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KU Baseball Weekly Update: March 16

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Baseball Wins Weekend Series vs Michigan; Jayhawks improve to 8-12 on the season.

The KU bats woke up for a couple of games in the weekend home series versus Michigan, and KU took two of three from the Wolverines at Hoglund Ballpark over the weekend.

Friday, March 13 - Kansas 6, Michigan 5

After falling behind 2-0 in the top of the first inning due to a defensive miscue, KU rallied in the later innings as the Jayhawk bats seemed to awaken from their early season slumber.  Kansas was led offensively by LF Connor McKay (3/5, HR, RBI, 2 R) and C Michael Tinsley (3/5, R).  SP Ben Krauth (6.2 IP, 8 H, 3 BB, 5 R, 6 K) picked up his third win of the season and CL Stephen Villines (2.0 IP, H, BB) picked up his fifth save of the year.

Saturday, March 14 - Michigan 4, Kansas 2

The Jayhawks took a 2-1 lead into the eighth inning of this one, but botched a routine popup and wild pitch allowed Michigan to tie the game and take the lead that their bullpen would hold for the win.  KU left nine runners on base, including two each in the sixth and seventh innings, but couldn't come up with the key hits.  KU was led offensively by LF Connor McKay (3/5, R), the only Jayhawk with a multiple-hit game.  SP Sean Rackoski (6.0 IP, 7 H, BB, R, 4 K) pitched a fine game.  As a matter of fact, Rackoski's last two starts have been solid outings, and hopefully the sophomore will be someone KU can rely on.

Sunday, March 15 - Kansas 8, Michigan 4

KU jumped all over Michigan early, scoring two runs in each of the first three innings, and KU coach Rich Price picked up his 400th victory in a Kansas uniform.  The Jayhawks posted 14 hits in the affair, led by seldom-used DH Taylor Owen (3/3, BB, R, 2 RBI) and LF Connor McKay (1/4, HR, RBI, R).  Making his first start in two weeks (Ed. note: Not sure why) pitching staff leader SP Drew Morovick (5.0 IP, 8 H, 2 BB, 2 R) labored through his outing but for the most part kept Michigan off the board.  CL Stephen Villines (2.0 IP, SV, 2 H, R, 4 K) picked up his second save of the series and sixth of the season.

Said Coach Price, "I think any time you have a devastating loss like we had yesterday where you have the lead in the eighth inning and then you make a defensive miscue and can't shut the door, you want to go out the next day and score early.  When you score early, you get the energy and enthusiasm back in the dugout and we were able to do that today with McKay's home run."

Up Next

The KU homestand continues next weekend with the Jayhawks hosting the Iowa Cyclones Hawkeyes Cyclones (I think that's right).  Friday is a night game, with a 6 PM start, and Saturday and Sunday are day games with afternoon starts.  Iowa is 11-4 on the season but hasn't played anyone of note with the exception of Big 12 baseball powerhouse Kansas State, a 5-4 KSU victory.

All of the games against Iowa can be seen on ESPN3, accessible online at WatchESPN.com, on smartphones and tablets via the WatchESPN app, through ESPN on Xbox Live to Gold Members and on Apple TV. In addition, the game can be heard on the Jayhawk Radio Network through KUAthletics.com/Radio or on the official Kansas Jayhawks mobile app.