Know Your Opponent: Heavy-hitters meet in Manhattan

Heavy-hitters meet in Manhattan
Freshman Mason Buss lines up for a pitch against Stonehill on March 6. K-State baseball finished strong with a 6-5 win. (Jersey Johnson | Collegian Media Group)

Kansas State 26-16 (9-6) 

The Wildcats are coming off a needed series win against UC Irvine. After the cancellation of its Tuesday matchup against UC Riverside, K-State has plenty of time to prepare for its Big 12 rival. Third baseman Kaelen Culpepper, first baseman Roberto Pena and shortstop Nick Goodwin provided solid hitting for the Wildcats last weekend and will look to continue the momentum against Texas Tech, who give up the third most home runs in the league.

Texas Tech 29-13 (8-7) 

Despite holding the fifth best record in the Big 12, the Red Raiders have the potential to compete for the top spot in the league, having recently won a series against Big 12 rival Baylor. Texas Tech has the best hitting percentage and scoring in the league with a .322 slugging percentage and 386 total runs. Even though Texas Tech is top in scoring, it ranks last in fielding percentage at .962.


Matchup to watch: Texas Tech sluggers vs. K-State pitching 

With the best hitting percentage and runs scored in the Big 12, the Red Raiders could take advantage of the Wildcat’s bullpen. Owen Boerema, Mason Bus and Tyson Neighbors have all had productive pitching seasons for K-State. They will have to pitch at their best against the Big 12’s best hitters. Texas Tech first baseman Gavin Kash and catcher Kevin Bazzell both rank in the top three in runs scored in the Big 12. The Wildcats will likely need to take advantage of the Red Raiders’ poor pitching and fielding to go blow-for-blow with the Texas Tech sluggers.


Prediction: K-State wins two of three