Baseball to Play at Penn State Tuesday, Host Toledo on Wednesday

Travis Perry (Photo by Rob Hayes)
Travis Perry (Photo by Rob Hayes)

The Youngstown State baseball team will begin another busy week with a pair of midweek non-conference contests. The Penguins will play at Penn State on Tuesday before returning home to host Toledo on Wednesday.

First pitch for Tuesday's game from Medlar Field at Lubrano Park is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. ET while Wednesday's contest at Eastwood Field will begin at 5 p.m. ET. Tuesday's contest will be broadcast live on BTN Plus and ESPN 1450. Wednesday's home game will be broadcast live at YSNLive.com.

Live stats will be available for both games through links on YSUsports.com, and fans can also follow @YSUBaseball on Twitter for live updates.

Probable Starters:

Promotions

  • Wednesday's game against Toledo will be the first of two Military Appreciation Days this season at Eastwood Field. Veterans and active military personnel can receive up to four complimentary tickets with a valid military ID.
  • Wednesday's contest will also feature another Quaker Steak "Strikeout Inning" promotion. If a YSU pitcher strikes out an opposing batter during a specific inning, all fans will receive a coupon for a buy-one, get-one-free appetizer of equal or lesser value at Quaker Steak and Lube.

Previewing Opponents

Scouting The Nittany Lions

  • Penn State begins the week at 16-11 overall and 1-7 in Big Ten play. The Nittany Lions have lost two straight and three of their last four games after dropping two of three at Indiana over the weekend.
  • Sophomore outfielder Mac Hippenhammer has a team-high .327 batting average while senior outfielder Jordan Bowersox is hitting .317 with a team-best 32 hits. 
  • Sophomore right-hander Mason Mellott leads the Big Ten with a 1.18 ERA to go along with a 4-1 record and four saves over 38 innings out of the bullpen. Sophomore left-hander Dante Biasi has team highs of 46.1 innings and 66 strikeouts to go with a 1.75 ERA in eight starts. Biasi leads the Big Ten with his 66 strikeouts and an opposing batting average of .169.
  • Freshman Tyler Shingledecker will take the ball for Penn State on Tuesday to make his first-career start. The 6-3 left-hander has a 1-1 record, a 4.12 ERA, a save and 26 strikeouts in 19.2 innings over 11 relief appearances this season.
  • PSU's pitching staff leads the Big Ten with 278 strikeouts while ranking third in the conference with a .221 opposing batting average and fourth with a team ERA of 3.75.
  • The Nittany Lions are under the direction of sixth-year head coach Rob Cooper.

Scouting The Rockets

  • Toledo entered the week at 10-17 overall and 1-6 in MAC play. The Rockets have now lost eight of their last nine games after losing two of three against Miami (Ohio) this past weekend. They will host Dayton for midweek contest on Tuesday before traveling to Youngstown.
  • Senior infielder/outfielder Brad Boss leads Toledo with a .381 batting average, 13 doubles, four home runs, 27 RBIs, a .593 slugging percentage and a .455 OBP. Boss ranks in the top 10 of the MAC in batting average, slugging percentage, OBP, hits, RBIs, doubles and home runs.
  • Freshman infielder Darryn Davis is hitting .368 with 17 RBIs, and sophomore outfielder John Servello is batting .310 with 18 runs driven in.
  • Junior right-hander Layne Schnitz-Paxton has a team-best 3.02 ERA while senior left-hander Michael Jacob leads the Rockets with 51.1 innings and 50 strikeouts. Senior right-hander Nate Haugh has four saves and a 3.77 ERA in 12 appearances out of the bullpen.
  • Head Coach Cory Mee is in his 16th season leading the program.

