Baseball preview: Incarnate Word - University of Texas Athletics (2024)

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March 21, 2023
Where: UFCU Disch-Falk Field
Time: Tuesday at 6:30 p.m.
TV:Longhorn Network
Radio: 104.9 FM The Horn/1260 AM
Live stats:

TUESDAY–Texas RHP Charlie Hurley (1-0, 1.71) vs. UIW RHP Seth Higdon (0-2, 7.36)

THE MATCHUP—The Longhorns continue their season-long 14-game homestand, welcoming Incarnate Word for a midweek game at UFCU Disch-Falk Field. Texas holds an 8-1 all-time record against the Cardinals with an 8-0 advantage in Austin. Last season the Longhorns swept a three-game weekend series against the Cardinals at UFCU Disch-Falk Field.

A LOOK AT THE LONGHORNS—Texas comes into the week riding a 10-game winning streak, outscoring opponents 93-30 during the streak. Over the last 10 games, Texas is hitting .321 as a team with 23 doubles and 13 homers. The Texas pitching staff has been the strength through the first 21 games this season with a 2.81 ERA and holding opposing hitters to a .218 batting average. In last weekend's sweep of New Orleans, the Longhorns held the Privateers to just three earned runs and 11 total hits over the three games.

EK—Eric Kennedy had a huge week at the plate, batting .550 with five home runs, two doubles, 10 RBI and nine runs scored in wins over North Dakota State and New Orleans. He had a pair of two-homer games and hit a grand slam in Saturday's win over the Privateers. Kennedy has a six-game hitting streak and multiple-hits in his last four games. In addition to his power display, he also added two bunt singles and a sacrifice bunt during the weekend. This season Kennedy leads Texas with nine doubles, seven homers, 20 RBI and 20 runs scored.

POW!—Peyton Powell has had a great month of March, starting all 13 games and picking up at least one hit in 12-of-13, with multiple hits in nine of them. For the season, Powell leads the Longhorns with a .439 batting average and has six doubles, three homers, 14 RBI and 15 runs scored. His versatility has also been beneficial, as he has played first base, third base and catcher this season.

OWN THE DISCH—A large part of the Longhorns success under head coach David Pierce has come down to dominating at home. Since 2017 Texas has produced a 162-42 (.794) record at UFCU Disch-Falk Field, including a 13-2 mark this season. Since the stadium opened in 1975, Texas has gone 1593-402-3 at home for a .798 winning percentage. The fan base has also done a great job of making the Disch a difficult place to play. With the exception of the 2021 season because of limited capacity due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Texas has led the Big 12 in attendance for 15-consecutive seasons.

HOME SWEET HOME—Texas holds a 13-2 record this season at the friendly confines of UFCU Disch-Falk Field. In the 15 home games, the Longhorns are hitting .301 and fielding .977, while the pitching staff has a 2.33 ERA. Texas hitters have also walked more times than they have struck out in home games, with 80 walks to 78 strikeouts. In the six games played away from UFCU Disch-Falk Field, Texas holds a 1-5 record and is batting .218 with a .959 fielding percentage. The Longhorns are also averaging 6,605 fans per game, the fifth-highest average attendance in the country.

THE HOMESTAND—Texas is in the midst of a 14-game homestand at UFCU Disch-Falk Field. Through the first 10 games of the homestand, the Longhorns have started 10-0 with wins over Sam Houston, Mercer, Manhattan, North Dakota State and New Orleans. The full homestand spans a three-week stretch from March 7 and concludes with the opening Big 12 series against Texas Tech this weekend. This is the longest Texas homestand in more than 20 years and the longest since the Longhorns hosted 13-straight games at UFCU Disch-Falk Field in 2011. The last time Texas had a longer homerstand was in 2001, when Texas played 21-straight home games from February 6 to March 13. This is the program's eighth homestand of at least 10 games since 2001.

