May 24, 2011
Complete Release in PDF Format
IN THE BATTERS BOX - No. 8 seed Notre Dame opens the 2011 BIG EAST Tournament with No. 1 seed Connecticut at 8:00 p.m. ET on Wed., May 25 at Bright House Networks Field in Clearwater, Fla. The Huskies took two of three from the Irish at Frank Eck Stadium back in April. The winner of the Notre Dame-Connecticut game will face the winner of the No. 4 seed Seton Hall and No. 5 seed West Virginia matchup. Each and every Notre Dame game of the tournament can be heard in South Bend on WHME / Harvest 103.1 FM and heard live at UND.com. Every game, with the exception of the championship game, will be streamed live at BIGEAST.org.
NOTRE DAME IN THE BIG EAST TOURNAMENT - Notre Dame has qualified for the BIG EAST tournament 15 times over its 16 years in the league.The Irish captured five consecutive tournament titles from 2002-06. Notre Dame also finished as the tournament runner-up in 1996 and '98.
The Irish own an all-time mark of 31-21 in tournament action.
Notre Dame has had five players named BIG EAST tournament Most Valuable Player. The first Irish player to earn the award was Steve Stanley ('02). Javi Sanchez followed in '03, Matt Macri in '04, Matt Edwards in '05 and Wade Korpi in '06.
NOTRE DAME AGAINST CONNECTICUT IN THE BIG EAST TOURNAMENT - The Irish have played 52 all-time games in BIG EAST tournament history, but have never played Connecticut. The only other members of the league to not face the Irish, Cincinnati and Georgetown.
IRISH COACHING DEBUTS - Mik Aoki looks to join Paul Mainieri, Pat Murphy and Jake Kline as the only Notre Dame coaches in program history to win their first postseason game with the Irish.
Here's a quick look at the first postseason game results of new head coaches dating back to the 1934 season.
First-Year Head Coach Postseason Debuts
|Dave Schrage||L, 2-13 vs. Rutgers||May 22, 2007 (BIG EAST Tournament)|
|Paul Mainieri||W, 9-7 vs. Xavier||May 13, 1995 (MCC Tournament)|
|Pat Murphy||W, 11-6 vs. Butler||May 20, 1988 (MCC Tournament)|
|Larry Gallo||L, 5-18 at Oral Roberts||May 21, 1983 (MWCC Tournament)|
|Jake Kline||W, 1-0 at Purdue||June 11, 1949 (NCAA District 4 Playoffs)|
AOKI'S CLUBS A-OK IN CONFERENCE TOURNAMENTS - Mik Aoki led Boston College to the ACC Tournament in 2009 and '10 - the school's first two appearances in program history. The Eagles, unranked and the No. 8 seed each time, recorded three victories over top-25 foes.Aoki's 2009 squad not only qualified for the ACC Tournament, but made a statement as well. Entering the tournament needing at least one win to likely ensure a spot in an NCAA regional, the Eagles lost their first game to No. 7 Florida State. Boston College then responded emphatically, beating No. 13 Georgia Tech and No. 16 Miami in the next two games by a combined score of 17-4 to earn its bid to the NCAA Austin Regional.
Last year, No. 8 seed Boston College baseball team opened the 2010 ACC Championship with top-seeded and No. 1 Virginia. The Eagles took a 4-3 lead with three runs in the top of the seventh inning, but surrendered three runs in the bottom of the eighth and lost to the Cavaliers, 6-4. Boston College, as it did in '09, rebounded with a walkoff victory over No. 10 Miami, 12-10. The Eagles plated five runs in the bottom of the ninth inning to tie the game, 10-10, before a two-run home run in the bottom of the 12th gave Boston College the victory.
AOKI NOT A STRANGER TO BIG EAST TOURNAMENT - Mik Aoki was the Boston College pitching coach from 2004-06, including the Eagles last two years in the BIG EAST ('04-05). Boston College reached the 2004 BIG EAST championship game, but lost to Notre Dame, 11-5.
The Eagles and Irish squared off in a memorable first round battle. Notre Dame tallied a run in the bottom of the ninth inning to on a Matt Edwards' RBI single to edge Boston College, 3-2. Eagles' eventual first-round MLB draft pick Chris Lambert did not allow an earned run in 8.0 innings (struck out eight, walked two and yielded just two hits), but did not factor in the decision.
Aoki and No. 2 seed Boston College faced off against the Irish in an opneing round game of the 2004 tournament. The Eagles took a 5-4 lead into the ninth inning and were one out away from victory, but C Shawn McGill's throw to end the game, sailed over 1B Dave Preziosi's head into right field. The error brought two Irish runners home. That proved to be the difference.
CONNECTICUT INSIDER - The Huskies, led by eighth-year head coach Jim Penders, enter the BIG EAST tournament with a 39-15-1 overall record and 22-5 mark in BIG EAST action.Connecticut is averaging 6.5 runs per game and hitting .307 with a .384 on-base percentage. The Huskies have also totaled 115 stolen bases in 151 attempts.
Junior OF George Springer leads UConn in just about every offensive category. He leads the team with a .379 batting average, 51 runs scored, 77 hits, 22 doubles, 12 home runs, 72 RBI and 29 stolen bases (in 36 attempts). He has also added two triples, 28 walks, 18 hit-by-pitches and seven sacrifice flies. Springer owns a .685 slugging percentage and .480 on-base percentage. Senior 1B Mike Nemeth is hitting .335 with 42 runs scored, 71 hits, nine doubles, three home runs and 43 RBI. He has collected 41 walks and swiped two bases (in two attempts). Sophomore 2B L.J. Mazzilli is batting .335 with 35 runs scored, 75 hits, 20 doubles, four triples, two home runs and 25 RBI. He has drawn 18 walks and swiped 11 bases (in 19 attempts). Junior SS Nick Ahmed is hitting .322 with 43 runs scored, 48 hits, nine doubles, two triples, two home runs and 29 RBI. He has not played April 25. Junior 3B Ryan Fuller is batting .302 with 33 runs scored, 60 hits, 23 doubles, four triples, four home runs and 47 RBI, but has also struck out 47 times.
The Huskies' pitching staff has a 2.79 ERA and .222 opponents' batting average along with 391 strikeouts and 193 walks in 493.0 innings of work. Connecticut averages 3.52 walks and 7.14 strikeouts per nine innings. Junior RHP Matt Barnes will take the mound. He is 11-3 with a 1.11 ERA in 105.0 innings of work over 14 appearances, all starts. Barnes has allowed 19 runs, 13 earned, on 58 hits and his opponents are hitting .163 against him. He has struck out 97 and walked 26.
Junior RHP David Fischer (2-1, 1.34 ERA in 20 appearances, two starts), sophomore RHP Will Jolin (2-1, 2.55 ERA in 20 appearances), sophomore RHP Dan Feehan (1-2, 2.73 ERA in 22 appearances) and junior RHP Kevin Vance (0-0, 1.19 ERA in 23 appearances and 12 saves) makeup the Husky bullpen.
Connecticut has committed 79 errors in 55 games and fields .964.
