Illinois to Play EIU at Peterson Park on Tuesday

Reid Roper and the Illini will play Eastern Illinois on Tuesday at 6 p.m. at Peterson Park in Mattoon, Ill.
Reid Roper and the Illini will play Eastern Illinois on Tuesday at 6 p.m. at Peterson Park in Mattoon, Ill.

April 22, 2013

 Illinois (24-12) vs. Eastern Illinois (14-22)
 Game Time Tuesday, April 23, 2013 | 6 p.m.
 Location Peterson Park | Mattoon, Ill.
 Live Stats Gametracker
 Live Audio ($) Online or WDWS AM-1400 (Dave Loane & Matt Wille)
 Game Notes Illinois | EIU
 Pitching Matchup ILL: J.D. Nielsen (LHP, Fr., 0-0, 6.75 ERA)
EIU: Jaden Widdersheim (RHP, Jr., 3-3, 6.66 ERA)
 Series History Illinois leads 50-24
 Last Meeting Eastern Illinois won 8-4 (4/9/13)
 Streak Lost 1
 Social Media @IlliniBaseball   |  Facebook
 Preview Interviews Coach Hartleb | Justin Parr

Illinois Is...
...7-0 at neutral sites in 2013
...20-2 when out-hitting its opponent averaging 6.7 runs & 11 hits per game this season
...15th in SBs (82) & 19th in average (.307) in the NCAA

Tuesday's Game vs. EIU Panthers
Pre-Game Notes: After falling to Eastern Illinois on April 9 in Champaign (8-4), Illinois will look to even the season series on Tuesday, April 23, when the two teams square off at 6 p.m. at Peterson Park in Mattoon, Ill. Freshman J.D. Nielsen (0-0, 6.75 ERA) will make his first career start for the Illini, while the Panthers will send Jaden Widdersheim (3-3, 6.66 ERA) to the hill.

Series History vs. EIU: Illinois has had a great deal of success over the years against Eastern Illinois, holding a 50-24 advantage in the all-time series. The Illini are 18-12 all-time against EIU in Mattoon-Charleston and 2-2 at Peterson Park after defeating the Panthers, 5-2, there a year ago to sweep the season series. EIU won the 2011 meeting at the Mattoon American Legion field, 4-1, but the Illini took a 6-5 victory in 10 innings at Peterson Park in 2010. The Panthers won the inaugural meeting there between the two teams in 2008, 13-3.

Illini Team Notes
Hits Translate to Wins: Illinois is 20-2 on the season when out-hitting its opponent and just 2-9 when gettting out-hit by an opponent (also 2-1 when hits are equal). The Illini have recorded double-digit hits in 21 games this season, including a streak of six-straight double-digit games, which was snapped in the series finale against Ohio State (4/21) with nine hits. UI is averaging 11 hits per game and ranks second in the Big Ten with 396 hits and 19th in the NCAA with a .307 batting average.

First in Steals: The Illini lead the Big Ten with 82 stolen bases in 97 attempts, which is ranked 15th in the NCAA. Sophomore David Kerian and redshirt-junior Jordan Parr are tied for second in the Big Ten with 17 stolen bases, which leads the Illini, while senior Justin Parr is tied for ninth in the conference with 13 steals. Eleven different Illini have at least one stolen base, and the Orange and Blue have been caught stealing 15 times, which is the third fewest in the Big Ten.

Early Offense Key for Illini: The Illini are 11-5 when scoring in the first inning and 18-5 when scoring before their opponent. Illinois is outscoring its opponents 39-15 in the first frame, which is its highest-scoring inning. UI ranks second in the Big Ten with 241 runs and has outscored its opponents (162 runs) in every inning on the year. The Illini are averaging 6.7 runs per game in 2013 and have reached double figures in seven games.

Perfect at Neutral Sites: Illinois is 7-0 in games at neutral sites in 2013. The Illini won all three neutral contests at the Keith LeClair Classic in Greenville, N.C., and defeated HBU in both games at Texas-Arlington. UI also downed SIU in extra innings at Rent One Park on Marion, Ill., and knocked off Missouri at Busch Stadium.

