The Games: Dartmouth (18-6) vs. Brown (3-20, 1-7)
Location: Red Rolfe Field at Biondi Park (2,000), Hanover, N.H.
First pitches: Saturday, April 13 at 1 p.m. (DH); Sunday, April 14 at noon (DH)
Series Record vs. Brown: Big Green lead 132-103-1
Video ($), Audio - Big Green Insider (Wayne Young play-by-play)
Complete Game Notes
Start of Rolfe Division Play
Dartmouth emerged from the inter-divisional games atop the Rolfe Division standings with a .500 record at 4-4, one game better than Yale and Harvard at 3-5. But the Big Green starts play against their division rivals against Brown, a team that lost seven of its eight contests to the Gehrig Division teams over the last two weekends.
Having won the last five division crowns, it should come as no surprise that Dartmouth has fared quite well against its three divisional rivals with a 43-17 record (.717) against them since 2008. And here in Hanover, that record is even better at 24-6 (.800).
Last Week in Review
• Last the weekend, Dartmouth split a pair of Ivy doubleheaders, first with Princeton and then with Cornell. The Big Green suffered their worst-ever loss at Biondi Park in the opener against the Tigers, 7-1, before rebounding in game two for a 6-1 triumph. Senior Kyle Hunter baffled the Princeton hitters, striking out a career-high 11 over eight-plus innings to earn the win.
• In the first game against the Big Red, Dartmouth pulled out a thrilling 1-0 victory on national television when freshman Trent Goodrich drew a bases-loaded walk with two outs in the ninth. Senior Michael Johnson did not get the decision, but threw two-hit, scoreless baseball for eight innings. Cornell returned the favor in the second game, shutting out the Green on four hits in a 3-0 Dartmouth defeat.
• The Big Green’s 20-game home winning streak against non-conference opponents came to an end on Tuesday as Boston College earned a 9-5 victory. Sophomore Matt Parisi had three hits with a triple and his first collegiate home run.
• The offense broke out of its recent malaise on Wednesday by hammering Holy Cross, 19-4. Junior Jeff Keller was a perfect 3-for-3 with two doubles, a home run, four runs and five RBIs to lead the offense, while sophomore Nick Lombardi and junior Dustin Selzer each had a single, homer and four RBIs. Selzer’s four-bagger was a grand slam to cap the scoring on the day. On the mound, junior Louis Concato provided a quality start in hurling six innings and allowing three runs for his second win of the season.
Last Time Against the Bears
Last year in Providence, Dartmouth took three of four from Brown to open up a commanding three-game lead in the divisional race. But after the first game, the Bears were tied atop the standings by winning a 4-3, eight-inning contest. The Big Green fell behind, 3-0, rallied to tie the score in the sixth, but were undone by an unearned run on a bases-loaded walk in the bottom of the eighth. Dartmouth had to rally again in the second game after trailing 5-2 in the seventh. Joe Sclafani popped a two-run homer to bring the Green within a run, and tied the score leading off the eighth with a blast of his own. Dartmouth tacked on four more runs, capped by a Thomas Roulis two-run double, for a 9-5 triumph.
In the second twinbill of the series, the Big Green utilized their patience to win the first game, 12-1. The lineup managed just eight hits, but also drew 10 walks and was hit three times for a total of 21 base runners in the seven-inning game. went the distance for his first win of the season. The series finale was a closer affair with the two teams knotted at five in the eighth. Chris O'Dowd broke the tie with a three-run bomb to lift Dartmouth to another 9-5 win. picked up the win with two innings of relief and Thomas Olson closed out the game by getting the final six outs.
The Overall Record vs. Brown
• Dartmouth has played the Bears 236 times since the first meeting in 1871, with the Big Green having the edge, 132-103-1.
• The Big Green have won the season series each of the past five years, winning three of four every year save 2011 when they swept the four games.
• In the divisional era (since 1993), Brown has held its own in Hanover as Dartmouth is just 18-17 against the Bears, including a divisional playoff victory in 2001. But since Biondi Park was built before the 2009 season, the Green have won seven of eight from Brown here.
• Dartmouth head coach Bob Whalen is 50-39 against the Bears during his tenure in Hanover, including a pair of games the two played against each other in Hawaii back in 1992.
• The first game between the two clubs came back in 1871, a 41-17 victory for Brown.
Scouting the Bears
• Brown played one of the most difficult non-conference schedules in the country with road games at LSU, Auburn, Washington State and Gonzaga, and it has taken its toll with the Bears winning just three of their first 23 contests.
• As a team Brown is hitting just .227 with on-base and slugging percentages in the .280s. But Daniel Massey has risen above that to hit .370 with three of the team’s seven home runs. Will Marcal is the only other Bear over .300 (.301) and leads the team with 13 runs and 12 RBIs.
• On the mound, the Bears pitchers have an ERA of 5.81. Kevin Carlow has the best ERA (3.90) among the starters and leads the team with 27 strikeouts, but is 0-4 on the season. The bullpen has not recorded a save, but would likely rely on either Will Lacker (3.09 ERA in 11.2 IP) or Kevin Guthrie (3.12 ERA in 8.2 IP).
