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Notre Dame Baseball

Game Thread | (G4) Notre Dame at FIU

February 25, 2024

Notre Dame (4-2) at Florida International University (5-2)

When: February 25th

Time: 12:00 PM ET 

Where: FIU Baseball Stadium | Miami, Fla. 

Watch: ESPN+ 


- FIU leads the all-time series 8-2.

- FIU head coach Rich Witten worked under Shawn Stiffler at VCU for five seasons, which included two trips to the NCAA Tournament and 162 wins

- Notre Dame’s 3-0 start is the best open to a season since 2010, when they also started 3-0

- Radek Birkholz, Bennett Flynn and Nate Hardman have been named to the NCBWA Stopper of the Year Watch List:

- Notre Dame’s five home runs in game three against Rice were the most in a game since 2021

- The Irish are No. 2 in the ACC in fielding percentage (.991) entering the weekend



Notre Dame RHP Tobey McDonough 1-0 (1) 0.00 1.0 1
FIU RHP Cameron Knox 0-0 (1) 11.57 2.1 4


DM Jefferson DH .071
David Glancey LF 261
Jack Penney SS .158
Tito Flores RF .292
Connor Hincks 1B .316
Simon Baumgardt 3B .259
Joey Spence C .250
Estevan Moreno 2B .111
TJ Williams CF .500


Brylan West 1B .600
Jeff Liquori RF .281
Ryne Guida DH .444
Armando Becerra CF .346
Kishon Frett LF .227
Alex Ulloa SS .346
Samuel Fischer 3B .000
Ronny Medina C .091
Chase Engelhard 2B .467

Notre Dame had a chance to take the series on Saturday but dropped game two 10-8 and then game three 10-5. 

FIU really took advantage at the plate on Saturday, while Notre Dame couldn’t quite get things going. The Irish batted just .194 in game three and 3-for-11 with runners in scoring position in game three. Yet, it was the strikeouts that hurt Notre Dame in both Saturday games. The Irish struck out 22 times combined and that’s not going to get the job done. 

Notre Dame has done a great job of finding ways to score runs without getting hits, but they also can’t strike out 10+ times a game. The ball needs to be in play to give yourself a chance and Notre Dame simply isn’t going that. 

DM Jefferson needs to get going at the plate. The junior DH is batting .071 in the lead-off role and had just one hit on the year. Now, Jefferson does have a .435 OBP as he’s drawn five HBPs and four walks, but the bat needs to get going as he showed a year ago it was a weapon. 

Jack Penney also needs to get it going at the plate. The .158 batting average isn’t going to cut it in the three-hole as the Irish need more production there. It’s the second weekend, so the concern with Penney and Jefferson isn’t overly high because they’ve shown they can get on base with their bat, but Notre Dame needs them to get going too. 

Notre Dame’s pitching got beat around on Saturday as well and it starts with simply throwing strikes. Similar to Notre Dame simply getting the ball in play at the plate, the Irish pitchers need to throw strikes to allow the defense to make plays and not give free runners. 

Notre Dame threw strikes on 63.6 percent of its pitches during game two, which is fine and a solid number. In game three, that dropped to 57.9 percent, which led to four walks and six batters hit. That’s not a recipe for success. 

It’s important for Notre Dame to even the series on Sunday from the perspective of not dropping a non-conference series to FIU as that can come back to bite them in May. Losing two early games to FIU isn’t a needle mover, but losing three hurts. No. 2 LSU lost to Stony Brook on Friday, so even the best teams in the country aren’t winning every early season game much less a Midwest program. 

If Notre Dame can get back to hitting the baseball, the Irish should leave Miami with another win. 

*Lineups will be added when released 

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