LAST MEETINGS WITH CONNECTICUT - Notre Dame dropped two of three to the Huskies earlier this season in South Bend. The Huskies took the first two games of the series (3-1 and 6-3), but the Irish rolled in the finale (14-4).The series opener featured a matchup between arguably the top two pitchers in the BIG EAST Conference -- Notre Dame senior RHP Brian Dupra and Connecticut junior RHP Matt Barnes. Neither right-handed hurler disappointed, but Barnes was the benefactor of quality situational hitting as UConn slipped past the Irish, 3-1. Barnes improved to 6-2 on the year. He allowed one earned run on four hits in 7.1 innings. Kevin Vance collected his fourth save of the season with a scoreless ninth inning, but it was not without an Irish rally. Senior LF Matt Grosso drew a leadoff walk and senior 3B Greg Sherry singled to put two on and nobody out, but sophomore C Joe Hudson popped out to third on his sacrifice bunt attempt, which would have moved the tying run into scoring position. Vance then got sophomore DH Adam Norton to pop out and sophomore 2B Frank DeSico to ground into a fielder's choice to end the game. Dupra was charged with the loss and dropped to 2-3 on the year. He limited the Huskies to just two runs, one of which was unearned, on six hits in 7.1 innings. Dupra fanned four and walked three. Notre Dame stranded nine on the base paths, while UConn plated two of its three runs on sacrifice flies. Fifth-year senior RF Herman Petzold and Sherry were the only two Irish players to collect multiple hits. Petzold went 2-for-3, while Sherry went 2-for-4 with an RBI single.
Connecticut's George Springer went 2-for-5 with a two-run home run and the Huskies took advantage of five Notre Dame walks en route to a 6-3 victory in game two of the series. Elliott Glynn picked up the victory for the Huskies and improved to 2-4 on the campaign. The southpaw tossed just 5.0 innings, but limited Notre Dame to a pair of earned runs on four hits. Glynn struck out one and walked one. Irish senior RHP Cole Johnson was charged with the loss. He dropped to 2-5. Johnson failed to register a quality start for the first time in eight outings in 2011. He allowed just four hits and struck out six in 4.1 innings of work, but surrendered five runs, all earned, and walked three. Three of the Huskies five runs off Johnson reached base via walk or hit-by-pitch. Kevin Vance pitched a scoreless ninth for the second straight day to pick up the save. Freshman 1B Trey Mancini was the lone offensive bright spot for the Irish. He went 3-for-4 with a run scored and RBI single.
Notre Dame took advantage of three Connecticut errors in the bottom of the first inning to grab a 5-0 lead and never looked back. Freshman 1B Trey Mancini and fifth-year senior RF Herman Petzold each drove in four runs as the Irish routed the Huskies, 14-4, and salvaged the final game of the three-game series. Senior RHP Todd Miller picked up the win and improved to 3-2 on the season. He limited the potent Huskies' lineup to just two earned runs on eight hits in 6.2 innings of work. Miller struck out two and walked one. He has collected his sixth quality start of 2011 (in eight outings). Miller did issue a walk to open the game, but did not issue another free pass the rest of the afternoon. UConn southpaw Greg Nappo was charged with the loss and dropped to 3-2. He was victimized by an assortment of errors. Nappo allowed nine runs, only three earned, on five hits in 2.2 innings of work. He struck out two and walked two. Connecticut finished the game with six defensive miscues. Mancini and Petzold provided most of the Irish offense, but senior 3B Greg Sherry added three hits and sophomore C Joe Hudson and junior LF Alex Robinson chipped in with two hits apiece. Mancini went 2-for-4 with three runs scored and his team-high fifth home run of the season. Petzold also went 2-for-4 with two runs scored and a bases-clearing, three-run double. Sherry went 3-for-4 with an RBI and two runs scored. Hudson and Robinson each went 2-for-4. Hudson drove in a run and scored twice, while Robinson scored a run and drove in a run. The five-run first inning was the largest first inning outburst for Notre Dame since they plated five in the opening frame on March 4, 2007, against Nebraska in Deland, Fla. The Irish went on to upset the #7 Cornhuskers, 16-6.
CONNECTICUT SERIES HISTORY - Notre Dame leads the series with Connecticut, 24-13-1, including a 14-8 mark at Frank Eck Stadium and 10-5-1 record at UConn. The Irish won 11 straight against the Huskies from 2003-06 and took a 12-game unbeaten streak against the Huskies (11-0-1) into the 2007 series in South Bend (UConn took two of three), matching Notre Dame's second-longest unbeaten streak ever against a BIG EAST team (the Irish won 12 straight against West Virginia from 2003-06 and beat Georgetown 23 straight times from 1996-05).Connecticut has had the better of the Irish in South Bend in recent history. UConn has taken two of three from Notre Dame in each of its last three trips (2007, '09 and '11).
On the otherhand, Notre Dame is 7-1-1 over its last nine games at UConn dating back to the 2002 season. That year, the Huskies swept the Irish in three games at Storrs to open the BIG EAST slate. Notre Dame would regroup and not only capture the BIG EAST regular season and tournament titles, but reach the College World Series.
Notre Dame has won eight of the previous 13 season series against UConn (the Huskies have four series wins, plus a split of a two-game series).
The Irish took two of three from the Huskies in Storrs in 2008. UConn took the opener, 9-7, but the Irish rebounded to win the next two games, including a 4-3 decision in the finale. Eric Maust went a then career-high 8.2 innings and Kyle Weiland got the final out of the game with the tying run in scoring position.
The 2007 series was a wild one. After UConn blanked the Irish, 5-0, in the series opener, Ryan Smith lined a first-pitch, opposite-field single over the second baseman's head to cap Notre Dame's wild 5-4 victory over Connecticut in game two. The winning sequence came against a pair of relievers, with Ross Brezovsky drawing a five-pitch walk against Ted Garry (2-5) before Jeremy Barnes beat out his sacrifice bunt. Huskies' closer Matt Karl then took the mound but uncorked a costly wild pitch before losing Mike Dury on another five-pitch walk. Smith then went after the first pitch he saw, driving a fastball over the leaping second baseman Dale Brannon to end the game.
Wade Korpi was in line for the win in the series finale, after allowing just one run on five hits and two walks in a 6.0-inning outing that included six strikeouts. But the Huskies rallied for six runs against the Irish bullpen. The Irish were one out away from the win before the Huskies rallied into the lead, with that two-out sequence including two hits and two walks. Matt Untiet brought home the tying and go-ahead runs with a single up the middle. Karl (1-2) tossed the final 3.0 innings to pick up his first win of the season, along with 10 saves. Karl allowed one run on three hits and a walk while striking out three - including two in the ninth inning (the final K came with the tying and winning runs on base). Greg Nappo, a former summer-league teammate of Pollock's, did not factor into the decision, after allowing five run on five hits and two walks, with six strikeouts.
