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Ole Miss baseball vs. Long Beach State 2018: Online streaming, game times and preview

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The boys hit the road for the first time.

Josh McCoy-Ole Miss Athletics

Ole Miss has opened up the 2018 season in spectacular fashion, sweeping Winthrop and Tulane. Then, they added some dramatic in there for good measure with a walk-off win over Murray State on Tuesday to improve to 8-0 for the first time since 2008. That team actually climbed to 9-0 and No. 2 in the country before losing a midweek contest to Arkansas State.

This year’s team is in the top 10 as well (No. 9) but are still unscathed. This weekend, they head West. And quite a ways in fact.

Google Maps

They will make their way to the Aquatic Capital of America and take on the Dirtbags of Long Beach State (3-6) at Blair Field for a three-game weekend series that has some serious resume implications. Granted the 49ers aren’t so hot at the moment (2-6), but they still pose a threat to the Rebs’ unblemished record with textbook West Coast-style baseball. They’re going to come after Ole Miss in all phases fundamentally. They’re going to bunt, steal, hit and run, and bunt some more. Mike Bianco’s shaky defensive club is going to get its biggest test yet in California this weekend.

What are the Rebels dealing with this weekend?

The aforementioned rough start for LBSU is due in large part to some bad luck. Coach Troy Buckley found out that his Friday guy John Sheaks and his starting catcher Cole Joy will be out for an extended period of time. Sheaks will undergo Tommy John surgery and Joy is out with a broken thumb. That means he’s going to have to replace eight wins on the bump and a junior college transfer who hit at a .368 clip last season.

But, the expected rotation hasn’t gone to shambles just yet. Zak Baayoun is off to a strong start in 2018 (2-0, 1.26 ERA) and Clayton Andrews (0-2, 3.27 ERA) and Adam Seminaris (0-2, 3.48 ERA) are slinging it well, too. Behind those three, All-American closer Chris Rivera is coming off a 2017 campaign that saw him lock down game late (13 saves, 2.60 ERA). This year, he already has two saves in the bag. Eli Villalobos (0-1, 9.95 ERA) is another name to pay attention to, but he is off to a not-so-good start this year.

At the dish, Long Beach is going to play small ball and work station-to-station. Brooks Stotler leads the way for the 49ers with a .321 average and 12 total bases. Behind him are Laine Huffman (.300, HR, .500 slugging %) and Jarren Duran (.240, 3 SB, .321 on-base %). Besides that, the rest of the lineup isn’t very scary (.200 team average).

This series is practically built for Ole Miss to win. They have the starting pitching and the bullpen arms to take down a less-than-stellar hitting ball club. LB is no pushover, they did travel to No. 6 TCU and steal a road win earlier this season in a low-scoring, hard-fought, pitcher’s duel. But, the x-factor is going to be defense. Can Ole Miss make the plays in the field?

The numbers

Complete Ole Miss stats | Complete Long Beach State stats

How to watch

Saturday (Game 1)

First pitch: 4 p.m. CT
TV: NONE
Online streaming: Beach Vision
Game-time weather: 61°, rain, 90% chance of rain
Projected pitchers
Ole Miss: LHP Ryan Rolison (2-0, 0.90 ERA)
LBSU: LHP Clayton Andrews (0-2, 3.27 ERA)

Saturday (Game 2)

First pitch: 45 minutes after game one
TV: NONE
Online streaming: Beach Vision
Game-time weather: 58°, AM showers, 60% chance of rain
Projected pitchers
Ole Miss: RHP Brady Feigl (2-0, 0.00 ERA)
LBSU: LHP Zak Baayoun (2-0, 1.26 ERA)

Sunday

First pitch: 1:30 p.m. CT
TV: NONE
Online streaming: Beach Vision
Game-time weather: 62°, mostly sunny, 0% chance of rain
Projected pitchers
Ole Miss: RHP James McArthur (0-0, 0.87 ERA)
LBSU: TBA