When a baseball fan studies a pitcher's statistics and spots an ERA of 0.00, he can reasonably assume that the pitcher has thrown for six, perhaps seven, innings on the mound.
Like a lot of those seldom-used hurlers, Harvard's Bob Baxter boasts an ERA of 0.00.
But Baxter isn't seldom-used.
In fact, in his four appearances this season, Baxter has pitched 19-1/3 innings--more than anyone else on the staff.
The freshman left-hander, who is 3-0 and has 20 strikeouts to his credit, will earn his first Eastern Intercollegiate Baseball League (EIBL) start tomorrow when the Crimson hosts Columbia in a doubleheader.
But Harvard's first concern is Army, which enters today's doubleheader with a 9-3 mark in the EIBL (18-14 overall). The Crimson, which started a weekend later than the Cadets and also had two games postponed because of rain, sports a 5-1 league record (7-3 overall).
Army's probable pitchers are Rich Krafft (3-2) and Ken Toney (4-1). Its offensive weapons include freshman Hector Ortiz (.345), Erik Everton (.333) and Mike Iacobucci (.306). Through the Cadets' first 10 EIBL games, catcher Gary Bloomberg was batting 7-for-17, for a team-leading .412 average.
Senior left-handers Chris Marchok (1-2 overall) and Jim Chenevey (0-0) are Harvard's probable starters in today's games against Army.
When the Lions (6-6 EIBL, 27-9 overall) play the Crimson tomorrow, they will challenge Baxter and Kevin Curtin--who will probably start the first game--with offensive threats Mike Telesca (.327) and Eddie Quinn (.311).
Columbia will send freshman Mike Boccafola to the mound in the first game, with the second game's pitcher undecided.
Meanwhile, the Crimson squad features three .400 batters--Dan McConaghy (.421), Rich Renninger (.417), and Captain Mike Pakalnis (.400).
Harvard catcher-first baseman Jim DePalo is second in the EIBL in hitting with a .533 mark (.379 overall). Pakalnis is third in the league at .526 (10-for-19).
Last year Harvard swept Army, 2-1 (behind a complete game by Marchok), and 4-3, and split with Columbia, winning the opener, 4-2, but dropping the nightcap in eight innings, 1-0.