|Notes | Stats | Twitter||Notes | Stats | Twitter|
|April 15 (Game 1) • Noon
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|RHP (5-1, 2.45)||RHP Christian Taugner (3-2, 2.92)|
|April 15 (Game 2) • ~2:30 p.m.
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|RHP Cole O’Connor (3-1, 4.11)||RHP Reid Anderson (1-1, 5.40)|
|April 16 (Game 1) • Noon
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|RHP (3-1, 1.88)||RHP Max Ritchie (1-4, 2.70)|
|April 16 (Game 2) • ~2:30 p.m.
Video: ILDN | Live Stats
|RHP Jack Fossand (1-1, 4.71)||RHP Will Tomlinson (1-0, 2.81)|
With the eight games against the Ivy League teams in the Gehrig Division out of the way, Dartmouth now focuses on the 12 contests within the Rolfe Division in the race to qualify for the Ivy League Championship Series on May 6-7. The Big Green begin the weekend two games behind Yale in the standings, so they are in need of taking care of business on their home field in the four games against Brown to try and make up some ground before playing the Bulldogs in New Haven.
The Overall Record vs. Brown
• Dartmouth has played the Bears 252 times since the first meeting in 1871, with the Big Green having the edge, 144-107-1.
• The Big Green have won the season series seven of the past nine years, sweeping the last three in Hanover. Last year the two teams split the four games in Providence.
• In the divisional era (since 1993), Dartmouth is 26-17 against the Bears, including a divisional playoff victory in 2001. Since Biondi Park was built before the 2009 season, the Green have won 15 of 16 and the last 12 in a row.
• Dartmouth head coach Bob Whalen is 62-43 against the Bears during his tenure in Hanover, including a pair of games the two played against each other in Hawaii back in 1992 and a divisional playoff game that the Green won in 2001.
• The first game between the two clubs came back in 1871, a 41-17 victory for Brown. No, that is not a football score.
Scouting the Bears
• Brown has had a bit of a streaky season, losing its first six games before winning its next six. Most recently the Bears have dropped six of their last seven since sweeping a doubleheader at Cornell to start Ivy League play.
• At the plate Brown sports a slash line of .262/.347/.368 led by Sam Grigo with a .358 average, though Marc Sredojevic tops the team in both OBP (.433) and slugging (.481).
• The Bears don’t run much, having stolen just seven bases in 20 attempts.
• The pitching has been solid as the team ERA is just a touch worse than Dartmouth’s at 4.33. The top three in the rotation have combined for 90 strikeouts in 110 innings with a 3.60 ERA, and the top two out of the bullpen both have an ERA under three while striking out just over one per inning.
• The defense has made an about-face from last year, going from last in the league in fielding percentage to first with just 16 errors in 23 games. The Bears have also thrown out more than a quarter of opposing base stealers (13-of-44).
Last Time Against Brown
Dartmouth sandwiched a pair of victories around losses in the opener in the finale as the two teams split the series in Providence. Christian Taugner outdueled Duncan Robinson in the first game, a 4-2 Bears win with the lone two Big Green runs scoring on a Michael Ketchmark double. In the second game, Dustin Shirley and Thomas roulis each had three hits, and Dartmouth scored three times in the sixth, then held off Brown in a 4-3 triumph to split the twinbill with Michael Danielak getting the win with 3.1 innings of relief and Patrick Peterson a save, fanning three of the five batters he faced.
In the second doubleheader, the Big Green won a laugher to start the day, 15-0, with Beau Sulser going the distance for the shutout and Ketchmark joining Rob Emery with three RBIs apiece. The bats went silent in the finale, however, as the Bears earned the series split with a 2-0, four-hit combined shutout behind the pitching of Max Ritchie, J.J. Sliepka and Dante Bosnic.
Probable Starting Pitchers
• The series opener will feature a terrific pitching matchup with senior RHP Michael Danielak (5-1, 2.45) taking the mound for Dartmouth and RHP Christian Taugner (3-2, 2.92) for Brown. Each earned a victory last year against the opposing team, and Danielak is second in the Ivy League in victories and strikeouts (43).
• Game two will be a rematch of last year’s second games with sophomore RHP Cole O’Connor (3-1, 4.11) scheduled for the Big Green and RHP Reid Anderson (1-1, 5.40) set for the Bears. O’Connor did not get a decision in the 4-3 win, but has won three of his last four starts. Anderson took the loss for giving up four runs in 5.1 innings.
• Senior RHP Beau Sulser (3-1, 1.88) had not lost in any of his previous 10 starts before last week, and would like to reprise his seven-inning shutout from last year’s game three showdown. His opponent will be RHP Max Ritchie (1-4, 2.70), who held Dartmouth without a run for five innings last year and hasn’t allowed more than three in any start this year, but has had very little run support this year (2.0 runs).
• The reigning Ivy League Pitcher of the Week, junior RHP Jack Fossand (1-1, 4.71) gets the ball for the finale. All he did last week was hold Cornell scoreless for seven innings on a single hit.Brown is sending RHP Will Tomlinson (1-0, 2.81) to the hill for his first start. In 10 appearances, he has struck out 18 and walked six in 16.0 innings.