The 2006 showdown series at UConn saw Notre Dame sweep the doubleheader (7-6, 7-3) before the final ended in a 1-1 tie after 13 innings (the Irish and Huskies went on to finish a close 1-2 in the standings). Jeff Samardzija (7.2 IP, 6 R/5 ER, 9 H, 3 BB, 3 Ks) won the 2006 opener while Tim Norton had a no-decision (8.1 IP, 6 R/5 ER, 7 H, 3 BB, 7 Ks). Danny Dressman's three doubles in that game included the game-tying hit (vs. Ted Garry), as the Irish scored twice in the ninth inning (Mike Dury had the win and Kyle Weiland the save, each pitching 0.2 IP). Craig Cooper (5-for-6, RBI, 3 R) paced Notre Dame in game two, with Jeff Manship collecting the win (7 IP, R, 6 H, BB, 8 Ks) and Dury the save (0.2 IP) while Rich Sirois took the loss (6.2 IP, 6 R, 12 H, BB, 3 Ks). The 2006 series finale saw Wade Korpi (7 IP, R, 6 H, 2 BB, 5 Ks) start for an injured Tom Thornton and Weiland logged the final 5.0 innings in extended relief (5 IP, 2 H, 2 BB, 7 Ks). Notre Dame scored its lone run in the fifth inning (Cody Rizzo and Cooper both were hit-by-pitch, Brett Lilley singled to load the bases and the run scored on a ground ball fielding error). UConn also scored in the fifth, after a single by Dennis Donovan, a Josh Farkes HBP and Austin Wasserman's 2-out, RBI single. Nick Tucci suffered the game three loss (7.2 IP, R, 5 H, 2 BB, 3 Ks).
The 2005 series saw Dan Kapala (8 IP, 2 R, 6 H, BB, 2 Ks) and Thornton (9 IP, R, 6 H, 0 BB, 4 KS) become the first Notre Dame pitchers since 2001 (Aaron Heilman and Danny Tamayo) to throw complete-game wins in both ends of a BIG EAST doubleheader. Brian Dupra and Eric Maust accomplished a similar feat earlier this season against West Virginia.
Notre Dame's 2002 College World Series season included opening BIG EAST play with three losses at UConn (3-4, 8-9, 6-13), now one of just six times the Irish have ever been swept in a three-game BIG EAST series. That 2002 team ultimately started its season 9-10 and 0-4 in the BIG EAST but rallied to win the BIG EAST regular-season (18-8) and tournament titles.
Notre Dame's 2004 trip to UConn's Christian Field included a 10-hit, 10-run explosion by the Irish in the 1st inning of game three, as Matt Bransfield, Cooper and Matt Edwards all homered (in a span of four ABs), with Steve Sollman and Cooper each adding two-run singles. That win allowed the 2004 Irish team to become the first BIG EAST team ever to sweep a trio of three-game BIG EAST road series in the same season.
TALE OF THE TAPE
| ||Notre Dame||Connecticut|
|Runs Per Game||3.8||6.5|
|Batters' BB+HBP-SO Margin||-94||-29|
|Opponent Batting Average||.266||.222|
|Pitchers' SO-BB Ratio||2.69||2.03|
|Pitchers' SO Per 9 Innings||6.85||7.14|
|Pitchers' BB Per 9 Innings||2.55||3.52|
|Fielding Pct. (Errors)||.907 (58)||.964 (79)|
|Double Plays Turned||35||57|
|Record at Home||11-9||17-2-1|
|Record on Road (including neutral)||11-18-1||22-13|
|Record in One-Run Games||9-10||2-4|
|Record in Extra Innings||3-5-1||0-1-1|
|NOTRE DAME Stats vs. matt barnes|
|NOTRE DAME Stats vs. stephen catalina|
|NOTRE DAME Stats vs. dan feehan|
|NOTRE DAME Stats vs. david fischer|
|NOTRE DAME Stats vs. elliott glynn|
|NOTRE DAME Stats vs. will jolin|
|NOTRE DAME Stats vs. ryan moore|
|NOTRE DAME Stats vs. greg nappo|
|NOTRE DAME Stats vs. kevin vance|
|CONNECTICUT Career Stats vs. Sean Fitzgerald|
|CONNECTICUT Career Stats vs. Will Hudgins|
|CONNECTICUT Career Stats vs. Anthony McIver|
|CONNECTICUT Career Stats vs. Adam Norton|
|CONNECTICUT Career Stats vs. Dan Slania|
GRADUATE AND GO - Twelve members of the Irish baseball team participated in Notre Dame graduation ceremonies on Sunday before the squad took off for Clearwater on Monday morning.
LHP Joe Spizzirri, 3B Greg Sherry, C Matt Scioscia, RF Herman Petzold, RHP Todd Miller, C Cameron McConnell, RHP Cole Johnson, OF Matt Grosso, RHP Brian Dupra, SS Mick Doyle, 1B David Casey and 1B Ty Adams all donned their caps and gowns and received their diplomas at Notre Dame Stadium Sunday afternoon.
The team then took boarded the bus at 5:30 a.m. ET Monday morning for O'Hare Airport.
WALKING A TIGHTROPE - Notre Dame has played 19 games decided by one run in 2011. The Irish are 9-10 in those outings and it does not include three other extra-inning contests where Notre Dame either tied (Gonzaga, March 20) or lost by two runs (West Virginia, April 15; Michigan, May 4).
Notre Dame has established the school record for most games decided by a single run. The 2001 squad played in 18 games decided by the slimmest of margins.
The nine wins by a single run is tied for the seventh-most in single-season school history.
Here is a look at the top 10 seasons in terms of most games decided by a single run and those teams records in those contests.
Notre Dame has had two BIG EAST series in which all three games were decided by one run (vs. Georgetown and vs. Seton Hall).
Notre Dame has played in eight games decided by two runs and nine more decided by three runs. In all, 36 of Notre Dame's 50 games have been decided by three runs or less.
Here is a look at all of the Irish one-run contests:
|Rank||Year||1-run Games||Record||Rank||Year||1-run Wins|
| ||2001||18||9-9|| ||1981||11|
| ||2009||17||10-7|| ||2004||10|
| ||1998||15||10-5|| ||2003||9|
| ||2004||15||10-5|| ||2002||9|
| ||1985||14||8-6|| ||1997||9|
| ||1975||14||8-6|| ||1992||9|
| || || || || ||1967||9 (9-0)|
|February 18 (Michigan State)||L, 1-2|
|February 26 (Seattle)||L, 0-1 |
|March 5 (Manhattan)||W, 5-4 |
|March 12 (Coastal Carolina)||L, 3-4 |
|March 15 (UTSA)||W, 5-4 |
|March 17 (Iowa)||L, 3-4 |
|March 25 (Georgetown)||W, 3-2 |
|March 26 (Georgetown)||W, 1-0 |
|March 27 (Georgetown)||L, 3-4 |
|March 29 (Central Michigan)||W, 3-2|
|April 1 (Pittsburgh)||L, 2-3 (11) |
|April 2 (Pittsburgh)||L, 5-6|
|April 29 (Seton Hall)||L, 1-2|
|April 30 (Seton Hall)||W, 2-1 (12)|
|May 1 (Seton Hall)||W, 5-4|
|May 3 (Michigan)||L, 1-2|
|May 7 (Rutgers-1)||W, 5-4|
|May 8 (Rutgers)||L, 2-3 (14)|
|May 20 (Louisville)||W, 2-1|
FOR STARTERS - Notre Dame's starting pitchers have registered a quality start (pitcher completes at least six innings and permits no more than three earned runs) in 31 of 50 games for the Irish this season and own a 3.26 ERA. The five-man rotation of senior RHP Brian Dupra, senior RHP Cole Johnson, senior RHP Todd Miller, sophomore RHP Adam Norton and freshman LHP Anthony McIver have struck out 249 and walked only 78 in 320.2 innings of work.The 31 quality starts is even more impressive when you consider Notre Dame totaled 11 over the course of the entire 2010 season (54 games).
