LHP, Jacob Hennessy 1-0 (Clemson):
11.0 IP / 2.455 ERA / 1.000 WHIP
7 hits / 3 runs (3 earned)
14 strikeouts / 2 walks
Hennessy has faced 44 batters in his two starts for the Tigers and thrown a total of 159 pitches (108 strikes, 51 balls). He is averaging about 14.5 pitches per inning; 3.6 per batter faced.
Hennessy is throwing 68% strikes out of his total number of pitches. He has thrown 34 first-pitch strikes (.773) and of those 34 batters faced, he has gone on to retire 74% of them. He has walked only 5.9% of those batters and 21% have ended up reaching base off of a hit.
Hennessy is walking only 18% of batters faced per inning currently but has also had EIGHT no-walk innings. He has thrown only ONE wild pitch.
24 of the batters he has faced have gotten on or out in three pitches or less (55%). In SIX of his 11 innings pitched, Hennessy has retired the first two batters faced to go along with FIVE ‘1-2-3’ innings. He has retired 11 leadoff hitters as well.
RHP, Adam Hill 1-1 (South Carolina):
11.0 IP / 5.73 ERA / .727 WHIP
5 hits / 7 runs (7 earned)
20 strikeouts / 3 walks
Hill struggled in his first outing of the season against VMI in a loss. But he came back with a vengeance in his last start vs Charleston Southern where he pitched seven perfect innings (no hits, no walks) until a fielding error put a Bucs’ batter on base. He finished with 14 strikeouts in the game and allowed no runs.
Winning game 1 is crucial if the Gamecocks want to have a chance at the series; mostly because of the game being at home in Founders Park. I would give the pitching advantage to South Carolina in this game simply because Hill is viewed as a true “ace” pitcher.
Hennessy has been very good for Clemson but this is the first road game for the Tigers and the Gamecocks are depserate for a win. Clemson’s bullpen is deeper but it could work to USC’s advantage if they can get the Tigers to exhaust some of their relief options in game 1.
My Projection: Gamecocks win 6-3