⚾️ Kansas Heads to No. 19 West Virginia for Three-Game Series
|Kansas (13-14, 3-3 Big 12) at #19 West Virginia (22-7, 2-1 Big 12)|
|When||April 7 – April 9|
|Where||Morgantown, W.Va. // Monongalia County Ballpark|
|Watch||Friday | Saturday | Sunday (ESPNU)|
|Radio||Friday-Sunday: Jayhawk Sports Network | Saturday & Sunday: 101.7 FM/1320 AM|
|Live Stats||Friday | Saturday | Sunday|
|Notes||Kansas | West Virginia | Big 12|
|Social Media||@KUBaseball | @kubaseball | Facebook|
|Probable Starting Pitchers|
|Fri. 5:30 p.m. CT||RHP Collin Baumgartner (3-0, 3.69 ERA)||LHP Ben Hampton (2-0, 3.56 ERA)|
|Sat. 3 p.m. CT||RHP Sam Ireland (3-3, 4.58 ERA)||RHP Blaine Traxel (5-2, 2.57 ERA)|
|Sun. 2 p.m. CT||TBA||RHP Robby Porco (3-1, 8.31 ERA)|
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Kansas baseball continues Big 12 play this weekend with a three-game series against No. 19 West Virginia at Monongalia County Ballpark. First pitch of game one is set for 5:30 p.m. CT on Friday evening.
Kansas (13-14, 3-3 Big 12) is riding a five-game winning streak after defeating Missouri State 9-8 in 10 innings on a game-winning strike three wild pitch that ricocheted over the backstop. The Jayhawks overcame an 8-2 deficit in the sixth inning to pick up the win. The victory helped Kansas finish its homestand 5-0 and improve to 6-0 at home this season. The walk-off victory was the first for Kansas since the 2021 season.
Last weekend, Kansas earned its first Big 12 series sweep since the 2019 season. The Jayhawks swept Baylor by outscoring the Bears 30-14. The 30 runs scored were the most in a Big 12 series since the 2009 season. The KU offense scored 12 runs on Friday and 13 runs on Saturday, marking the first time since 2010 that Kansas scored at least 10 runs in consecutive conference contests.
Freshman Kodey Shojinaga has been swinging a hot bat as of late. The Honolulu, Hawaii, native leads Kansas this season with a .388 batting average after hitting .643 (9-for-14) with three doubles, five RBI and five runs scored in three games against Baylor last weekend. He had back-to-back career-high four-hit games on Friday and Saturday against Baylor, and then posted two hits against Missouri State on Tuesday. Shojinaga has a .524 batting average in six conference games.
Sophomore Chase Jans has an active 23-game on-base streak that began on Feb. 19. That is the longest of his career and by a Jayhawk this season. He is slashing .352/.431/.523 with seven doubles, one triple, two homers, 21 RBI, 14 runs and 11 walks during the stretch. Jans has hit safely in 21 of 25 games this and is hitting .330 overall this season.
On the mound for the Jayhawks this weekend will be SIU-Edwardsville transfer Collin Baumgartner on Friday and Minnesota transfer Sam Ireland on Saturday. The duo has started the first two games of every weekend series this season. Baumgartner is 3-0 with a 3.69 ERA and earned the win last Friday against Baylor after tossing 6.2 innings and allowing only three runs. Ireland is 3-3 with a 4.58 ERA and also was awarded the win last weekend against Baylor after throwing five innings and allowing four runs.
Defensively, Kansas has shined all season. Through 27 games, the Jayhawks have a .980 fielding percentage as a team. That mark ranks 20th in the country and second in the Big 12. Kansas has only committed 19 errors in 969 chances this season.
Kansas and West Virginia have met 30 times in program history with West Virginia holding an 18-12 advantage in the all-time series. Last season, Kansas picked up a 7-3 win on Friday night in Lawrence. LHP Daniel Hegarty threw a complete game in the victory before West Virginia won the final two games of the series.
West Virginia (22-7, 2-1 Big 12) is ranked as high as No. 19 in Baseball America’s poll. The Mountaineers began their season unranked, but a nine-game winning streak in the middle of March helped them gain more attention. Last weekend, West Virginia played its first conference series at Kansas State and won two out of three, making them the only school with a conference series win on the road this season. JJ Weatherholt has posted an impressive start to the season with a .463 batting average that includes 14 doubles and seven home runs. On the Mountaineers pitching staff, Blaine Traxel has thrown four complete games in seven starts.
HOW TO FOLLOW ALONG
All three games this weekend will be broadcast with Friday and Saturday on Big 12 Now on ESPN+ and Sunday’s contest on ESPNU with Sam Ravech (play-by-play) and Mike Rooney (analyst) on the call. Fans can also listen to the games on KLWN (101.7 FM/1320 AM) on Saturday and Sunday and the Jayhawk Sports Network on KUAthletics.com and the Kansas Jayhawks app for all three matchups.
Live statistics can be found here, while live updates will also be provided on the team’s official Twitter page @KUBaseball.
Kansas (13-14, 3-3 Big 12) hosts Texas Southern for a two-game series that includes the Buck O’Neil Classic on Tuesday, April 11 at Legends Field in Kansas City, Kansas. First pitch on Tuesday night is scheduled for 6 p.m. CT. Wednesday’s game will be played at Hoglund Ballpark in Lawrence, Kansas, with a 3 p.m. CT start.