What’s Up Next
Dartmouth finishes off a 10-game homestand with Boston College of the ACC on Tuesday afternoon at 3:30 p.m. Next weekend brings about a rematch of last year’s Rolfe Division playoff against Yale with the four games taking place in New Haven. Both of the doubleheaders on Saturday and Sunday will begin at noon at Yale Field.
Last Week in Review
• It was an up-and-down week for the Big Green starting with doubleheader splits with Princeton and Cornell before dropping a mid-week game to UMass Lowell, all at home.
• Jack Fossand was named the Ivy League Pitcher of the Week for twirling seven one-hit innings without allowing a run in a 5-0 victory over Cornell. The 6-5 right-hander walked two and struck out two, plus induced two double plays.
• Dartmouth jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the home opener, only to have the bats go silent the rest of the way as the Tigers rallied for a 4-2 triumph. It was the fourth straight home opener the Big Green had lost after winning the first five at Biondi Park.
• Justin Fowler had a career-high three hits to lead Dartmouth to a 7-6 victory to salvage a doubleheader split with Princeton. Chris Burkholder got the final four outs for his league-leading seventh save, giving Cole O’Connor his third win on the season.
• Beau Sulser pitched well enough to win against Cornell, but his counterpart was better as the Big Green were shut out, 2-0. Solitary runs in the fourth and fifth were all the Big Red needed to hand Sulser his first loss of the season.
• Supporting Fossand’s mastery in the final game of the weekend were Michael Ketchmark and Fowler with three hits apiece, while the latter drove in two of the five runs.
• Dartmouth had 20 base runners in the mid-week matchup with UMass Lowell, but could only turn five of them into runs as the River Hawks banged out 13 hits against seven Big Green pitchers in a 9-5 final. Freshman Austen Michel had perhaps the best outing on the mound, despite allowing two runs over three innings, as the rookie fanned a season-high six batters.
Ivy Pitcher of the Week
For the third time this season, Dartmouth had one of its hurlers selected as the Ivy League Pitcher of the Week in junior Jack Fossand. The Minnesota native needed just 72 pitches to get through seven scoreless innings against Cornell, surrendering just one hit and two walks while fanning two. This is the first year the Big Green have won the award three times since 2013 (Cole Sulser, Kyle Hunter, Michael Johnson). Incidentally, all three of those pitchers went on to pitch for MLB organizations.
Holbrook Base Streaking
Not really sure the best way to list this note, so what is written above this will have to do. Junior Kyle Holbrook has reached base in each of the last 18 games, the longest such streak for a Big Green hitter since Jeff Keller did it for 18 games as a senior in 2014. In the past decade, two players share the longest streak of reaching base at 27 games — Nick Santomauro ’10 (2008) and Jim Wren ’10 (2009). Holbrook has hit safely in 16 of those 18 games, walked once in another and was hit by a pitch in the other game.
Name Should be Fairer, Not Fowler
If you don’t like puns, you’ve come to the wrong place. Junior Justin Fowler has been on a tear since the calendar turned to April, hitting .400 (14-for-35) with an OPS of .950. To top that off, he has fielded his position at the hot corner flawlessly in 26 chances this month. In Ivy League play, his .483 average is second only to last year’s Blair Bat winner, Tim Graul of Penn (.500).
Top Strikeout Ratios
Dartmouth boasts six pitchers who have thrown at least seven innings and struck out at least 10 batters per nine innings, led by (not surprisingly) Beau Sulser at 10.5. And Chris Burkholder is also above 10 (10.12), but the other two might come as a surprise — junior Clay Chatham (10.38) and freshman Austen Michel (10.05). Chatham has fanned 10 in 8.2 innings, while the rookie has struck out 16 in 14.1 frames, including 11 in his last two outings spanning 6.2 innings. Against UMass Lowell on Tuesday, Michel whiffed a season-high six in just three innings of work. As a team, Dartmouth is striking out 7.547 batters per nine innings, which is just a hair better than last year’s 7.537 per nine when the Big Green set a single-season record with 297 punchouts.
Shutouts the Norm with Cornell
When Dartmouth and Cornell traded shutouts in their doubleheader on April 9, it made five of their last six meetings at Red Rolfe Field at Biondi Park end up as a shutout. Each shut the other out four years ago as well, and in 2015, the Big Red shut out Dartmouth in the first game of the twinbill, 1-0, before the Big Green outscored Cornell, 8-5.
The Sacrifice Flyer
In the 7-6 win over Princeton on April 8, junior Dustin Shirley swatted a pair of sacrifice flies, his second game this year with two of them. He currently leads the Ivy League with six, a total which ranks eighth nationally entering the weekend.
Ivy Top 5 Play of the Week
In the final inning of Dartmouth’s 4-2 loss to Princeton last Saturday, freshman center fielder Trevor Johnson made the highlight reels with an over-the-shoulder catch just before slamming into the fence. His catch was third on the Ivy League’s Top 5 Plays of the Week as seen on the Ivy League Digital Network.
Squid Will Do in a Pinch
Freshman Michael Calamari, a.k.a. Squid, has proven to be quite the capable bat off the bench. The rookie has been called upon as a pinch hitter eight times this season and has reached base five of those trips to the plate, going 4-for-7 with a double, walk and four RBIs to his credit. No Big Green player in the last dozen seasons has had as many pinch hits, and the only one with even three was Kyle Cavanaugh in 2006.