May 18, 2011
|Michael Roth Press Conference|
Columbia, S.C. – South Carolina heads (42-11, 20-7 SEC) on the road for the end of the regular season with a three-game series at Alabama (31-22, 13-14 SEC). Thursday’s opener is at 7:30 p.m. with Friday’s game also at 7:30 p.m. Saturday’s series finale is scheduled for 1 p.m. All three games can be heard on the Gamecock Radio Network. Saturday’s game will be televised on CSS with the game also available on Time Warner Cable Channel 506 in Columbia. South Carolina ranks No. 2 in the USA Today/ESPN coaches’ poll and No. 3 in the Baseball America Top 25 and Collegiate Baseball Top 30. South Carolina is in a three-way tie for first place in the SEC with Florida and Vanderbilt heading into the final weekend of conference play.
Probable Starting Pitchers
South Carolina – Michael Roth (Jr. LHP) 10-2, 1.35 ERA, 93.0 IP, 21 BB, 83 SO
Alabama – Nathan Kilcrease (Sr. RHP) 5-4, 3.74 ERA, 77.0 IP, 20 BB, 63 SO
South Carolina – Forrest Koumas (Fr. RHP) 5-0, 3.17 ERA, 54.0 IP, 22 BB, 48 SO
Alabama – Adam Morgan (Jr. LHP) 5-4, 3.89 ERA, 81.0 IP, 21 BB, 67 SO
South Carolina – Colby Holmes (So. RHP) 5-2, 3.70 ERA, 58.1 IP, 14 BB, 55 SO
Alabama – TBA
With the 6-5 win last Saturday vs. Arkansas, it marks South Carolina’s 12th consecutive season with 40 or more wins; the Gamecocks are the only team in the Southeastern Conference to win 40 or more games in each of the last 12 seasons.
HOLMES PROVIDES ANSWER – EARNS SEC PITCHER OF THE WEEK FOR A SECOND TIME
South Carolina sophomore right-hander Colby Holmes has earned SEC Pitcher of the Week honors for the second time this season. Holmes came within one pitch of a complete game shutout as South Carolina clinched a series victory over Arkansas with a 7-1 win on Sunday afternoon. Holmes pitched 8.2 innings – the longest outing by a South Carolina pitcher this season – giving up just one run on six hits while tying a career-high with seven strikeouts and walking just one Razorback hitter. 8.2 innings is a career-high as well for Holmes.
For the season, Holmes is 5-2 with a 3.70 ERA in 58.1 innings with 55 strikeouts to just 14 walks. Opponents are hitting just .228 against him.
Holmes earned SEC Pitcher of the Week the first time after he worked seven innings and struck out career-high seven batters to earn the win in a 2-0 victory over Tennessee. Holmes was stellar the entire night as he limited the Vols to just three hits and no walks.
Entering this weekend with just 28 at bats for the season, Steven Neff was a key bat for Carolina in the series victory over Arkansas. In Saturday’s 6-5 win, Neff hit his first career home run, a two-run shot, and was 3-for-4 with a double as well as Carolina defeated the Razorbacks. Neff followed that up with three more hits in Sunday’s 7-1 victory including two more home runs, only the second time this season that a Gamecock player has had two home runs in a game.
In addition, Neff also showed off his arm last week as the left-hander earned a win in the 6-1 midweek victory over Presbyterian as he worked five innings and allowed one run on five hits with five strikeouts and a walk. He is now 3-1 on the year on the mound.
WINGO & RECORDS
Senior second baseman Scott Wingo’s leadoff solo home run in the bottom of the ninth gave South Carolina a thrilling 6-5 victory over Arkansas on Saturday at Carolina Stadium. He had three hits in the victory. It was Wingo’s third walk-off hit of the year along with a game-winning RBI single in a 2-1 win over Auburn on April 29 and also drove in the winning run in the ninth in a 2-1 win over Georgia. In addition, Wingo was 2-for-3 in the 7-1 win on Sunday.
For the season, Wingo is hitting .326 (58-for-177) with four homers, 25 RBI a .444 slugging percentage and a .465 on-base percentage. Wingo’s on-base percentage is fourth best in the league and he has walked 39 times, second highest in the league as well. He leads Carolina in SEC games hitting at a .361 clip, 11th best in the conference. Wingo is now tied for third on the all-time games played list at Carolina with 238 games with the Garnet & Black with Andrew Crisp.
Wingo also holds the school career record for hit by pitches with 55 so far in his career.
BRADY BEHIND THE PLATE
Senior catcher Brady Thomas has been hot at the plate as well with his average up to .335 (60-for-179) for the season. Thomas collected three hits in the 6-5 win over Arkansas on Saturday. He was also 3-for-5 with two RBI in the win over Charleston Southern.
