No. 16 U-M to Wrap Regular Season with MSU Series

May 17, 2017

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THIS WEEK
Thursday, May 18 -- at Michigan State (East Lansing, Mich.), 4:05 p.m.
TV: Big Ten Network | Live Stats | Live Audio | BTN2Go
Friday, May 19 -- vs. Michigan State (Wilpon Complex), 6 p.m.
Senior Night | Live Stats | Live Audio | BTN Plus
Saturday, May 20 -- at Michigan State (East Lansing, Mich.), 12:05 p.m.
TV: Big Ten Network | Live Stats | Live Audio | BTN2Go

PROMOTIONS
• Friday: Senior Day, Kids Zone, T-Shirt Giveaway (First 800 fans)

Tickets | Promotions/Giveaways
Complete Game Notes PDF | Coach Bakich on WTKA audio

ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- After defeating Eastern Michigan by a 12-4 score on Tuesday (May 16) in the final non-conference game of the regular season, the No. 16-ranked University of Michigan baseball team (40-12, 14-7 Big Ten) will wrap up regular season play with a Big Ten Conference series against Michigan State this weekend (May 18-20). Michigan State will host the first (Thursday, May 18, 4:05 p.m.) and final (Saturday, May 20, 12:05 p.m.) games of the series, with Michigan hosting the middle game (Friday, May 19, 6 p.m.), which will serve as the Wolverines' Senior Day celebration.

» Tuesday's victory marked Michigan's 40th win of the season, which stands as the most in a single season for the Maize and Blue since 2008. Prior to the 2017 campaign, Michigan had compiled a 40-win season just 12 times in modern history, and the 40-win mark is the first for Erik Bakich in his head coaching career.

» The Wolverines continue to lead the Big Ten Conference with six selections to the national polls this week. Nationally, Michigan is ranked the highest in the Big Ten with a No. 15-ranking in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll, and the Wolverines are also ranked No. 16 in the D1Baseball.com poll as well as the Perfect Game poll. Michigan is also ranked No. 18 in the National Baseball Writers Association poll, and rounds out the top 25 selections with a No. 19-ranking in the Baseball America poll. Finally, Michigan broke back into the Collegiate Baseball Newspaper poll this week with a No. 29-selection.

» Michigan's 40-12 overall record in the best in the Big Ten, though the Maize and Blue is currently ranked third in the Big Ten Conference with a 14-7 record in conference play. After sweeping a makeup doubleheader against Rutgers on Tuesday (May 16), Minnesota currently leads the conference with a 14-6 Big Ten record, which means that Michigan is just a half-game back in the standings.

» The Wolverines will go into the weekend with a 22-5 home record and a 6-1 record against in-state opponents this season. The Maize and Blue boasts a .319 team batting average when playing in-state foes this year and has out-scored opponents 52 runs to 23 runs during that time. Additionally, Michigan's pitching staff has compiled a 2.30 ERA when facing in-state opponents this year and has struck out 59 batters through 66.2 innings pitched.

» Michigan's defense currently ranks No. 4 in the country, thanks to a .983 fielding percentage. The Wolverines originally entered the week with the nation's best fielding percentage at a .984 clip and the fewest errors in the country, but Michigan erred twice in a 12-4 victory over Eastern Michigan on Tuesday (May 16).

» The Maize and Blue also ranks fourth in the nation with 111 stolen bases, good for first in the Big Ten. The Wolverines have been caught stealing just 26 times this season. Junior Jake Bivens currently leads Michigan with 21 stolen bases on the year.

» Michigan's pitching staff has been rock solid this season, posting a conference-best 3.16 team ERA to rank 10th in the country. The Wolverines also rank 11th in the nation with 9.4 strikeouts per nine innings and lead the Big Ten with the lowest opponent batting average, most batters struck out and fewest hits allowed.

» Offensively, the Wolverines currently lead the Big Ten in numerous statistical categories, including on-base percentage (.387), runs scored (356), RBI (314) and walks (242). In Big Ten play, Michigan has out-scored its opponents 141 runs to 85 and boasted a .288 team batting average.

» Michigan is currently without the bat of sophomore Ako Thomas, who suffered an injury during the first game of Michigan's series with Indiana and left the game in the first inning. Sophomore Jimmy Kerr has replaced Thomas at second base, and recently capped off an impressive showing at Rutgers with his first Big Ten Conference Player of the Week recognition. After missing nearly three full weeks of play, Thomas returned to the field as a defensive replacement for the first and final contests of Michigan's three-game sweep of Purdue (May 12-14). Despite his absence from the batting order, Thomas still currently leads the Big Ten Conference in batting average (.371) and on-base percentage (.483).

» With one complete inning pitched against Michigan State earlier this season in a non-conference meeting, senior reliever Mac Lozer etched his name in the record books with the second-most appearances all-time throughout Michigan's 151-year history. With 95 career appearances so far, the senior righty needs 12 more appearances to break the all-time record, which stands at 106 (Todd Marion, 1990-93).

» With a team-high 11 saves on the season, senior reliever Jackson Lamb needs just one more save to tie the all-time record for saves in a single season. He currently ranks seventh all-time at Michigan with 13 career saves.

» Senior outfielder Johnny Slater currently leads Michigan and ranks fourth in the country with seven triples this season. At this time, Slater is ranked tied for seventh with 11 career triples and needs four more to break the single season record, which stands at 10 (Mike Watters, 1985).

» Tuesday's meeting with Michigan State will mark the 304th meeting between the squads since the first meeting in 1884, back when Michigan State was known as Michigan Agricultural College. Since 2012, the Wolverines hold a narrow 7-5 record over the Spartans, though Michigan State has won four of the last six meetings, including the last two of a Big Ten series last season. Throughout the past 151 years, however, Michigan owns the series by a 196-105-2 record. The teams met once already this season back in April, when the Wolverines took a non-conference 12-4 victory over the Spartans at the Wilpon Complex.

Communications Contact: Katie Gwinn Hewitt


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