Dupra, Johnson and Miller have combined for 27 quality starts (Norton, three, and McIver, one, have the other four) and a 3.27 ERA (269.1 IP, 98 ER). Opponents are batting .267 against Dupra, Johnson and Miller.
Dupra, Johnson and Miller's 27 quality starts have come in 38 outings in 2011. Notre Dame's weekend rotation accounted for just 11 over the entire course of 2010 (54 games).
The weekend rotation has struck out 208 batters and walked only 64 in their 269.1 innings of work. That equates to a 3.25 strikeout-to-walk ratio, 6.95 punch outs per nine innings and 2.14 walks per nine innings.
Dupra, Johnson and Miller registered nine straight quality starts to open 2011. The Irish had not gone that many consecutive games with a quality start in nearly 10 years. Notre Dame recorded nine straight quality starts from Mar. 31 - Apr. 10, 2001. The starters that posted those nine straight quality starts: Aaron Heilman (2), Danny Tamayo (2), J.P. Gagne (2), Mike Naumann (2) and Peter Ogilvie.
Notre Dame's starting rotation of Dupra, Johnson, Miller, McIver and Norton has averaged 6.41 innings per start. In fact, Dupra, Johnson and Miller have averaged 6.57 innings per start on the weekend. Notre Dame's starting pitchers averaged only 4.73 innings per start in 2010.
Dupra and Johnson each rank among the top 10 in the BIG EAST in innings pitched. Dupra (97.0) ranks fifth and Johnson (93.0) ranks ninth. Notre Dame is the only school in the conference that has two pitchers ranked among the top 10 in innings pitched.
Notre Dame's pitching staff has already totaled 23 starts of at least 7.0 innings in 2011. The Irish managed only seven such starts over the course of the entire 2010 campaign (54 games).
HOPE YOU ARE NOT LEFT-HANDED - Notre Dame entered this season without two weekend starters from 2010 (junior LHP Steve Sabatino and graduated RHP Eric Maust). Sabatino, along with key junior LHP Irish relievers Joe Spano, Ryan Richter and Dustin Ispas, will miss the entire 2011 campaign following offseason elbow injuries. All four have already begun the rehabilitation process following Tommy John surgery. The injuries left Notre Dame with exactly one scholarship LHP (freshman Anthony McIver).
PITCHING THE NAME OF THE GAME - Notre Dame enters the BIG EAST tournament with a 3.36 ERA. The Irish entered the game against Michigan State on May 17 with a 2.82 ERA, but has posted a 10.06 ERA over the last four contests. Ninetween of those runs allowed have come against three members of the 2011 Irish staff that had totaled only 13.0 innings over the entire year.Despite the recent struggles, the 3.36 ERA is the best by a Notre Dame staff since2001 (3.22). The Irish owns a 2.69 strikeout-to-walk ratio, which is light years better than the total of 1.73 from 2010. Notre Dame has walked only 129 batters in 455.2 innings, good for a 2.55 average per nine innings. That mark is just off the school record for fewest walks per nine innings (2.48 in 2001), but still would rank second all-time.
Here is where the Irish would rank among the top five in a number of single-season pitching categories:
|Rank||SO/BB Ratio||Year||Rank||BB Allowed/9 IP||Year|
|1.||2.95 (504/171)||2006||1.||2.48 (151/547.2)||2001|
|2.||2.78 (420/151)||2001||2.||2.55 (129/455.2)||2011|
|3.||2.69 (347/129)||2011||3.||2.63 (162/554.2)||2004|
| ||2.69 (436/162)||2004||4.||2.82 (161/513.0)||1994|
|5.||2.49 (454/182)||2000||5.||2.90 (165/512.0)||1992|
|Rank||WP Allowed/Game (since 1969)||Year|
Notre Dame owns a 2.69 strikeout-to-walk ratio, which is light years better than the total of 1.73 from 2010. Here is an interesting comparison between the 2011 pitching staff and those from 2007-10.
|Category||2011||2010||2009||2008||2007||School Record (Year)|
|Opp. Avg.||.266||.299||.286||.272||.267||.204 (1960)|
|BB/9 IP||2.55||3.65||3.82||3.41||3.49||2.48 (2001)|
Here is where the Irish appeared in a number of pitching categories in the latest NCAA rankings (through May 15):
|ERA||2.82 (15th)||Texas (2.17)|
|Hits Allowed Per Nine Innings||8.58 (50th)||Texas (6.19)|
|Walks Allowed Per Nine Innings||2.48 (12th)||Florida (1.80)|
Series Pitching Breakdown
The Irish pitching staff ranks first, second or third in the following BIG EAST categories:
|Category||ND||BIG EAST Rank|
|Fewest Walks Allowed||129||1st|
|Fewest Hit Batters||33||1st|
|Fewest Wild Pitches||18||2nd|
|Sac Bunts Allowed||56||3rd|
|Fewest Runs Allowed||207||3rd|
The Irish pitching staff ranks first, second or third in the following BIG EAST categories in league games only:
|Category||ND||BIG EAST Rank|
|Fewest Walks Allowed||66||1st|
|Fewest Wild Pitches||7||1st|
|Fewest Hit Batters||20||t-1st|
|Runners Picked Off||5||t-3rd|
Johnson and Dupra have been saddled with awful run support the entire season. Johnson (3.00) ranks 11th in the BIG EAST in ERA and Dupra also in the top 10 prior to his last start at Louisville, but the duo has combined for a 7-13 record. Notre Dame scored a grand total of 74 runs over Dupra and Johnson's first 24 combined starts of 2011 or just 3.08 per game. That even included the 19 runs the Irish managed in Johnson's first start of 2011. Taking out that start, Notre Dame averaged 2.39 runs in games started by the senior tandem prior to the USF series.
Dupra and Johnson got eight and 10 runs, respectively, of support against the Bulls.
Johnson, who received 19 runs of support in his first start of 2011, benefitted from a total of 22 runs over his next 11 starts of the season combined.
Notre Dame has limited 19 opponents to two earned runs or less over its 50 games. The Irish limited their foes to 13 such games in 2010 (54 games).
The Irish staff has been quite stubborn in 2011 in terms of issuing walks. Notre Dame has walked only 129 batters in 455.2 innings, good for a 2.55 average per nine innings. That mark is just off the school record for fewest walks per nine innings (2.48 in 2001), but still would rank second all-time.
The Irish lead the BIG EAST in fewest walks by a large margin. Notre Dame's 129 free passes is far ahead of second place Rutgers (155 walks).
Even more impressive when you consider Notre Dame averaged 3.65 walks per nine innings in 2010 and 3.73 per nine innings combined in 2009 and 2010. The 3.82 free passes per nine innings in 2009 was the highest for an Irish staff since 1999.
Notre Dame has posted 29 games with two issued walks or less and 19 outings with one free pass or less over its 50 games. By comparison, the 2010 staff totaled 19 games with two issued walks or less and 15 with one free pass or less over the course of the entire season (54 games).
Dupra, Johnson, Miller, McIver and Norton, the five Irish pitchers to start in 2011, have walked only 74 in 304.1 innings of work over 47 starts. Dupra, Johnson and Miller did not walk a single batter in 22.2 innings of work at the Coca-Cola Classic in Rock Hill, S.C. In fact, the entire Irish staff walked only three (and one was intentional) in 35.0 innings of work that weekend.
