Missouri baseball looks to snap losing skid against Texas

Thursday, May 3, 2012 | 8:25 p.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — Just when it looked as if the Missouri baseball team was on a roll, the bats fell silent. 

After the Tigers fell to the basement of the Big 12 with a 3-9 conference record, the team won five straight games, averaging seven runs per game as it pulled into the middle of the pack.

Series notes

Missouri and Texas will play at Taylor Stadium at 6 p.m. Friday and 1 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Missouri basketball player Steve Moore will throw out the first pitch on Friday, with his coach Frank Haith taking over the duty on Saturday. 

Kelly Fick, a member of last year's Missouri team, will throw out the first pitch on Sunday.

Since then, Missouri (23-21, 7-11) has had only four hits in every game of a four-game losing streak against Texas Tech and Arkansas.

The Tigers will have their work cut out for them this weekend when they look to rebound against No. 25 Texas (26-16, 12-6) in the Longhorns' final trip to Columbia. Missouri hasn't won a series against Texas since 2008. 

As bleak as things currently look for the Tigers, the situation was worse a year ago. With three series left in the regular season, the Tigers were 19-26 overall and 6-11 in conference. The team eventually went on a hot streak during the Big 12 tournament, reaching the conference championship game before losing in extra innings to Texas A&M. 

To begin a potential turnaround this year, Missouri will have to figure out Texas freshman starter Parker French, who comes into Friday's game with a 5-2 record and 2.89 ERA.

His last time out, French gave up five runs — only one of them earned — over 3 2/3 innings in a loss against Texas A&M. 

Missouri will send reigning Big 12 Pitcher of the Week Rob Zastryzny to the mound. He threw a complete game shutout in the Tigers' most recent win last Friday against Texas A&M. Overall, Zastryzny is 4-2 with a 3.58 ERA. 

Offensively, Missouri will look to outfielder Scott Sommerfeld and first baseman Andreas Plackis, who have combined for seven of Missouri's 16 hits during the losing streak. 

Missouri and Texas will face off at 6 p.m. Friday and 1 p.m. both Saturday and Sunday.

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