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**Opponent Preview - Minnesota** Games 26-28

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Minnesota won 2 out of 3 against Nebraska last season 5-1, 2-8 and 2-0.

Minnesota finished 44-15 overall and 18-4 in conference last season.

Minnesota won both the regular season title and the conference tournament title last season.

In the 2018 Big Ten Baseball Tournament they beat Michigan State 3-2, Illinois 3-0, Ohio State 8-1 and Purdue 6-4.

Minnesota swept the Minneapolis Regional by beating Canisus 10-1 and UCLA twice 3-2 and 13-8.

Minnesota got swept by the eventual champions Oregon State in the Corvallis Super Regional 1-8 and 3-6.

Minnesota finished 12th in the RPI last year. 

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From College Baseball Daily's Big Ten Preview:

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Minnesota (2018 Record: 44-15, 18-4)

It was a banner 2018 season for Minnesota as they won over 40 games, finished first in the Big Ten, won the Big Ten Tournament, and advanced to the Super Regionals. Unfortunately, they matched up with the eventual College World Series champs in the supers.

Returning Players

 Catcher Eli Wilson should be back behind the plate after batting .289 in 2018 with 5 home runs and 37 RBI. Outfieldler Ben Mezzenga hit .383 last year with 40 runs scored and 12 stolen bases. Jordan Kozicky will join him in the outfield after hitting .271 a season ago with 5 home runs and 38 RBI.

Patrick Fredrickson was a Freshman All-American last year with a 1.86 ERA in 97 innings pitched with 73 strikeouts. Max Meyer was one of the best closer’s in college baseball last season with 16 saves, a 2.06 ERA, and 54 strikeouts in 43.2 innings pitched. Nick Lackney will try to bounce back in his senior season after posting a 5.48 ERA in 2018 over 47.2 innings with 47 strikeouts.

Outlook for 2019

The Gophers are losing a lot of key contributors from last season on offense. The pitching staff will have to carry this team if they are going to get close to repeating last year’s success.

 

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Predicted Order to Finish:

1. Indiana

2. Michigan

3. Minnesota 

4. Illinois

5. Purdue

6. Ohio State

7. Iowa

8. Michigan State

9. Nebraska

10. Rutgers

11. Maryland

12. Penn State

13. Northwestern

 

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