IRISH CONTINUE TO PITCH OUT OF JAMS - Notre Dame's pitching staff has come through all season with runners on base. They have limited their opponents to a .257 (210-for-818) batting average with runners on base. In fact, Notre Dame has been even more effective with runners in scoring position - limiting its opposition to a .245 batting average (128-for-523).Here is an interesting comparison between the 2011 pitching staff and those from 2007-10.
|With Runners On Base||.257||.317||.312||.267||.280|
|With Two Outs||.235||.309||.283||.263||.246|
|With Runners In Scoring Position||.245||.312||.300||.258||.269|
THE IRISH PEN FAR FROM FOUL - Notre Dame's starting pitching has been outstanding all season and its bullpen has not disappointed either. The front line bullpen of junior RHP Will Hudgins, freshman RHP Sean Fitzgerald, freshman RHP Dan Slania, freshman LHP Anthony McIver and sophomore RHP Adam Norton carry a 2.58 ERA into the BIG EAST tournament. The bullpen owns a 9-9 record with 11 saves and has limited its opponents to a .245 batting average. The quintet has struck out 86 and walked 31. Here is an interesting comparison between the 2011 bullpen and those from 2007-10.
The Irish relief corps has been even better in BIG EAST action. Notre Dame's bullpen has posted a 2.08 ERA in 73.2 innings. They own a 7-4 record and seven saves in league play. The bullpen has struck out 43 and walked 20. Irish opponents are batting just .230 against the bullpen in BIG EAST games. The pen has surrendered two home runs and 12 total extra-base hits in 26 league games.
Even more impressive, three of Notre Dame's top four relief pitchers to this point of 2011 are all freshmen. LHP Anthony McIver (2-3, 3.26 ERA), RHP Sean Fitzgerald (1-2, 1.93 ERA with five saves) and RHP Dan Slania (2-3, 1.84 ERA with three saves) have been nearly untouchable out of the bullpen. The rookie trio has posted only a 5-8 record, but have combined for a 2.66 ERA in 81.1 innings of work. They have punched out 61 and walked only 25.
Fitzgerald, Slania and McIver have been even better in BIG EAST games. Fitzgerald is 1-1 with a 1.64 ERA and five saves. He has allowed just 16 hits in 22.0 innings of work with 14 strikeouts and two walks. Slania ia 2-1 with a 0.75 ERA and one save. He has allowed 10 hits in 12.0 innings of work with six punch outs and two walks. McIver is 2-2 with a 2.08 ERA in 13.0 innings of work. He has allowed 13 hits and fanned seven with eight walks. The trio carries a BIG EAST ERA of 1.53.
Fitzgerald and Slania helped the Irish secure a spot in the BIG EAST tournament with 4.2 scoreless innings of relief in the 2-1 victory over Louisville on May 20. Slania registered the victory with 3.1 scoreless innings. Fitzgerald picked up the save with 1.1 hitless innings.
Junior RHP Will Hudgins (1.78 ERA in 17 relief appearances) improved to 4-0 with another quality relief outing at Rutgers on May 7. The sidewinder allowed one earned run, a solo home run, on a pair of hits in 3.0 innings of work. Hudgins struck out three and did not issue a walk. He had not allowed a run, earned or unearned, since March 20 against Gonzaga - a span of 16.2 scoreless innings of work.
Fitzgerald was charged with the loss out of the bullpen against Michigan on May 3. He allowed a pair of hits in his inning of relief. With the score tied, 1-1, Fitzgerald yielded a solo home run to Coley Crank in the bottom of the eighth inning. The round tripper was only the second home run allowed by the Irish bullpen in 98.1 innings of work this season. It was the first home run allowed by the pen since Fitzgerald surrendered one on March 5 against Winthrop - a span of 78.1 innings.
Notre Dame's bullpen posted a 1.32 ERA over the 14 games (41.0 innings) following the late inning collapse against Pittsburgh on April 1. The Irish surrendered an eighth inning, 5-1, lead en route to a 6-5 loss to the Panthers. The quartet of junior RHP Will Hudgins (1-0, 0.00 ERA in six appearances over 8.1 IP), freshman RHP Dan Slania (1-0, 1.80 ERA in four appearances over 5.0 IP), freshman LHP Anthony McIver (0-2, 0.90 ERA in seven appearances over 10.0 IP), freshman RHP Sean Fitzgerald (1-0, 1.93 ERA in nine appearances over 14.0 IP) and sophomore RHP Adam Norton (0-0, 3.38 ERA in two appearances over 2.2 IP) limited foes to a .208 batting average.
IRISH PRETTY SOLID WITH THE GLOVE - Notre Dame enters the BIG EAST tournament with a .970 fielding percentage. The Irish have committed 58 errors in 1,960 fielding chances. Notre Dame is tied for second in the BIG EAST in fielding percentage. The Irish also have committed the second-fewest errors in the conference.The .970 fielding percentage is the best by a Notre Dame squad since 2008 (.973) and tied for third-best since 1982.
|Rank||Fielding Percentage (since 1982)||Year|
| ||.970 (1960/1902)||2011|
Notre Dame has only allowed 27 stolen bases and 51 stolen base attempts in 2011 - both are the fewest in the BIG EAST.
|Fewest Stolen Bases Against|
|1. Notre Dame||27|
|2. St. John's||32|
|8. Seton Hall||54|
|11. West Virginia||69|
|Fewest Stolen Base Attempts Against|
|1. Notre Dame||51|
|2. St. John's||62|
|9. Seton Hall||86|
|11. West Virginia||103|
The 27 stolen bases are the fewest allowed by an Irish team since at least 1995. Here is a comparison o recent years.
|Stolen Base Attempts||51||83||95||75||95||95||143||82|
FIRST INNING EXPLOSION - Notre Dame plated five runs in the bottom of the first inning en route to a 14-4 rout of Connecticut on April 10. The five runs were the most for the Irish in any first inning this season. The last time the Irish scored five runs in the first inning came on March 4, 2007 against Nebraska in Deland, Florida. Notre Dame went on to upset #7 Nebraska, 16-6.The last time Notre Dame scored more than five runs in the first inning came on March 22, 2006 against Central Michigan. The Irish used a seven-run first inning to beat the Chippewas, 11-9.
Notre Dame has struggled to score runs in 2011, but has managed to register innings with 11 runs (vs. Purdue on Feb. 19) and five runs (vs. Connecticut on Apr. 10, vs. Pittsburgh on Apr. 3 and vs. Penn State on Feb. 20).
Oh Captain, My Captain - Senior SS Mick Doyle and senior RHP Brian Dupra are serving as Notre Dame's team captains for the 2011 season. Each received the captain's honor following a preseason vote by their teammates. Dupra served as a team-captain in 2010.
PROBABLY GOING TO JINX IT, BUT - Notre Dame has played three games this year that have exceeded three hours and each took extra innings. The Irish and Gonzaga tied, 3-3, in 12 innings on March 20 in a game that lasted 3:18. Notre Dame and Michigan went 10 innings on May 4 and the game lasted 3:10. The Irish played in their longest game of the season on May 8 against Rutgers. Notre Dame lost 3-2 in 14 innings to the Scarlet Knights. The game lasted 3:56.The Irish have played in 21 games this season that finished under two hours and 20 minutes, including two games at Winthrop, all three outings at Seattle and two of the three games against Georgetown.
