Kansas Heads to Omaha for Midweek Bout at Creighton
Watch WatchNotes Game NotesRadio ListenStats Live StatsCalendar ScheduleRoster RosterLAWRENCE, Kan. – The Kansas baseball team heads back on the road to Omaha to play Creighton in midweek fashion, Wednesday, March 23, at TD Ameritrade Park, home of the College World Series.
The Jayhawks (7-11) won their last meeting with the Bluejays (March 26, 2014) inside TD Ameritrade Park, 11-0, and look to use that to snap a three-game skid. Creighton (12-4) has won six-straight games and 12 of its last 13 with a perfect 6-0 mark at home. First pitch is slated for 6:30 p.m., and can be seen live for free on Jays Video via GoCreighton.com/watch. Fans can also tune into a live audio broadcast via KUAthletics.com/Radio.
- Kansas enters the midweek game with Creighton with an all-time record of 1,842-1,760-17.
- Head coach Ritch Price is in his 22nd season as a Division I head coach with a record of 638-607-3 (.514).
- Price is in his 14th year at Kansas with a record of 422-378-2 (.528), and is just 17 wins from becoming KU’s all-time winningest coach (Floyd Temple, 438).
- Since Price took control of the program in 2003, Kansas and Creighton have met 11 times with the Jayhawks holding the edge in the series, 6-5.
- Since 2011, KU has won just one game against the Bluejays in six tries. The victory came on March 26, 2014, in shutout-fashion, 11-0.
- That March 26, 2014, game was the last time the two teams faced one another and prior to the 2015 season, have played one another in consecutive years since 2009.
- Kansas batted .281 in five games last week and scored an average of 5.8 runs per contest compared to the 8.0 runs per game its opponents scored. During that span, the Jayhawks gave up nine doubles, five triples and five home runs, while hitting 12 doubles, two triples and one home run.
- Senior second baseman Colby Wright led the Jayhawks with a .533 average (8-for-15) in five starts during the week including two doubles, five RBIs, five walks, two hit-by-pitches and three runs scored. His .733 slugging percentage was second only to freshman left fielder Devin Foyle and his .682 on-base percentage ranked first.
- The Jayhawks will open up Big 12 play at home March 25-27, against West Virginia. This is the first time KU will open up conference play at home since 2011 when it hosted Oklahoma State (March 18-20).
Kansas and Creighton have met 34 times in the history of the two programs with the Bluejays leading the all-time series, 22-12. The two teams first met in 1903 when Kansas came out on top, 15-13. It would be 77 years until April 22, 1980 when the two squads would meet again. The Jayhawks are 6-5 under head coach Ritch Price, but have only won one of their last six games against Creighton. That last win for KU came on March 26, 2014, when KU set a then-TD Ameritrade Park record for hits in a game at 16.
Two Jayhawks who have seen a familiar face in Creighton’s Alex Trautner. Junior catcher Michael Tinsley faced Trautner in high school play. The two matched up in 2013 when San Ramon Valley played Tinsley’s Serra Padres, who came away with the win, 5-2. Sophomore righty Casey Douglas also faced off against Trautner and The SRV Wolves. Douglas’ high school, Saint Francis, won by a score of 8-4.
BLUEJAYS’ HEAD COACH ED SERVAIS
Ed Servais has been at the helm of the Creighton baseball program for 12 seasons. Entering his 13th season with the Bluejays, Servais is the winningest coach in program history. His teams have averaged just over 35 wins per season under his 12-year leadership. Prior to being named the skipper at Creighton in 2003, Servais served as the program’s interim coach for the previous month. He was an assistant on Creighton’s staff for six years and spent time as the hitting and first-base coach as well as the defensive infield coach. Servais was also the recruiting coordinator. Before Creighton, Servais spent two years as an assistant coach at Iowa State. During his tenure at ISU, Servais served as a recruiting coordinator, hitting instructor and infield and outfield coach. Servais was the head coach at Division III St. Mary’s in Minnesota for seven years where he compiled a record of 159-76-1.
Winners of six straight and 12 of their last 13, the Bluejays enter Wednesday’s contest with an overall record of 12-4 and a perfect 6-0 mark at home. Creighton bats .266 as a team and scores an average of 4.8 runs per contest. Outfielder Daniel Woodrow leads the Bluejays with a .357 (25-for-70) average including a team-high 13 runs scored, a triple and seven RBIs. Infielder Nicky Lopez is the only other CU starter who is batting over .300 with a .322 clip and is tied for the team high with 13 runs scored. On the mound, Creighton holds a team ERA of 2.35 and has struck out 112 batters on the season. The Jayhawks will see lefty Jeff Albrecht in the midweek game. Albrecht has made six appearances on the year with Wednesday marking his first start. The southpaw has thrown 12 and 1/3 innings and has struck out 10 batters compared to one walk allowed. In addition, opponents are batting .143 against Albrecht.
GOING THE DISTANCE
Senior lefty Ben Krauth has pitched back-to-back complete games and has given up just two runs in his last 17 innings pitched. In addition, Krauth has tied his career-high nine strikeouts in both of those starts and leads Kansas with 30 strikeouts on the season – that ranks fifth in the Big 12 Conference. For his performance against North Dakota (March 11), Krauth was named the Big 12 Conference’s Pitcher of the Week. Krauth (1-3) kick-started KU’s perfect 3-0 weekend in the Millard Management Classic when he threw the first complete-game shutout of his Jayhawk career in a 7-0 win over the Fighting Hawks. With that effort, he became the first pitcher in the Big 12 this season to toss a complete-game shutout. In fact, no one else in the league has even tossed a complete game – Krauth has two. If that wasn’t enough, he is also the first Jayhawk to accomplish that feat since Jordan Piche´ threw a one-hit shutout at Baylor in 2014 (April 25).
Senior second baseman Colby Wright and junior centerfielder Joven Afenir are riding team-high and season-long seven-game hitting streaks. During the streak, Wright is batting .526 (10-for-19) with three doubles, a home run, seven RBIs and six runs scored to go along with a team-best .842 slugging and .700 on-base percentage. Afenir is batting .346 during his streak that includes two doubles, a triple, five runs scored, a .500 slugging and .455 on-base percentage.
Senior lefty Ben Krauth has one of the best pickoff moves in the country. In five starts, Krauth has picked off five base runners and is tied for the NCAA lead in that category among pitchers. Since joining the Jayhawks in 2015, Krauth has picked off 13 base runners in 19 starts and averages 0.68 per game. He is four pickoffs away from tying the single-season record set by Tom Gorzelanny (9) in 2002 and holds the most career pickoffs by a Jayhawk in the Price era. Only 10 players in Division I baseball have picked off four or more base runners with Krauth and East Carolina’s Jacob Wolfe leading the way among pitchers. The only person to pick off more than those two is Evansville catcher Boomer Synek (6). *All Division I schools accounted for in these numbers except UC Santa Barbara, Cal State Fullerton, Lamar, Texas A&M Corpus Christi, New York Tech and Oral Roberts where pickoff numbers couldn’t be found.
The Jayhawks open up the Big 12 Conference slate against West Virginia (March 25-27). All three games against the Mountaineers can be seen on ESPN3 with an audio broadcast available on the Jayhawk Radio Network via KUAthletics.com/Radio.
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