09 Oct

let’s get some hits

It has been a rather quiet start for the smattering of Mississippi-connected hitters in the MLB postseason. Collectively, the seven have five hits and one RBI. Texas has stormed to four straight road wins, but ex-Mississippi State star Nathaniel Lowe is just 3-for-18 (.167) with an RBI and two runs in four starts at first base. Baltimore, which trails Texas 2-0 in their American League Division Series, has alternated former MSU standouts Adam Frazier and Jordan Westburg at second base and seen them go 1-for-8. DeSoto Central High alum Austin Riley went 1-for-4 in Atlanta’s loss to Philadelphia in Game 1 of the National League Division Series at Truist Park; that was one of just five hits the Braves managed in a 3-0 loss. Riley and Co. need to step up tonight against Phillies ace Zack Wheeler. Former Southern Miss star Matt Wallner is 0-for-6 for Minnesota, which swept Toronto in the wild card round and is 1-1 against Houston in the ALDS. Wallner, who typically sits against left-handers, didn’t play in the Twins’ 6-2 win on Sunday. Ole Miss alum Grae Kessinger, an Astros bench player, didn’t get in either game in Houston. Ex-UM standout Nick Fortes has already gone home; he went 0-for-2 as Miami was swept out of the wild card round by Philadelphia. … There is a high standard for Mississippians in postseason play. The record for highest career batting average is held by Charleston native Bill Hoskins, a Negro Leagues star who batted .487 in 43 NL World Series plate appearances between 1937-46. (Baseball Reference now includes Negro League stats in its all-time charts.) Hoskins, a 6-foot-2 left-handed batter, hit .325 with 36 homers in his career, most of it spent with the Baltimore Elite Giants. Tim Anderson, the ex-East Central Community College star still with the Chicago White Sox (for now), has the third-best single-postseason batting average (per baseballreference.com) with a .643 mark in 14 plate appearances in 2020. P.S. Houston kept MSU product Kendall Graveman off the roster for the NLDS because of a shoulder issue, but the right-hander could be activated for the next round. … Ex-Ole Miss star Lance Lynn reportedly is “in play” to be the Game 3 starter for the Los Angeles Dodgers, who got bludgeoned by Arizona in the NLDS opener. Game 3 is Wednesday at Phoenix.

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