Jayhawks Meet Aggies in Big 12 Championship Rematch Friday
May 24, 2012
LEADING OFF: The Kansas Jayhawks face sixth-ranked Texas A&M in an elimination game at the Big 12 Baseball Championship Friday at 7 p.m. at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark. KU will tangle with the Aggies for the second time in the tournament after falling to Texas A&M in the first round, 10-4 in the opening round Wednesday.
ON THE AIR: Live video from KU’s Friday evening game is available on the Big 12 Digital Network at big12sports.com. Fans can also listen to the contest on Lawrence radio station 1320 AM (KLWN) as well as on AT&T Jayhawk All-Access.
SERIES HISTORY: The Jayhawks and Aggies will be meeting for the second time in the tournament after Texas A&M knocked off KU, 10-4, in the first round of the Big 12 Baseball Championship on Wednesday. Texas A&M is 2-0 all-time in postseason games against KU, which also includes a 1993 win at the College World Series. The Aggies lead the all-time series with Kansas 49-16 with one tie and have beaten the Jayhawks three of four meetings this season.
ABOUT THE JAYHAWKS: Kansas looks to win back-to-back Big 12 Championship games for the first time since 2006, when it won the tournament title. KU earned its first postseason win over Texas on Thursday, downing the Longhorns, 4-2 to advance to Friday’s elimination game. KU is 5-11 in Big 12 Championship games and 6-6 in the month of May this season.
KU’s offense averages 4.2 runs per game and has a team batting average of .247. Junior IF Jordan Dreiling leads the team with a .299 batting average and a team-best .450 on-base percentage. On the mound, KU ranks eighth in the Big 12 with a 4.25 team ERA and have held opponents to a .271 batting average. Redshirt junior RHP Thomas Taylor will take the hill against Texas A&M Friday. Taylor earned KU’s lone win over the Aggies on April 15, pitching seven innings and allowing one run on five hits with three walks and four strikeouts.
SCOUTING THE AGGIES: Texas A&M fell to Missouri on Thursday evening, 5-3, to move into the loser’s out game with KU. The Aggies loss was just their second loss in 13 games during the month of May. It also stopped an 11-game winning streak in Big 12 Baseball Championship play for the two-time defending tournament champions.
The Aggies’ offense averages 5.9 runs per game and is batting .294 as a team. Junior OF Tyler Naquin leads the Texas A&M offense with a .383 batting average and has 15 doubles, a .545 slugging percentage and 17 stolen bases. Senior 1B Jacob House leads the Aggies with eight homers and is batting .310 with a team-best 53 RBIs on the season.
Texas A&M’s pitching staff leads the Big 12 with a 2.79 ERA and is holding opponents to a .234 batting average. Senior RHP Ross Stripling will make the start against Kansas on Friday. The senior is 10-2 on the season with a 2.70 ERA in 110 innings pitched with 15 walks and 104 strikeouts. Stripling held Kansas to three runs on six hits over eight innings to earn a 6-4 win over the Jayhawks in Lawrence on April 14.
Head Coach Rob Childress is in his seventh year at Texas A&M and has an overall record of 288-150-2 at the school. Childress is in line to lead the Aggies to a sixth-straight NCAA Regional appearance, while the team advanced to the College World Series last season.
UP NEXT: A Kansas win on Friday would advance the Jayhawks to the tournament semi-final round where they would match up with Border Showdown rival Missouri at 12:30 p.m. on Saturday. KU would need to defeat the Tigers twice on Saturday to move on to the Big 12 Championship game on Sunday at 1 p.m.