The longest game of the series with the Redhawks was Friday's meeting, which lasted only 2:20. The final two games of the series took just 1:52 and 2:01 to complete, respectively.
The first game of the doubleheader on Sat., Feb. 25, which lasted only 1:52, was the quickest nine-inning game for the Irish since Apr. 4, 2009 against Villanova. Notre Dame planked the Wildcats, 4-0, in 1:43.
Notre Dame's two games in its doubleheader at St. John's last 1:49 and 2:19, respectively.
Notre Dame's 50 games of 2011 have averaged out to just over 2:27 minutes in length.
IRISH COACHING DEBUTS - Mik Aoki was looking to join Dave Schrage (2007; 15-7 vs. Prairie View A&M) and Pat Murphy (1988; 14-11 at Duke) as the only Notre Dame coaches since 1924 to win their first game with the Irish, but Notre Dame dropped its season opener against Michigan State on Feb. 18.Here's a quick look at the first-game results of new head coaches dating back to the '14 season (5-5-1; previous seasons had rotating coaches who spent only part of the season with the team).
|First-Year Head Coach Debuts|
|Mik Aoki||L, 1-2 vs. Michigan State||Feb. 18, 2011|
|Dave Schrage||W, 15-7 vs. Prairie View A&M||Feb. 17, 2007|
|Paul Mainieri||L, 6-10 vs. Texas||Feb. 24, 1995|
|Pat Murphy||W, 14-11 at Duke||Feb. 25, 1988|
|Larry Gallo||L, 7-8 at Delta State||Mar. 16, 1981|
|Tom Kelly||L, 3-4 vs. St. Bernard||Mar. 14, 1976|
|Jake Kline||L, 5-7 vs. Ohio State||Apr. 13, 1934|
|George Keogan||W, 4-3 at Georgia Tech||Apr. 12, 1924|
|Walter Halas||T, 3-3 vs. Wisconsin||Apr. 15, 1921|
|Gus Dorais||W, 4-3 vs. Wisconsin||Apr. 19, 1919|
|Jess Harper||W, 7-2 vs. Wisconsin||Apr. 7, 1914|
MANCINI GOES BOOM BOOM - Freshman 1B Trey Mancini leads Notre Dame in batting (.333), hits (59), triples (three), home runs (nine), RBI (34), total bases (106), slugging percentage (.599) on-base percentage (.398), multiple hit games (17), multiple RBI games (nine) and runs scored (33).
Mancini has earned BIG EAST honor roll three times this season. No player has been honored by the BIG EAST more this season in terms of Player of the Week/Honor Roll than Mancini. Georgetown's Rand Ravnaas, St. John's Joe Panik, West Virginia's Grant Buckner and Mancini are the only four position players to receive such honors three times.
Mancini was named to the BIG EAST Weekly Honor Roll on May 9. He paced the Irish offense over the week. Mancini batted .455 (10-for-22) with one run scored, two doubles, one triple and two RBI in five games. He registered a .636 slugging percentage and .500 on-base percentage. Mancini also played flawless defense, not committing an error in 58 fielding chances.
Mancini was dynamite in the series victory at Rutgers. He batted .571 (8-for-14) with a run scored, double, triple and two RBI. He went 7-for-8 in the doubleheader sweep of the Scarlet Knights. Mancini reached base safely in each of his first eight plate appearances in the series (seven hits and a intentional walk). He collected a base hit in all five games, including a three- and four-hit game.
Mancini was named to the BIG EAST Weekly Honor Roll for the second time this season on Apr. 11. He batted .533 (8-for-15) with six runs scored, two doubles, one home run and seven RBI in four games last week. He is the only rookie to earn the nomination twice this season.
With Notre Dame trailing Seton Hall, 4-2, in the bottom of the eighth inning and two outs on May 1, the Pirates called upon closer Matt Harvey. He entered the contest with 46 strikeouts in 27.2 innings of work, including five punch outs in 2.2 innings of work en route to his fourth save of the season in the series opener, but Mancini hammered a 1-0 fast ball over the batter's eye in left centerfield to give the Notre Dame its first lead of the game and ultimately a 5-4 come-from-behind victory at Frank Eck Stadium.
Mancini ranks among the freshman leaders in the latest NCAA rankings in a number of offensive categories (through May 15):
|Category||Total (NCAA Rank)|
|Home Runs Per Game||0.20 (t-2nd)|
|Home Runs||9 (t-2nd)|
|Slugging Percentage||.612 (4th)|
|Total Bases||101 (t-12th)|
|Batting Average||.339 (33rd)|
Of the eight freshmen in the NCAA with nine home runs, none have played fewer games (50) as the Irish first baseman.
Mancini ranks among the leaders in the following BIG EAST categories in all games:
|Category||Total (BIG EAST Rank)|
|Home Runs||9 (t-5th)|
|Slugging Percentage||.599 (5th)|
|Total Bases||106 (11th)|
Mancini ranks among the leaders in the following BIG EAST categories in league games only:
|Category||Total (BIG EAST Rank)|
|Home Runs||7 (t-3rd)|
|Total Bases||61 (t-6th)|
|Slugging Percentage||.629 (5th)|
Here is how Mancini ranks among all BIG EAST freshman in a number of offensive categories:
|Category||Total (BIG EAST Freshman Rank)|
|Home Runs||9 (1st)|
|Slugging Percentage||.599 (1st)|
|Batting Average||.333 (2nd)|
|On Base Percentage||.398 (3rd)|
|Runs Scored||33 (3rd)|
Mancini would be the first Notre Dame freshman and eighth player in program history to lead the Irish in all three triple crown categories (batting average, home runs and RBI). Only seven players have accomplished the feat since 1948. The other players to lead Notre Dame in all three categories included Ryan Connolly (2010), Dan Peltier (1989), Mike Trudeau (1985), George Sefcik (1962), Dick O'Leary (1961) and Elmer Kohorst (1956, although tied for home run lead). Here is the breakdown on those players and their respective offensive totals.
|Year||Player||Batting Average||Home Runs||RBI|
* projected stats over 56-game season
JAGIELO IN THE MIDDLE OF THE ORDER - Freshman Eric Jagielo started at first base and batted third for the Irish in the season opener against Michigan State. He was the first Notre Dame rookie to start at first base in a season opener since Feb. 23, 1989. Joe Binkiewicz started at first base in the first game of a doubleheader against Trinity (TX).Jagielo delivered a two-out, walk-off RBI single in the bottom of the 12th inning to give the Irish a 2-1 victory over Seton Hall on April 30 at Frank Eck Stadium. He slapped a 1-0 offering from George Fernandez into left field to plate senior SS Mick Doyle.
Jagielo is the first Notre Dame rookie to bat third in a season opener since at least 1988. Irish records unfortunately do not have complete box scores prior to the '88 season.
Jagielo has started games in 2011 at four different positions. He has started at first base, third base, left field and center field. Jagielo played shortstop in high school and exclusively in the infield.
Jagielo has hit third in the lineup over all 50 games in 2011.
Jagielo has homered twice in the last seven games. He smacked a two-run bomb on the first inning against USF on May 13 and did the same thing versus Michigan State on May 17.
