Thursday, March 11, 2010

Cardinal Nine Dare Opponents To Score On Them

Just when you thought manager Dan McDonnell couldn't top himself in just his 4th season at Louisville, he may be on his way to doing it again this season. Louisville is off their best start in school history (12-0) and are nationally ranked 8th in the country.

The Cardinal Nine will hope to continue the undefeated streak as they prepare to go on the road out of conference down to Oxford, Mississippi to meet #17 Ole Miss for a three game weekend series.

Last year the Cards used a high powered offense to get them into the post season for a 3rd straight year but while this team has shown it can slug it out, it has been an overpowering pitching staff that has helped this 12 game winning streak. Louisville pitchers have held opponent's to just .199 BA so far and are bolstering a 2.54 ERA.

Coach McDonnell has not only put together an impressive pitching staff but did so with a heavy local flavor. Half of the twelve pitchers the Cardinals have used this year are from the state of Kentucky, including 10 of Louisville's 12 wins this year have been awarded to a Kentucky native.

Leading the way has been Lexington's own Thomas Royse (pictured left), who has been the ace of this staff with 3 (tied for 1st in the country) wins in 3 starts while allowing just runs (only 1 was earned). Royse even pitched a 6 scoreless inning against Michigan in the Big Ten / Big East showdown. That shutout continued as Owensboro finest Neil Holland came in to pitch 3 more scoreless innings but pitching shutout baseball has been nothing new to Neil this year.

Holland has appeared in 6 games this season (12.2 IP) and has yet to allow any run, earned or otherwise, hell he has only allowed 1 hit and has 16 strikeouts. Gabrel Shaw (Paducah) is tied with Royse for wins with 3and has only allowed 1 earned run in this young season. Starter Dean Kiekhefer (Louisville) has just 1 win in 3 starts but has held batters to a .169 batting average with a 2.50 earned run average.

1 comment:

  1. Thank God for these baseball guys. Watching them in the Spring should calm us down after our beloved basketball team flames out.