M SEASON STATS
TEXAS A&M/TEXAS SERIES NOTABLES
Texas leads the all-time series with Texas A&M, 234-121-5, and has won 19 of the last 23 meetings ... the Texas A&M/Texas rivalry is the longest running and most often played series in Aggie baseball history ... the teams will meet for the 361st time on Friday in a series that dates back 108 years ... the Horns won two of three games against the Aggies a year ago, but Texas A&M earned a 4-0 victory in Austin on the regular season’s final day to earn a share of the Big 12 regular season Championship ... 2012 will mark the 98th straight season that the teams have met on the baseball diamond ... the last time A&M and UT did not play baseball was in 1914 ... Texas is the Aggies’ most common opponent at the Big 12 Championship (10 meetings) ... Texas is by far A&M’s most common opponent of all time.
Following the Texas series, the Aggies will make the short trip to Huntsville, Texas, to face No. 24 Sam Houston State in a Tuesday night affair. Next weekend, the Aggies will host in-state rival Texas Tech in a three-game series on Olsen Field at Blue Bell Park.
NOTES & TRENDS
• Saturday’s scheduled starter Ross Stripling continues to leave his mark as one of the most successful pitchers in school history, climbing both the Texas A&M and Big 12 all-time wins list. The right-hander captured his 27th win on April 15th at Kansas to move into a tie with Casey Fossum (1997-99) for fifth most in school history. Up next on the list is former Aggie great Ryan Rupe, who won 30 games for the Aggies from 1994-98. Stripling also ranks among the most proficient winners in Big 12 history, sitting in seventh place all-time with Fossum, Jason Jennings of Baylor (1997-99) and Texas’ Adrian Alaniz (2005-07).
• Fellow starting pitcher Michael Wacha is also etching his name into the Aggie record books, as he won his 23rd career game last weekend to break into the Texas A&M career top 10. He enters the Texas series sharing the No. 10 spot with Chris Russ (1998-01) and Ronnie Allen (1989-91).
• On Wednesday, Stripling and right-hander Rafael Pineda were named to the initial Watch List for the Pitcher of the Year award which is presented by the College Baseball Hall of Fame.
• Aggie right fielder Tyler Naquin remains the Big 12’s lone .400 hitter as he enters the weekend with a league-leading .403 (64-for-159) clip at the plate.
• The Aggies are one of the most aggressive teams on the base paths and enter the weekend ranked sixth in the country in team stolen bases with 92. Texas A&M features five players who have swiped at least 10 bags this season, led by sophomore Krey Bratsen with 16.
• Texas A&M is in a key portion of its schedule that began with April 17’s contest against Rice. The Aggies are in a stretch during which they face ranked teams (Baseball America poll on April 23 - #6 Rice, #3 Baylor, #20 Texas and #24 Sam Houston State) in eight of nine games. The lone, unranked team during the stretch is TCU, which was a NCAA Regional host a year ago.
Free Giveaway Friday - Fans may enter at the Guest Services booth to win a team signed baseball … Freebirds will be on the concourse passing out coupons.