ROTH RECEIVES ACCOLADES
Despite taking a loss on Friday night vs. Arkansas, junior left-hander Michael Roth gave the Gamecocks another quality start. Roth scattered 10 hits in 5.1 innings with three runs allowed, two earned, on 10 hits in 5.1 innings with five strikeouts and a walk. For the season, Roth is 10-2 with a 1.35 ERA in 93.0 innings. He has 83 strikeouts to 21 walks and opponents hitting .220 against him. Roth’s 1.35 ERA is listed as the best in the SEC. His 10-win total is second best as well. Innings pitched is third highest in the league as is strikeouts.
He is one of 25 pitchers in the country named a quarterfinalist for the National Pitcher of the Year Award selected by the College Baseball Hall of Fame.
Roth has been named to the Capital One Academic All-District 3 First Team as selected by CoSIDA (College Sports Information Directors of America). An international business major, Roth now moves on to the national ballot with results announced on May 24 for the Academic All-America team. To be nominated for the team, a student-athlete must have a 3.3 or better cumulative GPA and be in their second year of competition and academically at a school.
Roth was SEC Pitcher of the Week after earning a win vs. Vanderbilt. Roth did not allow a hit until the fifth inning and limited the Commodores to just one run on three hits in a 3-1 win on Friday night in the series opener vs. Vanderbilt. The three-hit total was the lowest in a game this season for the Commodores, who came into the weekend as the top hitting team in the conference. Roth’s eight strikeout total was one short of his career high.
WALKER AMONG LEAGUE LEADERS
Sophomore first baseman Christian Walker leads the team with a .357 batting average (74-for-207) with a 16 doubles, a triple, nine home runs and 52 RBI. He has a .444 on-base percentage and a .575 slugging percentage also. His slugging percentage ranks fourth in the SEC, his on-base percentage fifth best in the SEC and batting average seventh best also.
Walker earned SEC Player of the Week after a solid series at Mississippi State. Walker had a phenomenal weekend at the plate batting .909 (10-for-11) along with a sacrifice fly RBI and four walks against the Bulldogs in 16 plate appearances. He had 14 total bases for the weekend and a 1.273 slugging percentage as well.
In the rubber game of the series vs. the Bulldogs and with the Gamecocks missing three primary position starters, Walker was at his best as he went 4-for-4 with a double and a home run and four RBI in the 13-4 victory to help the Gamecocks take the series. Walker had a sacrifice fly in his first at-bat, tied the game up at 3-3 in the fourth inning with a two-out single and closed it out with a two-run homer in the ninth inning. Walker was 4-for-5 with two runs scored in the series opener, an 8-2 win over Mississippi State.
THE VERSATILE MR. BEARY
Senior outfielder/catcher Robert Beary was 3-for-4 with a RBI and a run scored in the 7-1 win over Arkansas. Beary’s average has climbed up to .303 (46-for-152) and he has 28 RBI to go along with 24 runs scored. His batting average is fourth highest on the team.
Beary was stellar in the Auburn series going 5-for-8 (.625) with three runs scored and three RBI vs. the Tigers. His batting average was the highest on the team for that weekend.
Beary has played left field, right field, third base, designated hitter and catcher this season for the Gamecocks and is the most versatile player on the team.
Beary had a career night for the Gamecocks in the 17-8 win over Rhode Island. Beary tied his career-high with four hits and drove in a career-high four runs. He also homered in the game. Beary hit .353 (6-for-17) in the five games (vs. College of Charleston, Rhode Island, Florida series) with five runs scored.
Junior outfielder Jake Williams tallied his fifth triple in the 7-6 loss at Ole Miss. Williams is now one short of the school record of six set by current Gamecock student assistant coach Brian Buscher in 2002. Williams also had two RBI in the 9-3 win at Wofford. For the season, Williams is hitting .280 (44-for-157) with seven doubles, two HR and 30 RBI as well.
TAYLOR MAKES AN APPEARANCE
Senior reliever John Taylor leads the SEC with 35 relief appearances. He is 4-1 with a 1.07 ERA in 50.1 innings with 53 strikeouts to just 17 walks. Opponents are hitting only .173 against Taylor. Taylor appeared in all three games this weekend vs. the Razorbacks. His 35 appearances, is sixth highest for a single season all-time by a Gamecock pitcher and just two short of the school record.
Evan Marzilli tied a career-high with three hits in the 9-3 win over Wofford. He was 3-for-3 with a triple and two runs scored. Marzilli has come on as of late with a .274 average (43-for-157) for the season. He is also hitting .296 in SEC games.
THE PRICE IS RIGHT
Sophomore right-hander Matt Price earned a win in the 6-5 victory over Arkansas and struck out four batters in 2.1 innings of work. He has finished a league-high 15 SEC games with five victories and seven saves in those conference tilts. His 1.32 ERA is the best among all SEC pitchers in SEC games also. For the season, Price is 5-3 with a 2.41 ERA and 13 saves in 25 appearances. He has struck out 50 batters in 37.1 innings; opponents are only hitting .197 against him.