NCAA Rankings: In the latest NCAA rankings (4/22), Illinois sits 15th in the nation in stolen bases (82) and 19th in average (.307). The Illini's .428 slugging percentage is 32nd, while their 24 home runs are ranked 42nd. Individually, senior Justin Parr is No. 3 in the NCAA in average (.435) and No. 6 in hits (67).

Illini Player Notes
24-Game Hit Streak: After recording a hit in each game of the Ohio State series, Illini center fielder Justin Parr extended his hitting streak to 24 games, which is one game shy of Ryan Snowden's school-record streak of 25 games from 2007. It also ranks as the longest active streak in the country and the fourth-longest in the nation this season. Oklahoma's Matt Oberste turned in the longest streak of 30 games earlier this year, while New Mexico's Mitch Garver and UNC Wilmington's Michael Bass each had a streak of 26 games.

Top Hitting Streaks in Illinois History
1. Ryan Snowden 25 games (2/25/07-4/14/07)
2. Justin Parr 24 games (3/9/13-present)
3. Tom Sinak 23 games (4/17/94-3/5/95)

Where Parr Ranks: Senior Justin Parr is ranked No. 3 in the NCAA and leads the Big Ten in average (.435) and No. 6 in the nation in hits (67), which leads the conference. For the season, he has the most total bases in the Big Ten with 98 and most triples with four and is second in the conference in slugging (.636), OBP (.482) and RBI (40). He is third in the conference with 34 runs scored, tied for third in doubles (11) and tied for fourth in home runs (4).

Johnson Sets Career Innings Pitched School Record: With a groundout to second for the first out of the second inning at Ohio State (4/19), senior Kevin Johnson surpassed Mark Dressen's previous school-record mark of 328.2 career innings. The Midlothian, Ill., native owns the new record with 333 career innings and has not missed a start in his career, tallying 53 total starts with 13 in 2010 (75.2 IP), 16 in 2011 (103 IP), 14 in 2012 (88.1 IP) and 10 thus far this season (66 IP). He has been the Illini's No. 1 starter for the past three years and earned his 20th career victory with the win over the Buckeyes while improving to 6-2 in 2013, which is tied for the second-most wins in the Big Ten. His 44 strikeouts in 2013 are ranked seventh in the Big Ten, while his 208 career strikeouts sit fifth on the Illini all-time list.

Lindauer Named to SS Watch List Again: Junior Thomas Lindauer was named to the watch list for the 2013 Brooks Wallace Shortstop of the Year Award, sponsored by Mizuno, the College Baseball Hall of Fame announced. The Moline, Ill., native was recognized on the list for the second year in a row. Lindauer is one of three Big Ten shortstops on the list of 25 along with Indiana's Michael Basil and Ohio State's Kirby Pellant. The award recognizes the top shortstop in college baseball and will be presented on June 29 in Lubbock, Texas.

Lindauer Power Surge: Junior Thomas Lindauer has been on a power surge during the 2013 campaign, belting all eight of his career home runs this season, which leads the Big Ten and ranks in the top 40 in the NCAA. He has collected 28 RBI, which ranks sixth in the Big Ten, and tallied 66 total bases, checking in at seventh in the conference. Six of his eight home runs have been solo shots. He belted two solo home runs during the Purdue series (4/12 & 14), one solo homer at Indiana (4/7), two on March 30 vs. Oakland (one in each game of the doubleheader) and one at Baylor (3/9, G1). His first career home run was a two-run shot vs. Houston Baptist (3/2), and he also had a three-run homer against Eastern Illinois (4/9).

Clutch Two-out Hitting: Illinois is hitting .315 (138-for-438) with two outs in an inning and has a pair of players hitting over .380 when faced with the situation in sophomore David Kerian (.500, 19-for-38) and senior Justin Parr (23-for-60, .400). The Illini have 88 total two-out RBI, with five players in double figures - Justin Parr (15), sophomores Michael Hurwitz and David Kerian (12) and junior Thomas Lindauer and Jordan Parr (11).