By Mike Lehman, TTU Sports Information
Tennessee Tech Baseball Weekend Preview (5/9)
COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – The Tennessee Tech baseball team will play its final home games of the 2019 campaign this weekend, playing host to Ohio Valley Conference foe Morehead State in a three-game series at Quillen Field and Bush Stadium at the Averitt Express Baseball Complex.
Due to forecasted inclement weather, the two teams will play a doubleheader on Friday, May 10 beginning with a 1:00 p.m. CT first pitch for game one. Tech will host its Senior Day ceremony following the conclusion of game one of the doubleheader, with game two to follow shortly after the ceremony. The series finale is currently scheduled for a 2:00 p.m. start on Saturday, but will be reevaluated following Friday's doubleheader.
All three games are currently scheduled to be streamed on ESPN+. Fans are encouraged to check social media and the TTUSports.com website for updates concerning this weekend's schedule and stream schedule.
TENNESSEE TECH (20-27, 7-17) vs. MOREHEAD STATE (32-17, 15-9)
Friday, May 10, 1:00 pm | Cookeville, Tenn. | Quillen Field/Bush Stadium (1,100) | STATS | VIDEO
Friday, May 10, 5:00 pm | Cookeville, Tenn. | Quillen Field/Bush Stadium (1,100) | STATS | VIDEO
Saturday, May 11, 2:00 pm | Cookeville, Tenn. | Quillen Field/Bush Stadium (1,100) | STATS | VIDEO
All-American outfielder Kevin Strohschein has spent the majority of his senior campaign rewriting the Tech and OVC record books and continued that trend on Tuesday. He ripped his 69th career double to right center field against Middle Tennessee, breaking a tie for the OVC's career lead with Jacksonville State's Clayton Daniel. Later in the contest, he smashed a home run in his OVC career-record 976th at bat. In the first inning of Tech's contest at No. 13 NC State, the senior slugger blasted a two-run shot to left field. The home run broke both the OVC's career marks for hits (331) and RBI (230). Now the Golden Eagles' all-time leader in hits, doubles, RBI, runs scored, at bats, total bases, games played and games started, as well as the OVC leader in hits, doubles, RBI, at bats and total bases, the center fielder is still within spitting distance of two more OVC marks.
|Current||OVC Record||Current Leader||School (Years)|
|Home Runs||61||62||Zach Stephens||Tennessee Tech (2011-14)|
|Runs||233||241||Bert Smith||Jacksonville State (2006-10)|
ACTIVE CAREER LEADERS
Strohschein ranks as one of the most accomplished hitters, not just in Tech or OVC history, but among all current NCAA Division I players. The McDonough, Ga. native leads all active players in career home runs (60), RBI (240) and total bases (614). He also ranks in the top-five in hits (second with 346), runs (second with 230), at bats (third with 972), and doubles (third with 68).
BEST OF THE BBCOR
How good and consistent has Strohschein been through his four career? Since the BBCOR bat standards were adopted in 2011, he is the only player to have played his entire career in the BBCOR era and rank in the top five career categories of hits, doubles, home runs, RBI, runs, total bases and at bats. He is the era's all-time career leader in RBI and total bases (by a whoppinp margin over more than 75) and ranks second in hits, home runs and runs scored.
HE'S GOT THE POWER
Sophomore Jason Hinchman has enjoyed a breakout campaign in his first starting role with the purple and gold, leading the OVC in home runs with an eye-popping 21 in 47 games. That's 42.9 percent of his 49 hits leaving the ball park. It's also good enough to rank the first baseman second nationally in long balls, tying Arizona State's Hunter Bishop and Tulane's Kody Hoese while trailing only Vanderbilt's JJ Bleday (23) for a share of the lead. What's more astonishing, is the fact that Hinchman did not have a long ball through the team's first 10 games of the season. He has 21 round trippers in his last 37 games.
With a two-run bomb at Eastern Kentucky last weekend, he became just the fourth player in program history to join the 20-home run club for a single season. Former Tech legend A.J. Kirby-Jones accomplished the feat twice, smacking 20 exactly in 2009 and setting the school record with 26 in 2010. The first member of the exclusive group was Jeremy Bonczynski, who smashed 20 long balls in 1997. The club's most recent addition was All-American Brandon Thomasson, who clubbed 22 in 2014.
Freshman John Dyer has raised many eyebrows in his rookie campaign, ranking as one of the best hitters in the Tech lineup, as well as the league. The Mt. Juliet native leads all OVC freshmen in batting average (.341), hits (56), doubles (12), home runs (nine), RBI (49), slugging percentage (.591) and on base percentage (.435). He also ranks third in runs scored (37). Dyer ranks in the top-five in the league in RBI and slugging percentage and the top-15 in batting average, doubles and on base percentage.
HOME RUN U
The nation's reigning home run champ after smashing an OVC-record 135 dingers a year ago, it took the Golden Eagles a little time to get the bats rolling to start the 2019 campaign. The power is back on it Cookeville, however, as Tech enters the week having smashed a long ball in 23 of its past 26 contests. Over that span, the Golden Eagles have clubbed 58 dingers, with 16 games boasting multiple shots. Recently, Tech snapped a 17-game streak with at least one home run, easily ranking as a program record. In fact, the 2019 squad is the first in school history to hit double figures with the streak. Last year's record-shattering squad did it nine times in-a-row twice. On the year, Tech leads the OVC with 76 round trippers and ranks second nationally.
TENNESSEE TECH GOLDEN EAGLES
2019 Record: 20-27
2019 OVC Record: 7-17 (11th)
Head Coach: Justin Holmes
TTU: 20-27 (1st Season)
AVG: Kevin Strohschein (.381)
2B: Kevin Strohschein (19)
3B: Kevin Strohschein (2)
HR: Jason Hinchman (21)
RBI: Jason Hinchman (51)
R: Kevin Strohschein (52)
BB: Jason Hinchman (38)
SB: Jason Hogan (4)
ERA: Tyler Sylvester (3.91)
W: 8 players tied (2)
APP: Daniel Holley (19)
IP: Mark Leonard (53.0)
K: Mark Leonard (56)
SV: Jacob Cole / Tyler Sylvester (2)
MOREHEAD STATE EAGLES
2019 Record: 32-17
2019 OVC: 15-9 (4th)
Head Coach: Mike McGuire
MSU: 220-183 (7th Season)
AVG: Jake Hammon (.360)
2B: Jake Hammon / Reid Leonard (12)
3B: Connor Pauly (2)
HR: Hunter Fain (9)
RBI: Connor Pauly (50)
R: Reid Leonard (49)
BB: Reid Leonard (32)
SB: Jake Hammon / Connor Pauly (10)
ERA: Dalton Stambaugh (3.72)
W: Dalton Stambaugh (6)
APP: David Looney (19)
IP: Dalton Stambaugh (72.2)
K: Dalton Stambaugh (83)
SV: Jake Ziegelmeyer (7)
Photo by Tony Marable