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Florida State Baseball Travels to Virginia

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In their first conference road series of the year the Seminoles (17-5, 5-1) visit the Cavaliers (13-5, 2-4) who were stunned last weekend.

Liz Condo-USA TODAY Sports

Florida State is 1-4 so far this season on the road but Virginia has hardly been tested as they have only played two games at home. To just about everyone's surprise the Hoos were swept by Virginia Tech last weekend and also managed to lose their head coach Brian O'Connor as he was suspended four games for bumping a the home plate umpire. Despite winning the series last week against Wake Forest the Noles suffered a blow as Friday starter Mike Compton was sidelined with an abdominal strain suffered during warmups. He will be out again this weekend as the Noles will rely on some inexperience to come through as they face on of the best teams in the nation.

Virginia Florida State
Nat. Rk Stat Nat. Rk
134 0.268 BA 0.270 131
200 0.339 OBP 0.416 5
73 0.408 SLG 0.431 41
0.747 OPS 0.847
167 5.1 R/G 8.0 7
7.0% BB% 16.4%
12.6% K% 22.1%
59.1% SB% 72.5%
7 2.03 ERA 4.22 130
21 7.22 H/9 9.32 152
7 9.7 K/9 9.2 18
84 3.31 BB/9 3.11 62
34 2.92 K:BB 2.97 30
144 0.965 Field% 0.956 233

It is very apparent that these two offense are drastically different a month into the season. There is nothing the Cavs offense is doing well right now except strike out with a low frequency. Florida State is scoring more than 3 runs more per game and that is with Florida State playing a pretty difficult schedule, per Warren Nolan the Noles have faced the 27th toughest schedule while Virginia is 226 in the rankings. It is still amazing just how much  FSU is striking out right now, that number is extremely high but they are still managing to walk more than any team in the country which is why they are scoring so many runs.

There are some Virginia players having great seasons, 1B Pavin Smith (.351/.412/.558) and C Matt Thaiss (.338/.444/.662) are leading the way with 9 homeruns combined. They make up for 56% of the teams homeruns and 40% of the teams extra base hits. While he is not the Noles best hitter, freshman 3B Dylan Busby (.286/.423/.492) is having a solid season as well as freshman Taylor Walls (.301/.500/.370) who still leads nation with 28 walks. It will be interesting to see if slumping Ben Deluzio (.181/.282/.222) will see some time off. The former third round pick is striking out twice as much as he is walking and looks completely lost at the plate.

Game 23 - Virginia March 20

First Pitch: 5:00 p.m. ET

FSU Starter: RHP, Boomer Biegalski (2-1, 2.94 ERA)

UVA Starter: LHP, Nathan Kirby (3-1, 0.81 ERA)

Radio: 106.1 FM - Tallahassee

TV/Internet: Cavaliers Live ($) - Internet

Game 24 - Virginia March 21

First Pitch: 1:00 p.m. ET

FSU Starter: RHP, Drew Carlton (1-1, 6.00 ERA)

UVA Starter: RHP, Connor Jones (4-1, 1.57 ERA)

Radio: 106.1 FM - Tallahassee

TV/Internet: None

Game 25 - Virginia March 22

First Pitch: 1:00 p.m. ET

FSU Starter: RHP, Cobi Johnson (2-1, 7.06 ERA)

UVA Starter: LHP, Brandon Waddell (1-0, 2.42 ERA)

Radio: 106.1 FM - Tallahassee

TV/Internet: Cavaliers Live ($) - Internet

Here is a fun fact, going into the season the Virginia rotation had pitched 314.6 career innings over 55 starts and 101 total appearances, the current Noles rotation had pitched approximately 0 career innings over 0 starts and 0 total appearances. Can an under performing Cavaliers offense take advantage of this, one would think so since they have yet to take advantage of a hitter friendly home park and a BABIP that is roughly 45 points below average.

They only managed to score 7 runs in the three games last weekend against VT, a pitching staff that allowed 33 runs a week prior to Wake Forest. I do expect the Noles pitching to have some success, despite their high number of hits allowed they do rank as one of the best in the country in strikeout to walk ratio, which means that UVA is going to have to put the bat on the ball to get runners on base and score runs.

It goes without saying that Virginia pitching is elite, it always has been and will be under their head coach. Expect runs to be at a premium for FSU, if they do get a lead they can not afford to let teams back in the game with their putrid defense. The Noles made 5 errors Tuesday night against UF and this is the worst defense I have ever seen under Mike Martin. They are on pace to make 100 errors this season, only 8 out of 296 teams had that many in 2014, they do not want to join the company of Alcorn, La.-Monroe, UMES, Utah Valley, Central Mich., Austin Peay, Northwestern and N.C. Central.

I am not sure how ESPN decides this series isn't worthy to be on ESPN3 but the only way you can watch it is through the UVA subscription feed. Even then the views will be limited due to their paranoia.

We're pleased to offer live video streaming for a number of home baseball games during the 2015 season. Last season we made some changes to the production of the video webcasts. This was done to prevent future opponents from being able to use the video streams as a scouting advantage and to provide our team with the best chance to be successful.

This season when Virginia is batting, the live video webcasts will show the pitch from the camera behind home plate and the production will follow the ball once it's put into play. When Virginia is in the field, we will continue to use the cameras we believe minimize the opportunity for opponents to use the video as a scouting tool while allowing our fans who can't attend games at Davenport Field the opportunity to watch the team.

We will do our best to update you as the games are happening and will provide you with recaps. You can listen online at seminoles.leanplayer.com . I would be content with Florida State avoiding a sweep and extremely pleased with a series win this weekend.

Go Noles!