After 41 games in 54 days, the baseball team’s hopes for an Ivy League title rest on this weekend’s four games against Brown (15-24, 5-11 Ivy).

Various scenarios could take place this weekend but, to put it simply, Yale (20-20-1, 9-6-1) needs to win at least two games more than Dartmouth (21-13, 12-4) — who will play four against Harvard this weekend — to retain its Red Rolfe Division title and, ultimately, keep its Ivy League title chances alive.

[ydn-legacy-photo-inline id=”12226″ ]

Winning two more than the Big Green would force an incomplete tied game against Penn from earlier in the season to completion. If Yale was to win that contest, the Elis would take part in a playoff against Dartmouth for the Rolfe Divison title and earn the opportunity to play the Lou Gehrig Division winner for the Ivy League Championship.

But in order for any of the above scenarios to play out, the Bulldogs need to perform well and win as often as possible in the home-and-home series against the Bears: Anything less than a split would eliminate the Elis.

After starting the season 6-14, the Bulldogs have put together a stellar second half of the season with a 14-6-1 record and have won six of their last eight matchups.

The last seven games have been without Ryan Lavarnway ’09, one of the nation’s best hitters. In the slugger’s absence, the Elis have been riding three hot bats.

Center fielder and leadoff man Josh Cox ’08 is hitting a stellar .386 this season, with an Ivy League-leading 68 hits and 20 stolen bases.

P.J. Gorynski ’08 — Lavarnway’s replacement at catcher — and Stefan Schropp ’09 have also helped shoulder the load. Schropp is hitting at a .346 clip while Gorynski is hitting .331, with seven home runs.