MO State HS Sports

Baseball Opens Key Series With Ole Miss Thursday at Taylor

Matt Garcia

COLUMBIA, Mo. – Missouri baseball heads into the home stretch of its 2023 regular season, opening a pivotal three-game Southeastern Conference series with Ole Miss Thursday (May 4) with a 6 p.m. (CDT) contest at Taylor Stadium, followed by single games Friday (May 5) and Saturday (May 6) at 6 p.m. and 2 p.m., respectively.

Mizzou (25-19, 5-16 SEC) will be looking to build momentum following its 20th nonconference victory of the season, a 9-7 win over archrival Kansas on Tuesday (May 2) in Columbia. The Tigers enter the weekend on a six-game slide in SEC play, including four straight in league home contests since their April 7 walk-off victory over No. 4 Vanderbilt.

Ole Miss (24-21, 5-16 SEC), the defending national champion, took two of three games from Georgia last weekend, stopping a five-game SEC skid of its own.

Fans can once again catch Mizzou baseball on the airwaves all season long on KTGR and the Tiger Radio Network. Tex Little and Matt Michaels return to the booth for the call. Additionally, Thursday’s series opener will be televised live on the SEC Network, with John Schriffen and Gregg Olson calling the action.


Thursday, May 4 (6 p.m.) – RHP Chandler Murphy (Mizzou) vs. LHP Xavier Rivas (Ole Miss)
Friday, May 5 (6 p.m.) – LHP Javyn Pimental (Mizzou) vs. RHP JT Quinn (Ole Miss)
Saturday, May 6 (2 p.m.) – RHP Logan Lunceford (Mizzou) vs. TBD (Ole Miss)


2023 Mizzou Baseball Tickets

  • Thursday – Star Wars Night (free lightsabers, while supplies last)
  • Friday – Cinco de Mayo (free Truman mug, first 250 fans)
  • Saturday – Family Funday/Veteran’s United Military Appreciation Day (t-shirt giveaway, postgame autographs, kids run the bases)


  • Mizzou and Ole Miss meet for the 25th time on Thursday night, with the Rebels holding a 15-9 edge in the all-time series.
  • The Tigers have won three of the previous five meetings in Columbia, including two wins over the Rebels in the two clubs’ 2019 regular-season series.
  • MU is just 4-11 vs. Ole Miss in its SEC era (2013-present).
  • Close games have been the norm in the series, with nine of the last 12 contests being decided by three runs or fewer (and 15 of the 24 overall meetings).


  • Missouri is off to a 25-19 overall start this season and bring a 5-16 SEC mark into play this weekend.
  • The Tigers received votes in at least one major poll for seven straight weeks (Feb. 27-April 10), peaking as high as No. 15 in Collegiate Baseball’s March 20 poll.
  • Mizzou’s 2023 roster features a heavy helping of talent from within the state of Missouri’s borders, with 16 players from the Show-Me State.
  • Additionally, Mizzou head coach Steve Bieser has brought in players from a total of 16 different states, plus the territory of Puerto Rico.


  • Missouri has six wins over RPI Quadrant I clubs to its credit, including five vs. teams rated among the top 25.
  • Mizzou is 14-6 at home thanks in part to a pitching staff that has limited the opposition to a .224 batting average and 4.2 runs per game at Taylor Stadium.
  • Mizzou ranks third in the SEC in triples (12) and fourth in hit by pitches (73).
  • The Tigers pitching staff ranks 30th nationally in hits allowed per nine innings (8.17).
  • Mizzou has out-hit the competition in 27 of its 44 games, going 23-4 in those contests.
  • Tre Morris has been the Tigers’ top two-out hitter this season, logging 10 hits in 30 at-bats (.333).
  • Trevor Austin has driven in runs in 13 of his 14 chances with runners on third base and less than two out.
  • Ty Wilmsmeyer’s total of 18 steals ranks second in the SEC, while Mizzou ranks fifth as a team (56).
  • Luke Mann logged his second four-hit game of the season Tuesday, going 4-for-5 with four extra-base hits in Mizzou’s win over Kansas.
  • Dylan Leach has reached base safely in 16 of his last 17 games since March 28, logging 13 of his 20 hits on the season during the same stretch.
  • Logan Lunceford has fanned at least six hitters in six of his eight starts and leads all freshman SEC hurlers in strikeouts with 59.
  • Rorik Maltrud ranks eighth among all SEC pitchers in overall strikeouts (62).
  • Hank Zeisler has been one of the Tigers’ most consistent offensive threats, totaling 12 home runs and 47 RBIs to date, while ranking third in the SEC in triples (3) and seventh in walks (37); the first baseman has produced 23 two-out RBIs this season.
  • Zach Franklin leads the club with six victories and two saves in 17 total appearances; the graduate transfer ranks fifth among all active NCAA Division I pitchers in career victories (22) and seventh in career strikeouts (266).
  • The Tigers are 22-4 when scoring at least six runs, but just 3-15 when failing to do so.
  • The Mizzou pitching staff has logged double-digit strikeout totals in 21 of its 44 games and ranks 29th nationally in K’s/9.0 IP (10.1).


