Jayhawks Travel to Baylor for Big 12 Series
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Kansas softball begins its six-game road swing at Baylor April 22-24. The Jayhawks enter the three-game series with a seven-game win streak on the line, which is tied for the longest win streak of the season by KU. First pitch of the series is slated for Friday, April 22 at 6:30 p.m., on Fox College Sports and the Jayhawk Radio Network.
Following the Jayhawks
Listen to every pitch all season long as part of the Jayhawk Radio Network, in partnership with KJHK, the University of Kansas’ student radio station, KLWN and KWOD. All of KU’s contests will be carried live, for free, at KUAthletics.com/radio. Fans can also get in-game updates via twitter by following @KUsoftball. Additionally, all three games in Waco will be televised. Friday’s series debut will air on Fox College Sports, Saturday’s contest will be broadcast on Fox Sports SW and the series finale on Sunday will be televised on Fox Sports Plus.
Leading off for Kansas
- Kansas heads into the weekend with a seven-game win streak on the line, which ties for the second-longest winning streak in 2016 by the Jayhawks. KU also looks to snap its seven-game losing skid to Baylor.
- KU is 11-13 when facing the Lady Bears in Waco and has lost its last three games on the road against Baylor. The last victory for the Jayhawks inside Getterman Stadium was during the 2012 series finale.
- The Jayhawks outhit their opponent in each of the last seven games. KU owns a 23-2 record when outhitting its opposition on the diamond.
- In each of the last seven games, Kansas’ pitching staff has limited the opposing team to two runs or less. The Jayhawks have a 23-0 mark when giving up no more than two runs in a game.
- Kansas’ defense has recorded just 22 errors in 40 games for the second-best fielding percentage in the league (.979). KU has played 24 games this season without committing an error.
- Kansas set a new attendance record on April 9 at Arrocha Ballpark at Rock Chalk Park. The crowd of 1,240 marked the largest attendance record and the third of four sellouts since the ballpark opened in 2015.
About the Jayhawks
Kansas enters its third weekend of its Big 12 slate with a seven-game win streak on the line. On the season, KU improved to 27-13 overall and a 4-2 mark in conference play after sweeping Texas Tech last weekend. The three-game sweep of the Red Raiders marked the first league sweep of 2016 for the Jayhawks and second undefeated weekend in a row. Kansas has put a run on the scoreboard first in six of its last seven games and owns a 21-5 mark when plating a run before its opponent. The Jayhawks have also limited their opposition to two or less runs in the last seven outings and compiled a 23-0 record when giving up two or less runs.
The Jayhawks’ offense heated up over the weekend after outhitting Texas Tech in all three games and, Kansas registered a .493 clip at the plate. Senior Chaley Brickey led the offensive charge finishing the weekend 6-of-8 (.750) in the batter’s box with a pair of doubles, a home run and six runs batted in. Brickey’s four runs batted in performance on Sunday gave the Haltom City, Texas native 150 RBIs in her career, tying Maddie Stein for the most RBIs in a career. Brickey recorded a pair of doubles over the weekend to increase her career total to 51, just eight doubles away from claiming KU’s all-time double record. She also launched her 38th home run of her four-year career in the series finale. Brickey needs seven more to become Kansas’ all-time home run leader. Collectively, the Jayhawks are batting .294 on the season with four starters hitting above .300.
In three appearances, including two starts over the weekend, sophomore hurler Andie Formby posted a 0.58 ERA in 12 innings of work. Formby went 2-0 in the circle with two complete games and one shutout. After recording a pair of victories, Formby improved to 16-5 on the season. She leads the Big 12 Conference in shutouts with nine of the season and has posted the lowest-ERA in the league (1.84). Kansas’ pitching staff has recorded the third-lowest ERA in the conference (2.52) and tallied the fourth-most strikeouts (194) in the Big 12.
Scouting the Lady Bears
Baylor owns an overall record of 35-12 in 2016 and a 7-4 mark in Big 12 action. The Lady Bears host Texas State before opening a three-game series with the Jayhawks on Friday, April 22. Baylor has won three of its last eight games heading into its midweek matchup with Texas State. The Lady Bears entered the 2016 season selected to finish the Big 12 Conference slate in second place behind Oklahoma by the league coaches, but currently sit in third place in the Big 12 standings.
Senior infielder Sarah Smith leads the Lady Bears with a .409 clip at the plate, which is tied for the third-best batting average in the Big 12. Smith is tied for third in the league in hits with 54, including 12 doubles and seven home runs. Smith and sophomore infielder Shelby Friudenberg have posted a team-best 39 runs batted in this season. Redshirt senior outfielder Linsey Hays has registered a team-high 10 home runs in 2016. Collectively, Baylor is hitting .314 on the season, the second-best team average in the league, with 400 hits including 114 hits for extra bases. The Lady Bears have recorded 118 walks and stolen 62 bases in 86 attempts.
In the circle, the Lady Bears’ pitching staff has posted a 2.46 ERA with 296 strikeouts, the most in the Big 12. The Baylor pitchers lead the league in shutouts thrown with 15, four more than the Jayhawks. Senior Heather Stearns is 16-6 on the rubber with a conference-leading 174 strikeouts. Stearns has posted a 1.94 ERA in 144 innings pitched. The reigning Big 12 Pitcher of the Week, sophomore Kendall Potts, has a 1.95 ERA with 68 strikeouts.
The Series Breakdown
The Baylor Lady Bears have a three-game edge in the all-time series, 28-25. Baylor has won the last seven games against Kansas, including a series sweep during the 2014 meeting in Waco. KU’s last victory against the Lady Bears was a 6-5 decision in favor of the Jayhawks during the 2013 series in Lawrence. Kansas began the series with the Lady Bears in 1981 and won 11 of the first 12 games. Baylor owns a 13-11 mark against the Jayhawks inside Getterman Stadium.
Around the League
The Jayhawks are putting up impressive numbers during the 2016 season. Kansas is second in the Big 12 Conference in drawing walks with 141, has the second-best fielding percentage (.979), is third in home runs with 43, fourth in batters struck out with 194 and third in shutouts thrown with 11. Individually, senior infielder Chaley Brickey leads the Big 12 in walks (31), slugging percentage (.770) and on-base percentage (.537). Brickey is also second in runs scored (39), fourth in doubles hit (15) and tied for fourth in home runs (9). Sophomore infielder Daniella Chavez is first in RBIs (43) and tied for fourth in home runs hit (9). In the circle, sophomore Andie Formby has posted the lowest ERA in the league (1.85). She is first in shutouts (nine), is tied for second in wins (16) and is fourth in strikeouts (107).
Although graduating both corner infielders at the conclusion of the 2015 season, Kansas’ defense hasn’t skipped a beat committing just 22 errors in 40 games for a .979 fielding percentage, which is the second-best fielding percentage in the Big 12 Conference. KU had a .977 fielding percentage last season after committing only 35 errors in 364 innings, which was the second-best percentage in the conference and 11th in the nation. The Jayhawks’ defense was rarely found making an error during the 2014 season and led the Big 12, finishing second in the country, in fielding percentage after posting a .979 mark.
The Jayhawks continue their six-game road swing April 29 – May 1 when Kansas travels to Texas for a three-game series. KU’s series in Austin marks the final Big 12 Conference series on the road during the 2016 season, as the Jayhawks conclude the regular season with a six-game homestand. All three games at Texas will air on the Jayhawk Radio Network.
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