Bearcats Set for First Pitch Invitational
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Feb. 21, 2013

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FIRST PITCH INVITATIONAL

Feb. 22 - 5 p.m. vs. Michigan State
Feb. 23 - 6 p.m. vs. Furman
Feb. 24 - 3 p.m. vs. Western Carolina

The Last Meeting
Michigan State9
Cincinnati4
March 18, 2012
Marge Schott Stadium
Cincy Drops 9-4 Decision to Michigan State in Series Finale
Sophomore right fielder Justin Glass went 4 for 4 and freshman designated hitter Taylor Schmidt went 3 for 3, but it was not enough as the University of Cincinnati baseball team dropped a 9-4 decision to Michigan State University Sunday afternoon at Marge Schott Stadium.

The Last Meeting
Cincinnati9
Furman / First Pitch Invitational8
February 27, 2011
Greenville, S.C.
Cincinnati Defeats Paladins
In the final game of the First Pitch Invitational, the University of Cincinnati baseball team recorded its second win of the season after defeating Furman University 9-8 Sunday at Fluor Field.

SETTING THE SCENE
-The University of Cincinnati baseball team heads to Greenville, S.C. to play in the fourth annual First Pitch Invitational at Fluor Field, which is hosted by the Greenville Drive, the Single-A affiliate of the Boston Red Sox.
-Game 1 of the First Pitch Invitational begins 5 p.m. Friday against Michigan State. R-Jr. RHP Christian McElroy will make his second start of the season for the Bearcats.
-The second game of the weekend is set for a 2 p.m. first pitch on Saturday, with UC taking on the Furman Paladins. Sr. RHP Andrew Strenge will climb the mound for Cincinnati.
-The weekend finale is scheduled for a 3 p.m. start on Sunday against the Western Carolina Catamounts. Redshirt freshman right-hander Connor Walsh is scheduled to make his second career start for UC.

BEARCATS IN GREENVILLE
-Cincinnati is making its second appearance at the First Pitch Invitational after playing in the event in 2011.
-The Bearcats opened the round-robin event on the campus of Clemson University and fell 15-4.
-On the second day of the First Pitch, UC lost to Charleston Southern 9-5.
-In the First Pitch finale, Cincinnati topped Furman 9-8.

NOW PITCHING FOR UC
-UC will hand the ball to redshirt junior right-handed pitcher Christian McElroy in the weekend opener on Friday.
-McElroy was selected in the 32nd round of the 2012 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft by the Cincinnati Reds, but opted to remain at UC.
-Last season, McElroy appeared in 13 ballgames with nine starts, posted a 4.41 ERA with four wins and 46 strikeouts in 63.1 innings pitched. He finished sixth in the BIG EAST Conference in fewest hits allowed (59) and 12th in opponent batting average (.252), and did not allow a triple the entire season. In three of 13 appearances, he did not allow an earned run.
-In the season opener Feb. 15 at Florida Atlantic, McElroy allowed five total runs (three earned) on eight hits with one walk and one strikeout in 3 1-3 innings pitched.
-Game 2 of the Greenville Invitational feature senior RHP Andrew Strenge, who is looking to bounce back after an injury-plagued junior season.
-Strenge was the team's No. 1 starter for the first four weeks of the season before missing at least three potential starts due to shoulder fatigue. Before the injury, he boasted a 2.33 ERA with 23 strikeouts in 19.1 innings pitched while holding opponents to just a .203 batting average.
-The Yardley, Pa. native took the mound in UC's second game of the season at FAU, and lasted just 3 2-3 innings after getting tagged for five runs on seven hits.
-Game 3 Greenville will feature redshirt freshman Connor Walsh, who will made his collegiate debut on Sunday, Feb. 17 at FAU after sitting out the entire 2012 season due to arm surgery.
-Walsh allowed three earned runs on four hits with one strikeout and three walks in 3 2-3 innings at FAU.

OPPONENT BREAKDOWN
-Michigan State went 37-23 overall and 13-11 in Big Ten Conference play, advancing to the NCAA regionals.
-MSU returns 20 letterwinners, including seven position players and four starting pitchers from last season's squad.
-The Spartans were picked to finish third in the Big Ten in 2013. Sr. RHP Andrew Waszak, Jr. RHP David Garner and Sr. LF Jordan Keur were named to the conference players to watch list.
-Furman went 28-31 overall and 13-17 in Southern Conference play last season. The Paladins reached the semifinals of the SoCon Championship.
-Furman returns 23 lettermen from last season, including six starting position players.
-The Paladins were picked to finish seventh in the SoCon Preseason Coaches Poll. Sr. OF Will Muzika was tabbed a preseason second-team SoCon selection.
-Western Carolina went 32-24 overall and 16-14 in the Southern Conference last year.
-The Catamounts return 23 letterwinners from last season, including seven position players and four starting position players, led by Sr. catcher Preston Hatcher, who was named to the NCBWA Stopper of the Year Watch List.
-Five Catamounts earned preseason conference honors: Hatcher, RP Preston Hatcher, 1B Tyler White, SS Aaron Attaway, OF  Julian Ridings and DH Jacob Hoyle.
-The Catamounts were voted second in the coaches' preseason poll and sixth in the media tabulation as announced by the SoCon office.

THE SERIES VERSUS MICHIGAN STATE
-UC is 2-10 all time against Michigan State.
-The first meeting occurred during the 1929 season.
-Cincinnati and Michigan State have played on postseason game. On May 27, 1971 the Bearcats topped MSU 8-7 in the NCAA District 4 Championships.
-Last season, Michigan State swept UC in three games at Marge Schott Stadium.    
    
    Michigan State: 2-10
    Year     Date     Site     Result
    1929         H     L, 13-4
    1930         A     L, 5-3
    1930         H     L, 13-3
    1969     3/19     N     L, 10-5 (6)
    1969     3/20     N     L, 9-7 (8)
    1969     3/23     N     L, 6-2 (7)
    1969     3/25     N     W, 9-6
    1971     5/27     A     W, 8-7 ^
    2011     2/20     N     L, 8-4
    2012     3/16     H     L, 4-3
    2012     3/17     H     L, 5-4
    2012     3/18     H     L, 9-4

THE SERIES VERSUS FURMAN
-UC is 4-2 all time against Furman.
-The first meeting occurred during the 1984 season.
-UC and Furman last played at the Greenville Invitational in 2011, with UC winning 9-8.

    Furman: 4-2
    Year     Date     Site     Result
    1984     3/20     A     L, 3-2
    1999     2/19     A     W, 14-2
    2002     2/8     A     L, 7-6
    2002     2/9     A     W, 4-2
    2002     2/10     A     W, 6-5
    2011     2/27     N     W, 9-8

THE SERIES VERSUS WESTERN CAROLINA
-Sunday's game against WCU will be the first in the series.

BOMBS AWAY
-In the opening weekend of the 2013 season, Cincinnati totaled four home runs in three games, which ranked second in the BIG EAST Conference as a team.
-Freshmen Ian Happ and Devin Wenzel, as well as juniors Justin Glass and Brendon Neel each clubbed their first longballs of the season.
-Last season, UC did not hit four home runs as team until the 11th game of the season. The Bearcats did not hit their first homer until the fourth game when Sr. 1B Nic Spence belted a HR against Georgetown on Feb. 24, 2012.