Weekend Baseball Preview: The Spring Break Whiskey Tour

Because of the Big Ten Tournament I don't think I will be able to do a Profile In Badassery this week. Hopefully I will be busy the following weeks as well. I did want to do a very quick entry in regards to baseball before the weekend. It turns out our young Boilers have the best record in the Big Ten so far at 9-2, and three of their victories have come against top 30 ranked teams. This past week they notched a 6-4 victory over #21 Louisville. Connecticut and Pittsburgh were also both in the top 30 when we played them in the Big Ten/Big East Challenge, so Purdue has some rare non-conference schedule heft.

This week the baseball team is on its annual spring break trip. It begins this weekend with three games at Tennessee-Martin (3-7). After that, Purdue heads to Nashville to take on #2 Vanderbilt (13-1) in what will probably be the final game against a ranked team this year. Wednesday they will play at Belmont (5-8) before finishing the trip with three games at Tennessee Tech (4-9). That will end Purdue's 19 game overall road trip to start the season.

I must say that I am surprised that Purdue is off to this good of a start. The baseball Boilers have a history of dropping lots of winnable games, but so far they have taken care of business against bad to mediocre teams while seizing the few quality wins they can get. If they can win six of their eight games on this road trip (and especially if one of the wins is Vanderbilt) they will be in a position to earn an at large bid the NCAA Tournament with a solid Big Ten season.

Matt Morgan has evolved into a staff ace with a 2-0 record so far and a stellar 0.96 ERA. He and Brad Schreiber have 19 strikeouts each, while Joe Haase has a 2-0 record on the mound as well. Schreiber is 3-0 on the hill, and Nick Wittgren has taken over the closer's role with a pair of saves.

At the plate David Miller is batting .500 with 8 RBI, but as a team Purdue is pounding the crap out of the ball. Ryan Bridges, Angelo Cianfrocco, and Barrett Serrato are batting better than .400. Cameron Perkins has 15 RBIs and is comfortably over .300 at the plate.

This should be another good weekend series that Purdue needs to win. We're playing some very good baseball at the moment and Tennessee-Martin has only beaten Indiana State, Southern Illinois, and South Dakota State. They haven't played nearly as tough of a schedule as us.

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