Bulldogs Look to Conference Play

JOE HASENSTAB | Staff Reporter finnegan

Butler baseball will open Big East play at home against Seton Hall this weekend. The Bulldogs enter conference play with a record of 11-16.

The team played five games last week, going 2-3. The Bulldogs beat Wabash last Wednesday, lost to Xavier and Louisville in a doubleheader on Saturday, beat Valparaiso on Sunday and lost to Indiana-Purdue Fort Wayne yesterday.

The game against Xavier Saturday was not technically part of Big East play and will not count toward either team’s conference records. Butler will host Xavier for a three-game series April 17-19.

Butler will face Seton Hall this weekend. The Pirates are 18-5 and have won six of their last seven games. They have received votes to be ranked in the top 30 in the NCAA.

Senior centerfielder Marcos Calderon recognizes that the Bulldogs will be facing a tough opponent.

“Seton Hall is probably the best team in our division this year,” Calderon said. “We’ve gotten their scouting report already, and we see them as a pretty good squad. But we’ve got a lot of faith in ourselves, our team and our capabilities. We look at every series as a chance to win.”

Calderon also said the team is looking at this series as a chance for the Bulldogs to prove themselves to other Big East teams.

One of the problems the Bulldogs have had this year is consistent defense. The Bulldogs have committed 52 errors on the season while their opponents have committed 26. Unearned runs have let some games get out of their grasp. Calderon said good defense will be essential in the Big East, and that the team is improving in the field.

“I think we’re all taking positive strides every game, and the last couples games we haven’t made very many errors at all,” he said. “So we’re really working on sticking our nose in the ground and just doing whatever it takes.”