STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State puts the finishing touches on its 2012 fall baseball practices this weekend at Dudy Noble Field when MSU's 41-player fall roster is divided for the three-game Maroon-White World Series.
Game times are set for 5 p.m. Friday, 3 p.m. Saturday and 1 p.m. Sunday and all three contests are open to the public with no charge for admission.
Sophomore southpaw Jacob Lindgren, junior lefty Chad Girodo and sophomore righthander Will Cox will draw game-opening mound duty for Team Maroon while a trio of right-handers, senior Kendall Graveman, junior Evan Mitchell and sophomore Trevor Fitts are tabbed to start for Team White.
Mississippi State returns seven starting position players, seven other position players with starting experience and 13 of the 19 pitchers that took the mound for State in 2012. The Bulldogs compiled a 40-24 record, claimed the 2012 SEC Tournament championship and advanced to the program's 32nd appearance in NCA postseason play.
From a pitching corps that compiled the nation's second-best staff earned run average (2.58) a year ago the Bulldogs return 16-game starter Kendall Graveman (4-4. 2.81) and sophomore relief ace Jonathan Holder (2-1, 0.32, 9 saves).
The top seven and 11 of the top 13 Bulldog hitters return for the 2013 campaign, including junior shortstop and team hitting leader Adam Frazier (.371, 91 hits, 26 RBI, 9 SB) and sophomore first baseman Wes Rea (.249), who led the club with five home runs, 16 doubles and 41 RBI.
Mississippi State opens its 2013 campaign Feb. 15-17 with a four-game series at Dudy Noble Field against first-time foe Portland. MSU plays its first 20 games and a school-most 37 home contests in 2013.