Matt Ryerson-US PRESSWIRE
The Florida State Seminoles (10-0) get back to playing some weekday games as Presbyterian College (8-4) out of South Carolina comes to town for a two game set starting today at 4PM.
Lets get the most pressing matter at hand out of the way first, what exactly is a "Blue Hose"? According to the athletics website...
The nickname "Blue Hose" began in the early 1900's, when sportswriters referred to the Presbyterian College athletic teams as the "Blue Stockings" because of the blue socks they wore. Writers used the terms "stockings" and "hose" interchangeably over the years. They often shortened "stockings" to "hose" in newspaper headlines.
Now that's out of the way let talk about how Florida State should have no issues winning these next two games against a team that was picked to finish fourth in their division. That is coming out of the Big South, a conference dominated by Coastal Carolina and that is only expected to send one team to the postseason. The Seminoles are coming of a series sweep that saw them dominate all facets of the game while Presbyterian had a nice little weekend of their own sweeping conference opponent High Point.
Three weeks into the season and the NCAA finally got around to posting statistics and to no surprise the Seminoles are right up there in key categories. They currently sit at second in the nation, only behind Central Arkansas , in on-base percentage. Florida State is in a three way tie for fifth with 73 total walks in 10 games which is good for third in walks per game at 7.3, trailing only Central Arkansas and Mercer. Power has been no stranger to the bats either as they rank eighth in slugging, making them 1 of 4 ACC teams in the top ten.
Individually for the Noles, Jose Brizuela is tied for 4th in the country in walks per game and 25th overall in OBP, while 2B John Sansone is in a two-way tie for twelfth. JUCO superstar Marcus Davis is third all by himself with a .971 slugging percentage.
The Blue Hose are not a great offensive team, they currently are 9th in the conference in OBP (.350)and 7th in slugging percentage (.361) which puts them in the middle of the pack in runs scored with 59. Presbyterian's best offensive player is 1B Brad Zebedis (.279/.382/.465) while LF Nathan Chong and RF Brandon Paul are off to good starts.
Only tonight's starting pitchers have been announced and for the Seminoles that is RHP Luke Weaver who's last start was a gem versus Jacksonville on February 20th. Unfortunately Weaver has only pitched one inning since then and that was with an 18 run lead against Villanova on Friday. Florida State should have no issues with RHP Brett Bynum who has not been impressive in his "three" starts, one start was controlled, where he only pitched one inning.
Averaging less than 5 innings per start the freshman seems to be a pitcher who won't over power you and pitches to contact, something that the Noles need to take advantage of. In 14 13 innings the righty has allowed 14 hits with 4 walks to only 4 strikeouts.
I'm unsure how Florida State will approach Wednesday night, they could give a young guy a start and see how far he can go or they could go with the predetermined pitching by committee where pitchers have a certain pitch count. Regardless of their decision whoever they pitch will be better than watch Presbyterian counters with.
PREDICTION, NEWS AND COVERAGE:
Presbyterian had only two wins against top 100 RPI teams last season, UCF during a weekend series and Kennesaw State on a Wednesday night. Florida State doesn't have to worry about facing one of their better pitchers and therefore should be able to sweep the series, however bad losses do happen and one here wouldn't be the end of the world.
The Seminoles are only one of five non Ivy League schools who remain undefeated and here is where they fall in the polls: Baseball America 18, Collegiate Baseball 15, NCBWA 5, Perfect Game 15, USA Today/ESPN 5.
Coverage for both these 4PM games can be found on Seminoles All-Access and I will leave you with this fun video that was released this past weekend.