(Photo Credit: Clayton Hotze- MUTigers.com)
The Missouri Tigers baseball team is off to a hot start to their season winning 14 of the first 18 games. The team began the season with its best start since 1985 winning 10 of the first 11 games. Following a sweep by Milwaukee in the Tigers home opener Tim Jamieson’s squad has won the last four straight, most recently a pair against SEC opponent Georgia.
The addition of junior college transfer Reggie McClain has made all the difference for Missouri. In 17 junior college appearances McClain went 9-2 with a 2.83 ERA. In his first season as a Tiger McClain is already 3-1 on the season with a 1.84 ERA and is a two-time SEC pitcher of the week recipient.
Peter Fairbanks has also given the Tigers solid support on the rubber despite a 1-2 record. Fairbanks is averaging 5.5 innings over four starts with a 1.99 ERA. On the back end of games closer Breckin Williams has solidified himself as an anchor with five saves and a 2-0 record in eight appearances.
On the offensive side of the ball Brett Bond and Josh Lester have supplied the majority of the damage for Missouri. Bond a freshman out of Westminster high school in St. Louis has already solidified himself as an offensive threat as he leads the team in batting average (.333) and is tied for the team lead in home runs with two. Lester, a seasoned infielder in his junior year leads the team with an impressive 17 runs batted in.
With the exception of Georgia the Tigers strength of schedule hasn’t been all that impressive though the teams success speaks for itself. Last year nothing seemed to work as Missouri finished the season with a woeful 20-33 record, 5-14 on the road.
This year the added talent of the freshman class and the beefed up pitching staff should give the Tigers a better chance to win and compete within a tough South Eastern conference.
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