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No. 8 Georgia Tech Baseball Visits No. 5 Florida State for ACC Matchup

April 20, 2006

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ATLANTA–Eighth-ranked Georgia Tech (29-9, 10-8 ACC) visits Florida State (33-7, 13-5) for a three-game Atlantic Coast Conference series this weekend at Dick Howser Stadium in Tallahassee, Fla. Gametimes are 7 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and 1 p.m. on Sunday.

Georgia Tech is ranked as high as No. 8 in the national polls this week after winning two of three games against fifth-ranked Clemson last weekend. Tech spent three weeks earlier this season ranked No. 1 in the nation, the 11th time in school history the Yellow Jackets have topped the national polls.

Florida State dropped two of three games to Miami last weekend, and lost to Florida on Wednesday.

Pitching Matchups: (Georgia Tech vs. Florida State)
Friday: RHP Blake Wood (6-3, 5.20) vs. RHP Bryan Henry (8-2, 1.72)
Friday: RHP Jared Hyatt (2-0, 4.18) vs. RHP Tyler Chambliss (9-1, 1.80)
Friday: LHP David Duncan (4-1, 5.44) vs. RHP Jimmy Marshall (0-0, 2.51)

GAME COVERAGE: Friday and Saturday will be televised by SUN Sports. Radio coverage for all three games on WREK-FM (91.1 FM in Atlanta / online at: www.wrek.org). Live statistics available at www.ramblinwreck.com.

Please Note: For fans viewing SUN Sports in Florida or via satellite, the Tech-FSU games may be tape delayed, pre-empted or moved to an alternate channel due to conflicts with the National Hockey League playoffs. Contact your local cable system or satellite provider for details.

Georgia Tech vs. Florida State
Florida State leads Georgia Tech, 56-34, in a series that dates to 1959. The Seminoles hold a 31-12 advantage in games played in Tallahassee.

Georgia Tech has held the upper hand in the series in recent years. The Yellow Jackets won five straight games in 2005, and Tech has won nine of 11 games since the 2004 season. Georgia Tech swept the three-game regular season series in both 2004 in Tallahassee and 2005 in Atlanta.

Last year, Tech won three games in Atlanta by scores of 6-4, 9-8 and 9-4. The Jackets swept a pair of meetings in the ACC Tournament, 5-4 and 18-2.

Two years ago, the Yellow Jackets won a series in Tallahasse for just the second time in seven weekend trips to Dick Howser Stadium. The Jackets swept the series by scores of 11-4, 12-2 and 7-6.

Georgia Tech is 24-23 against Florida State under head coach Danny Hall.

Offensive Short Hops
Runs, Runs, Runs: The Yellow Jackets have scored 47 runs in their current three-game winning streak, averaging 15.7 runs per game. Tech scored 12 and 22 runs in the final two games of the Clemson series, and scored 13 runs at Georgia State on Wednesday.

Bats Warm With the Weather: After hitting .299 through the first 24 games of the season (though Mar. 26), Tech’s offense has exploded by batting .361 over the last 14 games. Tech scored 8.6 runs per game in the first 24 games of the year before averaging 10.3 runs per game over the last 14 games.

Record Outburst vs. Clemson: Georgia Tech scored 40 runs in three games against Clemson last weekend, the Yellow Jackets’ most ever in a three-game series against the Tigers. Tech scored 22 runs on Sunday, the most runs for the Jackets in the 186-game series between the schools.

Avoiding the Big Inning
Georgia Tech’s last five losses have one common theme, a big inning early in the game for the opponents which forced the Yellow Jackets to play catch-up the entire game. In each of Tech’s last five losses, the opponent has scored at least four runs in the first or second inning.

Georgia Tech's Last Five LossesDate    Opponent        Score   Big Inning      Score after 3rd Inn.Apr. 1  Maryland        L, 3-6  4 (2nd)         1-4Apr. 2  Maryland        L, 5-8  6 (1st)         1-8Apr. 4  Ga. Southern    L, 7-19 5 (1st)         2-11Apr. 7  Virginia Tech   L, 6-8  4 (1st)         1-4Apr. 14 Clemson         L, 6-7  4 (2nd)         0-6

Bullish on the Bullpen
Georgia Tech’s pitching staff has been bolstered by stong efforts from the bullpen. Relievers have pitched 158.0 innings in 38 games, posting a 3.19 ERA and a 13-2 record with nine saves.

Leading the way are RHP Tim Gustafson (1-0, 1.42, 19.0, 5 SV), LHP Lee Hyde (1-0, 2.35, 15.1), RHP Jared Hyatt (1-0, 3.05, 20.2, 1 SV), RHP Brad Rulon (2-0, 2.19, 24.2) and RHP Matt Wieters (1-1, 3.12, 17.1, 3 SV).

Over the last six games, Tech’s bullpen has allowed just two runs in 30.0 innings, posting a 0.60 ERA and holding opponents to a .147 batting average. In that span, Tech’s opponents have pitched 29.2 innings in relief and have allowed 42 runs (11.22 ERA).

“5” – The Magic Number
Since the arrival of pitching coach Bobby Moranda prior to the 2002 season, the Yellow Jackets are 158-15 (.913) when allowing five runs or less. The Yellow Jackets are 22-1 when allowing five runs or less in 2006.

Tech went 38-2 in 2002, 34-2 in 2003, 33-3 in 2004 and 31-7 in 2005 when allowing five runs or less. When allowing six or more runs, the Yellow Jackets are 51-67 since 2002.

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