TCU

TCU aiming to shore up rotation as road trip heads to Wichita State

TCU pitcher Rex Hill works in the first inning at UT Arlington. The junior left-hander pitched 4 1/3 innings in the Horned Frogs’ 17-4 victory Tuesday night at Clay Gould Ballpark.
TCU pitcher Rex Hill works in the first inning at UT Arlington. The junior left-hander pitched 4 1/3 innings in the Horned Frogs’ 17-4 victory Tuesday night at Clay Gould Ballpark. pmoseley@star-telegram.com

TCU is trying to think of a way to use Sean Wymer and other bullpen arms to help a rotation that has only one consistent starter, Brian Howard.

“We may have to piece things together, may have to be a little less conventional in some of our starts outside of Howard,” said coach Jim Schlossnagle, whose No. 9 Frogs (19-5) open a three-game series at Wichita State (9-16) on Friday. “We may have to throw a different guy every three or four innings. Right now, Howard has been the only starting pitcher who’s flat proven his ability to go through a lineup three times.”

Howard has averaged just over 6  1/3 innings a start. He is coming off an eight-inning performance at Texas and a seven-inning start against West Virginia.

Right now, Howard has been the only starting pitcher who’s flat proven his ability to go through a lineup three times.

TCU coach Jim Schlossnagle on Brian Howard

Luken Baker has averaged just over five innings in six starts, Rex Hill is averaging just over four innings, and Dalton Horton — who will debut as the Sunday starter this week — has been just under five innings in his four starts.

In the non-Howard starts, Schlossnagle said, “What we may have to do is just change the look after the starter gets through there a second time.”

Wymer is probably going to get a shot at that. Schlossnagle praised the freshman right-hander from Flower Mound after two perfect innings in relief Tuesday at UT Arlington. Wymer is 1-0 with no ERA in four appearances. He has struck out 10, walked three and allowed one hit in seven innings.

TCU starting pitchers Luken Baker, 2-1, 1.74 Brian Howard, 4-1, 2.35 Dalton Horton, 3-0, 2.91 Rex Hill, 2-1, 5.83

“He’s got a chance to be really special,” Schlossnagle said. “We’ve seen that now a couple of times. We’re going to have to start using him more, even though our bullpen has been good. We’re going to have to find a role for him because he’s really special.”

Sophomore left-hander Drew Gooch also has a 0.00 ERA out of the bullpen in seven appearances. He also threw two perfect innings in the 17-4 victory at UT Arlington, also.

The series at Wichita State ends a seven-game road swing for TCU. The Horned Frogs are 2-2 on the trip, which began with a Big 12 series at Texas.

Carlos Mendez: 817-390-7760, @calexmendez

TCU at Wichita State

6:30 p.m. Friday (ESPN3), 1 p.m. Saturday (ESPNU), 1 p.m. Sunday (ESPN3)

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