I'll be honest, when Memphis went up 6-0 in the top of the third, it seemed like the standard issue mid-week loss to a far inferior team. But give credit to the Rebels for sticking around long enough to watch the Tigers more or less implode. With the help of four walks, Ole Miss pushed seven runs across the plate in the bottom of the third, then got excellent relief pitching to hold on for an improbable 9-7 win.
Starting pitching, on the other hand, continues to plague the Rebels as James McArthur struggled early and often. Who will start on the mound next week? Will it be two new faces in the two-game series or will McArthur get one more crack at it? Will the bats, which were underwhelming despite the final score, find some life this weekend?
Swayze Swag levels
Nick Fortes: I guess Coach Bianco saw enough of Henri Lartigue's struggles behind the plate this past weekend. Highly-touted freshman Nick Fortes got the nod at catcher, going 1-for-3 (he also got on base from a hit-by-pitch) with two runs scored while looking plenty comfortable on defense. I'd imagine Bianco as a pretty solid evaluator of catcher talent seeing as he played the position himself. It will be interesting to see if Fortes starts again this weekend.
J.B. Woodman: J.B.'s bat is really starting to heat up, going 2-for-4 with three RBI and a run scored on Wednesday. With Colby Bortles not hitting his stride quite yet, J.B. is really stepping up as one of the veteran leaders at the plate, which is exactly what this team needs in order to maintain a threat in the heart of the lineup.
Young relievers: A tad shaky after inheriting a jam from James McArthur in the third, freshman Andrew Pagnozzi settled down to allow one run on two hits over an impressive 3.2 innings, picking up his third win of the season. Freshmen Connor Green and Brady Feigl then combined to get through the next three frames with no runs and just two hits. The only blip down the stretch was sophomore Will Stokes getting dinged for a solo homer in the top of the ninth.
Rebel bats: While the third-inning rally was great, you can mostly chalk it up to walks and wild pitches from Memphis pitchers on top of two Tiger fielding errors. The Rebs mustered just five hits compared to eight walks, but hey, you take 'em however you can get 'em.
James McArthur: Through two midweek starts this season, McArthur has allowed seven runs off nine hits with only four strikeouts over a combined 5.1 innings. You also have to take into consideration that those starts came against Arkansas State and Memphis. With a loaded bullpen of fresh faces, I'd expect to see another starter take the mound next week when the Rebs host a two-game midweek series against Southeast Missouri.
GRILLIN' AND CHILLIN'
Do you like the smell of charcoal while grilling a succulent filet and drinking some fancy craft brewski? Do you enjoy slowly sipping on really expensive bourbon while watching the game on your eleventy-inch curved plasma? Do you want to live like a rockstar? Then you're looking for the Y'all Lifestyle and I can't help you.
Do you instead like grilling affordable (but delicious) food and drinking cheap beer while watching America's pastime in person? Do you like working 40 hours a week with the hope of making ends meet in order to buy a handle of Jim Beam for the weekend? Then the smeargle Grillin' and Chillin' Lifestyle is for you! This week, it's time to put some spice in your life with a classic dish made with either green bell or poblano peppers.
- Four poblano peppers, split in half and seeded
- 1 pound of chorizo or seasoned ground beef
- 2 diced onions
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1-2 cups precooked rice (5 minute rice is fine)
- 2 diced Roma tomatoes
- Couple dollops sour cream (1/4-1/3 cup?)
- 1 bag (1.5-2 cups) Mexican blend/hot pepper cheese