Series History

Penn State:

  • Overall: Penn State leads 7-2
  • Bertolini: 0-0 // Home: 1-1 // Away: 1-6
  • Current Win Streak: 4 by Penn State
  • Last meeting: March 29, 2016 (L 1-6 at Penn State)
  • Last YSU win: April 6, 1991 (W 3-0 at Penn State)
  • First meeting: March 29, 1988 (L 0-1 at Penn State)

Toledo:

  • Overall: YSU leads 17-9
  • Bertolini: 1-0 // Home: 8-6 // Away: 8-2 // Neutral: 1-1
  • Current Win Streak: 1 by Youngstown State
  • Last meeting: May 8, 2018 (W 17-16 at Toledo)
  • First meeting: May 11, 1993 (W 7-4 at Toledo)
  • Toledo had won three straight in the series before YSU's victory last season.

A Win on Tuesday Would…

  • Be YSU's eighth of the season and 41st under Head Coach Dan Bertolini.
  • Give the Penguins their sixth win in nine games.
  • Snap a four-game losing streak to Penn State.
  • Give the Penguins their first win over a Big Ten opponent since 1996.
  • Be YSU's third win over a Power Five opponent this season.

A Win on Wednesday Would…

  • Give the Penguins five wins in six games at Eastwood Field.
  • Be the Penguins' second straight victory over the Rockets.
  • Be YSU's second victory over a MAC opponent this season.
  • Improve the Penguins' home record to 6-3.

Recapping Last Week

Kent State - Wednesday, April (W 4-3 - 11 innings):

  • Phillip Glasser raced home on a wild pitch in the bottom of the 11th inning to give Youngstown State a 4-3 win over Kent State and its second walk-off victory in as many Wednesdays at Eastwood Field.
  • Glasser led off the bottom of the 11th with a single to right center. Blaze Glenn, who sent the game to extra innings with an RBI single in the ninth, walked, and Cody Dennis advanced both runners with a pinch-hit sacrifice bunt. Drew Dickerson was walked intentionally, and Glasser slid head first around the tag at the plate when the first pitch to Steven D'Eusanio was in the dirt and bounced away.
  • Glasser was 3-for-4 and scored a pair of runs, while Glenn and Lucas Nasonti both had a pair of hits. That trio combined for seven of YSU's 10 hits.

Game 1 vs. UIC - Friday, April 5 (W 7-3):

  • Colin Clark pitched a gem, and Glenn homered as part of a five-RBI night to lead the Youngstown State to a 7-3 victory over Horizon League leader UIC on Friday at Eastwood Field.
  • Clark held the Flames to one earned run over a career-high eight innings, and Glenn backed him up by going 4-for-4 as YSU won for the fourth time in the last six games.
  • After allowing a base hit in the top of the second inning, Clark settled in and retired 10 straight batters before UIC notched a two-out single in the fifth. He also retired in the Flames in order in three different frames.
  • In addition to Glenn's four hits, Phillip Glasser and Lucas Nasonti both had a pair of hits as Youngstown State registered a season-best 13 hits as a team.
  • Glenn and Glasser combined to go 6-for-7 with two walks and a sacrifice bunt in 10 plate appearances from the second and third spots in the Penguins lineup.
  • Kip DeShields allowed a walk and single to start the ninth, but he induced a fielder's choice and game-ending 6-4-3 double play to preserve the win.

Game 2 vs. UIC - Saturday, April 6 (W 6-5):

  • The heart of the Penguins order combined for 10 hits, and Travis Perry pitched 7.2 solid innings to lift YSU to a 6-5 victory over UIC on Saturday afternoon.
  • Perry allowed four runs on eight hits and struck out three batters in the longest outing of his career. After allowing a one-out RBI double in the top of the fourth inning, the freshman right-hander retired 11 straight batters through the seventh.
  • Jeff Wehler and Trevor Wiersma both had three hits from the fourth and fifth spots in the lineup, and Glenn and Drew Dickerson had two hits apiece from the third and sixth positions for the Penguins. YSU had 14 hits collectively, which was a season high.
  • Youngstown State won its third straight game overall and fourth straight at home.
  • Dalton Earich recorded the final out of eighth inning, and Brett Souder allowed two baserunners in the ninth before getting two fly outs to earn his second save.

