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Baseball Welcomes Illinois for Weekend Series

The Bears will try to continue their winning ways in an abbreviated two-day series with the Fighting Illini. Everybody head out to Baylor Ballpark Friday at 6:35 pm and Saturday at 2:05 and 6:35 for a doubleheader.

This guy has excite.
This guy has excite.
USA TODAY Sports

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Illinois at Baylor
March 8-9, 2013 | Waco, Texas | Baylor Ballpark
SERIES NOTES Get Acrobat Reader
FRI. | 6:35 P.M.
Live Video Gametracker

Probable Starters:
UI - RHP Kevin Johnson
2-1, 3.44 ERA, 18.1 IP, 18 K
BU - RHP Dillon Newman

2-0, 1.62 ERA, 16.2 IP, 12 K
SAT. | 2:05 P.M.
Gametracker

Probable Starters:
UI - RHP Nick Blackburn
2-0, 3.57 ERA, 17.2 IP, 11 K
BU - RHP Max Garner

1-2, 2.79 ERA, 19.1 IP, 17 K
SAT. | 6:35 P.M.
Gametracker

Probable Starters:
UI - RHP John Kravetz
1-0, 5.91 ERA, 10.2 IP, 7 K
BU - RHP Austin Stone

0-1, 6.43 ERA, 7.0 IP, 7 K

After winning five of their last six, it's safe to say that the Bears are rolling. Dillon Newman and Max Garner are throwing ace-quality starts. Ryan Smith, Kolt Browder, and Doug Ashby are locking games down from the bullpen. Sean Spicer, Sterling Wynn, and Austin Stone are all very young and finding ways to work through their starts. Things are good.

When you add in Nathan Orf's triple slash line (.479/.561/.583), Duncan Wendel's .394 batting average, Cal Towey's pretty nice .182 ISO slugging percentage, and ten stolen bases between our speedsters Toth and Brown, things are coming up roses. And Beavers. And yes, also cats. And possibly geese.

This weekend, Illinois makes the trek down from the frigid northern plains. Hopefully, Waco will be warm and offer them a glimpse of the beauty that is spring in Texas... Until the Bears absolutely pound them into submission and send them packing back to their frozen wasteland with with little ice-tears running down their frost-bitten cheeks. Honestly Northerners, why would you live in a place that has eight months of winter? What could you have done to deserve that? Forgive yourselves already!

The Illini have had a nice season so far, going 7-4. They aren't ranked, and they weren't all that great last year at 28-25 (9-12 on the road). This is a series that the Bears should use to create some distance between themselves and .500. With conference play looming in only two weeks, they need as much momentum as they can muster for their Big 12 title defense. Everyone in Waco should head out to the ballpark and support the Bears. Feed the Beaver. Catch the Cat. Oh, and according to his twitter, Kolt Browder made friends with a goose named Guunter at the Ballpark... So the menagerie continues to grow! Goose the Beaver! Wait... no, that's not good. Um...

Quick, somebody think up something for a goose!