With Ole Miss basketball stealing limelight from Ole Miss baseball, a few Rebel fans have forgotten the Rebels baseball team is traveling to Memphis in hope of redemption. The Rebels will face the Tigers at AutoZone Park tonight in game 2 of a one and one series between the two schools.
Remember that 4 game skid I talked about in a previous Ole Miss baseball piece? Yeah, well that started in a midweek game against Memphis. The 9-6 loss to the Tigers was the first loss of the season for Ole Miss and also, the first loss in a string of four consecutive losses.
Seriously, like a lot of other Ole Miss baseball fans, I was worried after the Shriners Hospital for Children’s College Baseball Classic. However, amid off-field distractions, our pitching has shone brightly and is among the very best in the nation, if not the best. Per OleMissSports.com, Rebel pitchers have been on fire,
We’ve all been worried about the batsmen, but after a stretch of anemic offense, the Rebels opened a can of ‘whoopin’ at the plate Sunday to seal the series in our favor.
So, What’s At Stake?
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Trust me, on a get fired up level of 1 to 10, this game honestly deserves at least a 9. Memphis has been a thorn in the side of OM for decades, and little brother hasn’t fared much better against the Tigers.
The close proximity between Memphis and Oxford has created vitriol between the two schools. No, there is no love lost between the Tigers and Rebels.I myself, have friends and family who are Memphis fans, and several have degrees from the University of Memphis and Ole Miss. However, they love their Tigers and love ribbing me over our losses. I love them none the less, ha-ha.
At any rate, the Memphis Tigers baseball team would be none too happy to send us into the downward spiral of another 4 game skid, if at all possible. With little brother coming to Swayze next weekend, this is an important match-up for Ole Miss baseball. A win is more than just a win against our neighbors to the north.
Rebel Offense Ready
The Tigers will start sophomore Jonathan Bowlan (2-2, 6.10 ERA) in the match-up, which proves favorable for Ole Miss hitters. The Rebels have issued double-digit hits in two of their last three games, while hitting .249 and slugging .363. It would surprise many of us, for the Rebels to NOT rack up double-digit hits again tonight.
Bortles and Blackman need strong nights at the plate, while other Rebels strive to break out at the plate. Rebel hitting has improved thru the weekend series with Vandy, so Rebel fans hope to see the bats hot. The long ball will be scarce, so expect a number of sacrifices to ink the win for the Rebels.
On The Mound
Senior Sean Johnson draws the start tonight for the Rebels on the rubber. Johnson recorded 2 Ks while facing three batters, in a 1 inning appearance earlier this season. We anxiously await to see what pitching combinations Coach Mike Bianco has in store for us on the mound.
First pitch at AutoZone Park will be at 6:30pm CT. The game will be broadcast live on OleMissSports.com.