Kansas welcomes neutral site series against Texas Southern
LAWRENCE, Kan. – The Kansas baseball team travels to Melissa, Texas to take on Texas Southern in a four-game series, Friday, Feb. 22 – Sunday, Feb. 24, at the Melissa Sports Complex.
The Jayhawks (2-2) and Tigers (0-4) will play a doubleheader on Friday, starting at 11 a.m., before finishing the four game set with a game one each Saturday and Sunday at 11 a.m.
All four games of the weekend can be heard on the Jayhawk Radio Network via KUAthletics.com/Radio with Nick Springer calling the action.
- Kansas’ all-time record: 1,914-1,845-18
- Head coach Ritch Price’s record in Division I: 711-690-4
- Price’s record at Kansas: 494-462-3
- KU and Texas Southern will meet for the first time on a neutral field when both squads face off at the Melissa Sports Complex Feb. 22-24.
- Kansas holds a perfect 9-0 record against TSU and will meet the Tigers on the diamond for the third-straight season.
- The Jayhawks have outscored Texas Southern 83-19 in those nine victories, averaging 9.2 runs per contest.
- As it stands, Kansas averaged 5.25 runs per game against USC Upstate in its opening four-game series while the Tigers gave up an average of 29.0 runs per contest in their four-game series against New Mexico State to open up the season.
- The series move to Melissa, Texas guarantees the Jayhawks will not play a home contest in the month of February – the first time since the 2015 season.
- Kansas holds an all-time record of 141-104-1 (.573) in the month of February.
- Twenty-four of the Jayhawks’ 56 games slated for 2019 will be against 2018 NCAA Tournament teams, including six against squads that advanced to the College World Series.
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
After a three-home run performance opening weekend, junior catcher Jaxx Groshans was named the Big 12 Conference Player of the Week (Feb. 18). Groshans reached base seven times in 13 plate appearances, including four hits and three walks during the first three games of the Jayhawks’ season-opening series at USC Upstate. Groshans finished with a league-best three homers and six RBIs in those three contests, while batting .400 (4-for-10). In addition, Groshans scored the second-most runs in the conference on the weekend at four. In the Monday finale, Groshans batted 1-for-1 with a single and a RBI while drawing a career-high three walks. He is the first Kansas Big 12 Player of the Week since 2013 when Michael Suiter earned the same distinction (March 11).
SIX WINS AWAY
After a 2-2 mark to open up 2019, head coach Ritch Price is six wins away from reaching No. 500 as the Jayhawks’ skipper. Price is already the all-time winningest coach in Kansas history with 56 more victories than legendary coach Floyd Temple (1954-81).
FIRST PITCH BOMB
Sophomore third baseman Skyler Messinger got his season off on the right foot after he took the first pitch he saw in 2019 over the wall in left field for KU’s first of three home runs on Opening Day at USC Upstate (Feb. 15). That four-bagger marked just the second of his career and helped the Jayhawks to a 9-5 victory over the Spartans.
THRICE AS NICE
Junior catcher Jaxx Groshans hit three home runs in his first three games of 2019, including a two-bomb effort in the first game of a Saturday doubleheader at USC Upstate (Feb. 16). That multi-home run game was the first of his career and the first since last season when Brendt Citta hit two four baggers against West Virginia (May 5, 2018).
Junior righty Ryan Zeferjahn became the first Kansas baseball player to earn a Preseason All-America Team recognition from Baseball America when the publication announced he landed on its third team. Zeferjahn was one of 42 players from around the country representing 35 different schools to be honored.
PRESEASON ALL-BIG 12
Junior right-handed pitcher Ryan Zeferjahn earned his second preseason recognition when the league’s coaches voted him to the Preseason All-Big 12 Team. The team consists of 18 players from across the conference with Zeferjahn earning one of the six pitching spots.
KANSAS PICKED EIGHTH
With 22 letterwinners, five position starters and two starting pitchers returning from 2018, the Big 12 Conference coaches picked the Jayhawks to finish eighth in the annual preseason poll.
- Texas Tech (6)
- Baylor (2)
- TCU (1)
- Oklahoma State
- West Virginia
PRICE NAMES 2019 CAPTAINS
Head coach Ritch Price announced that James Cosentino, Ryan Cyr and Rudy Karre will represent the 2019 squad as captains. The trio is each holding the honor of captain for the first time in their careers and represents what the Kansas baseball program is all about.
“All three players have been model student-athletes in our program since the day they walked on our campus,” Price said. “They exhibit all the qualities we look for in a captain.”
THE DEAN OF BIG 12 BASEBALL
Kansas head coach Ritch Price is the most tenured skipper in the Big 12 Conference as he has coached in 404 league games – 260 more than any other current coach.
- 404 – Ritch Price, Kansas (17th season)
- 144 – Tim Tadlock, Texas Tech (Seventh season)
- 142 – Jim Schlossnagle, TCU (Seventh Season)
- 140 – Randy Maze, West Virginia (Seventh Season)
- 139 – Josh Holliday, Oklahoma State (Seventh Season)
USA, USA, USA
The Kansas baseball team represented the United States at the International University Sports Federation’s (FISU) Sixth World University Baseball Championships (WCB) in Chiayi City, Taiwan, July 6-15, 2018. The Jayhawks were just the third team (Cal State Fullerton, 2015; Iowa, 2017) to represent the country as a collegiate national team and the first to wear the Red, White and Blue in the WCB. KU played six total games and finished with a record of 3-3:
- July 5 vs. HONG KONG W 16-1 (6)
- July 6 vs. JAPAN L 1-5 (7)
- July 9 vs. RUSSIA W 12-2 (8)
- July 10 vs. CHINESE TAIPEI L 7-8 (12)
- July 13 vs. KOREA W 3-2
- July 14 vs. KOREA L 4-7
JAYHAWK DUO INVITED TO SPRING TRAINING
Two former Kansas baseball players got the call to Major League Spring Training as non-roster invitees. Blake Weiman of the Pittsburgh Pirates and Stephen Villines of the New York Mets will be learning from the big-league guys in their month-long stint in Florida. Both Villines and Weiman were drafted in the top-10 rounds of the 2017 MLB Draft and have perfected their crafts all the way to their respective Double-A affiliates.
FOUR DRAFTED IN 2018
The Jayhawks saw four players get their names called in the 2018 MLB Draft: righty Jackson Goddard, third round, Arizona Diamondbacks; closer Zack Leban, 12th round, Miami Marlins; Devin Foyle, 17th round, Oakland Athletics; and Brendt Citta, 38th round, Pittsburgh Pirates.
Kansas returns to Lawrence for its home opener Friday, March 1 for the first of a three-game series against Northern Illinois.
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