KU wraps up homestand with Houston Baptist
Sophomore outfielder Devin Foyle has reached base safely in all 12 games this season.
Turski vs. Russ
Rackoski vs. Thames
Goddard vs. Carter
LAWRENCE, Kan. – The Kansas baseball team wraps up its eight-game homestand when the Jayhawks play host to Houston Baptist March 10-11 at Hoglund Ballpark.
Due to the threat of inclement weather on Saturday, Kansas (5-7) and the Huskies (7-4) have agreed to play a doubleheader on Friday, March 10, starting at 1 p.m. Saturday’s contest will remain as scheduled with a 2 p.m. first pitch. If either day becomes unplayable, a game will be played at 1 p.m. on Sunday, March 12.
Fans can watch all three games live on ESPN3, or tune into the live audio broadcast on the Jayhawk Radio Network via KUAthletics.com/Radio or on the official “Kansas Jayhawks” mobile app.
- Kansas’ all-time record: 1,860-1,791-18 (.509).
- Head coach Ritch Price’s record in Division I: 656-638-4 (.507).
- Price (440-409-3 [.518]) is KU’s new all-time winningest coach, surpassing legendary skipper Floyd Temple (438).
- KU’s first game in the month of March came in 1959 when the Jayhawks shutout Washburn, 7-0, on March 30.
- Kansas holds an all-time record of 481-394-4 (.549) in the month of March with a mark of 141-119 (.541) under Price.
- KU is a combined 50-48-2 in games played on March 10-12 in school history – (22-17-2 on March 10; 13-15-0 on March 11; and 15-16-0 on March 12) – with a record of 16-8 in the Price era.
- Under Price, Kansas has won a total of 22 series in the month of March, but hasn’t won more the one series in the month since 2014 (at least two wins in a three-game series or three wins in a four-game series against the same opponent).
- In the six games played against the Huskies all-time, the Jayhawks have averaged 6.5 runs per contest compared to HBU’s 3.2 runs per game, and outscored Houston Baptist, 39-19.
- Kansas holds a record of 4-2 at Hoglund Ballpark in 2017 where it bats .303 and scores an average of 7.2 runs per contest. Away from the Hog, the Jayhawks bat just .182, scoring an average of 2.7 runs per game.
THE ALL-TIME WINNER
With Saturday’s (March 4) 11-7 victory over Northwestern State, head coach Ritch Price became KU’s new all-time winningest coach at 439 wins, surpassing legendary skipper Floyd Temple (438). It took Temple 28 seasons to set that standard, before Price eclipsed that mark in just his 15th year at the helm of the program. Price’s 440 wins account for 23.7 percent of the program’s 1,860 victories spanning 125 seasons. Temple averaged 15.6 wins per season playing an average of 30 games a year. Price averages 31 victories a year playing about 60 games a season.
Senior closer Stephen Villines picked up his second save of the season against Omaha (March 8) after throwing one and 1/3 scoreless innings to preserve the 6-5 Kansas victory. That save marks No. 28 for his career and puts him into sole possession of second place on the Jayhawks’ all-time saves chart, surpassing Paul Smyth (27). In his first outing of the season, Villines recorded the final seven outs in 32 pitches against The Citadel (Feb. 17), including three strikeouts. Villines needs four more saves to become KU’s all-time saves leader, as Don Czyz (31) currently holds the top spot.
Freshman catcher Jaxx Groshans leads Kansas with a team-best six-game hitting streak and helped the Jayhawks to a 3-3 record in those contests. Since the streak started, Groshans is hitting .364 (8-for-22) with two doubles and a team-leading nine RBIs. He holds a .455 slugging percentage and .391 on-base percentage in those six contests. Perhaps his biggest hit in that span came on March 5 against Northwestern State. The rookie backstop roped a two-run double in the bottom of the ninth inning against the Demons to send KU’s Sunday finale into extra innings.
ON THE RISE
Centerfielder Rudy Karre had a stagnant start to his sophomore campaign as he batted just .083 (2-for-24) through eight starts leading into last weekend against Northwestern State (March 3-5). Impressively enough, Karre found his rhythm at the dish and boasted two multi-hit games while hitting safely in four-straight games. In those four games, Karre is batting .500 (6-for-12) with one home run, four RBIs, five runs scored and a team-best .750 slugging percentage and is a perfect 2-for-2 in stolen bases. That performance jumped his season numbers up 139 points to .222 (8-for-36), as he is riding out this four-game hitting streak he is on.
When it comes to reaching base safely in consecutive games, no one does it better than sophomore outfielder Devin Foyle. The switch hitter started all 12 games for Kansas and has safely made it to first in each of those contests. His .442 on-base percentage ranks first on the team and is just 10 points off from cracking the top-10 in the Big 12 Conference.
HE’S GOT TENURE
Kansas skipper Ritch Price is the most tenured head coach in the Big 12 Conference as he is in his 15th season at the helm of the Jayhawks. TCU’s Jim Schlossnagle and K-State’s Brad Hill are second on the list, as both are in their 14th season. In addition, Price has coached in more Big 12 contests than any other active skipper in the league:
1. Ritch Price (KU), 357
2. Brad Hill (KSU), 332
3. Tim Tadlock (TTU), 96
4. Jim Schlossnagle (TCU), 95
5. Josh Holliday (OSU), 93
Kansas heads out on the road to play four games away from Hoglund Ballpark – a first since Feb. 26. The Jayhawks will head south and stop off to play Oral Roberts (March 15) in midweek action, before heading on down to open up conference play at TCU (March 17-19).
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