Hello Sun Devils. I cover the Kansas baseball team at Rock Chalk Talk. I thought I would pop over here and post the preview article I wrote for the Kansas - Arizona State series this weekend. I'd be happy for any feedback from ASU fans on the Jayhawks this weekend.
The Series in a Nutshell
The Jayhawk baseball team headed west for spring break. Kansas plays at #7 Arizona State Friday, Saturday and Sunday, and then will push on to face San Diego State Tuesday and Wednesday before returning to Lawrence to prepare for their first conference series. Number one ranked Texas will be at Hoglund March 20-22nd. KU will provide free webcasts for all games next week. Just visit here, go to schedule and log in. The broadcast start just a few minutes before first pitch.
Friday: Arizona State 9 - Kansas 4 FINAL KU Recap and boxscore link
Saturday: Kansas 3 - Arizona State 2 FINAL KU Recap and boxscore link
Sunday: Arizona State 12 - Kansas 10 FINAL
I did not find an ASU news release for the series so I just went with their regular weekend rotation in the above list. And no, those ERAs are not typos. The Sun Devils can pitch. After fourteen games their team ERA is 1.22. Fortunately their defense is less impressive. ASU has given up almost as many unearned runs (14) as earned runs (17). This is cold comfort when the bottom line still comes out to their surrendering only 2.2 runs a game.
The Sun Devils know how to hit as well. Their team line is .312/.428/.560. They average 8.9 runs a game. I don’t want to get into listing all their star players, because that would take a while and only depress the readership. Link to full ASU stats here.
Obviously Arizona State is a great baseball team. But they can be taken down. Kansas State split a two game series with them just this week. True, the Sun Devils have not yet lost a weekend game, and that weekend rotation looks horrifying, but they are not a team without flaws. If their defense truly is suspect that plays into KU’s hands. The Jayhawks are a slap hitting team that puts a lot of balls in play and runs the bases aggressively. Infield defense controls these problems, and maybe, just maybe, that is the part of the game where ASU is at its weakest. I guess well see soon enough. I’d love to see KU compete in these games and pull out a win. Anything further would be truly surprising.