The Rhode Island Rams will get their third and final crack at picking up a win in the Caravelle Resort Tournament this morning when they face off against the Marshall Thundering Herd. Rhody will also try to snap their eight-game losing streak as their 12-game road trip will come to an end. Here’s what Marshall brings to the table.
2013 Record: 20-34 (6-18 in Conference USA)
Key Losses: IF Nathan Gomez, OF Isaac Ballou, P Aaron Blair
Key Returners: IF Andrew Dundon, OF Eric Escobedo, P Michael Taylor
The Thundering Herd come into tomorrow’s game at 3-7 on the season. They’re 0-3 in the Carvelle Resort Tournament and have lost five straight overall. Marshall wasn’t all that good last season, and they don’t seem to have the pieces in place this year to be much better. So once again, URI has an opportunity to snag a win.
The good news for the Rams is that because the Thundering Herd have played three games so far in Myrtle Beach, they’ve already burned through their top three starters. The only other pitcher to have started a game for Marshall this season has been freshman Roscoe Blackburn, so it’s possible that Rhody gets a crack at him. Blackburn has no decisions on the season, but he does possess a 3.60 ERA in just five innings of work.
Besides the freshman pitcher, the Thundering Herd also have some freshman bats that can pose a threat. They’re led on offense by first year player Cory Garrastazu. The outfielder has a .444 average and three doubles as of Friday, and he’s emerging as one of Marshall’s best hitters. The other freshman threat is outfielder Corey Bird. He was hitting at a .370 clip (as of Friday) as he and Garrastazu were the only two players with averages higher than .250.
So once again the Rams appear to have a winnable game on their hands. But that hasn’t exactly worked in their favor as of late. Can they pick up the W this time around? First pitch comes at 10:00 a.m.