• Brown sits right in the middle of the league with a .963 fielding percentage, turning 12 double plays and throwing out 28 percent of base stealers.
Probable Starting Pitchers
• Dartmouth will continue with its usual rotation, beginning with senior RHP Cole Sulser (2-2, 3.41), who has lost his last two starts after never having lost two straight decisions in his career. He is still 17-5 in his career and eighth all-time at Dartmouth in strikeouts. For the second game, senior LHP (2-1, 1.57) will climb the hill. He is coming off a stellar outing against Princeton in which he struck out a career-high 11 batters in eight-plus innings. On Sunday, the Big Green will send junior LHP Mitch Horacek (4-1, 2.88) to the mound for the seven-inning game. He had his four-game winning streak end last week after yielding two runs in five innings against Cornell in a 3-0 defeat. Senior LHP (4-0, 1.57) will finish off the series and has been the most consistent pitcher for Dartmouth this season. He has provided a quality start in each of his five outings, including last week’s scoreless eight innings while surrendering just two hits in a 1-0 win, although he did not get the decision.
• Getting the game ball for the opener will be RHP Anthony Galan (1-2, 4.06), who last week threw a four-hit shutout against Penn. Game two of the doubleheader will likely feature RHP Heath Mayo (0-4, 10.90), who Brown is hoping can find his form from two years ago when he was 3-1 with a 3.06 ERA and was on the All-Ivy Second Team. RHP Kevin Carlow (0-4, 3.90) is the other seven-inning starter and has pitched better than his record. Opponents are hitting just .222 against him, but he has walked 11 batters in his two league starts thus far. For the final game, RHP Dave St. Lawrence (0-4, 7.36) is on tap. He has had the best control of the four starters with just 11 walks in 33.0 innings.
What’s Up Next
Dartmouth has one mid-week tune-up with Division II St. Anselm on Wednesday at 3:30 p.m. before traveling to Yale for a four-game Ivy series next weekend. The last time the Big Green went to New Haven, the Bulldogs swept the four games, holding the Dartmouth bats to just three runs total.
Bats Break Out for 19 Runs
After scoring just 22 runs in its first six games in April, Dartmouth exploded for 19 runs in a win at Holy Cross on Wednesday. The last time the Big Green scored at least that many runs came on March 17, 2011 when they beat Akron, 19-2. Junior had a perfect day at the plate, going 3-for-3 with two doubles, a home run, walk, hit by pitch, four runs and five RBIs. Both junior and sophomore had a single, homer and four RBIs as well, with Selzer’s long ball being his second career grand slam.
Dartmouth ranks among the top 30 Division I schools in four offensive categories — doubles per game (2.46, third), slugging percentage (.448, 22nd), triples per game (0.42, 29th) and average (.300, 29th) — two pitching categories — strikeout-to-walk ratio (3.1, ninth) and fewest walks per nine innings (2.58, 18th) — plus is 10th in fielding percentage (.980).
Going Back for Thirds
For whatever reason, Dartmouth has thoroughly enjoyed the third inning this season having scored twice as many runs (36) in that frame than any other. As a team, the Big Green are hitting .321/.409/.505 (average/on-base/slugging) with 12 doubles and a pair of home runs. On Wednesday, they scored seven runs alone at Holy Cross in the third. But the best triple-slash numbers Dartmouth has posted have come in the ninth (.386/.446/.596), so opponents need to be wary late in a close game.
King Kong Keller
While that nickname originally went to the old Yankee outfielder Charlie Keller, junior can lay claim to it as well with his recent torrid stretch. He has hit safely in 17 of his last 19 games during which he has hit a whopping .470 with 16 doubles, three triples and three homers while scoring 22 runs and driving in 26. With 17 doubles in just 23 games, he is the nation’s per game leader in the category (0.74) and is second in total doubles despite playing at least six fewer games than anyone else in the top 15. He needs just four more two-baggers to set a new Dartmouth single-season record, and six more for a new Ivy record.
Win Streak Ends After 5 Years
On April 30, 2008, Dartmouth lost the last game against a non-Ivy opponent at Red Rolfe Field (8-5 to Boston College) prior to the construction of Biondi Park. Since then, the Big Green had won 20 straight at home against non-Ivy opponents until April 7 of this year when they fell 9-5 to none other than Boston College.
Big Green Giblets
• Of all the spots in the lineup, the seven-hole has produced the best batting average by far this year. A total of nine Dartmouth players have hit in the seventh spot in the order and they have combined to hit .442 with a .721 slugging percentage.
• Junior reached 100 career hits in the loss to Boston College with his fourth-inning double.
• As a starting pitcher, senior has a 0.98 ERA this year, allowing three earned runs over 27.2 innings.
• Sophomore is eighth nationally in RBIs per game at 1.32 (29 in 22 games), and has not committed an error at third base in 50 consecutive games.
• Senior Ennis Coble needs just three runs and six RBIs to reach 100 in each category for his career.
• Both and could reach 100 career strikeouts this weekend; Johnson needs two while Horacek needs eight.
• The Big Green are hitting .300 as a team, but are even better with runners in scoring position at .322, led by at .435 and at .419. Next on that list are (.381) and (.375).