When a team gets to the stretch drive in any race, there is one place where it wants to be and that's right near the top. The Crimson batmen start today the two-week campaign that will wind up with a doubleheader at Army on May 12. If things go according to plan, Harvard will capture its third consecutive Eastern League title.
The nine (4-2) goes into this weekend's home action in third place in the EIBL behind leader Penn (7-2) and Cornell (5-2). The Crimson hopes to fatten its record at the expense of fourth place Princeton this afternoon and cellar-dwelling Columbia tomorrow.
The Tigers come to Cambridge with a 4-3 league record, mediocre pitching and a hitting attack that wouldn't scare even a Little League pitcher.
William Stryker, director of Princeton Sports Information, said yesterday, "We have a couple guys who can hit the ball--Ken Beytin, Pete Korsan and Dave Mistretta--but the rest of these guys, if they even get the ball out of the infield, we stop the game and bronze the ball."
Pitching for Princeton is not as gloomy as the hitting outlook, but the forecast is far from rosy. "Our pitchers came back from our southern trip with horrendous ERAs," Stryker said. "To make it worse, as our pitching improves and the staff ERA goes down, so does the team batting average."
Princeton ace Randy Blevins is the probable starter for today's game. Blevins, a 6 ft. 2 in. senior, owns a 3-2 record and is currently 11th amonth the pitching leaders of the EIBL with an ERA of 1.56. He has allowed only 7 hits in 23 innings pitched and has struck out 17.
Unfortunately for the Tigers, the Crimson will return the favor and post Roz Brayton, Crimson number one man, on the pitcher's mound. Brayton is 2-1 in League play this spring.
"Confident about the game?" Stryker queried yesterday. "We've got no reason to be. How can you be confident when your team bats under .200 and the other one averages over .350? All we can hope for is for us to have a great game and for Harvard to have a really bad one."