AUBURN, Ala. - Fresh off a series victory at Tennessee that upped Auburn’s record to 13-5 on the season, the baseball team returns home for a five-game home stand this week, beginning Tuesday night at 6pm CT against Charleston Southern. Auburn and Charleston Southern will also play on Wednesday at the newly scheduled time of 3pm CT before Auburn welcomes No. 16 Arkansas to Plainsman Park for a three-game SEC series this Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
“We encourage everyone to come out and give us support this week,” Auburn Head Coach John Pawlowski said. “This is a big week for us. We have to keep the momentum going (from winning two-out-of-three at Tennessee). I see some good things happening, but we just have to keep getting better as this season goes.”
Auburn slugged six home runs over the weekend to bring the season total to 39 on the year, which already ranks in a three-way tie for 21st in the school annals. Leading the offensive charge is the top two in the order in So. OF Trent Mummey and Jr. IF Joseph Sanders, who have combined to hit 17 home runs and drive in 44 RBI while scoring 52 runs.
Fr. RHP Dexter Price (3-0, 3.78) gets the starting nod for Tuesday’s game against Charleston Southern while the coaching staff has not decided on its Wednesday starter. Price comes in a winner of three straight, having allowed just seven runs all season while getting an average of 14 runs per start.
Charleston Southern (8-8is scheduled to start So. RHP Jesse Cadenhead (1-1, 11.30) on Tuesday and Sr. RHP Eric McGough (0-1, 8.49) on Wednesday.
Wednesday’s game is Youth Day and all fans 17-and-under with a cap and glove will get in free.
AUBURN Baseball Notes…
Auburn is 13-5 on the season after going on an 11-game winning streak from Feb. 28 – March 15 … The 11-game winning streak was the longest since winning 13 straight to open the 2001 season and was just the 11th time in school history that Auburn has won 11-or-more consecutive games.
Auburn is second nationally and atop the SEC with 39 home runs … New Mexico State leads the country with 46 … Jr. IF Joseph Sanders leads the team with nine home runs while So. OF Trent Mummey is second with eight … Auburn’s 39 home runs is already in a three-way tie for 21st in the school annals for home runs in a season with the 1989 and 1993 teams.
AT THE PLATE
EARLY RISERS: Auburn has outscored its opponents 28-3 in first innings this season, hitting 13 first-inning home runs … All three runs allowed came in the Florida State series … Three different hitters, So. OF Brian Fletcher, So. OF Trent Mummey and So. OF/IF Kevin Patterson have hit three first-inning home runs … All three first-inning home runs for Mummey and Patterson have been solo homers while Fletcher has hit two two-run home runs and a three-run home run.
HOMER HAPPY: Through the first 18 games of the season Auburn has already hit 39 home runs, most in the SEC … Auburn’s 1998 team, which holds the school record with 87 homers in a season, had just 24 homers 18 games into the season and it took the team 27 games to hit its 39th home run … Last season it took the team 44 games to hit 39 home runs, finishing the year with 58 … With 39 home runs out of 181 hits, over one in every five (22 percent) Auburn hit results in a home run.
SOLOISTS: Of Auburn’s 39 home runs, 24 of them have been solo shots, nine have been two run shots and six have been three-run homers.
THE MUMMEY RETURNS: So. OF Trent Mummey has scored a SEC-best 32 runs in the first 18 games of 2009 for an average of 1.78 runs per game … Based on a 55-game schedule, he would finish the year scoring 98 runs … The Auburn single-season record for runs scored is 83 by Gabe Gross (2000) but to break into the top 10 he would need to score just 71 … After going 0-for-4 in the season-opener, Mummey has hit safely in 17 straight games and scored a run in 16 out of 17 games, failing to score a run for just the second time this season in Sunday’s 7-1 loss in game two of a doubleheader at Tennessee.
EXTRA-BASE HITS: Of Auburn’s 181 hits on the season, 88 of them (49 percent) have gone for extra-bases, collecting 43 doubles, six triples and 39 home runs.
ON THE MOUND
WINDEX: Fr. RHP Dexter Price has gone a perfect 3-0 in his three starts this season, earning wins over Lipscomb, Davidson and Western Kentucky … The team has scored 42 runs in his three outings for an average of 14 runs per game while he has allowed just seven runs all season in 16 2/3 innings of work … He is one of just 12 pitchers in the SEC to have earned three-or-more wins this season so far.
TEAM NUMBERS: Auburn’s pitching staff enters the week with a 5.38 ERA, 11th in the SEC, and 133 strikeouts, also 11th in the league.