Game 19 Friday, April 4, 2014 F&M vs. Gettysburg | Lancaster, Pa. | 3:30 p.m. Live Stats | Audio
Game 20/21 Saturday, April 5, 2014 F&M at Johns Hopkins | Baltimore, Md. | 12:30/3:30 p.m. Live Stats
Game 22/23 Sunday, April 6, 2014 F&M vs. McDaniel | Lancaster, Pa. | 12:30/3:30 p.m. Live Stats | Audio
Series History: The Diplomats kick off a busy stretch of six games over a span of seven days when F&M travels to Gettysburg on Tuesday to open up Centennial Conference (CC) play, before facing the Bullets at home on Friday. Plenty of history exists between these two schools in a series that dates back to 1893. Gettysburg leads all-time at 103-62-1, but F&M has won the last four meetings.
The week continues on Saturday with a rematch of the 2013 CC Championship when the Diplomats travel to Baltimore to square off against No. 17 Johns Hopkins. The Blue Jays lead at 52-30 since 1894, but the Diplomats claimed a 16-1 thrashing the last time out to capture the conference title on May 5, 2013.
F&M wraps up its week on Sunday when the Diplomats host McDaniel at Caplan Field. Originally scheduled for last Saturday, the contest was postponed to rain. The all-time series lead belongs to F&M with a 47-37 mark, dating abck to the 1925 season.
Scouting the Opponents: Gettysburg enters play hitting at a .320 clip, while its pitching staff has combined for a 3.23 ERA, while holding hitters to a .240 average. Hopkins' batting average sits at an impressive .339 mark on the year, while its pitching staff has registered a 2.95 ERA over 122 innings. McDaniel is hitting at a .312 clip and its pitching staff has accumulated a 5.03 ERA.
Last Week: The rain washed out three of F&M's games last week, making its showdown with Shenandoah on Thursday the Diplomats only contest. F&M fell behind early and could not recover, falling to the Hornets on the road by an 18-7 score. The non-conference defeat dropped the Diplomats' record to 8-9 on the season, while Shenandoah improved to 17-4.
A pair of homeruns in the top of the first set the tone for Shenandoah's offense as the Hornets took an early 3-0 lead after the first frame. Five runs on four hits and three errors from F&M allowed Shenandoah to continue adding on to the score, making it 8-0 after the second.
F&M's offense began to heat up in the sixth when Will Benenson hit his first home run of the year, a two-run shot to left field that scored Matt Mezansky. The Diplomats added two more to the scoreboard in the following inning off one hit and an error from Shenandoah, before rounding out the scoring with two more in the top of the eighth with an David Iacobucci solo homer and a Zach Levins double down the right field line, but were unable to cut into the overwhelming deficit.
Eric Bateman (1-1) was charged with the loss after starting the game and allowing three earned off seven hits in three innings on the mound.
Benenson paced the F&M offense with a 2-for-5 showing at the plate that included a pair of RBIs, while Iacobucci went 2-for-4 with two RBIs and a run scored. Third baseman Michael Paul led the Hornets with a 2-for-6 effort that included four RBIs, while shortstop Billy Arenas went 4-for-6 from the leadoff position.
Record Book Watch: With three doubles on the season, Benenson sits tied for sixth place on F&M's all-time list with 30. The program record belongs to Scott Haft (2002-05), who accumulated 45. Benenson also moved into second place on the program's all-time RBI list with 12 on the season to give him 99 for his career. The record belongs to Jason Anderson (2007-10) with 108.
Behind the plate, Pat Andrews has successfully thrown out 25 runners in his career, including three on the season, a mark that places him second all time behind the program leader Dan Weber (2001-04), who holds the record with 27.