here are those in the Ole Miss fan base who despise any game our beloved university plays against Memphis.
”We’ve got nothing to gain.”
”Their facilities are terrible.”
”I have a neighbor who is a Memphis fan that pees in my bushes every weekend.”
I’ve heard it all. BUT I still really enjoy this rivalry because it’s in my backyard and more often than not, I get to enjoy the wins in person and with a Tiger friend in tow making it extra scrumptious.
The Rebels will take its next swings of the young 2018 baseball season against the Tigers, Tuesday at Thomas “The Tominator” Swayze Field (hold the applause). Ole Miss is 3-0 on the year after sweeping LOSEthrop (sick burn) while Memphis sits at 2-1 after a weekend series win against the mighty Hilltoppers from Western Kentucky.
Memphis pitched its way to a series win by only allowing four runs (three earned) in three games, which sources tell me is pretty good. The bats were not nearly as hot for the Tigers over the weekend, however, with a laughter-inducing batting average of .225 as a team through three games.
So is three games and these two stats really enough to tell us what kind of challenge the Tigers will be?
Memphis swept Ole Miss last season in its two games after going 1-3 in the previous two seasons. The Tigers finished last season at 30-29 but had a drastically improved record from its 22-39 finish in 2016.
The game clearly is a bigger opportunity for the Tigers, and Ole Miss should know that going into Tuesday. It’s a continuation of a nine-game home stand the Rebels enjoy to start the season before heading out to West to take on the 49ers a.k.a. Dirt Bags of Long Beach State. And it’s prime time to stack up wins before SEC play gets cranked up.
Starting pitching will be an interesting decision to watch for Memphis, because a rain out Friday caused a blip in the normal scheduling for its rotation. This will be the Tigers fourth game in as many days, though, this early in the season so it shouldn’t be a huge factor.
How to watch
First pitch: 4 p.m. CT
Online streaming: WatchESPN.com
Game-time weather: 77°, cloudy, 10% chance of rain
Ole Miss: RHP Houston Roth (3-0, 1.57 ERA in 2017)
Memphis: LHP Danny Denz (1-1, 4.71 ERA in 2017)