Jayhawks Begin Seven-Game Road Swing at K-State

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Roster RosterLAWRENCE, Kan. – Kansas begins a seven-game road swing to close out the regular season when the Jayhawks travel to in-state rival Kansas State for the annual Sunflower Showdown at Tointon Family Stadium May 13-15.

The Jayhawks (19-29-1, 5-12 Big 12) are a half-game behind the Wildcats (24-25, 6-12 Big 12) in the Big 12 standings and look to this weekend to propel them into the league championship at the end of the month.

All three games at Kansas State can be heard on the Jayhawk Radio Network with Steven Davis and Mitchell Glessner calling the action. Friday’s game can also be heard on the dial on KLWN 1320 AM.

On the web

Kansas Jayhawks app – search “Kansas Jayhawks”

Cox Kansas / ESPN3
All three games against the Wildcats can be seen on Cox Kansas with Saturday and Sunday’s games also on ESPN3.

Amazon Fire TV; Apple TV; Chromecast; Roku; Xbox One; Xbox 360.

ESPN3 on the web
WatchESPN.com; ESPN3.com

ESPN3 on mobile/tablet devices
WatchESPN app; ESPN app


  • Kansas’ all-time record: 1,854-1,778-18.
  • Head coach Ritch Price’s record at Division I level: 650-625-4 (.510).
  • Price (434-396-3) is just five wins from becoming KU’s all-time winningest coach (Floyd Temple, 438).
  • Kansas and Kansas State have played at least one game against one another annually since 1946.
  • The Jayhawks have played 357 games against the Wildcats – 20 more than any other opponent in school history (337, Missouri).
  • In the last three meetings against K-State, the visiting team came away with the series victory.
  • Since Big 12 play started, Kansas has won eight series against Kansas State with five coming in the Price era.
  • Junior catcher Michael Tinsley enters the weekend with the No. 1 batting average in the Big 12 Conference at .402 (76-for-189) and leads the league with 76 hits.

Overall Record: 184-172-1
Big 12 Record: 21-36
Current Streak: Won 1
Longest Win Streak: 8, (1952-55)
Longest Winless Streak: 8, (2007-09)
Last 10 Meetings: 3-7
In Lawrence: 83-66
In Manhattan: 63-81-1
Neutral Sites: 2-7
Under Ritch Price: 16-26    
First Meeting: 1898 (W, 13-2)
Last Meeting: May 17, 2015 (W, 9-6)

Kansas State enters the weekend with a 24-25 record and 6-12 mark in the Big 12. The Wildcats sit in seventh place in the league standings, a half game ahead of the Jayhawks. K-State has the third-best offense in the conference with a .287 batting average while ranking eighth in pitching with a 5.00 ERA. In 49 games, Kansas State averages 6.0 runs per contest compared to the 5.6 KU scores per game. Senior outfielder Clayton Dalrymple leads the squad with a .342 average including a team-high 67 hits and 43 runs scored to go along with a league second-best 14 stolen bases. Senior catcher Tyler Moore leads the team with 36 RBIs while junior first baseman Jake Scudder has hit six home runs and slugs .479 at the plate. On the mound Kansas will see junior lefty Parker Rigler (4-6, 4.24 ERA 61 K), senior righty Levi MaVorhis (5-4, 4.66 ERA, 63 K) and senior righty Corey Fischer (2-4, 5.36 ERA, 36 K).

Kansas plays its final seven games of the season on the road at Kansas State (May 13-15), at Wichita State (May 17) and at Oklahoma State (May 19-21). The Jayhawks hold a record of 3-13 in true road games – 2-4 Big 12 – and a 4-17 clip in games played away from Hoglund Ballpark. In true road contests, KU scores an average of 5.1 runs per contest compared to the 7.8 runs per game by its opponents. Two of those road wins came at the hands of senior lefty Ben Krauth (at Baylor and at Texas), who holds a 2-2 record in six starts on the road. The third win came at Samford when junior closer Stephen Villines pitched three innings of shutout baseball before the Jayhawks scored four runs in the ninth to win it.

Junior catcher Michael Tinsley leads the Big 12 Conference with a .402 batting average including a league-best 76 hits. The lefty bat ranks No. 7 in the NCAA among Power Five conferences in average and third in hits. He averages 3.9 at bats per game and if that holds true, he would finish the season with 218 at bats. In order to eclipse the .400 mark, Tinsley would have to register 88 hits (.403), or 12 more in the next seven games (1.7 hits per game). The last Kansas player to accomplish that feat was Joe DeMarco in 1997 (.439). If accomplished, Tinsley would become just the eighth Jayhawk since 1955 to bat .400 or better. The last Big 12 player to hit .400 or better was K-State’s Nick Martini (.416) in 2010.

Forty-two times since the start of the 2003 season a Jayhawk has hit safely in 10-straight games. Senior second baseman Colby Wright and junior catcher Michael Tinsley can say something that no one else in that 14-year span can – that they posted two 10-plus hitting streaks in a single season. Wright posted a 13 gamer earlier in the season and just snapped his 14-game streak with a hitless performance against then-No. 8 Texas Tech (May 7). Tinsley rode out an 11-game streak before a hitless game at Samford (April 22). He sandwiched that with his current 12-game hitting streak that includes multiple-hit performances in nine of those games. Tinsley has hit safely in 23 of his last 24 games, reaching base safely in each of those contests.

Junior closer Stephen Villines proves time and time again to be old reliable for Kansas out of the bullpen. Against then-No. 8 Texas Tech (May 8), Villines pitched a career-high six shutout innings, giving up just two hits to the No. 2-ranked offense in the Big 12 Conference. Villines’ 80-pitch effort was the second-most of his career as he threw 91 against Texas (April 17, 2015) in five innings of bonus baseball. Villines’ current 1.76 ERA, 5-2 record and 38 strikeouts in 41 innings pitched mimics his freshman campaign where he earned NCBWA Second-Team Freshman All-America honors (1.50 ERA, 2-2, 23 K, 48 IP).

Junior catcher Michael Tinsley is just seven points from cracking the Big 12 Conference all-time top-10 in career batting average with .375 the number to get. Tinsley’s current .368 career batting average ranks him fifth all-time in the Kansas history books while his single-season mark of .402 ranks him eighth. In the Price era, Brian Heere posted the best batting average at .393 and finished his career with a .373 clip, good enough for No. 2 on the KU charts. If that’s not enough, Tinsley holds the fifth-best career batting average among active NCAA players and the best out of any Power Five conference.

Eleven Jayhawks earned Academic All-Big 12 honors from the league. Sophomore shortstop Matt McLaughlin, senior third baseman Tommy Mirabelli, senior right fielder Joe Moroney, sophomore lefty Blake Weiman, junior designate hitter Marcus Wheeler and senior second baseman Colby Wright all earned first team recognition while junior centerfielder Joven Afenir, senior righty Hayden Edwards, senior reliever Sam Gilbert, senior first baseman Ryan Pidhaichuk and sophomore designated hitter Owen Taylor landed on the second team.

Kansas closes out the regular season with a four-game road swing starting at Wichita State (May 17) and ending at Oklahoma State (May 19-21). The Big 12 Conference Championship (May 25-29) would follow if the Jayhawks land in the top-8 in the conference standings by season’s end.

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