  • Under the direction of 23rd-year head coach Mike Bianco, Ole Miss enters the weekend with a 24-21 overall mark and a 5-16 SEC record.
  • The Rebels are hitting .287 as a team, good for eighth among all SEC offenses.
  • Kemp Alderman paces the club with a .371 average, 18 home runs and 57 RBIs, all three of which rank among the top 10 hitters in the conference.
  • Additionally, both Calvin Harris and Jacob Gonzalez have hit eight home runs for Ole Miss while hitting above .300.
  • On the mound, the Rebels have logged a 5.61 team ERA, led by left-hander Xavier Rivas’s 5-3 mark and 5.74 ERA among the group of regular weekend starters.
  • Mason Nichols has recorded three wins and four saves to lead the Ole Miss relief corps.


  • Mizzou has opened the home portion of its schedule by winning 14 of its first 20 games at Taylor Stadium, drawing 14 different crowds of 1,000 or more and a total of 27,587 fans over 17 home dates, good for an average of 1,623 spectators per date.
  • That marks a 61-percent increase in year-to-date home attendance compared to the first 17 home dates of the 2022 season, when Mizzou drew 17,104 spectators and seven crowds of 1,000 or more for an average of 1,007 fans per game.
  • The Tigers are on pace to shatter both their total season and single-game attendance marks are on pace, previously set in 2008, when MU drew a total of 31,450 fans over 26 dates, for an average of 1,210 fans per game.
  • Mizzou needs to draw a total of 3,864 fans over the final seven home games to break the club’s single-season mark.


  • Mizzou’s pitching staff has received a needed boost from its talented freshman class, which features five hurlers—Sam Horn, Brock Lucas, Logan Lunceford, Nic Smith and Daniel Wissler—who have combined to post a 10-4 mound mark through the first 43 games of the season.
  • Lunceford, who has fanned six or more batters in six of his eight starts, leads all SEC freshman pitchers in opposing batting (.196) and strikeouts (59) while earning a role in Mizzou’s weekend rotation.
  • Led by Lunceford’s three victories and 4.63 ERA, the group has posted a combined 118 strikeouts over 113.0 innings.


  • Luke Mann continued his climb up the Mizzou home run chart (see above), hitting the 41st homer of his career in Tuesday’s win over Kansas.
  • Mann needs one more long ball to match the career totals of Aaron Senne and Ryan Fry, currently tied in the No. 3 position with 42 round-trippers.
  • The fifth-year third baseman registered four extra-base hits as part of his second four-hit game of the season and hiked his career batting average vs. Kansas to .556 (10-for-18) in five total games.
  • Mann became the second Tiger in 10 days to hit three home runs in a game March 24 at No. 4 South Carolina as part of his first four-hit performance as a Tiger.
  • The St. Louis native logged a career-best 12-game hit streak (Feb. 24-March 15).
  • Mann was tabbed for first-team preseason laurels, becoming the first Tiger honoree since Kameron Misner’s second-team selection five years ago.
  • Mann’s 17 home runs in 2022 were the most by a Tiger since Ehlers hit 18 round-trippers in 2004.


  • Mann’s first-inning home run vs. Kansas (May 2) marked the Tigers’ 50th home run as a team.
  • Mizzou has reached the 50-home run plateau just three times during the BBCOR era (2011 to present), including the best single-season total of that timeframe last year when it hit 62 balls out of the yard.
  • Mizzou’s 62 homers last spring represented the program’s top total since the 1998 squad blasted a school-record 110 bombs.
  • In records dating to 1950, only 17 Mizzou teams have hit 50 or more homers in a season, with this year’s club tied with the 2019 Tigers for the 16th best total.


  • Mizzou head coach Steve Bieser is in his seventh year guiding the Tigers, entering the weekend with a 183-150-1 record as MU’s bench boss.
  • Bieser topped the 300-victory mark with Mizzou’s 10-4 win at FIU on Feb. 25, and enters Thursday’s game with a career 321-247-1 mark in 11 seasons.
  • The Tigers have finished with an overall record above .500 in five of Bieser’s six seasons.
  • Additionally, Mizzou is 119-39 in nonconference contests during Bieser’s tenure.
  • Bieser’s 104 wins from 2017-19 were the most ever by a Mizzou baseball coach in his first three campaigns.
  • Additionally, Bieser’s win total marked the winningest three-year stretch by the Tigers since 2008-10 (103).
  • Mizzou produced 39 wins in SEC play from 2017-19 as well, marking its top three-year stretch in league play since joining its new conference in 2013.


Single-game tickets for all Mizzou baseball home games in 2023 are on sale now and can be purchased by calling 1-800-CAT-PAWS, or by visiting

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This article is provided by University of Missouri Athletics