PETZOLD ULTIMATE EXAMPLE OF PAYING DUES - Notre Dame fifth-year senior OF Herman Petzold entered this season with exactly three base hits and no RBI in 10 at-bats over 11 career games - all of the bench. In fact, when first-year Irish head coach Mik Aoki took over the program in June, Petzold was not even listed on the 2011 roster. Petzold contacted Aoki over the summer and expressed interest in returning. He had already taken care of his academic paperwork in order to be eligible as a fifth-year senior and Aoki offered him an opportunity to tryout in the fall without any guarantees of a spot on the roster.Petzold earned a starting spot in right field and has not looked back. He is tied or leads the team outright in hit-by-pitches (five), games played (50) and games started (50). Petzold ranks second in batting average (.288), on-base percentage (.369) and hits (51). He was the only Irish player to register a hit in each of the first six games this season and has registered a hit in 33 of Notre Dame's 50 games. Petzold also ranks third on the team with 12 multi-hit games, including a team-best equaling four games with at least three hits.
Petzold had a career-best three hits in the victory over Central Michigan on March 29. He also drew a walk to reach base safely in each of his four plate appearances. Petzold added the eventual gamewinning RBI double.
Petzold had a three-run double and drove in career-best four in the victory over Connecticut on April 10.
Petzold also played exclusively as a middle infielder over his first four years, but he started the season opener against Michigan State on Feb. 18 in right field and performed as if he had played his entire career at the position. Petzold batted .417 (5-for-12) with a walk, hit by pitch, sacrifice bunt, two doubles, three runs scored and five RBI in three starts against Michigan State, Purdue and Penn State. He also played a flawless right field. He recorded four put outs without an error.
Without a doubt, Petzold's biggest hit of the weekend came in the 19-2 rout of Purdue on Feb. 19. With the Irish trailing 2-0 in the top of the third inning, Petzold drilled an 0-2 offering into the left centerfield gap for a one-out, three-run double to give Notre Dame a 3-2 lead. Notre Dame continued the momentum with an 11-run fourth inning and never looked back. He went 3-for-6 against the Boilermakers with two runs scored and four RBI - career-bests in hits, at-bats, runs scored and RBI.
Petzold ranks among the leaders in the following BIG EAST categories:
|Category||Total (BIG EAST Rank)|
|Sacrifice Bunts||10 (t-5th)|
Johnson, Petzold Earn Academic All-District Baseball Honors - Senior RHP Cole Johnson and senior RF Herman Petzold were selected to the Capital One Academic All-District V team. Their names appeared on the national ballot for a chance to be voted as Academic All-Americans.Already a finalist for the 2011 Lowe's Senior Class Award and recent recipient of the Byron V. Kanaley Award, the most prestigious honor presented to an Irish student-athlete, Johnson maintains a 3.68 grade-point average in the College of Science as a double major in pre-professional studies (pre-medicine) and Spanish language and literature. He was named to the Dean's List for the second time this past fall. Johnson has also been honored as a BIG EAST academic all-star each of the last three years.
Johnson, a right-handed pitcher, has rebounded from an injury-plagued 2010 season with a stellar campaign in '11. Johnson has pitched far better than his 4-7 record would indicate. Notre Dame has managed to score just 37 runs over his last 13 starts (10 alone came in one outing). He has a 3.00 ERA in 14 starts over 93.0 innings of work. He has struck out 80 and walked 28. Johnson is tied for the team-lead with 10 quality starts.
Petzold, who maintains a 3.319 grade-point average in the Mendoza College of Business as a double major in finance and mathematics, entered this season with exactly three base hits and no RBI in 10 at-bats over 11 career games - all of the bench. In fact, when first-year Irish head coach Mik Aoki took over the program in June, Petzold was not even listed on the 2011 roster. Petzold contacted Aoki over the summer and expressed interest in returning. He had already taken care of his academic paperwork in order to be eligible as a fifth-year senior and Aoki offered him an opportunity to tryout in the fall without any guarantees of a spot on the roster.
Petzold earned a starting spot in right field and has not looked back. He is tied or leads the team outright in hit-by-pitches (five), games played (50) and games started (50). Petzold ranks second in batting average (.288), on-base percentage (.369) and hits (51). He was the only Irish player to register a hit in each of the first six games this season and has registered a hit in 33 of Notre Dame's 50 games. Petzold also ranks third on the team with 12 multi-hit games, including a team-best equaling four games with at least three hits.
Johnson, DOYLE EARN AWARDS - The Notre Dame Department of Athletics held its annual O.S.C.A.R.S. (Outstanding Student-Athletes Celebrating Achievements & Recognition Showcase) on May 3 inside Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center and senior RHP Cole Johnson and senior SS Mick Doyle were both recognized.Johnson captured The Kanaley Award, the most prestigious honor presented to an Irish student-athlete. It has been given annually since 1926 to senior monogram athletes who have been most exemplary as both students and leaders. Chosen by the University's Faculty Board on Athletics, the awards are named in honor of the 1904 Notre Dame graduate who was a member of the baseball team as an undergraduate. Kanaley went on to a successful banking career in Chicago and served the University as a lay trustee until his death in 1960.
In the classroom, Johnson maintains a 3.68 GPA in the College of Science as a double major in pre-professional studies and Spanish language and literature. He was named to the Dean's List for the second time this past fall. Johnson has also been honored as a Big East academic all-star each of the last three years.
Doyle was one of seven student-athletes that received the Leaders of Distinction award, which is presented to those individuals deemed exceptional leaders by their coaches and teammates.
Off the diamond, Doyle maintains a 3.461 GPA as a finance major in the Mendoza College of Business. He recently participated in the Rosenthal Leadership Academy, which develops, challenges, and supports student-athletes and coaches in their continual quest to become world-class leaders in athletics, academics, and life. The Notre Dame Leadership Academy provides comprehensive and cutting edge leadership development programming through interactive workshops, 360-degree feedback, one-on-one coaching, peer mentoring, and educational resources. Doyle has also served on the Student-Athlete Advisory Council.
Johnson and Doyle have been involved with the Notre Dame team and its community-service efforts throughout his years with the Irish program. Through Fighting Irish Fight for Life, he and the team recently adopted five-year old Brady Burkhart, who has been diagnosed with leukemia. Johnson has also worked with Habitat for Humanity, Center for the Homeless, Memorial Hospital Pediatric Cancer Center and other works in the local community. They each participated in the Life Works Dream Team program at McKinley Primary School, which was a five-week program where he spent an hour a week teaching students about setting goals and overcoming obstacles. Johnson has also volunteered, independently from the team's programs, weekly at La Casa de Amistad, a local South Bend Hispanic community center. He participated in varied programs in an effort to edify Hispanic youth and adults in development of leadership skills, increase knowledge and appreciation of their own culture, and develop stronger self-esteem, encouraging fuller participation as community members.
