League-leading New Mexico's baseball team starts a three-game series at BYU on Thursday at 7 p.m.
The Lobos, 27-19 overall and 11-4 in league play, however, haven't won a Mountain West Conference game in over a week as they lost five consecutive non-MWC contests. BYU, 18-26 overall and 6-9 in the MWC, is battling through an off year and is in danger of losing more games at home than any season since the opening of Larry H. Miller Field in 2001. The first game at Miller Park in 2001 was a 7-5 victory over New Mexico.
Coach Vance Law has just changed BYU's pitching rotation, moving lefty Jake Wortham (3-3, 6.72) back to the game one starter. Wortham had been the opening starter over a month ago when BYU swept Air Force in Provo, but was switched to a game two starter in the interim.
Sophomore Blake Torgerson (4-3, 7.04) now moves up to the game two starter on Friday at 7 p.m. BYU's starting pitcher for Saturday's game at 1 p.m., is yet to be announced.
New head coach Ray Birmingham of New Mexico counters on the mound with Bobby LaFromboise (4-2, 3.66) on Thursday, Jacob Norton (5-3, 6.36) on Friday and Stephen Smith (4-2, 4.55) on Saturday.
New Mexico is the nation's No. 1 team completing double plays. Both BYU and UNM feature two of the MWC's top home run hitters in Sean McNaughton (11) and Brian Cavazos-Galvez (10), respectively, who both lead their teams also in batting average at .345 and .368, respectively. McNaughton, a sophomore outfielder, is the fifth player to lead the Cougars in batting average this season.
Now that Winter Semester is complete, BYU's schedule intensifies with a game every day for eight days in a row, except Sundays. All of BYU's remaining games are instate, concluding the regular season at Utah on May 15-17.
All of the BYU-UNM games will be televised live by BYUTV with Jay Monsen, Gary Sheide, Jarom Jordan and Kevin Schaefer calling the action. The games will also be broadcast live by Brent Norton over KSRR Radio (1400 AM).
Thursday's BYU-UNM game is only one of four baseball games played in the nation for the NCAA. The other games are Manhattan at New York Tech, Appalachian State at Elon in a doubleheader and Dallas Baptist at Texas A&M.
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