Price was key in both wins over top ranked Vanderbilt. The sophomore Gamecock reliever factored into two wins this weekend with a save in the 3-1 victory on Friday night and a victory in Sunday’s 5-3 win in the rubber game vs. No. 1 Vanderbilt. Price was dominant in his stints with 4.1 scoreless innings of relief. 11 of the 13 outs he tallied were by strikeout. All four batters he faced in the 43-1 win struck out as he picked up the save. In the 5-3 win over VU, he worked a season-high three innings and limited VU to just two hits and struck out a season-high seven batters to pick up his fourth win of the year.
Price is third at Carolina in all-time saves with 23. HIs 13 saves this year is fifth highest in a single season at Carolina.
Top 3 Saves All-Time
30 Rob Mosser (1990-93)
28 Brian Beatson (1987-90)
23 Matt Price (2009-11)
Top 5 Saves Single-Season
21 Blake Taylor (2002)
20 Chad Blackwell (2004)
19 Lee Gronkiewicz (2001)
15 Scott Barber (2000)
13 Matt Price (2011)
MOONEY KEEPS RISING
Junior shortstop Peter Mooney has been stellar at the plate in the leadoff role. In a 7-1 victory vs. Arkansas, Mooney was 2-for-3 with a RBI and two runs scored. He has raised his batting average to .274 (54-for-197) with 39 runs scored and a .387 on-base percentage.
South Carolina’s pitching staff continues to be one of the best in the nation. South Carolina’s pitching staff owns a 2.69 ERA, second best in the league. Opponents are hitting just .229 against the team and the team has 430 strikeouts; both marks are second best in the SEC as well. The Gamecocks lead the SEC in SEC games with a 2.54 ERA in 27 conference contests. Opponents are hitting just .227 in conference games as well.
At Tennessee, South Carolina’s pitching staff had its best weekend of the season with just one run allowed in 27 innings pitched. The Volunteers has just 15 hits for three games with a .179 batting average and Carolina finished with 24 strikeouts and just six walks allowed as well.
In a home series vs. Kentucky, the Gamecock pitching staff allowed just five runs the entire weekend and Kentucky hit only .181 as a team with just three extra base hits. The staff ERA for the weekend was 1.61.
The South Carolina pitching staff also has a tremendous weekend against the Gators in Gainesville. The Gamecock pitching staff allowed just six earned runs in 26 innings of play and the Gators hit just .217 in the series at McKethan Stadium. The staff ERA for the weekend was 2.08.
BY THE NUMBERS
For the season, South Carolina is hitting .298 on the year as a team (529-for-1773) fifth best in the conference. Carolina’s .393 on-base percentage is second best in the conference and the team’s .441 slugging percentage is fourth best in the SEC.
FLASH THE LEATHER
South Carolina is among SEC leaders with a .974 fielding percentage. Carolina’s .976 fielding mark in SEC games ties for the best in the league also.
South Carolina is 35-0 on the year when leading after six innings and 38-0 on the year when leading after eight innings. Carolina is 39-5 when limiting teams to just five runs or less. Also in superlatives, Carolina owns a 32-3 record when out-hitting the opponent. South Carolina is 13-7 in games decided by two runs or less.
PACK THE HOUSE
The crowds at Carolina Stadium continue to be some of the best in the country including a sellout of 8,242 on Saturday in the 10-2 win over Auburn. Carolina has a total attendance of 258,651 fans in 35 games for an average of 7,390.
All three games vs. Vanderbilt were played in front of 8,242 fans, three consecutive sellouts at Carolina Stadium adding to seven for the season. The three-game series attendance was 24,726, the best three-game mark in Carolina Stadium history.
There have been great crowds at Carolina Stadium this year with eight total sellouts. The Gamecocks had sellouts of 8,242 in the first two games vs. Santa Clara as well as the Friday victory over Clemson and the 4-3 10-inning win over Kentucky on April 2.
MORALES LEADS THE WAY
Senior infielder Adrian Morales went 3-for-5 with a RBI and run scored in the 7-3 win over Auburn. He also had two sacrifice flies in the 10-2 win over The Tigers. Morales is hitting .287 (54-for-188) for the season with three HR and 34 RBI. He has a .382 on-base percentage and a .404 slugging percentage.
Morales tied a school record for doubles in a game with three in the 4-3 win over Kentucky on Saturday. Morales reached base five times and was 3-for-3 in the win. He scored the game-winning run in the victory as well. He is the 24th player in school history to have three doubles in a game; the last was Christian Walker on May 2010 at Kentucky.
WEBB MEASURES UP
Sophomore left-hander Tyler Webb is the tallest pitcher on the Gamecock staff at 6-6. He earned the win in the 9-5 win over UNC Asheville. He has had a good season with a 3-1 record and a 2.84 ERA in 31.2 innings pitched. He has 26 strikeouts to 14 walks allowed.
Webb hurled a career-high 7.1 innings and tied a career-high with seven strikeouts and teamed with relievers Bryan Harper and John Taylor to hurl a five-hit shutout as South Carolina defeated Southern Illinois 4-0 in game two of a weekend series. Webb was effective throughout the game allowing just four hits in his longest start of his career. His seven strikeouts tied the career-high he set March 14, 2010 vs. Brown.