The Rhode Island Rams baseball team hasn’t played since Sunday, but the short break may not have been a bad thing. Rhody had some time to regroup following a three-game sweep at the hands of the Saint Louis Billikens. And regroup may not be the only thing they did. URI now sits at 4-16 on the season, so they likely used the time to work on hitting, pitching, defense, and whatever else they need to do to reverse this losing trend. They’ll have a chance to do just that starting this afternoon when they take on La Salle.
2014 Record: 24-29 (15-9 in the Atlantic 10)
Key Losses: IF Dan Klem, P Ryan Donohue, P Pat Christensen
Key Returners: IF Joey Ravert, IF Mark Williams, P Shane Hollman
The Explorers’ season has somewhat paralleled Rhode Island’s. Coming off a solid season in which they finished in the top half of the Atlantic 10, La Salle has taken a step back. They’ll enter today’s game at 4-18 on the season, including 1-2 in conference play. If you’re the type of fan that thinks URI is better than their record indicates, than the Explorers should be ripe for the picking. Either way, this three-game set should be a good measuring stick to see where the Rams sit in the A-10.
La Salle’s Shane Hollman will likely get the start this afternoon. The junior right-hander comes into today’s action with a 2-1 record and a 3.76 ERA on the season. Joey Ravert should get the ball in game two, and he’s one of the newer starters in the Explorers’ rotation. The sophomore is 1-0 with a 3.32 ERA on the year in just three starts. The Rams should have an advantage on Sunday when Shawn O’Neill gets the ball for La Salle. He’s just 1-5 on the year with a 4.71 ERA, but he is coming off his first win of the season last weekend.
The Explorers’ offense is led by junior Kevin Baron (no relation to Jim… we hope). The infielder is hitting .345 with five doubles and six RBI on the season. He’s also an on-base machine, as his 11 walks and .426 OBP both lead the team. La Salle’s power is provided by infielder Mark Williams. The junior has three home runs and 16 RBI to go along with his .313 average.
This afternoon’s game gets underway at 3:00 p.m., with Saturday’s contest beginning at 1:00 p.m. The first pitch in Sunday’s finale comes at 12:00 noon. All games will be played at Hank DeVincent Field in Philadelphia.
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