After capturing its first conference series of the year over Duke this past weekend, Boston College is riding high entering this week’s slate of five games which is capped off by an incredibly important ACC matchup with NC State. But, before the Eagles can worry about the Wolfpack, they’ll need to focus on beating the Dartmouth Big Green on the road on Tuesday, and the Harvard Crimson in the Beanpot Championship on Wednesday night at Fenway Park. Let’s take a closer look at this week’s midweek action:
Tuesday: Red Rolfe Field at Biondi Park, Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH
Wednesday: Fenway Park, Boston, MA
Tuesday, April 18th @ 3:30pm ET vs. Dartmouth
Wednesday, April 19th @ 6:30pm ET vs. Harvard
Tuesday: BC: Staff vs. DART: TBA
Wednesday: BC: So. RHP Jack Nelson (3-0, 1.67 ERA) vs. HARV: TBA
How to Watch/Listen:
Tuesday’s contest against Dartmouth will be covered on Gametracker as well as on the Ivy League Digital Network, though there is a charge to watch the matchup. Wednesday’s Beanpot Championship will be broadcast on WZBC via the TUNEIN Radio app, as well as streamed live on the Ivy League Digital Network. Tickets to Wednesday’s title game at Fenway can also be purchased at the gate prior to the start of the game, or by clicking here. Links to all the coverage options can be found on the baseball schedule page of BCEagles.com.
What you should know about the Dartmouth Big Green:
Through 30 games this season, Head Coach Bob Whalen has his Dartmouth team poised to contend for an Ivy League title and an automatic berth in the NCAA tournament, as they enter Tuesday’s matchup with BC with an overall record of 18-12, including an 8-4 mark in conference. The Big Green’s success has not be limited to the Ivy League so far this season, as they took two early road series from Miami and UCF, who were both ranked at the time. Plainly speaking, they present a challenge for Boston College.
Offensively, Dartmouth is hitting .292 as a team with a .384 on-base percentage. Leading the way for the Big Green is outfielder Matt Feinstein who leads the team with a .339 batting average, and has driven in 21 runs on the season. Providing most of the power in the Dartmouth lineup are first baseman Michael Ketchmark and outfielder/catcher Kyle Holbrook. Ketchmark is hitting .336 with in 30 starts on the year and has belted a team leading four homeruns with 22 RBI. Holbrook leads the team in runs batted in with 23, while batting .330 with three long-balls. Justin Fowler is also a threat at the plate, as the junior infielder is hitting at a.307 clip with eight RBI.
On the mound, the Big Green sport a 3.97 team-ERA, good for second in the Ivy League, and have allowed opposing hitters to bat .268 off them so far this season. While Dartmouth has yet to announce a starter for Tuesday, it’s a good bet the Eagles will face a pitcher who pounds the zone, as the Dartmouth pitching staff has only walked 77 batters on the season while striking out 210. What that means is BC will definitely get pitches to hit on Tuesday, they’ll just need to be ready to attack when they come.
What you should know about the Harvard Crimson:
Wednesday’s Beanpot Championship game at Fenway Park will be a rematch of last week’s midweek contest between the long-time rivals, which BC came from behind to win 8-5 in Chestnut Hill. Following the loss to Boston College, Bill Decker’s team went 1-3 over the weekend against their traditional rival Yale, and enter Wednesday’s contest with an overall record of 13-19, including a 2-10 mark in the Ivy League.
Offensively, the Crimson are hitting .273 for the season and have launched 25 home runs. Outfielder Patrick Robinson leads all hitters with a .411 batting average, seven homeruns, and 28 RBI. In last week’s meeting the sophomore hit a two-run homerun in the top of the fourth to give Harvard a short-lived lead. Behind Robinson are Patrick McColl and Josh Ellis who are hitting .348 and .338, respectively, while combining for seven homeruns and 37 RBI. The trio of Robinson, McColl, and Ellis have produced nearly forty percent of Harvard’s offense to-date.
On the mound, the Crimson pitchers have earned a 5.69 ERA through 32 games, while allowing opponents to hit nearly .300 on the season. Though no pitcher has been announced for Wednesday, it’s a strong possibility that there will be a rematch between BC’s Jack Nelson and Harvard’s Grant Stone, who went five solid innings against the Eagles a week ago. For the season, Stone sports a 5.74 ERA in eight appearances (seven starts) and has struck out 19 batters, while issuing 22 walks.
What you should know about the Boston College Eagles:
Mike Gambino’s Boston College team is riding high after its first ACC series-win of the season this past weekend at Duke. Now, sitting at 12-21 overall, and 3-15 in conference, the Eagles are looking to keep the ball rolling in a pair of Ivy League matchups before hosting NC State weekend.
Offensively, BC enjoyed a great weekend, raising its team batting average nearly ten points to .242. Leading the charge is junior two-way player Donovan Casey who leads the Eagles in batting with a .317 average, while adding a pair of homeruns and 16 RBI. Behind him is the only other player in the Eagles’ lineup hitting over .300, utility-man Jake Alu, who is batting at a .306 clip. Catcher Gian Martellini added his third homerun of the season at Duke, a grand slam blast that blew open Saturday’s contest in favor of the visitors. The sophomore is hitting .281 on the year with the aforementioned three homeruns and a team-leading 23 RBI. Also, freshman Jacob Yish has come on strong in the last 5 games, upping his average to .304 with a double and five RBI.
On the mound, the Eagle’s pitchers threw well over the weekend, lowering their team-ERA to 5.53. BC has already announced that Tuesday’s game will a “staff-day,” so fans can expect to see a lot of different arms against Dartmouth. Jack Nelson will again get the ball against Harvard, this time at Fenway Park for the Beanpot title. The sophomore leads the staff with a 1.67 ERA in 27 innings pitched, though he was hit hard in last week’s matchup with the Crimson.
While it feels great to come into the midweek after a series win, this week is a little worrisome to me. Yes, there is a lot working in the Eagles favor right now, from their play at Duke to the emotional boost they’ll get playing for the Beanpot title on Wednesday, to the Annual ALS Game on Saturday supporting Pete Frates. But, what worries me is that in all the hoopla, Tuesday’s game at Dartmouth will get overlooked and BC will travel to Hanover (which is a long, boring bus ride) and get beat by a very good Big Green ball club, who has already taken down two ranked opponents (one of them in the ACC) in road series this season. I sincerely hope that doesn’t happen, and that the team is focused, because it would definitely take some of the wind out of the Eagles’ sails right now, but historically, the Big Green have been a thorn in Boston College’s side. After Tuesday, Wednesday’s matchup with Harvard is no given, either. Though the Eagles eventually won last week, the Crimson had BC on the ropes for a while and hit the BC pitching staff (minus Donovan Casey and Mitch Bigras) very hard. Add in the fact that this week’s matchup is for a title and city-pride, and you can bet Harvard will come out swinging. My prediction is that BC takes both matchups in the midweek slate, but I’m hoping the Eagles aren’t looking past their Ivy League rivals to the great opportunity they have this weekend versus NC State, as that is a recipe for disaster.