Opposing players to watch

Baseball: Middle Tennessee State @ Marshall

Friday at 1 p.m.—Saturday at 7 p.m.—Sunday at 10 a.m.  

Ronnie Jebavy, Center Fielder, #1- Jebavy may be the most dynamic player in C-USA showcasing potency at the plate and range in the field. Jebavy ranks among the top five in C-USA in various hitting categories, such as batting average, slugging percentage, total hits and triples. Jebavy hits with both efficiency (.364 BA) and power (18 extra base hits) offering the rare skill level to single-handedly disintegrate a pitcher’s confidence. If that weren’t enough, he also makes a habit of victimizing pitchers once he reaches base where his 20 stolen bases ranks first in Conference USA and 22nd in the nation.

Jebavy’s brilliance doesn’t end at the plate, as he often performs acts of thievery in center field. In fact, Jebavy’s zeal patrolling centerfield has earned him two appearances on Sportcenter’s Top 10 Plays this season. His first appearance came after he robbed a homer with a leaping catch at the wall against Austin Peay, and gained national prominence again just days later after laying out to snag a ball in a loss to Rice.

Jared Allen Left Fielder, – Allen is a pure slugger who relishes the long ball, smashing 10 homeruns this season, a total that ranks fourth in the conference. Those 10 homeruns have swelled Allen’s slugging percentage to .516 which ranks ninth in the conference, giving the Blue Raiders a pair of sluggers in the top ten. Allen’s propensity to make flush contact from the plate has ensued in a team-high 39 RBIs this season, good for third in the conference. Allen will take his fair share of hacks at the ball and isn’t afraid to go down swinging, as evidenced by his 45 strikeouts this season, but when he does make contact he can do some serious damage to a pitcher’s ERA.

Brad Heltzel can be contacted at [email protected]