Hogs head to Bluegrass State for a top-10 showdown against Wildcats

LEXINGTON, Ky. – SEC Western Division leader No. 2 Arkansas (39-7, 16-5 SEC) travels to the Bluegrass State this year for a top-10 showdown against SEC Eastern Division leader No. 8 Kentucky (33-9, 16 -5 SEC). weekend at Kentucky Proud Park.

First pitch in the weekend series opener between the Razorbacks and Wildcats is scheduled for Friday, May 3 at 5:30 PM CT on SEC Network+ with Dick Gabriel (play-by-play) and Doug Flynn (analyst) on the call. Games two and three, which will also be streamed on SEC Network+, will kick off at 1:00 PM CT on Saturday, May 4 and at 12:00 PM CT on Sunday, May 5, respectively.

Arkansas enters the three-game set this weekend looking for its seventh straight road series victory against Kentucky, as well as its fourth straight road series victory over the Wildcats. The Hogs haven’t lost a weekend series in Lexington since 2011.

Friday May 3
#2 Arkansas vs. #8 Kentucky – 5:30 PM CT – SEC Network+ – Listen – Live Stats

Saturday May 4
#2 Arkansas vs. #8 Kentucky – 1:00 PM CT – SEC Network+ – Listen – Live Stats

Sunday May 5
#2 Arkansas vs. #8 Kentucky – Afternoon CT – SEC Network+ – Listen – Live Stats

On the hill
Friday May 3
Arkansas – LHP Hagen Smith (8-0, 1.35 ERA)
Kentucky – RHP Trey Pooser (3-0, 3.75 ERA)

Saturday May 4
Arkansas – RHP Brady Tygart (4-1, 2.68 ERA)
Kentucky – LHP Dominic Niman (7-3, ERA 5.00)

Sunday May 5
Arkansas – LHP Mason Molina (3-1, 3.47 ERA)
Kentucky – RHP Mason Moore (7-1, 5.08 ERA)

Dick Gabriel (play-by-play) and Doug Flynn (analyst) have the decider of this weekend’s series between second-ranked Arkansas and eighth-ranked Kentucky at Kentucky Proud Park. All three games will be streamed on SEC Network+.

The weekend series can also be heard on the Learfield-based Razorback Sports Network, including locally in Fayetteville on 92.1 FM or via the Razorback app, with Phil Elson on the line. A full list of radio partners is available here.

History lesson
Arkansas maintains a 47-26 overall series record against Kentucky, including a 19-14 record in games played in Lexington. Under head coach Dave Van Horn, the Hogs are 29-13 overall and 13-8 on the road against the Wildcats.

Since 2013, Arkansas is 14-4 against Kentucky and has won six consecutive weekend series. The Razorbacks, who haven’t lost a series in Lexington since 2011, are looking for their fourth straight weekend road series win over the Wildcats.

It just means more wins
Arkansas is 16-5 in SEC play for the first time in program history since joining the conference before the 1992 season.

With a series win or sweep this weekend, Arkansas can post its best 24-game SEC start in program history. The Hogs’ best SEC start through 24 games in school history is 17-7, which they have accomplished four times: 1999, 2019, 2021 and 2023.

The best pitcher in college baseball
Arkansas’ Hagen Smith, who is set to take the mound in Friday night’s series opener against Kentucky, is 8-0 with a team-leading 1.35 ERA and 111 strikeouts in 61.0 innings over 11 starts this season. The junior left-hander, who is also 6-0 with a 1.05 ERA and 71 strikeouts in 43.0 innings through seven SEC starts this year, has a team-best nine quality starts to his credit and a team-high of has eight double-digit strikeouts to his name. .

As of Friday, Smith leads the nation in strikeouts per nine innings (16.7) and hits allowed per nine innings (3.9) and ranks second nationally in ERA (1.35), fourth in strikeouts (111) and WHIP (0.82) and fifth in wins (8). Led by its dominance on the mound, Arkansas’ pitching staff ranks first nationally in ERA (3.12), hits allowed per nine innings (6.5), strikeout-to-walk ratio (3.5), strikeouts per nine innings (12.3) and WHIP (1.11) starting Friday.

Smith, one of only four NCAA Division I pitchers with 100 or more strikeouts this season, has recorded 310 career strikeouts in 209.0 innings of work. His 310 career punchouts rank second on the Arkansas strikeout list, and he is just 35 strikeouts away from tying Nick Schmidt (345) for first in program history.

Career strikeouts
1. 345 – Nick Schmidt (2003-06)
2. 310 – Hagen Smith (2022-present)
3. 301 – Matt Carnes (1979-82)
4. 283 – David Walling (1998-99)
5. 261 – Scott Tabor (1979-82)
6. 244 – Blaine Ridder (2016-18)
7. 232 – Kevin Kopps (2017-21)
8. 229 – Charley Boyce (2003-06)
9. 225 – Gerald Hannahs (1971-74)
10. 224 – Isaiah Campbell (2016-19)

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