Game 3 vs. UIC - Sunday, April 7 (L 3-8):

  • YSU fell 8-3 to UIC on Sunday afternoon in the series finale at Eastwood Field.
  • The Flames jumped ahead with a run in the first inning before the Penguins briefly went in front by scoring twice in the second. UIC tied the game with a run in the third, and crossed the plate twice in the fifth to grab the lead for good.
  • YSU got within a run after Glenn's second home run of the series in home half of the fifth, but the Flames plated three in seventh and one in the eighth to produce the final score. UIC's bullpen did not allow a hit while blanking YSU over the final four innings.
  • The defeat snapped the Penguins' three-game winning streak, and halted a streak of four straight victories at Eastwood Field.
  • Glenn was 2-for-3 with a solo home run and two RBIs while Dylan Swarmer doubled, walked and scored a run. Nasonti recorded an RBI single and a stolen base, and Cameron Murray had a base hit and a steal.
  • Marco DeFalco suffered his first loss of the season after allowing three runs on eight hits and striking out three over 4.1 innings.

Quick Notes Around The Diamond

  • Going into the week, YSU ranks second in the Horizon League with 60 stolen bases, and also leads the conference with a success rate of .811 (60-74) in stolen base attempts.
  • The Penguins' 60 stolen bases also rank 25th nationally as of April 8, and their 1.94 steals per game rank second in the Horizon League and 24th in the nation. YSU paces the league easily with 35 steals in league play; Wright State is second with 25.
  • Five Penguins rank in the top 10 of the HL in stolen bases. Jeff Wehler ranks second with 14 steals, Blaze Glenn is tied for third with 11, Drew Dickerson is sixth with eight and Lucas Nasonti and Phillip Glasser are tied for 10th with five. Wehler ranks 51st in the nation with his 14 steals.
  • The Guins have swiped at least two bases in 13 of their last 17 games, and in 18 of 31 games overall.
  • YSU also ranks second in the Horizon League with 144 walks heading into the week. The Penguins have five players who have drawn at least 14 free passes, and two who rank top 10 in the league. Glenn ranks fifth with 23 walks and Glasser is ninth with 17. YSU walked a school-record 272 times in 2018.
  • YSU has 10 or more hits in seven of its last 11 games including a season-high 14 in Saturday's win over UIC. The Penguins had double-digit hits in five straight contests from March 30-April 6.
  • Glenn was named Horizon League Batter of the Week for the second time this season on April 8. He is only player who has won the award multiple times in 2019.
  • Glenn was also named Horizon League Player of the Week by College Sports Madness, and a Top-30 Performer on April 5 by D1Baseball.com for his four-hit, five-RBI performance in YSU's 7-3 win over UIC.
  • Glenn, Wehler and Trevor Wiersma are each tied for seventh in the Horizon League with four home runs. Glenn is also tied for fifth with eight doubles and seventh with 22 RBIs.
  • Sophomore left-hander Colin Clark ranks fifth in the league with 44.1 innings pitched, and tied for eighth with 31 strikeouts. Clark also leads the circuit and ranks 18th in the nation with eight games started.
  • Freshman reliever Brett Souder ranks tied for sixth in the conference with two saves.
  • With its win over Pitt on March 27, YSU earned its third win over an ACC opponent in the last three years, and beat the Panthers for the second time this season.
  • With a 6-5 win over Oakland on March 23, YSU won its home opener for the first time since the 2012 season.
  • YSU played its first 19 games of the season on the road before its home-opening series with Oakland on March 23-24.
  • The Penguins have led in 22 of their 31 games this season. They have held 10 first-inning leads, and have scored first in 16 contests.
  • Last Wednesday's game against Kent State began a stretch in which YSU will play 10 of 15 games on its home field.

