Arkansas Razorbacks vs South Alabama & IPFW Baseball Preview

ArkansasRazorbacks.com

The Hogs are 6-0 and taking on South Alabama (3-4) before a scheduled one-off against IPFW (2-5) on Monday.

The Jaguars of South Alabama are leaving the friendly confines of Stanky Field (real name) for a series at Baum Stadium this weekend.

Arkansas has already announced the schedule is being shifted to account for a forecast of inclement weather on Sunday. Sunday's game will now be played Saturday afternoon as a doubleheader with the 12:05 game. The second game will start about 25 minutes after the first one.

The game on Monday is still scheduled for Monday.

Probable Starters:

Friday (3:05 p.m.)

LHP Jalen Beeks (Jr., 2-0, 0.00) vs. RHP Matt Bell (Sr., 1-0, 2.03)

Saturday (12:05 p.m.) vs. South Alabama

RHP Chris Oliver (Jr., 1-0, 0.82) vs. LHP Locke St. John (Jr., 0-0, 2.70)

Saturday  (following the first game) vs. South Alabama

RHP Trey Killian (So., 3-3, 3.19)* vs. TBD

Monday (3:05 p.m.) vs. IPFW

TBD vs. TBD

Arkansas’ starting pitchers have an earned-run average of 0.98, led by Jalen Beeks’ ERA of 0.00 and Chris Oliver’s 0.82.

South Alabama right-hander Matt Bell was named Preseason all-Sun Belt Conference after going 6-2 with a 3.70 ERA last season en route to 2013 second team all-SBC honors.

The Razorbacks have won their first six games of a season for the sixth time under Dave Van Horn and the third time in the last four years.

Arkansas is one of 11 undefeated teams remaining among the 298 teams in Division I. The SEC still has three undefeated teams, the highest number of undefeated teams for any conference entering this weekend.

South Alabama ranks third in the Sun Belt Conference in on-base percentage (.380) and fourth in batting average (.283), but is last in the league in runs scored (26) entering the weekend.

Arkansas has scored at least six runs in its first six games for the second time since 1997. In records dating back to 1960, this is the Razorbacks’ seventh time with a streak of at least six games with six runs or more scored to open a season. The school record for most games with at least six runs scored to open a season is 18 in 1996.

Arkansas leads the SEC in hit by pitch with 19 so far this season. Last season, the Razorbacks were hit by 36 pitches in 61 games. The school record for hit by pitches is 107 in 64 games in 2007.

Jaguar right-hander Brandon Hallford carries a 7 1/3 scoreless-inning streak into the weekend. In two relief appearances this season, Hallford has recorded seven strikeouts against three walks and allowed just one hit. He tossed two scoreless innings and struck out three to earn his first career save on Tuesday in a 4-2 win over Jacksonville State at Stanky Field.

The Razorbacks’ first three hitters in the lineup, Andrew Benintendi, Joe Serrano and Brian Anderson, respectively, have each reached base at least once in every game this season. Benintendi leads the team’s regulars with a .538 on-base percentage that is tied for 2nd in the SEC, and Anderson is right behind at .536. Anderson’s .458 batting average is tops among Razorbacks and 2nd in the conference.

The Razorbacks also are tied for 4th in the conference with five home runs and rank 5th in the conference in slugging percentage at .440 and sacrifice bunts with seven. Arkansas also is tied for 5th in the SEC with four sacrifice flies and 13 doubles.

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