Baseball To Battle Army With Star and Postseason Implications Abound
April 25, 2014
Navy Hosts Army With Patriot League Postseason Berth & Star On The Line
The culmination of a dramatic playoff push and the resolution to an 11-11 tie in the Army-Navy Star Series will be decided this weekend in the final regular season weekend series for the Navy baseball team as the Mids host the Black Knights of Army in a four-game series at Max Bishop Stadium.
After beginning league play with an 0-4 series at Bucknell, Navy has fought its way into the third position in the standings and sits on the cusp of its fourth straight postseason berth ... With a record of 8-8, the Mids stand a half game ahead of Lehigh (7-8), three full games of Lafayette, who sits in fifth at 4-10 and four ahead of Holy Cross at 3-11 (All three teams have make-up games in hand).
In terms of the Army-Navy rivalry, the Mids and Black Knights will be battling for both the individual star for their sport and the overall series title for the 2013-14 school year, both programs have won 11 competitions up to this final matchup ... Navy will look for a repeat of its 2013 Star Series as the Midshipmen went on the road to West Point and defeated the Black Knights in the first three games to win the star outright ... Army got its revenge later in the season with a two-game sweep of Navy in the Patriot League semifinals ... This weekend's series features two evenly matched offenses, who are posting .255 team batting averages and two standout starting pitcher trios ... Army's top three arms have posted a 2.06 ERA over 197 innings, while Anthony Parenti, Stephen Moore and Luke Gillingham has notched a combined ERA of 2.18 over 193.2 innings.
Saturday's Game One will be televised nationally beginning at 12 p.m. on CBS Sports Network ... John Sadek (Play-by-Play) and Danny Graves (Color) will have the call on Saturday ... The final three games of the series will also be streamed via the Patriot League Network and Navy Athletics.
Navy vs. Army
The Midshipmen are 109-104 all-time versus the Black Knights. Navy is currently on a three-game losing streak against Army
Last 10 meetings (3-7)...
5/11/13 at Annapolis, L, 7-3 *PL Semifinals
5/11/13 at Annapolis, L, 4-2 *PL Semifinals
4/1/13 at West Point, L, 14-7
4/1/13 at West Point, W, 15-4
3/31/13 at West Point, W, 4-2
3/31/13 at West Point, W, 7-1
4/1/12 at Annapolis, L, 7-2
4/1/12 at Annapolis, L, 9-5 (9)
3/31/12 at Annapolis, L, 6-2
3/31/12 at Annapolis, L 2-0
|Record||22-23 (8-8) PL)||28-12 (11-4 PL)|
|Opp. Batting Avg.||.251||.237|
Mids & Black Knights Last Series
Navy and Army faced off on two separate occasions during the 2013 season and each came away with identical 3-3 records ... During the Star Series on the weekend of March 31-April 1 at West Point, the Mids won the star for the first time since 2003 with a trio of wins in the four-game series ... Navy won the first three games by a combined 19 runs (G1: 7-1, G2: 4-2, G3: 15-4) before dropping Game Four, 14-7 ... In the Patriot League postseason, the two teams met again, this time in Annapolis as the second-seeding Mids hosted the number three Black Knights ... In the best of three series, Army defeated Navy twice on the first day, May 11 by scores of 4-2 and 7-3 to advance to the Patriot League finals ... In their six 2013 meetings, the Mids outhit the Black Knights, .298 to .250 and collected 13 extra-base hits as a team ... On the mound, Navy's 4.31 ERA bested Army's 5.58 average.
You Can Count On Three
Navy's starting rotation has been producing strong and consistent results
for the Mids since its opening series ... According to a poll by Texas' baseball
sports information contact, Navy has the 12th-best three-man weekend
rotation (Min. 6 starts) in the NCAA based on cumulative ERA.
Team ERA Weekend Starters
1. FIU 1.44 Franco (0.90), Crouse (1.52), Mourelle (1.99)
2. UAB 1.65 Mallard (1.11), Luna (1.55), Lieske (2.48)
3. Oregon St 1.72 Wetzler (0.69), Moore (2.82), Fry (1.68)
4. UC Irvine 1.95 Morales (0.61), Surrey (2.11), Brock (3.41)
5. Texas 1.98 French (2.27), Peters (2.70), Thornhill (0.97)
6. Army 2.06 Dignacco (2.01), Carroll (2.05), Robinett (2.11)
7. Arkansas 2.10 Beeks (1.49), Oliver (2.29), Killian (2.63)
7. Wichita St 2.10 Ladwig (1.32), Elam (2.12), Tewes (3.08)
8. Houston 2.11 Lemoine (1.70), Garza (1.75), West (2.89)
12. Navy 2.18 Parenti (1.02), Moore (2.42), Gillingham (3.38)
Not Going Down Without A Fight
Since getting swept 0-4 at Bucknell and scoring four total runs, Navy's offense
has seemingly put the team's push of a postseason bid squarely on its back ...
In the 17 games following the series with the Bison, the Mids have hit .275 and
averaged 5.4 runs of offense per game ... The team has garnered eight Patriot
League wins in 12 games during that span and finds itself currently in third position
and in line of one of the league's last two postseason bids.
Individual leaders during this span, include ...
Sr. 1B Kash Manzelli - .397 BA, 10 R, 5 2B, 1 3B, 2 HR, 19 RBI, .603 SLG %
Sr. DH David Norman - .340 BA, 6 R, 3 2B, 7 RBI, .396 SLG %, .435 OBP
So. CF Robert Currie - .318 BA, 15 R, 1 3B, 6 RBI, .418 OBP, 11-13 SB
Fr. SS Travis Blue - .311 BA, 13 R, 2 2B, 1 3B, 12 RBI, .394 OBP, .961 FLDG
* Currie, Blue, Manzelli and Norman have all hit 1-2-3-4 over the last 10 games.*
The Nation's Premier Speedster
Besides showcasing an astute batting eye over the first 45 games of the season, Robert Currie has also given Navy a top-notch speed option ... In the most recent NCAA rankings (April 24), Currie is the only player in Division 1 baseball to have 19 or more stolen bases and 5 or more triples ... He ranks 7th overall with 24 steals and 13th with five triples.
Class of 2014 to be Honored on Sunday
The five-man senior class of 2014 will be recognized on Sunday prior to the day's doubleheader. The quintet of Kash Manzelli, Brandon Beans, David Norman, Matt Kilby and team manager Chris Freeland have been apart of the Navy baseball program for four years and a combined 106 Midshipmen victories.
Fans are reminded that parking will be very limited at Max Bishop Stadium this weekend so please plan accordingly. Overflow parking will be available at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium for $5 and fans may take a shuttle to Max Bishop Stadium that will run every 10 minutes starting at 11 AM on both days and until one hour after the event is complete.