INFIELD HIT MACHINE—Throughout his career on the Forty Acres, Eric Kennedy has used his speed as a means to get on base. With six infield singles (five bunt) this season, Kennedy now has 64 career infield singles (36 bunts). In 2021, Kennedy had a career-best 27 infield singles (16 bunts).

DOWNTOWN PORTER BROWN—Porter Brown has made an immediate impact after transferring from TCU. The redshirt junior is second on the team with four home runs and 17 RBI, starting 19 of 21 games in left field and two as designated hitter. Brown also has one of the biggest hits of the season thus far, a go-ahead three-run homer in the eighth inning against Indiana on Feb. 24. In parts of four seasons at TCU, Brown batted .286 with 20 doubles, nine home runs, 63 RBI and 83 runs scored. He also stole 25 bases during his time at TCU, including eight in each of the last two seasons.

PRESEASON HONORS—Two Longhorn pitchers Lucas Gordon and Tanner Witt were named to the All-Big 12 Preseason team. Last season Gordon went 7-2 with a 3.05 ERA and 77 strikeouts in 85.2 innings after moving into the weekend rotation. Witt made two starts on the mound in the 2022 season before undergoing season ending surgery. He finished with a 2-0 record, a 1.64 ERA and 14 strikeouts in 11 innings pitched.

THE TRANSFERS—The Longhorns have seven transfers from Division I programs that hope to make an immediate impact, including outfielder Porter Brown (TCU), infielder Tanner Carlson (Long Beach State), catcher Garrett Guillemette (USC), RHP Cody Howard (Baylor) RHP Charlie Hurley (USC), LHP David Shaw (Rice) and RHP Heston Tole (Arkansas). Additionally RHP DJ Burke and LHP Chris Stuart transferred from San Jacinto College.

ROOKIES—Several freshmen will play big roles this season, including infielders Jalin Flores (San Antonio) and Jared Thomas (Waxahachie). Flores is likely to start at third base on Opening Day, while Thomas is expected to be the Longhorns starting first baseman. Additionally, infielders Jayden Duplantier and Cade O'Hara, catcher Rylan Galvan, outfielder Max Belyeu, and pitchers Kobe Minchey, Max Grubbs and Pierce George could all find significant playing time.

HEAR 'EM—In partnership with Learfield IMG College, Texas games will be broadcast on the Austin Radio Network, primarily on 104.9 The Horn and AM 1260. Craig Way handles primary play-by-play duties alongside Roger Wallace. This season fans will also hear analysis from Longhorn greats Keith Moreland, Ty Harrington and Nathan Thornhill throughout the season.

WATCH 'EM—Nearly all of Texas' home games will be broadcast on Longhorn Network this season. The team of Keith Moreland and Greg Swindell will return to the booth to call the action for all 36 home games.

THE SCHEDULE—The 2023 schedule features 36 home games at UFCU Disch-Falk Field after opening the season at the College Baseball Showdown at Globe Life Field in Arlington. In Big 12 play, the Longhorns will host Texas Tech, Kansas State, Oklahoma and West Virginia and will travel to Oklahoma State, Baylor, TCU and Kansas. Texas also had a marquee midweek match up at home, welcoming LSU to UFCU Disch-Falk Field on Feb. 28. Texas will also travel to College Station for a midweek game against Texas A&M on March 28.

TraDISCHions—Texas Baseball will honor its history throughout the 2023 season as part of the Saturday TraDISCHion series at UFCU Disch-Falk Field. For the second-consecutive season the Longhorns are celebrating past greats every Saturday, and this week will be RHP Kirk Dressendorfer (1988-90). During his three-year career, he recorded a 2.56 ERA with 462 strikeouts in 429.2 innings pitched. Dressendorfer was the three-time Southwest Conference Most Valuable Player and was also the 1988 SWC Newcomer of the Year. This season Texas has already honored OF Dustin Majewski (2002-03), OF Drew Stubbs (2004-06) and Adrian Alaniz (2005-07).

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Baseball preview: Incarnate Word - University of Texas Athletics (2024)
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