Arizona State (12-12, 4-2 Pac-12) plays eight games in 11 days, starting with a three-game stint on Thursday against at struggling Washington State (5-14, 1-5).
The Cougars bat a collective .241 and have the worst ERA (5.19) in the Pac-12 — and frosty Pullman temperatures have only caused greater damage.
Weather forced the Cougs to cancel a four-game home series with Sacramento State, and WSU has played 13 of 19 games of the road. Its away record: 2-9. Home? 2-2. The Cougars stole two of four from St. Mary’s who won a series against ASU in February.
The Cougars have flipped between sophomore left handers A.J. Block (0-3, .519 ERA) and Issac Mullins (0-2, .450 ERA) as series-opening starters. The two have both pitched in each of the Cougars’ last three Friday night matchups, meaning the Sun Devils will likely see either on Thursday. Their No. 2 starter, junior left-hander Scotty Sunitsch, has a Cougar best 2-1 record with a 3.96 ERA., and led WSU to a 5-4 win over Arizona in his last start.
Senior outfielder Blake Clanton (.326), junior utility player Justin Harrer (.302) and junior first baseman Wyatt Segel (.321) are the lone Cougars batting above .300, but eight-hitter JJ Hancock may be dangerous. He’s regularly .242, but batting a team-high .333 with runners in scoring position.
First pitch on Thursday comes at 6 p.m. followed by a 5 p.m. Friday tilt and a 12 p.m. Saturday matinee. Each game can be watched on Pac-12 Network or heard on the Washington State IMG Sports Network.