Baylor University Press Release
By: Zach Rhodes
WACO, Texas – Baylor will start a seven-game road trip with a midweek matchup at Sam Houston on Tuesday, April 13 at 6:30 p.m. CT at Don Sanders Stadium in Huntsville, Texas.
The Bears (21-11) lead the series against the Bearkats (15-15) 66-47, including a 4-0 shutout victory earlier this season on March 2 at Baylor Ballpark. The Bears have won the last two meetings against the Bearkats and head coach Steve Rodriguez is now 5-4 against them in his time at BU.
Date: April 13 (Tues.)
Game Times: 6:30 p.m.
Site: Huntsville, Texas / Don Sanders Stadium (1,163)
TV: Bearkats Sports Network ($)
Radio: ESPN 1660/92.3 FM
• Talent: Derek Smith (pxp)
Live Stats: GoBearkats.com
Twitter Updates: @BaylorBaseball
Series History: BU leads, 66-47
Streak: BU, W2
First Meeting: March 7, 1952
Last Meeting: March 2, 2021 (BU won 4-0)
Under Rodriguez: 5-4
Tues. April 13 – LHP Cam Caley (0-1, 8.53 ERA) vs. LHP Tanner Sembera (1-1, 5.63 ERA)
• Baylor has one of the most reliable bullpens in the country, with the combination of Boyd, Logan Freeman, Ryan Leckich, Jacob Ashkinos, Hambleton Oliver and Jimmy Winston. Boyd and Leckich are tops in the conference in appearances and 26th nationally with 15 appearances in 2021. Freeman is 5th in the Big 12 with 14 appearances, while Oliver is 7th with 13. Winston leads the team with four wins, while Ashkinos had a perfect 3-0 record. Each is sporting an impressive ERA, led by Boyd (1.08), Freeman (2.30), Winston (2.65), Oliver (3.32), Leckich (3.72) and Ashkinos (3.86).
• As a team, Baylor is near or at the top of the Big 12 and among the top 10 nationally in several different categories. The Bears are second in the Big 12 in hits with 323 (4th in the nation) and in batting average with a .300 average (21st nationally). BU is first in the league with five shutouts (3rd nationally) and second in the Big 12 in earned run average with a 3.81 ERA.
• Luke Boyd went a perfect 3-for-3 in save opportunities for the Bears in their three wins. Boyd did not allow a run, hit or walk in his three combined appearances while striking out five. On the season, the Ojai, Calif., native has a Big 12-best seven saves which is also good enough for 6th in the nation. Boyd has an impressive 1.08 ERA in 15 appearances, while converting all seven of his save attempts. In addition, he has struck out 25 batters and walked just nine in 16.2 innings of work.
• After hitting .406 last season in the leadoff spot, in 2021 Jared McKenzie has a .362 average. McKenzie is 8th in the Big 12 in batting average and ranks 2nd in the conference in hits (50) and 3rd nationally, in addition, he is 1st in the nation in runs scored (42) and 4th in the Big 12 in total bases (83). He also has seven home runs this season after not hitting any in 2020.
• JUCO transfer Jack Pineda has been a huge piece in Baylor’s success in 2021. Pineda is hitting .339 which is second on the team, while his 37 hits are 8th in the Big 12, while his 10 doubles on the season also leads the team (T-3rd Big 12). Against UTA on April 6, Pineda started his first game in the leadoff spot of the lineup and hit his first-career home run to start the game. Defensively, Pineda made the switch from second base to shortstop vs. Texas State (March 30).
To stay up to date throughout the season on all things Baylor baseball, follow the team on Facebook (Baylor Baseball), Twitter (@BaylorBaseball) and Instagram (@BaylorBaseball).