The Michigan Wolverines baseball team is back in action this weekend as they travel to Piscataway, New Jersey for a three-game series against the Rutgers Scarlet Knights.
So far this season, the Wolverines are 18-14 (6-3) and tied for second in the Big Ten. Rutgers is 18-15 (2-4) and 11th in the conference.
While Michigan has played three series in conference play, the Scarlet Knights have only played two, losing two of three against Michigan State and Maryland.
You shouldn’t think the Wolverines have an easy weekend ahead of them just because Rutgers is in 11th and 2-4 in the Big Ten. Maryland is always one of the top teams in the conference and the Spartans are a much improved team from a year ago. This Rutgers team can certainly play, and it will give Michigan a very competitive series.
On offense, the Scarlet Knights have some very impressive statistics. Out of Rutgers’ nine players with the most at-bats, six of them are batting over .300.
Evan Sleight and Trevor Cohen in particular are two guys to watch out for. Sleight is hitting .358 with 10 doubles, eight home runs and 22 RBIs. Cohen is hitting .346 with six doubles and 22 RBIs.
In terms of pitching, expect Michigan to face Rutgers starting pitcher John Sinibaldi for sure, but the Scarlet Knights have been mixing up starters, so it’s hard to know who else the Wolverines will see. Sinibaldi has a 3.48 ERA in 33.2 innings pitched. He has consistently been the game one starter for Rutgers this year.
It seems like the season just started, but after this series, Michigan will be halfway through conference play. If the Wolverines can find a way to win this one, they will be in really good position heading into the back end of the season.
Game one of the series will be Friday at 6 p.m., game two is Saturday at 3 p.m. and the series finale will be Sunday at 1 p.m.