DOYLE RULES WITH THE GLOVE - Senior SS Mick Doyle has been a regular in the Notre Dame lineup for the past three seasons and enters the final week of the regular season having started all 50 games for the Irish in 2011. He is hitting only .201 on the season with seven doubles, a home run and 15 RBI. Doyle is second on the team in stolen bases with 10 swipes in 14 tries. He is batting .308 with a double, home run and seven RBI in the month of May. He has seen action at second base, third base and shortstop during his Notre Dame career. This season, he has made just five errors at shortstop, good for a .974 fielding percentage - the best of any everyday shortstop in the BIG EAST Conference. Here is a look at how Doyle compares defensively to the rest of the shortstops in the BIG EAST.
|Player - Team||Putouts||Assists||Errors||Fielding %|
|Doyle, Mick - Notre Dame||69||122||5||.974|
|AHMED, Nick - Connecticut||72||161||7||.971|
|MENDE, Sam - USF||75||150||9||.962|
|PETERS,Chris - Cincinnati||85||208||14||.954|
|PANIK, Joe - St. John's||85||159||12||.953|
|WILSON, Derik - Pittsburgh||54||146||10||.952|
|BUCKNER, Grant - West Virginia||89||143||13||.947|
|RUSBARSKY, A.J. - Seton Hall||75||172||14||.946|
|GARZA, Mike - Georgetown||98||144||15||.942|
|CALBI, Marlon - Villanova||78||182||20||.929|
|Chittenden, Alex - Louisville||73||118||16||.923|
|SWEENEY, Pat - Rutgers||33||74||11||.907|
JOHNSON DOING HIS PART - Senior RHP Cole Johnson carries a 3.00 ERA into the BIG EAST tournament. Despite quality starts in 10 of his 14 outings, Johnson owns just a 4-7 record. The righty has been handcuffed by minimal run support. Notre Dame scored a grand total of 22 runs over Johnson's previous 11 starts before his outing against USF (the Irish plated 10 runs, but six came after he departed). The only other game in which the Irish managed more than three runs of support for Johnson came on Feb. 19, when Notre Dame pounded out a season-high 25 hits and scored a season-high 19 runs. The Irish have scored one run or less in four of his 13 starts.
Notre Dame spotted Cole Johnson three early runs and the senior right-handed pitcher did the rest as the Irish secured a doubleheader sweep of BIG EAST rival Rutgers, 3-0, on May 7. Johnson was simply too much for the Scarlet Knights. He limited Rutgers to just three hits, all singles, in 8.1 scoreless innings. Johnson struck out a career-best 12. He collected at least two strikeouts in the fourth, fifth, sixth and eight innings. The 12 strikeouts were the most by an Irish pitcher since Tom Thornton fanned 12 against Kent State on June 5, 2004. In fact, a Notre Dame pitcher has not fanned more batters than Johnson since Aaron Heilman set the BIG EAST record with 18 at West Virginia on April 15, 2000.
The three runs were more than enough for Johnson. He retired nine of the first 10 Rutgers hitters on the game. Johnson, who took a no-hitter into the seventh inning of his last start against Seton Hall, did not surrender a hit until a single to open the fourth inning. He proceeded to send down the next 10 Scarlet Knights before a one-out single in the seventh inning. Rutgers did not have a runner reach second base until the bottom of the seventh inning. Johnson took a two-hit shutout into the ninth inning.
Johnson was almost untouchable over his starts against Seton Hall and Rutgers. Johnson allowed just one earned run on six hits, five of which have been singles, in 17.1 innings of work.
Johnson did not factor in the decision against Seton Hall on April 30, but was lights out. He tossed his fourth career outing of 9.0 innings or more and first since April 9, 2009, against Cincinnati (9.2 innings). Johnson allowed just one earned run on three hits, two of which were singles, in 9.0 innings of work. He struck out two and walked three.
Johnson actually took a no-hitter into the seventh inning. He issued a leadoff walk to Zack Granite to open the contest, but proceeded to retire the next 10 Pirates before another free pass with one out in the fourth. Johnson sent down the next five Seton Hall batters before running into a little bit of trouble in the sixth. The Pirates had runners on first and second with just one out after an Irish error and hit batsman, but Johnson induced a 5-4-3 double play to take the no-hitter into the seventh inning. He retired six of the last seven Pirates he faced to send the game into extra innings.
Senior Mick Doyle gave Notre Dame a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the fourth inning with an RBI single and Johnson pretty much did the rest as the Irish shut out Georgetown, 1-0, on March 26. He limited Georgetown to five hits, four of which were singles, in 8.0 shutout innings of work. Johnson struck out six and walked one. He retired 15 of the 18 Hoyas between the fourth and eighth innings. The only three Georgetown batters that reached base did so via a hit-by-pitch, infield single and bloop base hit to left field.
Johnson ranks among the NCAA leaders in the following categories (through May 15):
|Category||Total (NCAA Rank)|
|Hits Allowed Per Nine Innings||7.03 (67th)|
|Strikeouts Per Nine Innings||7.66 (253rd)|
|Walks Allowed Per Nine Innings||2.69 (361st)|
Johnson has tossed at least 7.0 innings in seven of his 14 starts and ranks among the leaders in the following BIG EAST pitching categories:
|Category||Total (BIG EAST Rank)|
|Strikeouts Looking||26 (5th)|
|Opp. Batting Avg.||.217 (6th)|
|Innings Pitched||93.0 (9th)|
Johnson ranks among the leaders in the following BIG EAST categories in league games only:
|Category||Total (BIG EAST Rank)|
|Opp. Batting Avg.||.213 (6th)|
|Strikeouts Looking||17 (t-7th)|
JOHNSON GETS REVENGE AGAINST WEST VIRGINIA - Senior RHP Cole Johnson allowed just one earned run in 6.1 innings of work to lead Notre Dame past West Virginia, 5-2, in the second game of a day-night doubleheader on April 15. He limited the Mountaineers to just two runs, one earned, on four hits. Johnson struck out six and walked two. He collected his eighth quality start of 2011. He issued a leadoff walk in the first inning, but proceeded to register back-to-back strikeouts before a catcher's interference put two West Virginia runners on base. Jeremy Gum followed with a two-run double to give the Mountaineers a 2-0 lead. Johnson would blank the Mountaineers over the next 5.2 innings.Johnson surrendered 11 runs on ten hits in 5.0 innings of work in his last start against West Virginia on April 17, 2009.
JOHNSON QUITE INVOLVED OFF THE FIELD AS WELL - Senior RHP Cole Johnson, a co-captain in 2009, has the rare accomplishment of being named a captain as a pitcher and not an everyday position player. Over the last 32 seasons, Johnson is only the ninth pitcher to earn captain status. The others include Craig Allen ('96), Alex Shilliday ('99), Aaron Heilman ('00, '01), J.P. Gagne ('03), Chris Niesel ('04), Tyler Jones ('05), Tom Thorton ('06) and Brian Dupra ('10).Johnson was one of 12 Irish student-athletes invited to join a faculty-mentoring program based on leadership, academic performance and athletic accomplishments. Johnson was selected from over 900 Notre Dame athletes, and the only sophomore inducted in 2009.
Johnson was selected for the Notre Dame Rosenthal Leadership Academy, which is a special four-month program of seminars and workshops to develop leadership strategies, initiatives and skills.
Johnson Selected As Candidate For Lowe's Senior Class Award - Senior RHP Cole Johnson is one of 10 Division I college baseball players to be selected as a finalist for the 2011 Lowe's Senior CLASS Award. The award honors student athletes who excel both on and off the diamond and has notable achievements in four areas of excellence - community, classroom, character and competition.
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.
Joining Johnson on the list of baseball finalists are: P Chris Dennis (Portland), CF Brandon Eckerle (Michigan State), C Clint Ewing (Louisiana Tech), P Cole Green (Texas), FB/DH Frazier Hall (Southern), 1B Paul Hoilman (East Tennessee State), OF Chris Slater (Baylor), OF Cory Tilton (UNC Charlotte) and P Tyler Wils