ARLINGTON, Texas -- The UTA baseball team will open its 26-game home schedule with the nation's top-ranked team, welcoming TCU for a 6:30 p.m. CT first pitch at Clay Gould Ballpark. The game will be broadcast live on UTAMavs.com with Amanda Kent voicing the action.
The game on Tuesday has been designated a Black Out. The first 500 UTA students can get free long-sleeve UTA T-Shirts. Fuzzy's Taco Shop will once again provide concessions at Clay Gould Ballpark, which features a bevy of food, soda and adult drink options.
Tuesday vs. No. 1 TCU
R-Jr., LHP Adam Meyer vs. R-Sr., RHP Mitchell Traver
UTA will turn to junior southpaw Adam Meyer for his season debut on Tuesday. Meyer, a 6-foot-2, 210-pound product of Azele High School, will be making his 13th career appearance and his fourth start. Meyer went 1-1 with an 8.31 ERA in 2016, notching a save in 17.1 innings, walking seven and striking out 14. He made strong relief outings in 2016 vs. No. 7 Oklahoma State (1.1 shutout innings) and at Baylor (1.2 shutout innings). He transferred to UTA from Eastern Oklahoma State, where he made eight starts in 2015 with a 3.75 ERA.
TCU will call on fifth-year senior Mitchell Traver for his season debut in the start. Traver, a 6-foot-7, 255-pounder, has had a decorated career at TCU, owning a 10-5 record and a 2.61 ERA in his career, fanning 105 with 36 walks in 107 innings. A longtime prospect, Traver was a 17th round drat pick in 2016, a 28th round draft pick in 2015 and a 39th round pick out of high school in 2012. Ranked as the 52nd best prospect in the 2012 MLB Draft by Baseball America, Traver was one of the top pitchers in college baseball as a sophomore, going 9-2 with a 1.89 ERA in 14 starts, before a back injury limited him to 30.1 innings in 2016.
UTA (2-2) completed a four-game opening weekend tournament at Stephen F. Austin, facing SFA and defending Ohio Valley Conference Champion SEMO. UTA suffered a loss in the opener vs. SEMO, 4-3, before falling to SFA in 10 innings, 2-1 in the first game of a doubleheader on Saturday. UTA then bounced back to claim the twinbill finale vs. SEMO, 5-3, before claiming a 7-4 win at SFA on Sunday.
LEADING THE MAVS
The Mavs have been led at the plate in 2017 by sophomore shortstop Josh Minjarez, who sports a five-game hitting streak, dating back to his freshman season. Minjarez has hit .429 (6-for-14) with two doubles and four RBI, reaching base safely in eight of 16 trips to the plate. Junior DH Omar Salinas has started 5-for-12 on the year with a double, with junior infielder Easton Johnson going 4-for-10 with three steals. Senior Quintin Rohrbaugh is off to a 6-for-17 start with a homer and two RBI and junior rightfielder Phil Berthiaume has started 3-for-12 with an RBI. Catcher Will Olson is 3-for-12 on the year, with Brady Cox and RJ Williams also each adding three hits. Noah Vaughan has belted a two-run homer, adding three walks.
On the mound, Kadon Simmons (0-1, 6.75 ERA), Trae Patterson (0-0, 1.23 ERA), Jakob Hernandez (0-0, 3.86 ERA) and Reid Petty (1-0, 1.80 ERA) have made the first four starts of the year. Dylan Schneider (0-1, 0.00 ERA) and Jake Wilcox (0-0, 0.00 ERA) have each appeared in three games in relief. Jordon West (0-0, 3.00 ERA) has a save in two relief outings.
SCOUTING THE FROGS
The nation's consensus preseason No. 1 team, TCU (3-0) opened the season with a series sweep over Penn State in Fort Worth. The Horned Frogs posted a 6-3 win in the opener, a 12-1 win to clinch the series on Saturday and a 9-3 win on Sunday to sweep the Nittany Lions.
TCU has hit .272 as a team with three homers and 27 runs scored through three games. Nolan Brown leads TCU with a 5-for-9 start to the year, with Cam Warner and slugging star Luken Baker each scoring six runs. Baker and Warner each have homers, along with Elliott Barzilli. TCU has used 10 pitchers in its first weekend, with a 2.00 team ERA. Defensively, TCU has fielded .984 with one double play turned.
TCU leads the all-time series with UTA, 98-58-1, including a 37-35-1 record in games played in Arlington. TCU won the three-game, midweek series in 2016, claiming a 5-1 win in the first and a 17-4 result in the second meeting. UTA won the finale, 4-3 on April 6, 2016 on the road. UTA has won three of the last seven meetings and have a win vs. TCU in each of the last three seasons.
UTA is 33-15 all-time in home openers. In the Darin Thomas era, UTA has an 8-1 record in home openers. UTA has won two consecutive home openers, including a 3-2 win over No. 7 Oklahoma State in 2016.
UTA AGAINST THE RANKED
UTA will be searching for a win over a top-10 team for the fourth consecutive year. The Mavs have two all-time wins over No. 1 ranked teams, with the last coming in 1983 at No. 1 Texas.