STARKVILLE, Miss. – Riding a season-long seven-game winning streak, No. 8 Mississippi State baseball travels west this weekend for four games at the Hi Corbett Classic in Tucson, Ariz. The Bulldogs take on UC Santa Barbara Friday at 3 p.m. CT at Hi Corbett Field, before playing 2012 national champion Arizona at 8 p.m. later in the day. The Bulldogs face the Gauchos in a rematch Saturday at 3 p.m., then wrap up their weekend Sunday at 7 p.m. CT against the host Wildcats.
Hi Corbett Classic Schedule (All Times Central, Home Team Listed Second)
Friday 3 p.m. UC Santa Barbara vs. Mississippi State
8 p.m. Mississippi State vs. Arizona
Saturday 3 p.m. Mississippi State vs. UC Santa Barbara
8 p.m. UC Santa Barbara vs. Arizona
Sunday 2 p.m. Arizona vs. UC Santa Barbara
7 p.m. Arizona vs. Mississippi State
Live Video and Television
All four games will be streamed FREE live at Pac-12.com. For non-Arizona games, there will be natural sound only.
Audio and Radio
Mississippi State’s Friday and Sunday games will air live on the MSU Baseball Radio Network. Saturday’s contest will be broadcast on WKBB 100.9 FM. Fans can also listen to all four games this weekend via live streaming audio at HailStateTV.com.
Tickets and Promotions
Mississippi State’s two games vs. UCSB are free to attend. Following Friday’s game vs. UCSB, the stadium will be cleared before MSU’s game vs. Arizona. Tickets will be required for both Arizona games and can be purchased at ArizonaWildcats.com. Ticket prices can be found here.
Friday – UCSB vs. MSU – RHP Ben Bracewell (2-0, 0.59 ERA) vs. LHP Justin Jacome (1-0, 1.38 ERA)
Friday – MSU vs. UA – Jr. RHP Brandon Woodruff (1-1, 5.00 ERA) vs. RHP James Farris (2-1, 2.08 ERA)
Saturday – MSU vs. UCSB – Jr. RHP Trevor Fitts (2-0, 1.96 ERA) vs. RHP Shane Bieber (1-0, 1.50 ERA)
Sunday – Arizona vs. MSU – TBA vs. TBA
Fans can follow the program in Arizona on and off the field on social media by searching for “HailStateBB” on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. All-Access coverage of the program can also be found on FanCred.
Mississippi State – 8th in Perfect Game, 10th in USA Today Sports’ Coaches Poll, 12th in NCBWA and Baseball America and 14th in Collegiate Baseball
UC Santa Barbara – Unranked
Arizona – Unranked
Friday’s Forecast - High 79, Low 51 - Partly Cloudy (0%)
Saturday’s Forecast - High 75, Low 48 - Partly Cloudy (0%)
Sunday’s Forecast - High 75, Low 47 - Sunny (0%)
Need To Know
· This is the first time Mississippi State will play Arizona and UC Santa Barbara under John Cohen.
· Preseason All-SEC first baseman Wes Rea leads the country with 15 walks and is second in the nation with 19 RBIs.
· Rea has reached base safely in all 15 games this season.
· All-SEC second baseman Brett Pirtle has hit safely in 14 of the first 15 games this season.
· The Bulldogs are a perfect 7-0 when junior shortstop Seth Heck starts.
· State leads the nation since 2012 in double plays turned (167) and total strikeouts (1,268).
· Not counting the games Mississippi State has played in, the teams the Bulldogs have lost to are a combined 19-4.
Dawgs Have Depth
Through 14 games, 11 of 17 Bulldogs with an at-bat this season have tallied at least two RBIs in a single game. In addition, 11 of 17 Bulldogs with an at-bat this season have recorded multiple hits in a game. Total, MSU has 18 multi-RBI games and 34 multi-hit games.
Thanks to fast starts and good starting pitching, the Bulldogs are finding success. Through 15 games, no Bulldog starting pitcher has surrendered more than two earned runs in a single start. In addition, the Bulldogs are a perfect 10-0 when scoring first.
The freshman duo of right-handed pitchers Dakota Hudson and Austin Sexton has proved effective so far this year. As starting pitchers, the two have not allowed an earned run in 15.2 consecutive innings on the mound.
Feel The Need, The Need For Speed
After not having a player steal three bases in a single game since April 2009, the Bulldogs have had three players accomplish the feat in the first 15 games. It’s a big reason why MSU leads the SEC with 30 stolen bases on the year. On March 1 vs. Michigan State, Derrick Armstrong tied Brad Winkler’s 34-year school record with four swipes in a game. Armstrong joined Demarcus Henderson (3 on Feb. 19) and Jacob Robson (3 on Feb. 21) as Bulldogs with three-plus stolen bases this season.
Four Runs Or Less
In 69 percent of games since 2012, associate head coach Butch Thompson’s pitching staff has given up four runs or less 104 times, winning 85 percent of the time when doing so (88-16).