Oklahoma (17-10, 3-3) at #4 Oklahoma State (21-8, 5-1)
Fri., April 8 • 6 p.m. / Sat., April 9 • 8 p.m. / Sun., April 10 • 3 p.m.
O'Brate Stadium (8,000) • Stillwater, Okla.
Video/TV: ESPN+ (Fri. & Sun.) (Dave Hunziker & Tom Holliday)
ESPNU (Sat.) (Dari Nowkhah & Kyle Peterson)
Radio: KSPI 93.7 FM & stillwaterradio.net (Rex Holt & Matt Davis)
Live Stats: okstate.statbroadcast.com
Twitter In-Game Updates: @OSUBaseball
About Oklahoma State
• OSU is 21-8 overall and atop the Big 12 standings with a 5-1 conference mark. Up next, the fourth-ranked Cowboys host the Bedlam Series against Oklahoma beginning Friday night at O'Brate Stadium.
• The Cowboys are coming off a 36-19-1 season in 2021 in which they earned an eighth consecutive NCAA Regional berth. OSU finished fourth in the Big 12 Conference standings at 12-12.
• OSU returns 13 letterwinners from a year ago, including four position starters and nine pitchers. Highlighting the list are Preseason All-Americans Justin Campbell, Victor Mederos and Nolan McLean, as well as Jake Thompson, a Preseason All-Big 12 pick along with Campbell and McLean.
• The 2022 season is OSU’s 10th under head coach Josh Holliday, who is 341-185-2 at his alma mater.
• Oklahoma is 17-10 on the season, including a 3-3 mark in conference play. The Sooners are hitting .284 while their pitching staff sports a 5.19 ERA.
• Skip Johnson is in his fifth season as OU’s head coach and owns a 129-90 career record.
• OU's starting pitching rotation vs. the Cowboys is expected to be:
Friday: LHP Jake Bennett — 2-1, 2.09 ERA in seven starts, 46 K, 8 BB in 43.0 IP
Saturday: RHP David Sandlin — 2-2, 5.24 ERA in seven starts, 31 K, 11 BB in 34.1 IP
Sunday: LHP Chazz Martinez — 2-2, 4.04 ERA in seven starts, 38 K, 16 BB in 35.2 IP
Cowboys vs. Sooners
OSU is 179-156 all time against Oklahoma, including a 27-10 mark under Josh Holliday. The Cowboys lost to OU, 7-6, in non-conference midweek game on March 29 at Tulsa's ONEOK Field.
In this week's national rankings, OSU checks in as high as No. 4 in the Baseball America poll. The Pokes are also ranked No. 5 by Perfect Game, No. 6 by D1Baseball, No. 7 by the NCBWA and in the USA Today coaches poll and No. 10 by Collegiate Baseball.
OSU has been nationally ranked for 26 consecutive weeks dating back to the 2021 preseason polls. Its highest-ever ranking under Josh Holliday came March 28 when they were No. 2 in the Perfect Game poll.
From March 4, 2013 to April 3, 2017, OSU was ranked in at least one national poll, a streak of 77 consecutive weeks. During that time, the Cowboys spent 18 weeks in the Top 10 and were ranked as high as No. 3 (by the NCBWA in 2014). They have finished in the top 10 in the final national polls twice under Josh Holliday — 10th in 2014 and fourth in 2016.
OSU currently sits at No. 25 in the official NCAA RPI, while OU is No. 19.
Big Time In Big 12
Entering the 2022 conference schedule, Josh Holliday ranked fifth all time among head coaches in winning percentage in Big 12 play at .597. In his first eight seasons, he led the Pokes to a 111-75 mark.
We're Going Streaking
OSU's recent 11-game winning streak was the third longest of the Josh Holliday head coaching era. The Pokes won 14 in a row in 2020-21 (last five games of COVID shortened '20 season and first nine of '21) and went on a 12-game win streak in 2014.
The program record for longest winning streak is 30 games, set by the 1986 Cowboys.
Flashing The Leather
OSU's .988 fielding percentage ranks second in the NCAA; the Pokes have made just 13 errors.
If You Build It...
OSU ranks eighth nationally in average home attendance; in 13 games at O'Brate Stadium this season, the Cowboys are averaging 5,334 fans.
Justin Campbell leads the Big 12 and ranks eighth nationally with 66 strikeouts. He has posted double digit strikeout totals three times and has struck out at least eight in all seven of his starts on the season.
In 2021, Campbell struck out 10 or more in five of his 13 starts and had six games of eight-plus Ks.
With a team-leading .330 batting average, Jake Thompson has established himself as one of the Big 12's top hitters.
Thompson, who Josh Holliday calls one of the best two-strike hitters he's ever coached, has reached base safely in 41 of OSU's last 45 games, including a streak of 25 consecutive games during that stretch, and he leads the Cowboys with 11 multi-hit games.
A sixth-year graduate student who has found a home at his fourth college stop, Thompson is OSU's leading returning hitter after posting a .342 batting average last season, and he was the Big 12's top hitter in conference-only games in 2021 with a .393 average.
Small Town, Big Time
What is it about OSU closers and small towns?! We don't know, but Trevor Martin is continuing a trend.
Martin hails from Asher, Oklahoma, population 412, and the right-hander is 1-1 with a Big 12-best nine saves in a team-high 16 stints out of the bullpen this season. He's also tallied 28 strikeouts in 17 innings of work. He's already tied for fifth on OSU's single-season saves list - and one away from moving into a tie for second - and he ranks third nationally in saves and 13th in appearances.
