PHILADELPHIA – Penn finishes its baseball nonconference slate on Wednesday with a pair of games at Lehigh starting at 1 p.m.
The Quakers will bring with them a highly decorated southpaw, as Chris McNulty added Ivy League Rookie of the Week honors Tuesday to his Big Five Pitcher of the Week award received on Monday.
McNulty, was honored for his scoreless week of pitching as he factored into both of Penn’s wins this past week. On Sunday, he tossed a complete-game shutout against Princeton, salvaging a split with the Tigers on Sunday. He allowed just six hits and walked no batters while striking out seven for the first complete-game shutout by a Penn pitcher in nearly two years. Earlier in the week, the rookie picked up his first collegiate save with a scoreless ninth inning in Penn’s 12-9 win over La Sale.
Offensively, Penn is climbing a few All-Time Lists for production. This past weekend, Penn produced 10 doubles, bringing its 2009 total to 83. That number is tied for the third-most doubles in a season by any club. With six games to go, the all-time mark of 89 set by the 1995 squad is in reach.
Individually, Jeremy Maas and Derek Vigoa each have 13 doubles. That ties them with five other Penn players for fifth on the list of most doubles in a season. Each player’s next double will tie them with Kyle Armeny, ’08 for fourth (14 – 2007). Two doubles will equal the third-highest single-season output of 15 from Mike Shannon in 1995.
A few other possibilities of cracking the top-five lists …Sophomore Dan Williams has 142 at bats this season. He would need to average two at bats over the final six games to crack the top five with 154.As a team, Penn is 65 ABs away from pulling even with the 2001 squad which ended the campaign with 1,287 at bats.The Red and Blue have 367 hits this year. 20 more over the final six games will tie them with the 2007 team which had 387 and sits in fifth place.Williams is closing in on a top-five in hits as well. He has 48 to date and the fifth-best mark is 57 set by Tim Henwood (1995) and Andrew McReery (2002).In terms of longballs, the squad has went deep 31 times so far this season. Two more homers equals the fifth-place mark of 33 from the 1977 team. The ’09 squad has an outside chance of moving all the way up to second, which is held by the 1978 team with 37.William Gordon has eight deep flies this year, which is already fifth-most in a season by a Penn player. One more and he ties for fourth. The all-time single-season record is 12 by Tom Olszak in 1979.On the mound, Penn has pitched 291.0 innings this year. The Quakers are slated to play six more games. If those games all are played and Penn pitches at least the minimum in all six, they should reach 337.0 innings thrown. That would slot the staff tied for second all-time behind the 1995 team which pitched 358.0 innings. At the very least, with the four Ivy games left to play, Penn will move into third place.The Quakers have already struck out 211 opposing hitters this year, the sixth-highest mark in school history. Up next is to take over fifth place, which is held by the 2001 team (226).McNulty has pitched in 13 games this year. If he pitches tomorrow and makes his scheduled start over the weekend, he will tie seven other hurlers for sixth all-time at 15. Tom Grandieri and Patrick Brennan have an outside chance at reaching 15 appearances as they both currently sit at 12.
Lehigh is 9-32-1 and enters the doubleheader on an eight-game losing streak. Senior Geoff Campbell leads the Mountain Hawks at the plate with a .345 average. He has 51 hits and 21 runs scored. Andy Russell is a force on the basepaths, stealing 10 bases on 13 attempts. Billy Goldman has swiped seven bags. Cory Kent has been the best pitcher for Lehigh, possessing a 4-2 record and a 3.58 ERA over 16 appearances and 32.2 innings of work.
Last year, the two teams met three times, once in Florida and twice at Meiklejohn Stadium. In the Sunshine State, Lehigh won, 7-4. The two team split a pair in Philly, with Lehigh winning 3-0 and Penn taking a 6-2 victory.