JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Feb. 14, 2013) – There will be plenty of buzz hovering around Thomas Stadium early Friday morning before the ETSU baseball team opens the 2013 season against Penn State.
Prior to first pitch at 2:35 p.m., a ribbon-cutting ceremony will be held inside the ballpark to honor the Thomas family and those who had a hand in building the home of Buccaneer Baseball. The dedication ceremony is open to the public and will begin at 10:30 a.m.
The three-game series continues Saturday and Sunday with game times set for 1:05 p.m., each day.
ABOUT PENN STATE
- Penn State finished third in the Big Ten in 2012 after posting a record of 29-27, 15-9.
- The Nittany Lions return four of their top seven hitters, including junior outfielder Steve Snyder, who was placed on the Big Ten Preseason Watch List. Joining Snyder on the list were senior right-handed pitchers Steven Hill and David Walkling.
- Snyder hit .258 (54-209) with seven doubles, two triples and 31 runs scored in 2012, while senior infielder Luis Montesinos – Penn State’s top returning hitter – finished with a .280 batting average (56-200), along with 11 doubles, 16 RBIs and 23 runs scored.
- The Nittany Lions had a pair of players drafted in the 2012 Major League Baseball Draft. Starting pitcher Joe Kurrasch (4-2, 2.05 ERA) was taken in the eighth round by the San Francisco Giants and First Team All-Big Ten selection Jordan Steranka (.363, 20 doubles, 11 home runs, 20 RBI) was drafted in the 21st round by the Pittsburgh Pirates.
- Penn State’s roster features 16 upperclassmen (eight seniors and eight juniors) and 19 underclassmen (nine freshmen and 10 sophomores).
- Friday – RHP Kerry Doane (4-5, 4.50 ERA) vs. RHP David Walkling (1-1, 3.74 ERA)
- Saturday – RHP Griffin Krieg (N/A) vs. RHP Steven Hill (5-4, 3.84 ERA)
- Sunday – RHP Jimmy Nesselt (3-5, 3.97 ERA) vs. Patton Taylor (1-0, 6.23 ERA)
- Stats reflect 2012 season
- This weekend marks the first-ever meeting between the two programs.
- The last Big Ten foe ETSU faced was Indiana last season.
- The Bucs won the series with the Hoosiers back on March 4 at Thomas Stadium.
Live stats will be available for all three games via StatBroadcast by visiting ETSUBucs.com. Fans can access live stats on their computers, mobile devices or tablets. Meanwhile, live audio will be offered for Friday’s game only as “Voice of the Bucs” Jay Sandos will handle the play-by-play duties on ETSUBucs.com. Live updates will also be posted on Twitter by following @ETSUAthletics.
Below is a list of promotional items for Friday’s season opener:
- Free food from FATZ – students only
- First 300 students receive an exclusive “Opening Day” T-Shirt
- First 1,000 fans receive “Opening Day” poster, courtesy of Sir Speedy
- Fans have the chance to win prizes from the Neebo Bookstore, Carnegie Hotel and other Johnson City area businesses
Come out to Thomas Stadium early and tailgate prior to ETSU baseball games this season. A designated tailgating area will be roped off in the parking lot where fans can enjoy a festive environment before the Bucs take the field. Click here for tailgating guidelines.
ETSU fans wanting to receive Buccaneer news, score updates, in-game promotions and much more sent to their mobile device can do so by signing up for “Buc Updates.” Click here to sign up today!
- ETSU returns 13 letterwinners from its 2012 roster. The 2013 Buccaneer roster features six seniors, eight juniors, five sophomores, and 13 freshmen.
- Junior Clinton Freeman (Jonesborough, Tenn.) was selected to the preseason all-conference list and named Atlantic Sun Preseason Player of the Year by Baseball America. In 2012, Freeman led the Bucs in batting average (.365), hits (81), doubles (14), and RBIs (50). Freeman was also among Atlantic Sun leaders, as he tied for second in hits, ranked fourth in average and RBI, sixth in slugging percentage (.550), and tied for 10th in home runs (7).
- Senior Andrew Green (Powell, Tenn.) enters the 2013 season 23 stolen bases shy of breaking the all-time ETSU record. Green recorded 22 stolen bases in 2012, which were tied for the fifth-highest in single-season history.
- Opening Day starter Kerry Doane (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.) set ETSU single-season records in 2012 for strikeout-to-walk ratio (8:33/1) and fewest walks per 9.0 IP (1.00). Doane struck out 50 batters and only walked six.
- Sunday starter Jimmy Nesselt (Plantation, Fla.) also set the school record for fewest hits per 9.0 IP last year. Nesselt allowed 7.71 hits per nine innings during his rookie season.
- Junior right-hander Will Chesney (Knoxville, Tenn.) was one of 75 relief pitches named to the initial watch list for the ninth annual National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Stopper of the Year Award.
For more information on Buccaneer baseball, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the baseball page.