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Nebraska Baseball Preview: Rutgers

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The Huskers are coming off of a hot weekend against Ohio State....and another loss to UNO as they take on the scorching hot Scarlet Knights.

NCAA Baseball Regional - Fayetteville Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

Nebraska vs Rutgers Preview:

Date: April 8th-10th

Time: April 8th (Fri.) @ 6:35 p.m April 9th (Sat.) @ 3:17 p.m April 10th (Sun.) @ 12:05 p.m

Location: Hawks Field at Haymarket Park, Lincoln, Nebraska

Record(s): Nebraska (12-15) Rutgers (22-6)

Head Coach(s): Will Bolt, Steve Owens

Stream: Big Ten+

Radio: Husker Radio Network

The Huskers swept the Ohio State Buckeyes at home this past weekend in a pretty crucial series momentum-wise. They outscored the Buckeyes 32-13 on the weekend and had only two errors on the weekend while overall playing some pretty dominant baseball. Luke Sartori has shined with numerous web-gem’s in centerfield this season, do yourself a favor and watch his highlight tape. The pitching was pretty impressive for the most part and lead by Shay Schanaman once again after 6.1 innings with eight strikeouts on Friday’s start. Griffin Everitt had another solid weekend with five hits in five at bats. He just continues to hit and has really made a name for himself on a national stage. Nebraska had 35 total hits on just this past weekend alone, that’s 15% of their total hits all year.

In Tuesday’s game against UNO, the Huskers couldn’t capitalize on a late-game rally and three Maverick errors as they lost 5-6. Nebraska actually out-hit UNO 9-8 but struggled with runners in scoring position. Drew Christo took the loss as he has really struggled this year so far, something the Huskers definitely did not see coming in arguably their most talented arm. There were a bit of fireworks to end the game as Colby Gomes was struck out by UNO’s Harrison Kreiling to end the game as Gomes and UNO catcher Eduardo Rosario exchanged words at home plate as the benches cleared. Clearly this has been a frustrating stretch of baseball for Nebraska.

Weekend Match-ups:

Game 1: RHP Shay Schanaman (2-3) vs. RHP Jared Kollar (5-0)

Game 2: TBD vs. RHP Nathan Florance (4-1)

Game 3: RHP Dawson McCarville (2-3) vs. LHP Justin Sinibaldi (1-0)

The Scarlet Knights have been the best team in the Big Ten this season. They have won seven straight and are only trending upward. The scary fact of the matter here is that offensively, the Scarlet Knights are among the Big Tens best...the Huskers are at the bottom in almost every category.

Redshirt Junior Nick Camilo is the team leader offensively with a slash line coming into this game at .423/.527/.740. Camilo also leads the team with seven home runs, obviously one of the more dangerous hitters you can find right now. In total, Rutgers has eight hitters above .300 right now and as a team are hitting .326. The Knights are the superior team in this matchup by far offensively.

Grad student Jared Kollar is going to be an incredibly entertaining pitching matchup against Nebraska’s Shay Schanaman on Friday. He is 5-0 with a 2.66 ERA, he has kept hitters to just a .199 batting average and has 49 strikeouts under his belt. Nebraska will also face Nathan Florance who has a 3.19 ERA in seven starts and has struck out 36 hitters while leaving them at a .219 clip. Justin Sinibaldi will be making his fourth start of the year and has been a relatively solid arm for the Scarlet Knights with a 4.34 ERA in ten games. Ultimately Rutgers has just a 3.08 team ERA with 256 strikeouts and opponent hitters are hitting below .220.

Verdict:

Both of these teams are playing completely different baseball right now and ultimately it is hard to ignore what the Scarlet Knights have done this season. Rutgers is a good ball team and this is going to be a battle between the top of the Big Ten and the bottom.

The Huskers are going to have a ton of pressure on their hitters to make something happen as well as their pitchers to try and miss as many bats as possible. This does however provide a very good opportunity for Nebraska to turn their season around, after all to be the best you have to beat the best.