Texas travels to Lincoln to take on the once-proud Cornhusker baseball team this weekend. This will be the final Nebraska-Texas series in the Big XII; and the move to the Big Ten will likely mean a continued decline in the status of the Husker program. Nebraska moves next year from one of the Big Four baseball conferences to one where baseball is, at best, an afterthought. So that's a shame.
This year's version of Big Red comes in at 27-18 overall, 6-11 in conference. They are tied with Mizzou for last place, and if the season ended today they would not make the Big XII Tournament. The biggest reason for their struggles has been the offense: their weekend starters have all put up decent numbers but have received no run support. The team's collective .273 average is deceptive, as they are slugging a measly .396. That means the vast majority of their hits are singles, and it's hard to put together big innings that way.
Perhaps more important, the team has lacked a certain "synergy:" on the occasion that they do score a bunch of runs, the pitching has not held up and the opponent has put up a big number as well. But those types of games haven't been around in the last few conference series; the last time they scored more than five in a Big XII game was April 5 against Okie State. If the Texas pitching is in top form, this is an opportunity for Texas to get its first sweep since they played Missouri to start April.
TBA is once again on the hill for the Longhorns on Sunday; last week that meant Sam Stafford again and we have no reason to believe that won't be the case this week as well. Nebraska apparently will have video for the series, but it is behind a pay wall. The audio appears to be free, though.
First pitch tonight is at 6:35 CDT.
PROBABLE PITCHING MATCHUPS
Friday, May 6, 2011 - 6:35 p.m. Central
Texas: RHP Taylor Jungmann (10-0, 0.90 ERA)
Nebraska: LHP Logan Ehlers (1-2, 3.86 ERA)
Saturday, May 7, 2011 - 2:05 p.m. Central
Texas: RHP Cole Green (4-3, 3.03 ERA)
Nebraska: RHP Jon Keller (2-4, 2.77 ERA)
Sunday, May 8, 2011 - 12:05 p.m. Central
Nebraska: RHP Tyler Niederklein (6-2, 3.86 ERA)