Big Ten Baseball Weekly Review - 2012 Week 8

Purdue remains the top team in the Big Ten... and it may not be that close.

You'd think that playing so many games on the road would make Big Ten teams battle-tested, but that was not the case this past weekend as Purdue was the only road team to win a conference series, sweeping Northwestern in Evanston.

Ohio State swept Minnesota. Nebraska went 2-1 against Iowa at home (barely), as did Illinois over Indiana. Michigan and Michigan State played a split home and away series, playing two in Ann Arbor and one in East Lansing with the Wolverines taking the series 2-1.

Purdue remains the only conference team ranked, this week's high being #18th by the USA Today/ESPN Coaches' Poll and the NCBWA writer's poll.

Big Ten

Overall

Team

Record

Pct.

Record

Pct.

1. Purdue

7-2

.778

24-5

.828

2. Nebraska

5-4

.556

22-12

.647

Ohio State

5-4

.556

18-12

.600

Indiana

5-4

.556

14-18

.438

5. Michigan State

3-3

.500

19-10

.655

Illinois

3-3

.500

17-12

.586

Minnesota

3-3

.500

17-16

.515

8. Iowa

4-5

.444

13-16

.448

9. Michigan

2-4

.333

15-17

.469

Penn State

2-4

.333

13-18

.419

Northwestern

3-6

.333

10-18

.357

Illinois

2-2

Bradley 6, Illinois 3

Indiana 12, Illinois 3

Illinois 7, Indiana 3

Illinois 11, Indiana 6

A seven-run third inning lead to Friday's loss, but the Illini bounced back to take the series after pitcher John Kravetz went 7.1 innings giving up eight hits and three runs.

Josh Ferry got the start in the finale, but it was reliever Matt Milroy who starred, throwing for five innings, giving up three hits and no runs while striking out 10.

Illinois is last in conference team pitching with a 5.00 ERA. Their top pitcher (ERA) is Luke Joyce at 3.50, but only 18 innings pitched. The Illini are currently 194th nationally in team ERA.

Indiana

2-2

Indiana 6, Ball State 5 (15 innings)

Indiana 12, Illinois 3

Illinois 7, Indiana 3

Illinois 11, Indiana 6

There's a consistent theme for the Hoosiers. Friday's win = zero errors. Saturday's loss = four errors. Sunday's loss = two errors.

As of April 8th, Indiana's fielding percentage of .947 ranked them 271st out of 291 possible ranks in the NCAA. That's up from 280 the week before.

Iowa

3-2

Iowa 6, South Dakota State 2

Iowa 11, South Dakota State 4

Iowa 4, Nebraska 3

Nebraska 9, Iowa 4

Nebraska 9, Iowa 8

Iowa nearly took a road series win at Lincoln, but gave up four runs in the bottom of the ninth on Sunday to LOSE.

Friday's win was Iowa's first ever at Nebraska, as the Hawkeyes outhit the Huskers 9-8 and Nebraska committed three errors. Saturday saw the Hawkeyes give up the last five runs of the game after leading

Hawkeye Phil Keppler was a thorn in the side of Nebraska, hitting well enough to earn Big Ten Player of the Week honors.

Michigan

3-1

Michigan 7, Central Michigan 3

Michigan 4, Michigan State 0

Michigan 4, Michigan State 3

Michigan State 10, Michigan 8 (13 innings)

Michigan nearly swept the Spartans, leading the third game 8-7 in the bottom of the eighth when MSU tied the game in the ninth. In the 13th, the Wolverines gave up a double leading to a RBI, then a two-out single scored the final run in the win.

Two Wolverines are ranked amongst the top in the Big Ten in stolen bases. Patrick Biondi is 19-for-25 attempts, while Michael O'Neill is 15-for-18. Michigan is 33rd nationally in that category, while Biondi is tied for 19th and O'Neill is tied for 40th.

Michigan State

2-2

Michigan State 6, Eastern Michigan 1

Lansing Lugnuts 7, Michigan State 0 (vs minor league team)

Michigan 4, Michigan State 0

Michigan 4, Michigan State 3

Michigan State 10, Michigan 8 (13 innings)

I'm not counting that exhibition loss against the Lansing Lugnuts, a Class A minor league team affiliated with the Toronto Blue Jays. No doubt it was played for marketing purposes, but you'd have to wonder why you'd play a game like that just before you went into a series against your biggest rival.

In Friday's game, MSU left the bases loaded twice, including the ninth inning.

Saturday's game had Sparty outhitting the Wolverines 13-11, but losing again despite Michigan committing four errors.

Minnesota

1-3

Minnesota 7, Augsburg 1

Ohio State 2, Minnesota 1

Ohio State 5, Minnesota 3

Ohio State 4, Minnesota 1

Last week I commented that Minnesota might have things figured out in their opening conference weekend sweep over Michigan. Then this week they go into Columbus and score five runs in three games. You'd think that 18 hits would have translated into more. The Gophers are ninth in team batting at .254.

Ruined was another great outing by Gopher pitcher TJ Oakes - who pitched eight innings on Friday, giving up five hits and two runs while striking out nine.

Nebraska

3-1

Nebraska 6, Kansas State 0

Iowa 4, Nebraska 3

Nebraska 9, Iowa 4

Nebraska 9, Iowa 8

Nebraska had it's hands full the second week in a row as Iowa nearly took the road series - having to score five runs in the final two frames of Sunday's game to avoid the game and series loss.