In 2014, Brendan McCurry set OSU's single-season saves record with 19 to earn first-team All-America honors. A native of Tupelo, Oklahoma, population 330, McCurry is also the Cowboys' leader in career saves with 27. His brother, Randy, had 10 saves in 2009 and finished his career with a dozen.
Another small-town Oklahoma kid, Jordy Mercer, from Taloga, Oklahoma, population 300, served as OSU's closer from 2006-08 and ranks second on OSU's all-time list with 17 saves.
The Cowboys have shown a flair for the dramatic to find success late in games and emerge victorious.
• In the series finale and rubber game at Vanderbilt, the Cowboys scored two runs in the ninth inning to break a 5-5 tie and claim the win.
• The Cowboys trailed Wright State 6-2 in the ninth inning of the second game of their Sunday doubleheader but scored four runs to send the game to extra innings before getting a walk-off win in the 10th.
• OSU was down 4-1 after seven innings in its series opener at Arizona State but plated four runs in the eighth inning and two in the ninth to secure a 7-5 victory.
• In game two of the BYU series, neither team had scored entering the eighth inning. The Pokes rallied for three runs with two outs and went on to a 3-0 win.
• Trailing 4-3 in the seventh against DBU, the Cowboys rallied for two runs in the inning en route to a 5-4 win.
• Jake Thompson's two-out, three-run homer in the bottom of the eighth inning in the series finale against Seton Hall snapped a 3-3 tie in a game OSU went on to win 6-4.
• The Pokes trailed 3-1 with two outs in the eighth inning at Wichita State before rallying for three runs and going on to a 5-3 win.
David Mendham's baseball journey has taken him from his native Canada to Oklahoma to South Carolina and back to Oklahoma, where he appears to have found a home in Stillwater.
The OSU first baseman is on a tear at the plate, where he's hit safely in 12 of the Cowboys' last 14 games, including posting a nine-game hitting streak, the longest by a Cowboy this season.
Mendham has raised his season batting average from .194 after the March 16th game against DBU to its current .309 mark, which ranks second on the team. He is OSU's leading hitter in Big 12 play at .364.
Mendham leads OSU with a .531 slugging percentage and nine doubles and is second with 20 RBIs.
True freshman Zach Ehrhard has established himself at the top of the OSU lineup as one of the Cowboys' most consistent bats.
Primarily OSU's right fielder, Ehrhard is third on the team with a .308 batting average and has hit safely in 18 of the 26 games he's played, including turning in nine multi-hit efforts.
Nolan McLean's powerful bat has been a fixture in the middle of the Cowboys' order throughout the season, and he has also seen increased work on the mound of late.
The sophomore leads the Cowboys with five home runs and is second with eight doubles. He has hit safely in eight of OSU's last 10 contests.
McLean, a hard-throwing right-hander, has also made eight relief appearances on the season and has racked up 17 strikeouts in 9.0 innings. He recorded his first-career save at Wichita State on April 5.
Bedlam Is Back
This weekend's Bedlam Series will mark the first time the rivals have played the entire series at a single on-campus site since 1989 when all four games were played in Stillwater.
In 2021, the opener was in Stillwater with the final two games in Norman. In 2018 and 2019, one game was played on campus, one in Tulsa and one in Oklahoma City.
From 1990-2017, the series split its games between the minor league ballparks in Tulsa and OKC.
Roman Phansalkar is having a career year as a key part of OSU's bullpen.
In his first two seasons at OSU spanning 2020 and 2021, the righty pitched in 15 games and had 21 walks and 17 strikeouts while allowing 26 runs (19 earned) in 19 1/3 innings.
This season, Phansalkar is 3-2 with a 2.05 ERA in 12 relief appearances, and he's struck out 18 while walking just seven in 26 1/3 innings of work.
Armed & Dangerous
OSU's pitching staff ranks second in the Big 12 with a 3.84 ERA and is tops in the league in opponent batting average, with teams hitting just .221 against the Cowboys.
The Pokes also rank second in the league in strikeouts with 319 (10 shy of the leader) and have allowed the second-fewest walks with 104 (five more than the next lowest).
Justin Campbell ranks eighth in the conference with a 3.05 ERA, while five other Cowboys with at least six appearances sport ERAs under 4.00.
A Star Is Born
Justin Campbell blossomed into an All-American in 2021, building an impressive resume by dominating on the mound and also being a threat with a bat in his hands.
In 14 appearances (13 starts), the righty posted a 7-2 record and 2.57 ERA and recorded 102 strikeouts in 84 innings, marking the 18th time an OSU pitcher has tallied 100 strikeouts in a season. He became the 15th different Cowboy hurler to achieve the feat and first since Thomas Hatch and Trey Cobb in 2016.
Campbell earned All-American status from Collegiate Baseball, Perfect Game/Rawlings and Baseball America, and he was named All-Big 12 First Team as both a pitcher and utility player.
Last season, Campbell also played in 30 games as a DH and pinch hitter and hit .269 with a homer, five doubles and 10 RBIs. He was one of five finalists for the John Olerud Two-Way Player of the Year Award.
Campbell became the second player in OSU history to earn All-Big 12 honors at two different positions in the same season, joining Jordy Mercer on that list. He's the only Cowboy to earn first-team accolades at two positions as Mercer was a first-team utility player and made the second team as a shortstop in 2008.
Number Two And A Long Way To Go
With 341 wins, Josh Holliday ranks second on OSU's all-time head coach wins list behind hall of famer Gary Ward, who guided the Pokes to 953 victories in 19 seasons.
Holliday recorded his 300th career win as a head coach when he led his alma mater to a 5-4 win over Bedlam-rival Oklahoma on March 30 in Stillwater.