Arkansas Baseball Notebook - Feb. 24

Arkansas Baseball Notebook

Feb. 24, 2008

Week: 3-0

Overall Record: 3-0

Friday, Feb. 22: Arkansas 9, Wright State 4

Saturday, Feb. 23: Arkansas 5, Wright State 4

Sunday, Feb. 24: Arkansas 7, Wright State 3

Noting the Razorbacks

Arkansas (3-0) posted a season-opening sweep of Horizon League favorites Wright State at Baum Stadium over the weekend … Dave Van Horn’s Razorbacks won their 14th-straight season opener on Friday with the help of a go-ahead three-run home run by freshman Andy Wilkins … not to be outdone, Aaron Murphree followed that up on Saturday with a game-winning, two-run, opposite-field home run in the sixth inning … Murphree and Wilkins worked together on Sunday to complete the sweep as Wilkins’ two-RBI single in the seventh inning proved to be the game winner while Murphree went 3 for 4 with two RBI, two doubles and a run scored … All-America candidate Logan Forsythe turned a fantastic weekend as well with a .500 (5 for 10) batting average and more big-league play at third base than could be counted … Forsythe doubled, scored five runs, drew four walks, posted a .643 on-base percentage and stole two bases … he was also perfect in the field in 10 chances … on the mound, Dallas Keuchel notched his first win of the season in the opener with a career-best 5.1 innings out of the bullpen and a career-high-tying six strikeouts … he did not allow a hit and retired the first batter of the inning five times … junior college transfer Cliff Springston claimed victory on Saturday with 3.2-impressive innings out of the bullpen … the hard-throwing left-hander allowed just one unearned run on one hit while fanning six … another newcomer, freshman Brett Eibner, earned the win on the mound on Sunday after starting the game in center field … Eibner allowed just one run on three hits over three innings … he struck out four and walked just one … Eibner also went 2 for 3 at the plate over the weekend in two starts in center field with a .857 on-base percentage … Travis Hill earned his first save of the season on Saturday, pitching the final 1.2 innings with a one-run lead and holding the Raiders hitless while facing the minimum and striking out two … the Arkansas bullpen was nothing short of amazing over the first three games of the season with three wins in 19.1 innings of work, a 0.47 ERA, 23 strikeouts against just six walks and a .118 opponent batting average … at the plate, the Razorbacks excelled with two outs, posting a .314 average and collecting 12 of their 18 RBI in the series with two down … UA also posted a .430 team on-base percentage that was helped by 16 walks and eight hit by pitches.

Hitter of the Week Nominee

Aaron Murphree * Senior

Weatherford, Texas/Weatherford HS/Northeast Texas CC

· Aaron Murphree carried the Arkansas offense in a three-game sweep of Horizon League favorites Wright State in the opening series of the 2008 season.

· Murphree batted .600 (6 for 10) in three starts at three different positions (first base, right field and designated hitter).

· He connected for his first home run in a Razorback uniform in Saturday’s 5-4 win. The three-run opposite-field blast also proved to be the game winner.

· Murphree also drove in a team-best six RBI in the series. He had three doubles, including a career-high two doubles in Sunday’s 7-4 win.

· He posted a 1.200 slugging percentage for the weekend with a .667 on-base percentage while scoring three runs.

· Murphree drove in two runs in each of the three games and finished the series off with a 3-for-4 performance in the finale.

· He batted .400 with runners in scoring position and 1.000 with two out, including four two-out RBI.

Pitcher of the Week Nominee

Dallas Keuchel * Sophomore

Tulsa, Okla./Bishop Kelley HS

· Dallas Keuchel did not allow a hit over a career-high 5.1 innings in the Hogs’ season-opener to claim his first victory of the 2008 campaign.

· Keuchel came on out of the bullpen in the second inning and faced just three batters over the minimum.

· He also tied his career high with six strikeouts while issuing just two walks and inducing six ground ball outs.

· Keuchel retired the first batter he faced in five-of-six innings.

Freshman of the Week Nominee

Andy Wilkins * True Freshman

Broken Arrow, Okla./Broken Arrow HS

· Andy Wilkins quickly proved why Baseball America called him the best pure hitter in the state of Oklahoma coming out of high school last season with two game-winning hits in the Wright State series.

· The Broken Arrow, Okla., product hit .455 for the weekend (5 for 11) in three starts (one at first base and two at designated hitter).

· Wilkins drove in a team best six runs while also scoring three runs.

· He posted a .727 slugging percentage and a .571 on-base percentage with the help of three walks.

· Wilkins connected for his first home run as a Razorback in his first game with a three-run blast deep to right field that put the Hogs on top to stay.

· He went 3 for 3 with a RBI in Saturday’s 5-4 win over Wright State that clinched the series for the Diamond Hogs.

· Wilkins then came through with the game-winner again on Sunday with a two-RBI single through the right side of the infield.

· He hit .500 with runners in scoring position and .500 with two out, including four two-out RBI.

Tuesday, Feb. 26: Southeast Missouri State at Arkansas, 3:05 p.m.

Wednesday, Feb. 27: Kansas at Arkansas, 3:05 p.m.

Domino’s Pizza Classic – Olsen Field, College Station, Texas

Friday, Feb. 29: Arkansas vs. Louisiana Tech, 12:30 p.m.

Saturday, March 1: Arkansas at Texas A&M, 6:30 p.m.

Sunday, March 2: Arkansas vs. Ohio State, 11 a.m.