This week was a good one for Baylor Baseball. Coming off a series win against WVU last week, the Bears finally seem to have found their groove. First, the Bears grabbed a win in Arlington, followed by a series win against OU.
Let's get started!
Baylor vs. UTA
Hitting-wise, the Bears seemed to come out swinging, with all 6 runs and the majority of their 13 hits coming in the first two innings. In the first, Brown scored on a fielder's choice hit by Wendel, A Ducoff single led to Price and Wendel scoring. In the second, a Wendel single led Gilcrease to score, a Price single allowed Brown to score, and a Ducoff single allowed Wendel to score. With 13 hits throughout the evening, the days of 2 hits per game seem to be but distant memories. (And for that, we are all grateful, amirite?)
Pitching was pretty good, as well. Theron Kay started, and in his 7 innings allowed only 6 hits and 2 runs while striking out 4. Montemayor replaced him on the mound, pitching the final 2 innings, allowing 1 hit and issuing 1 strikeout. Montemayor has proven to be a fairly solid guy on the mound. Even on his off days, he still has a pretty good game, and when he's on, watch out, because he throws straight FIRE.
Final Line: Baylor 6, UTA 2
Baylor vs. OU
Wow. Holy pitches, Batman. Daniel Castano took the mound for 9 full innings and pitched the first full-game shutout since 2008. During his 9 innings, he threw 119 pitches (an impressive count, per Coach Smith), allowing a mere 5 hits and issuing 4 strikeouts. He has proven to be a solid, solid guy on the mound, beginning in the LSU game. From then on, he's been pretty reliable on the mound, which is exactly what you want in your Friday night guy.
Hitting was another story. The three runs scored by Baylor in this game came in the first and the fifth. In the bottom of the first, a Price single led Logan Brown to score. In the fifth, the Bears scored 2 unearned insurance runs on a fly out by McLean. Altogether, the Bears had 7 hits against Jake Elliott, a reputable pitcher. This wasn't the same team at bat who were collectively inconsistent two weeks ago. There's still individual inconsistency (it's baseball, and furthermore we are all humans), but the consistency across the board is much improved.
Final Line: Baylor 3, OU 0
Nice play at 3B by Jonathan Ducoff & good scoop at 1B by Duncan Wendel to get leadoff batter in top 4. BU 1, OU 0. pic.twitter.com/I1cjp1dFOP
— Baylor Baseball (@BaylorBaseball) March 28, 2015
Pitching was good. Drew Tolson took the mound for 9 innings, showing great endurance deep into the game. He started a little shaky, walking 2 in the 1st (which led to both of the OU runs when they hit a triple into the hole between center and right field), but he seemed to improve as the game continued, throwing a total of 7 strikeouts and allowing a mere 2 hits. Besides the walks, I was impressed with Tolson's performance, especially since he threw a grand total of 99 pitches during 9 innings. (If you math that one out, that's an average 11 pitches per inning, which ain't a huge number. That's efficiency.)
Hitting was, again, pretty good. The Bears scored 3 in the bottom of the 4th, then scored 4 insurance runs in the 7th. In the 4th, an Esthay single led to a Price score, and a Menard single to center brought home Esthay and Aaron Dodson. In the 7th, a series of HBP and an intentional walk loaded the bases. A series of singles brought home 4 runners. Of all the hitting improvements, I'm the most impressed with the ability to capitalize and score when runners end up in scoring position. That's something that seemed to elude the Bears a few weeks ago, and I'm happy to see that it's returned.
Fielding was incredible this game. Besides the one well-hit ball into the hole between right and center fields, fielding was excellent. Kameron Esthay caught anything that came his way, and was responsible for every out in one inning, as he caught every fly out OU hit. The connection between infielders and 1st was also crucial in this game, as it nipped any men trying to get on base in the bud.
Final Line: Baylor 7, OU 2
I...yeah. This was a game I'll not harp on.
Pitching and fielding this game were a hot mess. With the 8 runs allowed by Hessemer in the 1st, the game was essentially over. There were 4 errors throughout the game, most of which came from fielding. OU was able to hit well, move around the bases, and simply overpower the Bears during this game.
Hitting for the Bears was pretty scattered. In the 5th, Menard singled and was later brought home on a Brown fly-out. In the 6th, Tunnell doubled, and was later brought home by and Esthay single. Finally, in the 8th, Sabatini singled, and was brought home by a Menard double.
Final Line: Oklahoma 13, Baylor 3
The Bears host University of Houston on Tuesday the 31st at 6:30. Sic 'em!
Also, for your viewing pleasure, here's the Uptown Funk parody with Voldemort. Enjoy responsibly, sports fans.
Feed the Beaver, folks.