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No. 24 Maryland baseball vs. Siena preview

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The Terps will look to remain undefeated at Bob “Turtle” Smith Stadium.

Courtesy of Maryland Athletics
UMTerps

Coming off of a tough loss to Delaware, in which the team surrendered six unanswered runs, No. 24 Maryland baseball will have the opportunity to bounce back against a struggling Siena team at home.

After sweeping the weekend series against Georgetown and Cornell, the Terps took a swift 3-0 lead in the second inning, but couldn’t generate any more offense, falling to Delaware 6-3 in their last game.

“I don’t think it’s anything other than a blip on the radar,” head coach Rob Vaughn said. “The bottom line is you have to deserve to win and you have to especially deserve to win on the road.”

Sophomore Logan Ott got the start on the mound but was limited to three innings after pitching on Friday night. Once Ott was taken out, the Terps were in trouble as they couldn’t find a pitcher who could survive more than one inning. Four of the six relief pitchers gave up runs, with third baseman Nick Lorusso allowing three in the seventh and eighth inning, giving the Blue Hens the lead for good.

This weekend, the Terps will roll out their usual starters with junior Nick Dean and Big Ten Co-Pitcher of the Week Ryan Ramsey tag-teaming the Saturday doubleheader, while sophomore Jason Savacool wraps up the series on Sunday.

Saturday’s doubleheader is set to begin at noon, with the following game scheduled for 3:30 p.m. First pitch of Sunday’s matchup is at 1 p.m. All games will be streamed on BTN Plus.

Siena Saints (2-11, 0-0 MAAC)

2021 record: 15-24, 14-22

Head coach Tony Rossi is the longest-tenured head coach in Division I baseball history as he is in his 53rd season with the program. Rossi is the winningest coach in both Siena College and Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference history in any sport with 923 wins. The six-time MAAC Coach of the Year has led Siena to five MAAC Tournament Championships and two NCAA Tournament appearances. However, Rossi and the Saints haven’t had much success as of late as the team hasn’t finished above .500 since 2008, including an 0-17 record in 2020.

Hitters to know

Sophomore infielder Kobe Stenson has been moved to the sixth spot in the order after hitting in the top of the lineup for the majority of last year. Stenson adds a spark to the end of the lineup as he leads the team in batting average (.326), hits (15) and runs (11). He is one of two players with a batting average above .300 and has been Siena’s most consistent hitter.

Redshirt junior Brett Young is the other Saint with a batting average above .300 and has been the team’s offensive anchor this year. After having a limited role in his first two years, Young has broken out, playing and starting in all but one game this season. He has been Siena’s only true home run threat as he leads the team in RBIs with eight, home runs with two and eight extra-base hits.

Pitchers to know

Senior left-handed pitcher Ben Seiler has started in all three of the Saints' doubleheaders this season, only letting up five hits and one run in six innings last Saturday. Seiler, who has been Siena’s most reliable starter, has pitched 21.1 innings this year, recording a 4.22 ERA, 1.50 WHIP and 17 strikeouts, all of which are second on the team.

Senior right-handed pitcher Arlo Marynczak has been the Saints' go-to relief pitcher since his freshman year. In a team-high five appearances, Marynczak has pitched 14 innings, leading the team in ERA (2.57), WHIP (1.07) and strikeouts (19). Marynczak’s most recent appearance came last Saturday when he pitched three innings without allowing a single hit or run.

Strength

Fielding. One of Siena’s lone bright spots this year has been its fielding and ability to avoid errors. The Saints are third in the MAAC in fielding percentage (0.968) and second-to-last in errors (14). If there’s one thing Siena won’t do, it’s making mistakes in the field.

Weaknesses

Hitting. The Saints have struggled tremendously at the plate this season, one of the main reasons why this team only has two wins. Siena has a .220 batting average this season, .049 below last season, while ranking eighth in the MAAC in runs (57) and hits (96) and second in strikeouts (149).

Three things to watch

1. Can Maryland get the bats rolling again? The Terps' offense has been a bit stagnant as of late, averaging just 5.5 hits and four runs over their last two games. Even when Maryland put up 12 runs against Cornell, seven of them came as a result of a hit-by-pitch or walk. The Terps face off against a stellar Dallas Baptist team next weekend and could really use this Siena series to work out the kinks and gain some momentum.

2. How will the Terps perform in their second doubleheader? Maryland is approaching its second doubleheader of the season while the Saints are playing in their fourth. The Terps swept their first doubleheader with a 3-1 and then 9-1 win over Campbell, while Siena has won just one of its six. If Maryland can remain fresh and focused, it should be able to pull this one off.

3. Can Maryland take advantage of an easier matchup? With a record of 2-11, Siena this will be Maryland’s easiest matchup yet, but that doesn’t mean it should overlook them. The Terps fell to a 7-7 Delaware squad and barely squeaked out a 3-2 win over the 7-9 UMBC Retrievers. Maryland has been prone to playing down to its competition, so it will need to see Siena as a faceless opponent this weekend.