Notebook

Glenn Recognized After Impressive Week

  • Junior third baseman Blaze Glenn has been named the Nike Horizon League Batter of the Week for the period of April 1-7, the league office announced on Monday.
  • This is the second time this season that the Toronto, Ohio, native has earned the league's weekly offensive award. He was also the Batter of the Week on Feb. 25 after the second week of the season. He is the first player to claim the award multiple times so far this season.
  • Glenn was also named Horizon League Player of the Week by College Sports Madness.
  • Glenn was 10-for-16 at the plate in leading the Penguins to three wins in four games last week. He hit seven singles, a double and two home runs while driving in eight runs. He posted a .625 batting average, a .714 on-base percentage and a 1.063 slugging percentage for the week.
  • Glenn went 2-for-4 with a pair of walks and an RBI in a 4-3 win over Kent State on Wednesday, and he delivered a clutch RBI single in the ninth inning that forced extra innings. 
  • The junior then went 4-for-4 with a two-run home run, a walk, two runs scored and a career-high five RBIs in YSU's 7-3 series-opening win over UIC on Friday. For that showing, he was named as a Top 30 Performer for April 5 by D1Baseball.com.
  • In game two against the Flames, Glenn was 2-for-4 with a double, a walk and a run scored to help lead the Penguins to a 6-5 victory. He also went 2-for-4 in the series finale on Sunday with a solo home run and two RBIs.
  • For the year, Glenn is batting .250 and leads YSU with four home runs, eight doubles, 22 RBIs and a .435 slugging percentage. He also has 11 stolen bases in 13 attempts, and he has hit safely in eight consecutive games. The junior has also now reached base in 13 straight contests.
  • Glenn ranks among the top 10 in the conference in RBIs, doubles, home runs, walks and steals.
  • After a slow start to the season, the 2018 Second-Team All-Horizon League honoree is batting .484 and slugging .806 with 15 hits including four doubles and two home runs over his last eight games. He also has 10 RBIs, seven runs scored, six walks, 25 total bases, a .590 OBP and three stolen bases over that stretch.

Clark and Perry Toss Gems

  • Youngstown State got two outstanding starts from Colin Clark and Travis Perry this weekend during the team's series victory over UIC.
  • Clark pitched a gem on Friday night to earn his first-career victory, and help lead YSU to a 7-3 series-opening win over the Flames.
  • The sophomore left-hander allowed one earned run, on just five hits while striking out four and walking only one over a career-high eight innings. 
  • After allowing a base hit in the top of the second inning, Clark settled in and retired 10 straight batters before UIC notched a two-out single in the fifth. He also retired in the Flames in order in three different frames.
  • Clark ranks fifth in the Horizon League with 44.1 innings pitched, and tied for eighth with 31 strikeouts. Clark also leads the circuit and ranks 18th in the nation with eight games started.
  • Perry pitched 7.2 solid innings to help lead to a 6-5 victory and the series win over UIC on Saturday afternoon. He also collected the first win of his young career.
  • He allowed four runs on eight hits and struck out three batters in the longest outing of his career. After allowing a one-out RBI double in the top of the fourth inning, the freshman right-hander retired 11 straight batters through the seventh.
  • Perry ranks 10th in the Horizon League with 36 innings pitched this season.

