The Clemson Tiger baseball team will head up to Winston-Salem to face Wake Forest in a three game series this weekend. The Tigers are coming off a series win over Virginia Tech taking two of three in Blacksburg, VA.
Wake Forest is 11-13 in conference play and 23-23 overall. The Demon Deacons have proven to be pesky at home. Earlier in the year, Wake swept Virginia in Winston-Salem. The Deacs had 12 days off prior to defeating Elon and Appalachian State in midweek games.
Last season, the Tigers swept Wake Forest in Doug Kingsmore Stadium. Once again, it is a critical weekend series for the Tigers as they are jockeying for position in the ACC standings. Currently, the Tigers are tied for fourth with Florida State, but they are three games back of Georgia Tech, Miami, and North Carolina in the loss column.
For the third series in a row, there is a change in the starting pitching rotation. Stephen Faris will make the start Friday night, and Kris Harvey and Josh Cribb will start the last two games, but the days have not been decided. Harvey returns to the rotation after not starting versus Virginia Tech. Cribb pitched a six-hit complete game shutout against Virginia Tech on Monday. Faris has struggled since being moved to the weekend rotation, and he will be looking for his first quality start since pitching a complete game against South Carolina in a 12-2 victory.
Wake Forest will counter with Brian Bach Friday night. On Saturday, Josh Ellis will get the nod for the Deacs. In the series finale, Charlie Mellies will take the mound for Wake Forest.
Herman Demmink leads the Tigers with a .357 batting average, but saw his 11-game hitting streak come to an end last Sunday. Travis Storrer is streaking with a 13-game hitting streak. Storrer had two homers in the series versus Virginia Tech. Harvey and Andy D'Alessio have combined to hit 30 homers on the year with Harvey leading the league with 18. Clemson broke a team record with its 48th sacrifice bunt of the season earlier this week.
Wake Forest has .390 on-base percentage, but a .277 team batting average. The Demon Deacons have walked 233 times on the season with an astounding 83 hit-by-pitches, so Tiger pitching will have to adjust if the batters crowd the plate.
Gametimes are 3:00 pm Friday, 1:30 pm Saturday, and 1:00 pm Sunday.