Notes and Numbers: Bulldogs in Strong Position in Western Division

There are four weekends left in the SEC regular season, and No. 16 Mississippi State (32-10, 10-8 SEC) finds itself in a pretty good place after taking two of three from Auburn over the weekend. The Bulldogs are tied for third in the Western Division with Ole Miss, and both teams are a game behind second-place Arkansas. LSU still has a death grip on first place at 15-3, although it did suffer an upset Sunday to Alabama.

Right now, MSU is in good position to host a regional, and you’ll see some projections this week saying as much. One of many reasons for that is the Bulldogs’ RPI ranking, which is currently 10th according to both BoydsWorld.com and WarrenNolan.com.

It’s a tough closing stretch facing MSU. After a trip to No. 2 Vanderbilt this weekend, it’s back home to take on Alabama, on the road at No. 21 Ole Miss, then home again versus No. 18 South Carolina.

OK, let’s take a look at some statistical rankings involving MSU and some of its players. First, some team stats.

• Offense: MSU ranks third in batting average (.296), third in on-base percentage (.396), fourth in slugging percentage (.410), third in runs scored (269), tied for fourth in home runs (24), fourth in walks (190), fourth in strikeouts (266), and tied for fourth in steals (48).

• Pitching: MSU ranks second in ERA (2.37), third in opponent batting average (.213), first in strikeouts (353), third in saves (14), third in hits allowed (285), ninth in walks (141), and tied for second in home runs allowed (11).

• Defense: MSU ranks second in fielding percentage (.976), second in chances (1,683), fourth in putouts (1,129), first in assists (513), 10th in errors (41), and first in double plays (57).

• Your weekly Hunter Renfroe stats update: He’s second in batting average (.407), first in slugging percentage (.815), first in OBP (.485), tied for fourth in RBIs (42), tied for second in doubles (12), and tied for first in home runs (13). He had a quiet weekend versus Auburn, going 1 for 9 with no RBIs, but he did draw four walks and scored two runs.

• Other Bulldogs in the stats: Adam Frazier is third in runs scored (40), tied for second in doubles (12), and second in triples (5). Alex Detz is second in walks (35). Reliever Ross Mitchell remains the ERA leader (0.91). Jonathan Holder is tied for first with 12 saves.

• Also, catcher Nick Ammirati‘s weekend should be noted. The senior was 6 of 11 with three RBIs and three runs scored against Auburn, lifting his season average to .321. He also threw out a pair of baserunners. On the year, he’s thrown out 9 of 24 base stealers (37.5 percent).

I am the online content coordinator for DJournal.com. Previously at the Journal, I covered Mississippi State athletics (2008-13), high schools (2004-08), and was on the copy desk (2002-04). I'm working on a recipe for bacon-flavored coffee, which would solve all the world's problems.

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