In Friday's game, the Husker offense managed eight hits against Hawkeye Jared Hippen, who went 7.1 innings, giving up three runs.

Husker Brandon Pierce got his first career conference start on Saturday, going six innings, giving up seven hits and three runs.

Nebraska is currently second in conference team batting average at .320, fourth in team pitching with a 3.78 ERA and first in team fielding with a .974 fielding percentage.

Northwestern

0-3

Purdue 7, Northwestern 0

Purdue 3, Northwestern 1

Purdue 8, Northwestern 4

They played Purdue. They lost all three. What else is there to say?

Ohio State

4-0

Ohio State 8, Miami (OH) 2

Ohio State 2, Minnesota 1

Ohio State 5, Minnesota 3

Ohio State 4, Minnesota 1

Ohio State swept Minnesota for the first time since 2001. Friday's game had Buckeye Jared Long throw for eight innings, giving up three hits and a run while the winning run was scored in the eighth inning on a squeeze play after the Buckeyes had already moved the runner to third on a bunt.

Saturday, OSU's Brian King went seven innings, giving up three hits and three runs, while the Gophers outhit the Buckeyes nine to five.

Sunday the Buckeyes outhit the Gophers ten to six, while John Kuchno went six innings giving up only one hit.

Penn State

5-0

Penn State 9, Kent State 7

Penn State 8, Binghamton 2

Penn State 15, Canisius 5

Penn State 4, Canisius 3 (11 innings)

Penn State 4, Canisius 3

Canisius pseudo-RPI - 214. Kent State? - 128 Binghamton - 230.

Penn State's pseudo-RPI as of April 9th? - 155.

Remember that for later.

Purdue

4-0

Purdue 6, Anderson 1

Purdue 7, Northwestern 0

Purdue 3, Northwestern 1

Purdue 8, Northwestern 4

Purdue continues to lead the Big Ten in batting average at .325, which puts them at fifth nationally, but it wasn't the bats that got it done this weekend at Evanston, it was the pitching.

Friday's complete game shutout earned Boiler Joe Haase co-pitcher of the week. Saturday Purdue's Lance Breedlove went seven innings giving up five hits and a run and then Sunday freshman Connor Podkul went six innings giving up six hits and three runs in his first conference start.

The sweep gave Purdue their first road sweep over a conference opponent since 2001. Eight players are hitting over .300 for Purdue.

Illinois, Iowa, Ohio State and Purdue Collect Weekly Honors

Player of the Week

Phil Keppler, Iowa

UT - Sr. - Manchester, Iowa - Manchester

 Hit .733 for the week, including a .667 average in a Big Ten road series against Nebraska

 Slugged 1.000 and reached base at a .700 clip in conference play to combine for an OPS of 1.700 on the weekend

 Recorded multiple-hits in four games, including two 3-for-3 efforts, over five contests last week

 Scored five runs and drove in seven during the week, hitting his first home run of the year in Game 2 against the Huskers

 Last Iowa Player of the Week: Trevor Willis (March 7, 2011)

Co-Pitcher of the Week

Matt Milroy, Illinois

RHP - Jr. - Batavia, Ill. - Marmion Academy

 Struck out 10 of the 21 hitters he faced in a five-inning relief appearance on Sunday, helping Illinois to the series win against Indiana

 Scattered just three hits and three walks in his first win of the season

 Fanned the side twice, compiling the highest strikeout total at Illinois Field since 2004

 Collects his first career award

 Last Illinois Pitcher of the Week: Kevin Johnson (March 12, 2012)


Joe Haase, Purdue

RHP - Sr. - Knightstown, Ind. - Knightstown

 Picked up his second career complete-game shutout in Purdue's series-opener against Northwestern on Friday

 Struck out four in the outing, surrendering only two hits and one walk

 Retired the side in order six times, needing only 99 pitches to lead the Boilermakers to their third shutout win of the season

 Collects his second career award and his first of the season

 Last Purdue Pitcher of the Week: Lance Breedlove (April 3, 2012)

Co-Freshman of the Week

Reid Roper, Illinois

2B/RHP - Harrisburg, Ill. - Harrisburg

 Hit .455 and slugged .636 to help Illinois to a series win over Indiana

 Scored two runs and drove in a pair, going 3-for-4 with runners in scoring position

 Pitched a perfect ninth inning in the Illini's series-clinching win on Sunday

 Picks up his first weekly honor

 Last Illinois Freshman of the Week: John Kravetz (March 12, 2012)

Patrick Porter, Ohio State

OF - Chagrin Falls, Ohio - Kenston

 Hit .500, reached base at a .600 clip and slugged .625 to help Ohio State to a series sweep over Minnesota

 Recorded a pair of outfield assists, throwing out two runners who each tried to score from second on singles over the weekend

 Went 1-for-4 with a run, an RBI and a stolen base in a non-conference win over Miami (Ohio)

 Picks up his first weekly honor

 Last Ohio State Freshman of the Week: Josh Dezse (May 2, 2011)

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Corn Nation

You must be a member of Corn Nation to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Corn Nation. You should read them.

Join Corn Nation

You must be a member of Corn Nation to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Corn Nation. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9341_tracker