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MSU looks for 2 midweek victories against Bowling Green, Central Michigan

March 26, 2012
Sophomore pitcher Mike Theodore pitches the ball during the baseball game Sunday against Oakland at McLane Baseball Stadium. Theodore earned his second win of the season by allowing just one run in seven inning, pitching in his first career game at McLane Baseball Stadium. The Spartans beat Oakland 10-1. Derek Berggren/The State News
Sophomore pitcher Mike Theodore pitches the ball during the baseball game Sunday against Oakland at McLane Baseball Stadium. Theodore earned his second win of the season by allowing just one run in seven inning, pitching in his first career game at McLane Baseball Stadium. The Spartans beat Oakland 10-1. Derek Berggren/The State News

In the midst of an eight-game home stand, the MSU baseball team hosts its first midweek game of the season at 3:05 p.m. Tuesday at Kobs Field at McLane Baseball Stadium.

The Spartans (13-7) welcome Bowling Green (7-12) to East Lansing in the first of back-to-back games, as MSU also plays host to Central Michigan (8-12) at 3:05 p.m. Wednesday. With the two games falling just days after the Spartans swept Oakland to open the home season and right before they play Ohio State (12-10) this weekend, it would be easy to overlook the Falcons and Chippewas before opening Big Ten play.

However, senior third baseman Torsten Boss said the team enters Tuesday’s and Wednesday’s games with the same goal they have every weekend.

“We’re just looking to get a couple dubs, you know, a couple more wins,”  Torsten Boss said.

“We’ll hopefully work on hitting the ball better and working hard, but the mindset doesn’t really change.”

Since losing four in a row at the end of February and beginning of March, MSU has won nine out of the last 10 games, and the Spartans will hope to extend their six game winning streak this week.
They also hope to welcome sophomore catcher Joel Fisher back into the lineup.

Coming into the season as MSU’s expected starter behind the plate, Fisher suffered a leg injury trying to field a foul ball early this season. He’s started just two games and made a total of six appearances, but head coach Jake Boss Jr. said Fisher might make a return Tuesday or Wednesday.

“He had a good workout before the game (Sunday),” Jake Boss Jr. said. “He felt really good and was able to do just about everything without any pain. It will be good to be able to put him back in the middle of the order.”

Fisher’s presence likely will help bring stability to a lineup that featured as many as three freshman starters last weekend against the Golden Grizzlies.

That youth has helped contribute to a lack of execution at the plate this season, Jake Boss Jr. said, and more experience in the lineup can’t hurt. With or without Fisher, though, the Spartans still will have various young players making contributions, especially during the midweek games, and junior second baseman Ryan Jones said that’s good for the young guys.

“As freshmen, it takes some games and some experience to get them to understand everything,” Jones said. “And that’s what we try to do as upperclassmen is show them the ropes, and I think we’re doing that so far.”

Sophomore right-hander David Garner will get the start on the mound Tuesday, making his first appearance since taking a ball to the back when junior catcher John Martinez tried to throw out an Oakland runner at second base Friday.

Garner is yet another young player earning more experience with each and every game, and Jake Boss Jr. said the team continues to make progress as conference play approaches.

“We’re getting there,” Jake Boss Jr. said. “We are young, we got a lot of guys that are learning from the older guys, and that process is continuing to get better and better.”

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