Strong Stretch For Wehler and Dickerson

  • Sophomore outfielder Jeff Wehler has had a hit in eight of his last 10 games, in 12 of his last 15 and in 15 of his last 20. He has also reached base in 14 of his last 16 outings, and notched eight multi-hit games over his last 20 games played.
  • Wehler doubled in Friday's win over UIC and went 3-for-5 with a run scored and an RBI in Saturday's victory.
  • Over his last 15 games, Wehler is batting .339 and slugging .508 with 20 total hits, four doubles, two home runs and nine RBIs. He has also drawn eight walks, scored eight runs, and stolen nine bases while posting 30 total bases and an OBP of .420 over that stretch.
  • Wehler leads YSU with 28 total hits, eight multi-hit games, 17 runs scored and 14 stolen bases in 17 attempts. He is also hitting .356 and slugging .489 with 16 hits, seven RBIs and eight steals in 11 Horizon League games. In league action, Wehler ranks first in steals, tied for fourth in hits and eighth in batting average.
  • In overall action, Wehler is tied for the team lead and ranks tied for seventh in the league with four home runs. He is also second in stolen bases and tied for fifth with 110 at bats.
  • Senior infielder Drew Dickerson is hitting .333 and slugging .426 over his last 16 games with 18 hits, five doubles, six RBIs, 10 walks, 11 runs scored, 23 total bases, seven steals and a .438 OBP. He is also batting a team-best .385 and slugging .487 in 11 league contests.
  • Dickerson was 2-for-4 with a double, two RBIs and a run scored in Saturday's win over UIC. He began the season just 3-for-25 at the plate over his first eight games.
  • The senior is 8-for-9 in stolen base attempts, and his eight steals rank sixth in the Horizon League. He was caught stealing for the first time on Friday against UIC. Dickerson had just four steals all of last season.
  • In Horizon League action, Dickerson ranks second in the circuit with six steals, tied for third with four doubles, fifth with his .385 batting average, tied for sixth with 15 hits.

Bats Coming Alive

  • After a slow start to the season, Youngstown State's offense has started to return to its typically high-powered form over the last few weeks. 
  • YSU has 10 or more hits in seven of its last 11 games including a season-high 14 in Saturday's win over UIC. That came a day after the group registered 13 hits in a 7-3 win over the Flames in the series opener. The Penguins had double-digit hits in five straight contests from March 30-April 6.
  • The Penguins have also scored at least six runs in four of their last six contests. YSU plated a season-high 10 runs in its victory at Wright State on March 30. 
  • Youngstown State has also drawn at least five walks in five of its last six outings.

DeShields Getting It Done

  • Senior right-hander Kip DeShields has been one of YSU's most reliable arms out of the bullpen this season. 
  • Over his last nine appearances, DeShields has permitted just two runs on six hits over 8.2 innings with a 2.08 ERA. He also picked up a pair of victories over that stretch. 
  • The Beloit, Ohio, native's first victory came on March 23 against Oakland after he entered in the sixth inning with one out and runners at second and third. The senior got a strikeout and a fielder's choice to keep the Penguins within a run, and help them to an eventual 6-5 victory. 
  • DeShields' second victory of 2019 came on March 27 against Pitt when he pitched a perfect top of the 10th inning to set up YSU's walk-off 3-2 win in the bottom half.
  • DeShields recorded the final out of the eighth inning in YSU's win at Wright State on March 30. He also allowed just two hits over 1.2 scoreless innings in two appearances this past weekend against UIC.
  • The senior has not allowed a run in nine different appearances this season, and opponents are hitting just .232 against him.

Home Cookin'

  • After playing its first 19 games of the season away from home, Youngstown State played its Horizon League and home-opening series against Oakland on March 23-24 at Eastwood Field.
  • The Penguins won their home opener for the first time since 2012, and have posted a 5-3 home record since with wins over Horizon League leader UIC, ACC member Pitt and MAC foe Kent State.
  • Last Wednesday's contest against Kent State began a stretch in which YSU will play 10 of 15 games at Eastwood Field.
  • The Penguins will host Toledo on Wednesday before a stretch of four straight road contests. YSU will return home on April 18 to start a three-game Horizon League series with Northern Kentucky. That game will begin a season-long five-game home stand for the Penguins.
  • YSU had won four straight at Eastwood Field before Sunday's loss to UIC. Five of the Penguins' seven wins this season have come on their home field.

Up Next

The Penguins will conclude the week with a three-game Horizon League series at Milwaukee beginning on Friday 2 p.m. ET.