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Red Storm Baseball improving, faces Butler on the road this weekend

The Red Storm have been busy in the past week, playing 6 games in about a week's time. Here's a look back at last week's action and a preview of what is to come.

John Liu

The St. John's Red Storm have had many ups and downs this year, but recently the Johnnies have been playing much better than earlier in the season.

St. John's currently stands at 12-10 on the year after going on a 6-2 run in their last 8 games. The Johnnies have taken advantage of their first home-stand of the season as they have rallied off wins in 4 of their first 6 games at Jack Kaiser Stadium.

The Johnnies have been led by their pitching staff which has given up just 15 runs in their last 8 games (1.88 runs/game). With that type of pitching, St. John's is likely to continue their hot streak going forward.

Junior Cody Stashak has continued to impress in his Division I debut as he has compiled 4 wins to go along with his 2.82 ERA and 7.82 SO/9. In addition, fellow junior Ryan McCormick has begun to emerge for the Red Storm as he earned Big East Pitcher of the Week honors for his performance last week. For the week, McCormick pitched 9.1 innings allowing no earned runs and fanning 10 batters.

It's worth mentioning that the Johnnies haven't been quiet at the plate either, as their bats have kicked it up a notch.  St. John's has gone from an average of 3.8 runs per game in their first 14 games to 5.1 in their last 8, including a season high 17 on March 28th against Rider.

The offense has been led by senior 1B Matt Harris who has a triple slash line of .377/.488/.493 on the year. Harris leads the Johnnies in all 3 of those categories and is the undeniable catalyst for this team's offense.

Looking ahead, St. John's were to begin play today against Wagner, but the game was cancelled on account of rain.

For the weekend, St. John's will play Butler in Indianapolis in a three game stretch from April 2-4. The Bulldogs have a story that is quite similar to Wagner as they began the year losing 14 of 17 but have now won their past 9 contests putting them at 12-14 on the year. Powered by an effective pitching staff, Butler has been winning by a margin of more than 5.5 runs per game during their hot streak and they will pose a formidable threat to the Johnnies.