#10 TCU (25-12, 10-5) at #2 Oklahoma State (26-11, 9-3)
Fri., April 22 • 6 p.m. / Sat., April 23 • 6 p.m. / Sun., April 24 • 1 p.m.
O'Brate Stadium (8,000) • Stillwater, Okla.
Video/TV: ESPN+ (Fri. & Sat.) (Robert Allen & Tom Holliday)
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 26-11 overall and atop the Big 12 standings with a 9-3 conference mark. Up next, the second-ranked Cowboys host TCU in a weekend series 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 346-188-2 at his alma mater.
• Winners of four in a row, TCU is 25-12 on the season and third in the Big 12 standings with a 10-5 league mark. The Horned Frogs are hitting .276 while their pitching staff sports a 4.24 ERA.
• Kirk Saarloos is in his first season as TCU's head coach after nine seasons there as an assistant.
• TCU's starting pitching rotation vs. the Cowboys is expected to be:
Friday: RHP Riley Cornelio — 3-2, 2.87 ERA in nine starts, 58 K, 21 BB in 53.1 IP
Saturday: RHP Marcelo Perez — 3-1, 2.88 ERA in 10 appearances (two starts), 22 K, 14 BB in 25.0 IP
Sunday: RHP Brett Walker — 4-2, 4.50 ERA in nine starts, 35 K, 12 BB in 50.0 IP
Cowboys vs. Horned Frogs
OSU is 28-28 all time against TCU, including a 14-17 mark under Josh Holliday. In 2021, TCU was 4-0 against the Cowboys, sweeping them in the regular season series in Fort Worth and defeating them in the Big 12 Championship title game.
In this week's national rankings, OSU checks in as high as No. 2 in the Baseball America poll, which matches its highest-ever ranking under Josh Holliday. The Cowboys are also No. 3 in the D1Baseball, Perfect Game and Collegiate Baseball polls. The Cowboys are ranked No. 4 in the USA Today coaches and NCBWA polls.
OSU has been nationally ranked for 28 consecutive weeks dating back to the 2021 preseason polls.
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. 20 in the official NCAA RPI, while TCU is No. 36.
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 11-game winning streak in March 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 .983 fielding percentage ranks seventh in the NCAA; the Pokes have made 23 errors in 2022.
If You Build It...
OSU ranks seventh nationally in average home attendance; in 18 home dates at O'Brate Stadium this season, the Cowboys are averaging 5,508 fans.
Justin Campbell leads the Big 12 and ranks eighth nationally with 81 strikeouts. He has posted double digit strikeout totals three times and has struck out at least eight in eight of his nine starts.
In 2021, Campbell struck out 10 or more in five of his 13 starts and had six games of eight-plus Ks.
With a .312 batting average and team-high 37 RBIs, 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 48 of OSU's last 53 games, including a streak of 25 consecutive games during that stretch, and he leads the Cowboys with 12 multi-hit and 10 multi-RBI 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 1-2 with a 4.01 ERA in a team-high 20 appearances (18 in relief). He is second in the Big 12 with nine saves and has 40 strikeouts in 24.2 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 seventh 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.
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 18 of the Cowboys' last 22 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 .316 mark, which leads the team. He is OSU's second-leading hitter in Big 12 play at .298.
Mendham leads OSU with 12 doubles and a .526 slugging percentage and is second with 26 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 24 of the 31 games in which he's had a plate appearance, including turning in 11 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 eight home runs and is second with 10 doubles. He has hit safely in 15 of OSU's last 18 contests.
McLean, a hard-throwing right-hander, has also made 12 relief appearances on the season and is 1-0 with two saves; he has racked up 26 strikeouts in 14.0 innings. He recorded his first-career save at Wichita State on April 5 and notched his first win vs. Oklahoma on April 9.
Big 12 Love For The Pokes
OSU was picked by league coaches to finish second behind Texas in the 2022 Big 12 Conference standings. Three Cowboys - Justin Campbell, Nolan McLean and Jake Thompson - were named to the Preseason All-Big 12 Team, while Victor Mederos was named the Preseason Newcomer of the Year and Roc Riggio the Preseason Freshman of the Year.
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 2.30 ERA in 16 relief appearances, and he's struck out 23 while walking just nine in 31.1 innings of work.
Phansalkar owns a 2.38 ERA in conference-only games, having allowed just three earned runs in 11.1 innings over a team-high seven appearances.
Armed & Dangerous
OSU's pitching staff ranks second in the Big 12 with a 4.18 ERA and leads the league in strikeouts with 418 and opponent batting average, with teams hitting just .229 against the Cowboys.
The Pokes have allowed the third-fewest walks in the conference with 139 (eight more than the lowest).
Justin Campbell ranks sixth in the conference with a 2.98 ERA, while five other Cowboys with at least nine appearances sport ERAs under 4.00.
OSU's pitching staff ranks third nationally with 418 strikeouts, and the Cowboys are fifth in the NCAA with an average of 11.3 strikeouts per nine innings.
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.
• Down 7-4 after seven innings in game two of the Bedlam Series, OSU plated three runs in the eighth, tying the game on a two-run homer by Roc Riggio, and won the game on a walkoff wild pitch in the ninth.