MACON, Ga. (MERCER RELEASE) – The Mercer baseball team concludes a season-long eight-game road swing with a three-game weekend series at Auburn starting on March 6 at Plainsman Park.
Mercer (12-2) takes on the Tigers in game one on Friday evening at 7 p.m., with game two slated for Saturday at 4 p.m. and game three set for a 2 p.m. first pitch on Sunday.
These are the first of four scheduled games against Southeastern Conference foes for the Bears this season, with the fourth contest featuring a match-up against Florida down in Gainesville on May 6.
Mercer: LHP Grant Papelian (1-0, 3.07 ERA, 10 K)
Auburn: RHP Dillon Ortman (2-1, 2.55 ERA, 15 K's)
Auburn: RHP Keegan Thompson (2-0, 0.39 ERA, 19 K's)
SCOUTING THE OPPONENT
Auburn enters play this weekend with a 6-6 record after most recently dropping a 4-3 decision against in-state rival Alabama on March 5. The Tigers were picked to finish last in the West Division according to the Southeastern Conference Preseason Coaches' poll after returning 24 letterwinners from last year's squad that finished 33-23 overall. Auburn is led by first-year head coach Sunny Golloway, who was tabbed the 17th head coach in program history after spending the last eight seasons as the head coach at Oklahoma. The Tigers offense has struggled for the most part this season, scoring only 49 runs in their first 12 games and while sporting a .257 team batting average.
LAST TIME OUT
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Senior Austin Barrett drove in a career-high six runs to lift the Mercer baseball team to an 8-5 road win over Florida A&M on Wednesday evening. Barrett finished the night going 3-for-5 with a run scored and six RBI, besting his previous career-high of four RBI which he accomplished at Northern Kentucky on May 18, 2013. Down 4-0 early on, the Bears stayed composed and pulled even with Florida A&M thanks to a four-run top of the third inning. An RBI single by senior Michael Massi and a three-run home run by Barrett, his first long ball of the season, knotted the score up at 4-4. Mercer took the lead for good after scoring two more insurance runs in the top of the ninth, thanks to a two-RBI single by Barrett, to make the final score 8-5. Senior Stephen Glaze picked up the win, his team-leading fourth win of the season, after allowing one earned run in 2.2 innings of work.
- Auburn leads the all-time with Mercer 60-15. The series between the two schools will be renewed for the first time since 2008, when the Tigers swept a home-and-home series against the Bears by scores of 10-4 and 18-6.
- Mercer is currently receiving votes in the USA TODAY Division I Baseball Top-25 Coaches Poll. The Bears are ranked No. 12 in the RPI according to WarrenNolan.com and are tied with Florida International, Tennessee, Vanderbilt, Alabama State and South Carolina for the most wins in the country, with 12.