The Rhode Island Rams look to build on a season-best offensive output this evening when the open up a three-game series against the Winthrop Eagles. Rhody is coming off their first road victory of the season, a huge 18-8 win over UNC Greensboro on Wednesday afternoon. The win increased URI’s record to 3-11 on the season, with Atlantic 10 play on the horizon.
The Eagles come into today’s action at 5-11, but winners of their last two. They’re coming off a 2-1 win against the ETSU Bucs, who toppled the Rams 5-0 on Sunday. Winthrop’s other wins have come against Pennsylvania, Clemson, Delaware State, and Maryland Eastern Shore. Again, compared to Rhody’s schedule this season, Winthrop’s hasn’t been nearly as rigorous.
The Eagles offense packs a two-headed punch of junior Cody Dolan and sophomore Clay Altman. Both players are batting .386 over the first 16 games of the season, with Dolan packing much of the power. The righty has tallied five doubles and a homer, good for 5 RBI and a .526 slugging percentage. Altman is more of a singles hitter, with just one extra-base hit (a double) on the season in 64 plate appearances. He is tied for the team lead with eight RBI. The good news for URI is that besides these two players, there’s not much pop in the Winthrop lineup. In terms of regular players, their next best hitter (Leighton Daniels) is batting just .246.
It looks like Rhody is going to have a clear advantage when they come to play. No Eagles pitcher has collected more than one win so far, and only one hurler has a winning record. Eric Ruth is 1-0 with a 0.90 ERA in 10 innings pitched, spread out over six relief appearances. Withrop starters have a combined 4.72 ERA, so the Rams will hopefully be able to score early and often.
Game one of the three game set gets underway at 6:00 PM this evening in Rock Hill, South Carolina. Game two will be played on Saturday at 3:00, with the series finale coming at 1:00 PM on Sunday.