Middle at the End

Vandy caps home slate against Middle Tennessee

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – No. 2 Vanderbilt closes its home regular season schedule on Tuesday, hosting Middle Tennessee at 6:30 p.m. from Hawkins Field. The matchup can be seen on the SEC Network Plus and heard on WNSR 560 AM/95.9 FM and VUCommodores.com.

The Commodores (41-10) are coming off a 3-1 week highlighted by a Battle of the Barrel win Tuesday at No. 6 Louisville and series victory against No. 21 Missouri. Vanderbilt is 21-3 in nonconference games, batting .335 while posting a 3.69 ERA and .988 fielding percentage.

Middle Tennessee (18-33) has lost eight of its last 10 matchups including 2-of-3 last weekend against Florida International. The Blue Raiders rank 10th nationally and lead Conference USA with 2.97 walks allowed per nine innings.

– TUESDAY: RHP Mason Hickman (6-0, 2.15 ERA) vs. TBA

Outfield tickets are available for just $7 by calling (615) 322-GOLD or by visiting VUCommodores.com. Hot dogs will be on sale for just $2. Fans can pick up the final of a 10-part “Dores in the Pros” poster series featuring Atlanta Braves shortstop Dansby Swanson. The first 500 fans in attendance will receive a Vanderbilt baseball apron.

Vanderbilt and Middle Tennessee are meeting for the 147th time in the history of the programs. Vandy holds a 99-47 advantage in the series. The Dores have won 13 straight at home vs. the Blue Raiders (2006-present) and are 55-16 in Nashville. Vanderbilt is 14-2 against MTSU at Hawkins Field. The Commodores struck four homers, including two from JJ Bleday, and notched a 15-3 win against Middle Tennessee on April 9 in Murfreesboro.

Vanderbilt is 12-1 in the midweek including 10 straight wins (March 5-present). The last time Vandy won 11 consecutive midweek games was March 27, 2012-March 13, 2013 (12 straight). The Commodores posted a 7-7 record in midweek games a season ago.

Vanderbilt has faced seven in-state foes this season for a total of nine games. The Commodores are 7-2 in those games including taking 2-of-3 against Tennessee to close March. In nine contests vs. in-state foes, the Dores have batted .357 and averaged 11.5 runs per game. Vandy has limited foes to a .208 average alongside a 3.62 ERA.

The Commodores cap the regular season with a three-game series at Kentucky beginning Thursday at 5:30 p.m. CT. Friday’s contest is set for 5:30 p.m. CT and Saturday’s finale is at 1 p.m. CT. Vanderbilt heads into the final weekend with a one-game lead in the SEC standings over second-place Arkansas.