Tigers Go For 11th Straight Against Furman

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By Sports Department

CLEMSON, S.C. (CU SID) -- Clemson (26-11), ranked as high as #12 in the nation, will host Furman (19-16) on Wednesday at Doug Kingsmore Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for 6:30 PM. The game will be available live via webcast on TigerCast at ClemsonTigers.com. The game will also be broadcast live on the radio by WCCP (104.9 FM) out of Clemson. Live stats will be available online at ClemsonTigers.com as well.

The Series
Clemson and Furman have met 201 times on the diamond, with the Tigers leading 140-57-4 in the series dating to the 1896 season. Clemson’s first two games in school history were against the Paladins, both losses in 1896, which were the Tigers’ only games that season. The two teams have played at least one game every year since the 1983 season.
Clemson, who has won seven games in a row in the series, won both matchups in 2012. The Tigers won 12-5 at Fluor Field in Greenville on April 10, then Clemson was victorious 9-2 at Doug Kingsmore Stadium on May 15. Furman’s last win in the series came on March 3, 2009 by a score of 4-2 in 14 innings.
The Tigers lead 77-26-1 at Clemson and 28-5 at Doug Kingsmore Stadium. Jack Leggett is 21-5 against Furman as Clemson’s head coach, including a 15-4 record at Doug Kingsmore Stadium. Leggett was also 29-7 against the Paladins as Western Carolina’s head coach, meaning he is 50-12 all-time against Furman.

The Starting Pitchers
Furman will start junior righthander Jacques de Gruy (0-1, 15.43 ERA) on the mound. The Dallas, TX native has made three relief appearances for a total of 4.2 innings pitched. He has allowed 10 hits (.417 opponents’ batting average) and six walks with four strikeouts.
The Tigers will counter with senior righthander Jonathan Mayer (2-0, 4.01 ERA) on Wednesday. The San Diego, CA native has made nine relief appearances and two starts for a total of 24.2 innings pitched. He has given up 32 hits (.323 opponents’ batting average) and three walks with 21 strikeouts.

The Paladins
Furman, led by 20th-year Head Coach Ron Smith, enters Wednesday’s game at #12 Clemson with a 19-16 overall record and 7-11 SoCon mark after falling twice in three games at Wofford last weekend. The Paladins, who are 6-3 in one-run games, are 8-7 on opponents’ home fields in 2013.
Furman is averaging 5.7 runs per game and hitting .281 with a .400 slugging percentage and .359 on-base percentage thanks to 124 walks and 37 hit-by-pitches against 258 strikeouts on the season. The team has also totaled 64 doubles, four triples, 26 home runs, and 45 stolen bases in 70 attempts.
Alex Abrams is hitting a team-best .333 with three homers and 21 RBIs. Jakes Jones and Taylor Johnson are both hitting .311, while Johnson has five homers and 33 RBIs. Chris Ohmstede has a team-high eight homers and 22 RBIs, while Will Muzika has a team-high 17 stolen bases.
The pitching staff has a 4.60 ERA and .275 opponents’ batting average along with 262 strikeouts against 145 walks in 323.0 innings pitched. Sophomore righty Matt Solter has six of the team’s 10 saves in 16 relief appearances. Furman, who has allowed 55 steals in 68 attempts, is fielding at a .955 clip as well.

The Tigers
Clemson, ranked as high as #12 in the nation, enters Wednesday’s game against Furman with a 26-11 overall record and 12-6 ACC mark sweeping Wake Forest in a three-game series at home last weekend. The Tigers, who are riding a 10-game winning streak, are 17-7 at home in 2013.
The Tigers are averaging 5.3 runs per game and hitting .278 with a .369 slugging percentage and .350 on-base percentage thanks to 133 walks and 15 hit-by-pitches against 235 strikeouts. Clemson has also totaled 58 doubles, nine triples, 13 homers, and 59 stolen bases in 86 attempts.
Tyler Slaton is hitting a team-best .344 with a .405 on-base percentage. Shane Kennedy is batting .328 with four homers, three triples, two homers, a team-high .425 on-base percentage, and 10 steals, while Garrett Boulware is batting .316 with seven homers and 31 RBIs.
The pitching staff has a 3.15 ERA and .256 opponents’ batting average in 337.0 innings pitched. The staff has allowed 117 walks against 238 strikeouts, good for a 2.03 strikeout-to-walk ratio. Junior righty Matt Campbell has six of the team’s 11 saves, while senior righthander Scott Firth has two saves. The Tigers are fielding at a .972 clip as well.

Polls
For the first time in 2013, the Tigers are in the top 25 of all three polls after going 5-0 in five games last week. Clemson is ranked #12 by Collegiate Baseball and #20 by Baseball America. The Tigers entered the top 25 of the Sports Weekly coaches poll for the first time at #24. The top-25 rankings means that Clemson has had at least least one top-25 ranking during all 20 of Jack Leggett’s 20 seasons as head coach at Clemson.

ACC Standings
The Tigers are in second place in the ACC Atlantic Division standings with a 12-6 league record. Florida State is in first place in the division with a 13-5 record. North Carolina is atop the overall ACC standings at 15-2. In the overall ACC standings, Clemson is in fourth place. The top-eight teams in the overall ACC standings will play in the 2013 ACC Tournament at Durham, NC.

Tigers Riding 10-Game Winning Streak
Saddled with a 16-11 overall record and 5-6 ACC mark, Clemson broke through with a dramatic 5-4 win in 11 innings at #1 North Carolina on April 1. The Tigers have not lost since and have won 10 games in a row, their longest winning streak since winning 17 consecutive games in 2006 from April 22 to May 25.
During Clemson’s 10-game winning streak, the Tigers are hitting .300 with a .385 on-base percentage thanks to 53 walks against only 50 strikeouts. The Tigers are averaging just 5.8 runs per game during the streak, but they are 4-0 in one-run games, 2-0 in two-run games, and 2-0 in three-run games, meaning eight of the 10 wins have been by three runs or less. Shane Kennedy (.405), Tyler Krieger (.395), and Tyler Slaton (.390) are all hitting .390 or better in the last 10 games. The Tiger pitching staff has a 2.01 ERA and .221 opponents’ batting average in the last 10 games as well.

Meyer a Familiar Face on the Mound
Senior righthander Jonathan Meyer (San Diego, CA) has been a regular presence on the mound for the Tigers the past four seasons. He has made 78 career appearances, tied for 10th-most in Tiger history, while his 2.33 walks-per-nine-innings-pitched mark is ninth-best in school history.
In 185.1 innings pitched over 78 appearances (15 starts) in his career, he is 11-8 with four saves, a 4.03 ERA, and 145 strikeouts against only 48 walks. In 24.2 innings pitched over 11 appearances (two starts) in 2013, he has given up just three walks against 21 strikeouts.

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