Florida State Travels to Boston College (Kinda)

USA TODAY Sports

The Florida State Seminoles (19-5, 7-2) and their number one ranking face the Boston College Eagles (7-15, 1-8) this weekend but due to poor field conditions the games will be played at the University of Rhode Island.

For the second weekend in a row the Seminoles are looking to rebound after a midweek loss to the Gators. The Noles offense was once again shut down but the main focus of the game was the 8th inning bench clearing tough guy match that resulted in a ridiculous four game suspension for Florida State's All-American DJ Stewart.  Coach Martin says he plans to appeal but who knows what will come of that.

As for Boston College they are once again one of the worst teams in the conference.  Midweek games should not be looked at with too much significance but the Eagles were just shutout by Northeastern this week, a team with 201 RPI ranking. In conference play Boston College has one lone win and that was against Wake Forest in which their Friday ace and bullpen combined for a six hitter against the Deacs. In total Boston College has managed to score just 1.7 runs per game against Miami, UVA and WF, they have been limited to 2 runs or fewer in 8 of those 9 games.

OFFENSE:

As mentioned the Eagles offense is bad and it is even worse when playing a high level of competition, in ACC play their slash drops to a horrendous .177/.249/.235 and they strike out three times as much as they walk. The Noles on the other hand are one of the best offenses in the country despite the competition. Yes in their five loses they have scored only 7 runs, but they are only losing 20% of the time which means in the 4 out of 5 games they are winning they are scoring runs at an absurd amount. Fans need to realize that 1 game doesn't determine the fate of your season, the postseason is not single elimination and when you are winning 80% of the time and scoring 9.5 runs in those games your team is in great shape.

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Boston College's leading batting average is .250, Florida State has 9 starters who are hitting .250 or better. The Eagles have one lone hitter with an on-base percentage greater than .400 in Nick Sciortino, the Noles have 7 starters with an on-base percentage of .400 or better. BC's leading power guy has a slugging of .381, FSU has 7 starters with a slugging percentage greater than that .381 mark.

Even without their best hitter who is serving a suspension and a talented freshman who is out with bruised ribs the Noles lineup is far and away better than that of the Eagles.  Unless the pitching for Florida State doesn't make it off the plane Boston College will struggle all weekend to score runs.

PITCHING:

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The pitching to date has not been terrible for BC, in year's past it was the worst in the league. Quality starting pitching has been the key to their success so far and not allowing big innings.  Through 22 games the Eagles have yet to allow a team to score 10 runs against them but the Noles have put up 10 runs in more than 40% of their contests so far. What will get the Eagles in trouble is their poor control, they don't strike out batters at a high rate and they walk batters at an extremely high rate.  In ACC play the have allowed more walks than strikeouts, that will be a recipe for big offensive numbers against the most disciplined team in the country for the past 5 years.  photo Friday-7.jpg

Against Virginia, the only team that BC has faced with an offense comparable to that of FSU the BC righty didn't make it through the 5th inning. This will be the Noles biggest test of the weekend as Gorman has shown excellent control striking out 25 batters and only allowing 5 walks in his 6 starts. Weaver is coming off of what might have been the worst start of his career. He did manage to last 7 innings against Clemson last weekend but allowing 6 runs on 8 hits with only 3 strikeouts made it difficult for the Noles against a good Tigers team.

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Left-hander Andrew Chin has a nice ERA and that's in part to a low hits per nine but that doesn't matter against a stout Noles lineup if he continues to issue walks. 15 walks to only 16 strikeouts could get him in trouble but he did fare well last season against Florida State where he went 5.2 innings and only allowed 2 runs. Leibrandt pitched beautifully last weekend against Clemson where he pitched a complete game allowing only 1 unearned run. I expect another great outing against an anemic offense.

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Like the Saturday starter for BC the righty Burke has walks issues, compound that with being extremely hittable that the sophomore might be in for a short outing.  After a rocky 2nd inning last weekend Compton settled down and pitched 5 solid innings keeping the Noles in the game and allowing for a comeback win to take the series. Since his complete game shutout back on the 9th versus Maryland the right-hander has dealt with control issues, a solid start against a weak offense might be what he needs to help him moving forward.

COVERAGE:

The cold weather apparently has made the BC home field unplayable so this series will be moved to the University of Rhode Island. There is no way to watch this series unless you are physically present at the game so the best you can do is listen if you are an All-Access subscriber or follow on Game Tracker

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I totally expect Florida State to take this series from Boston College and yes a sweep is the most likely scenario. Updates will be in this thread all weekend and look for a series recap on Sunday.

Go Noles!

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