Bulldogs get ready to open play in CWS

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Omaha, NE-Seventh-ranked Mississippi State (48-18) resumes its NCAA postseason run on college baseball’s biggest stage Saturday when the Bulldogs take on first-time foe Oregon State (50-11) in the opening game of the 2013 NCAA College World Series.

State, playing in its ninth CWS and first since 2007, meets the OSU Beavers at 2:10 p.m. (CDT) in the initial game of this year’s NCAA championship event at TD Ameritrade Park Omaha. The game will be televised nationally by ESPN2. It’s the first CWS game in three-year old TD Ameritrade Park Omaha for the Diamond Dogs. Their previous College World Series games in 1971, 1979, 1981, 1985, 1990, 1997, 1998 and 2007 were contested at Johnny Rosenblatt Stadium.

The radio broadcast of MSU’s College World Series competition will be carried on the statewide Bulldog Sports Network with Jim Ellis and Bart Gregory describing the action.

Senior righty Kendall Graveman (7-5, 3.14) will make his 18th start of the campaign in Saturday’s opener. Pac-12 champion Oregon State is expected to start freshman right-hander Andrew Moore (14-1, 1.36).

The Bulldogs begin CWS play having won 12 of their last 15 games, including a two-game sweep of No. 6 national seed Virginia in last weekend’s NCAA Charlottesville Super Regional.

Saturday’s game marks the CWS coaching debut for fifth-year Bulldog skipper John Cohen. Cohen was a member of MSU’s 1990 team that notched its 50th win during the College World Series. His 2013 MSU edition has posted the most wins since, the most for Mississippi State since 1990

Junior All-American outfielder and first-round draft selection Hunter Renfroe (.360, 15 HR, 61 RBI) paces the Bulldogs at the plate. Junior shortstop Adam Frazier (.359, 19 doubles, 38 RBI) this week became the fourth Diamond Dog accorded All-America team honors in 2013. Frazier, the fourth player in MSU history to reach the century mark in hits, was named to the 2013 Perfect Game College All-America Team. The Bishop, Ga., product has 102 hits, 12 in six NCAA Tournament games, and with his next hit would tie the mark of MSU record-holder Brian Wiese (1998, 103 hits).

The other two Bracket One teams in this year’s CWS, Louisville (51-12) and Indiana (48-18), meet in Saturday’s 7 p.m. nightcap.