Ball State (18-18) at Purdue (18-17)
Tuesday, April 18 at 6 p.m. ET / BTN Plus on BTN2Go
Alexander Field / West Lafayette, Indiana
All-Time Series: Purdue leads 50-37-2 / All-Time in West Lafayette: Purdue leads 32-17-1
First Meeting of 2017: Purdue 16, Ball State 4 (March 22 in Muncie)
2016 in West Lafayette: Purdue 9, Ball State 2 (April 19)
First Meeting: Purdue 9, Ball State 7 (April 1930 in West Lafayette)
Purdue at Indiana State (17-15)
Wednesday, April 19 at 6 p.m. ET / ESPN3/WatchESPN
Bob Warn Field / Terre Haute, Indiana
All-Time Series: ISU leads 40-29-2 / All-Time in Terre Haute: ISU leads 20-14-1
First Meeting of 2017: ISU 5, Purdue 2 (April 4 in West Lafayette)
2016 in Terre Haute: ISU 4, Purdue 1 (April 5)
Purdue's Last Win vs. Indiana State: Purdue 10, ISU 6 (April 2015 in Terre Haute)
First Meeting: Purdue 7, ISU 0 (1902 in West Lafayette)
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Before Purdue baseball's stretch of four straight home weekends begins Friday against Illinois, home-and-away dates are up first as midweek play continues with rematches vs. Ball State and Indiana State.
First pitch Tuesday vs. Ball State is slated for 6 p.m. ET at Alexander Field. New Purdue football coach Jeff Brohm is slated to throw out the first pitch. All general admission tickets, hot dogs, nachos and domestic draft beers are specially priced at just $2 for all home midweek games this season. Wednesday's 6 p.m. game in Terre Haute will be available live on ESPN3/WatchESPN, but an authenticated pay-TV subscription is required.
Starting Tuesday, the Boilermakers are scheduled to play 15 of their next 17 games at home. Wednesday's game at Indiana State and a May 9 midweek rematch with Valparaiso in Northwest Indiana are the only road games over the next four weeks. Purdue does not leave the state again until a May 17 flight to the Twin Cities for a series at Minnesota to close out the regular season.
The Cardinals and Sycamores have been playing well as of late. Purdue's 16-4 win in Muncie marked the start of a nine-game losing streak for Ball State. But Rich Maloney's team has turned things around, entering the week with a seven-game win streak. The Cardinals were swept at home in their first two Mid-American Conference series by teams led by former Purdue assistants (Kent State and Ohio), but got back to .500 in league play with road sweeps at Western Michigan and Bowling Green the last two weekends.
Indiana State has won six of its last eight, taking two of three against Evansville and Southern Illinois in its first two Missouri Valley Conference weekends of the season.
Meanwhile, Purdue won four its first five games this month, but enters the week having lost four of its last five. The Boilermakers are just 6-9 since their seven-game win streak was snapped March 25 at Iowa. In those last 15 games, Purdue has a .961 fielding percentage (22 errors) and an equally lackluster 1.44 strikeout-to-walk ratio on the mound (85 Ks, 59 walks).
HUNTER HITS SAFELY IN EVERY GAME OF ANOTHER SERIES
Skyler Hunter was a team-best 5-for-12 in the Rutgers series. He hit safely in every game of a series for a team-high fourth time this season. However, it was the first time he had done it in a three-game series. The first three weekends the freshman accomplished the feat were all four-game series. Hunter broke up John O'Reilly's no-hit bid with a two-out single in the seventh inning Sunday. He has reached base safely in 24 of the last 25 games dating back to March 10.
Bryce Bonner also hit safely in all three games in Piscataway. The freshman has started 11 straight games, making five starts at designated hitter during that stretch. He has 11 doubles in his last 62 at-bats dating back to March 12 to take over the team lead in slugging percentage (.519) for the season.
LEARNARD STINGY AT ALEXANDER AS WELL
Ross Learnard worked two scoreless frames at Rutgers to extend his consecutive scoreless innings streak to 23. In his four appearances at home this season, the lefty has retired 16 of the 19 batters he has faced. The only hit he has surrendered at Alexander was a single to the first man he faced in the April 4 loss to Indiana State. He responded by striking out the next four batters to come to the plate.
SHIPLEY ON SAFELY IN ALL THREE GAMES IN JERSEY
Harry Shipley reached base safely and scored a run in all three games of the Rutgers series. He drew a one-out walk in the seventh inning Sunday to end O'Reilly's perfect game. The shortstop was hit by a pitch in the ninth inning Saturday, his 50th career HBP. The junior continues to chase Kyle Wood's program record (55). Shipley also scored a run in every game of the Texas State and Santa Clara series.
As Purdue's team leader in runs scored, Evan Warden has also scored a run in every game of three different series this year -- Southeast Missouri, Ohio State and Indiana. The second baseman scored five times over the first two games of the Rutgers series, but his streak of six consecutive games with a run scored was snapped Sunday. Currently riding a 16-game reached base safely streak, Warden entered Sunday having scored a run in 12 of Purdue's last 13 games.
Warden (1st, 22) and Shipley (T-3rd, 16) remain top five nationally in hit by pitch.