This Week in BIG EAST Baseball - April 14

PROVIDENCE, R.I. - Through three weekends of play in the BIG EAST baseball season, 2011 preseason favorite Connecticut holds a one-game lead on first place in the conference. The Huskies, who sit at 7-2 in the league, are ahead of Louisville, Pittsburgh and West Virginia who each own 6-3 conference records. Here is a look at the six weekend series. Cincinnati (17-14, 4-5) at Rutgers (12-18, 4-5) Friday, April 15, 3 p.m.: Cin - RHP Dan Jensen (2-3, 2.62 ERA) vs. RU - RHP Tyler Gebler (2-3, 2.83 ERA) Live Stats Sat., April 16, 1 p.m.: Cin - RHP Andrew Strenge (1-3, 3.50 ERA) vs. RU - LHP Rob Smorol (2-4, 5.17 ERA) Live Stats Sunday, April 17, Noon: Cin - RHP Nick Johnson (4-1, 3.14 ERA) vs. RU - RHP Nathaniel Roe (3-5, 5.04 ERA) Live Stats - Rutgers has seen much improvement from its pitching staff this season. The Rutgers pitching staff owns a team ERA of 4.43 which is an improvement of 1.47 from last season's team ERA of 5.90. All three of Rutgers' weekend starters were relievers on last year's squad. - Scarlet Knights' sophomore ace Tyler Gebler has allowed just one earned run in each of his last two appearances. He is 1-0 in those games with nine strikeouts in those games. Gebler leads Rutgers' starter with a 2.83 ERA. - RU sophomore reliever Rob Corsi, who is in his first season at Rutgers after transferring from Duquesne last season, owns a 2-1 record with a 2.45 ERA in 13 relief appearances. He has struck out 14 in 14.2 innings. Corsi has allowed just one run over his last 10 appearances, spanning 11 innings. - Cincinnati went 2-0 this week after the Bearcats defended their title at the Joe Nuxhall Classic with wins over Xavier and Wright State. Freshman Justin Glass earned MVP honors after going 2-for-3 with three RBI in the title game against Wright State. - Cincinnati's Jake Proctor is 14-for-14 in stolen bases this season. He is the only BIG EAST player with at least 10 stolen base attempts who has not been caught. - Bearcat senior Nick Johnson threw a complete game against Louisville, earning the win while allowing just two runs. It is the second-straight weekend the Bearcats have had a pitcher go the distance. Louisville (20-12, 6-3) at St. John's (16-13, 5-4) Friday, April 15, 3 p.m.: UofL - RHP Matt Koch (4-3, 3.08 ERA) vs. STJ - RHP Kyle Hansen (4-3, 2.81 ERA) Live Stats Watch Live Sat., April 16, 1 p.m.: UofL - RHP Justin Amlung (6-0, 1.14 ERA) vs. STJ - LHP Kevin Kilpatrick (2-2, 4.19 ERA) Live Stats Watch Live Sunday, April 17, Noon: UofL - TBA vs. STJ - LHP Brendan Lobban (3-1, 4.47 ERA) Live Stats Watch Live - St. John's holds an 8-6 advantage in the all-time series. The last time the two teams met was in the 2010 BIG EAST Championship semifinal, where St. John's beat Louisville 5-3 to advance to the title game. - Louisville has the top pitching staff in the BIG EAST this season. The Cardinals lead the league with a 2.53 ERA which also ranks in the top 20 in the nation. The team's six shutouts are the second most in school history. - Louisville has allowed 59 of their 109 runs in the first three innings. After the first three innings, the Cardinals' outscore their opponents 111-50. - Louisville has won nine straight series in BIG EAST regular-season play. - Louisville Saturday starter Justin Amlung is one of only two BIG EAST starting pitchers without a loss this season (Seton Hall's Joe DiRocco is the other). Amlung is tied for first in the league with six wins and ranks second with a 1.14 ERA. - St. John's shortstop Joe Panik leads the BIG EAST with a .518 on-base percentage. He earned a spot on the BIG EAST Honor Roll after batting .615 last week with five RBI. - Red Storm Friday starter Kyle Hansen ranks in the top five in the conference in strikeouts (48) and opponent batting average (.209). - St. John's is the top fielding team in the BIG EAST this season. The Red Storm have a .973 fielding percentage, committing just 30 errors in 1,106 chances.