Struggling Rebels host rising Tide

By Parrish Alford

OXFORD – The approach to offense won’t change much, but Ole Miss will hope for better results as it tries to break a six-game losing streak tonight.
Surprising Alabama visits this weekend for three game against the Rebels who are having trouble putting runs on the board.
First pitch times are 6:30 tonight, 4 p.m., Saturday and 1:30 p.m., Sunday.
Ole Miss (23-10, 4-8 SEC) has lost eight of its last 10. It’s six consecutive losses have all come against SEC teams, though Tuesday’s 5-1 loss to Mississippi State will not count in the league standings.
Alabama has been pretty good in the league standings, getting off to an 8-4 start, tied for second in the Western Division. The Crimson Tide defeated Alcorn State 7-3 Wednesday night, improving to 22-13 overall and eclipsing last year’s win total.
The Tide is coming off an SEC series loss against Arkansas in which it avoided a sweep by winning 5-0 last Sunday. Alabama won its first three series against Tennessee, Georgia and Auburn, sweeping Georgia.
Over the life of its losing streak Ole Miss has scored one run three times and been shutout twice.
“There will always be changes and tweaks from lineups and some things guys may work on individually,” Ole Miss coach Mike Bianco said. “But the process is the process. You have to go up and have quality at-bats.”
The Rebels are hitting just .216 in conference play, last among SEC teams. Ole Miss has doubled 12 times among its 86 SEC hits or one double for every 33.1 at-bats.
There have been four home runs and no triples. Six hits against MSU were all singles.
Bianco isn’t focusing only on offense. Ole Miss pitchers have walked 49 batters in SEC play, third-most in the league.
The Rebels issued 10 walks and hit a batter against the Bulldogs Tuesday night.
weekend warriors
Alabama seems to have played its best on the weekends when it hits .284 against SEC teams as opposed to .253 in all games. The Tide has an in-league ERA of 2.19.
“You have to make pitches on the mound. You have to play good defense. You have to get the timely hit,” he said. “Those things don’t change, especially when you’re struggling.”
parrish.alford@journalinc.com